family · The Journey

The Journey Readings: Week 129… and unhealthy family relationships…

Family… sometimes we think that’s the most important thing there is in life… that nothing bad can come from supporting family members… blood relations… but sometimes… it’s just not true…

Through King Jehoshaphat we see some pitfalls… from unhealthy family relationships…

Jehoshaphat… king of Judah… followed the ways of God…
he ruled the southern kingdom of what was formerly one nation…

The Lord was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked
in the earlier ways of his father David. He did not seek Baals,
but sought the God of his father and walked in his commandments,
and not according to the practices of Israel.
2 Chronicles 17:3-4 ESV

Ahab… king of Israel…the northern kingdom… sought idols… and practiced evil…

All the peoples of Judah and Israel were family… the descendants of Abraham… Isaac… Jacob…

Jehoshaphat seemed to put alliance with family on line with… or above… his loyalty to God…

Even though he honored God and His ways… he allowed his son to marry into Ahab’s family… a wicked unbelieving family…

Now Jehoshaphat had great riches and honor,
and he made a marriage alliance with Ahab.
2 Chronicles 18:1 ESV

Ahab invited Jehoshaphat to go on a military campaign with him against a common enemy… Jehoshaphat answered…

“I am as you are, my people as your people.
We will be with you in the war.”
2 Chronicles 18:3 ESV

It’s all in the family… it must be a great idea…

The war did not go well… Ahab was killed… despite his efforts to disguise himself as one of the soldiers… and making sure Jehoshaphat fought in full royal garb as a prime target for the enemy…

Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned in safety
to his house in Jerusalem. But Jehu the son of Hanani the seer
went out to meet him and said to King Jehoshaphat,
“Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord?
Because of this, wrath has gone out against you from the Lord. …”
2 Chronicles 19:1-2 ESV

Jehoshaphat was scolded by God… for putting family ahead of godliness…
helping the wicked… just because they were related…

Toward the end of his reign… Jehoshaphat aligned with Israel again in a business deal…

After this Jehoshaphat king of Judah joined with
Ahaziah king of Israel, who acted wickedly.
He joined him in building ships in Eziongeber.
Then Eliezer the son of Dodavahur of Mareshah
prophesied against Jehoshaphat saying,
“Because you have joined Ahaziah, the Lord will destroy
what you have made.” And the ships were wrecked
and were not able to go to Tarshish.
2 Chronicles 20:35-37 ESV

God would not allow Jehoshaphat… His follower… to profit from an alliance with one who acted wickedly… even if it was “family”…

I wonder how often we do the same…
because it’s family… we go to great lengths to support…
even if they have rejected God and His ways…

Jesus had some difficult teaching on family… and faith…

“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father
and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters,
yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. …”
Luke 14:26 ESV

Our culture’s sensibility on family thinks this is preposterous…
but this is what He says…
alliances with Him should never be superseded by family…

His blood… is thicker than family…
faithfulness to Him and His Way…
should always come before relatives…

Even worse… Jehoshaphat’s unhealthy ideas about family…
led to devastation for his family and his nation…

When Jehoshaphat died… his oldest son reigned…
(this was the one married to Ahab’s daughter…)
he began his reign by killing all his brothers…
and some of the princes in Israel…
in order to strengthen his kingdom…

No… family relationships are not always great…
beware unhealthy family relationships…
keep your relationship with God healthy…

This week’s readings…
Monday                 2 Chronicles 25:14 – 26:23
Tuesday                 2 Chronicles 27-28
Wednesday            2 Chronicles 29
Thursday               2 Chronicles 30-31
Friday                   2 Chronicles 32:1 – 33:9

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s