Today’s Reading: 2 Chronicles 24:1-25:28
Many of us have sing the hymn, ‘it is well with my soul’ but in reality, how is it with your soul today? Our passage today takes place a little over 200 years after the reign of David. The kingdom of Israel has been divided for over a century. It’s a little tricky to keep track of the two resulting kingdoms, mainly because the Southern kingdom, which is called Judah, has all the things we would associate with Israel: Jerusalem is there, the Temple is there, the kings are the descendants of David. The northern kingdom, which has none of those things that we would associate with the nation of Israel, retains the name “Israel.”
What is frightening about Amaziah’s fall into idolatry is that one minute he was serving God, and the next he was prostrating himself before an image of silver or gold. What makes a person turn like that? Have you seen it? The friend or even mentor you had so respected spiritually? A young Christian, maybe even someone you’ve been discipling, who seems to be going great guns and then suddenly decides to bag it all?
If we hope to avoid the path Amaziah took, we need to figure out what happened. I believe the answer is in verse 2: “He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, but not wholeheartedly.” Even when he was doing what was right, his heart just wasn’t in it. Obedience is important, but it is not enough. God is after a heart which is fully devoted to him. Amaziah did what was right — but he never put his whole heart into it. He had faith, but it was a flabby, lukewarm faith — not the kind of stuff that can handle victory without giving in to pride or defeat without giving in to despair.