Short Term



2 Kings 15:8-16
8 In the thirty-eighth year of Azariah king of Judah, Zechariah the son of Jeroboam reigned over Israel in Samaria six months.
9 And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, as his fathers had done. He did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which he made Israel to sin.
10 Shallum the son of Jabesh conspired against him and struck him down at Ibleam and put him to death and reigned in his place.
11 Now the rest of the deeds of Zechariah, behold, they are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel.
12 (This was the promise of the Lord that he gave to Jehu, “Your sons shall sit on the throne of Israel to the fourth generation.” And so it came to pass.)

13 Shallum the son of Jabesh began to reign in the thirty-ninth year of Uzziah king of Judah, and he reigned one month in Samaria.
14 Then Menahem the son of Gadi came up from Tirzah and came to Samaria, and he struck down Shallum the son of Jabesh in Samaria and put him to death and reigned in his place.
15 Now the rest of the deeds of Shallum, and the conspiracy that he made, behold, they are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel.
16 At that time Menahem sacked Tiphsah and all who were in it and its territory from Tirzah on, because they did not open it to him. Therefore he sacked it, and he ripped open all the women in it who were pregnant.

Imagine living in a time when you get a new national leader who only last for six months or less! These events point to the downward spiral that is engulfing the Northern Tribes of Israel. Within 50 years of these events, Israel will disappear forever, dispersed into slavery because of their idolatry. These are tumultuous times for the people of God and even in this chaos, they refuse to look to God for rescue. Well, let’s amend that – they will look to God for rescue, but continue to refuse to give Him their love and loyalty. They still want their false gods, for those are controllable.

Today we face a national tragedy. The east coast has been devastated by a storm of epic proportions. One cannot help but be moved to tears as the destruction of Hurricane Sandy is revealed after a night of terror. But is there any mention of turning to God and begging for help? That is most certainly happening on an individual level. But as a nation, are we looking at God and begging for forgiveness for our idolatries? Are we seeking His face for help and aid in our hour of need? I fear that we are not. Instead we are pulling ourselves up by our damaged bootstraps and declaring that we will fix this! It makes me sad.

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