The reign of cruelty by Jehoram is also documented in 2 Kings 8. We read in this chapter about one of the cruelest kings of Judah; evidenced by killing his brother and anyone that may have been a threat to the king’s leadership. It seems clear that his wife, Athaliah; who was the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel, influenced the new king toward cruelty and spiritual harlotry.
In spite of all the negatives that were attributed to Jehoram, as a descendent of David, was a benefactor of the covenant the Lord had established with the young shepherd who became king. She had been mentored by two of the most heinous leaders, her parents. Again we see how influential a spouse or family member can have on even a godly person.
Jehoram not only went astray, but “caused the inhabitants of Jerusalem to commit harlotry, and led Judah astray.” Leader’s decisions not only have a personal effect, they have a corporate effect as well. Decisions are further reaching than we understand. Make wise choices.
How the letter reference as being written by Elijah was most likely written by Elisha, since Elijah had been translated previous to this time. The contents reveal the judgment of the Lord against Jehoram and the affliction by which he would ultimately die. Included in the judgment was the stirring up of the Philistines, Arabs and the Ethiopians; when upon defeating Judah, took all Jehroam’s possession and the killing of his sons, with one exception – Jehoahaz.
This depraved king was so evil; he didn’t even receive a royal burial as many of his predecessors did.
A wise minister counseled a man about his life and what was really important. It seemed the man was obsessed with academic degrees that limited his social life. The wise minister asked the man what he would rather than said about him at his funeral; how many degrees he had or how many friends.
Let us choose the most important and eternally lasting, as opposed to those which would more self-serving. (story adapted from one shared by Tony Campolo)
The most important eternal decision we can make on this Day we celebrate the birth of the King of kings; is to accept Him as our Lord and Savior. What a gift!