We have before us in this chapter of 2 Kings, a listing of the kings from Judah & Israel. Just reading a number of verses, it is easy to get confused to whom the writer is referring to; because of the references of Joash, Jehoash and Amaziah leading both Judah and Israel. Rest assured that is not the case, as they references to different kings over different nations.
The first several verses illustrate how Amaziah lead Israel back to a revival and renewal in serving the Lord; “he did what was right in the sight of the Lord”. However there was a short coming in not destroying the “high places”; which ultimately became part of the reason for the fall of Judah and Israel into Babylonian captivity. When he realized the kingdom “was established in his hand”, we had those who had conspired in the murder of his father.
We know that Amaziah understood the word of the Lord and the Law, as he did not put to death the conspirators children and family. According to Deuteronomy 24, fathers weren’t to be put to death for the sins of their children’s transgressions, nor were the children weren’t to be put to death as a result of their father’s transgression.
Edom rebelled against the rule of Judah, which David had taken; and it was in the heart of Amaziah to retake Edom and bring it back under Judah’s reign. As a result of having had success with Edom, he chose to fight with Israel and Jehoash (Joash); which was responded to with a parable that for each of the kings was easy to understand and recognize the meaning and symbolism. However Amaziah refused to listen to the king of Israel; he went to battle against Joash and was soundly defeated. The reason Israel didn’t back off from the battle, even after having given the parable, was due to the atrocities they had inflicted upon Israel. Children, women and aged men were butchered by Judah and they purposed to respond in like manner.
We discover that Jonah was a contemporary prophet of Israel and was the only one who has any of this written and spoken word of the Lord since Samuel. We also see Uzziah or Azariah arrives on the scene for Judah. The first part of his name means the help of the Lord and the second half means the strength of the Lord.
The work of ministry is tough regardless of what ministry one may have or be called to. When the Lord comes to help and impart strength we’re better off than attempting ministry in our own strength and not rely on His help.
Who is your helper; who is your strength? When it’s the Lord, we are empowered for the next level of ministry; provided we heed the Lord and His desires.