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Don’t Miss Out
We frequently keep away from Previous Testomony narrative books like 1 and a pair of Kings. They’ll really feel international and intimidating. It’s simpler to get sensible software from Philippians, or Matthew, or the Psalms. Lots of the tales in 1 and a pair of Kings can appear unusual and even disturbing.
However after we keep away from 1 and a pair of Kings, we miss out. It is a theologically wealthy e book that makes a novel contribution to our understanding of our sin and frailty, God’s character and provision, and the plan of redemption being labored out in historical past. If this portion of Scripture had been excised from the canon, one thing precious can be misplaced from our understanding of the gospel.
Listed below are 4 particular ways in which 1 and a pair of Kings may also help us.
1. 1 and a pair of Kings helps us put the entire Bible collectively.
A number of outstanding biblical themes, growing from Genesis all the way in which to Revelation, are interwoven with the narrative of 1 and a pair of Kings.
Temple. A lot of the early parts of 1 Kings concern the development and dedication of the temple. Solomon’s dedicatory prayer in 1 Kings eight is without doubt one of the nice mountain peaks within the biblical panorama, setting the temple within the bigger context of the exodus (Moses), the monarchy (David), and God’s plan to bless the nations (Abraham). Finding out 1 and a pair of Kings supplies us with a richer understanding of God’s want to dwell amongst his folks, misplaced since Adam and Eve’s expulsion from the Backyard (Genesis 3), and in the end fulfilled on the brand new earth (Revelation 21).
This accessible examine information helps readers see God’s mercy and style towards his folks as he gives blessings as a substitute of curses in response to their disobedience—pointing ahead to the faithfulness of the Redeemer who was to come back. A part of the Realizing the Bible collection.
God’s Phrase. The tales of Elijah and Elisha include a number of the most dramatic moments within the Bible, reminiscent of Elijah’s standoff with the false prophets of Baal in 1 Kings 18. By the ministries of those and different prophets, 1 and a pair of Kings emphasizes the binding, inescapable nature of God’s Phrase. Numerous occasions occasions are interpreted with the chorus “this occurred to meet the phrase of the Lord” (e.g., 1 Kings 12:15). The phrase of God is true and efficacious. It introduced the world into being at creation (Heb. 11:3); it would choose the nations on the finish of historical past (Rev. 19:15); and it speaks with the identical surety now by prophet and preacher.
Land. God’s promise of the land of Canaan to the folks of Israel, pledged within the Abrahamic covenant and achieved underneath the management of Joshua, is briefly thwarted by the Babylonian exile on the finish of two Kings. The post-exilic literature narrates the return of the folks to dwell within the land and their covenant renewal with the Lord, even whereas a way of anticlimax anticipates a higher restoration to come back (e.g., Hag. 2:3–9).
Kingdom. In 2 Samuel 7, God promised David that one among his offspring would reign on his throne, construct a home for God, and set up a kingdom eternally. The early chapters of 1 Kings current Solomon’s accession to the throne and constructing of the temple by way of God’s faithfulness to those guarantees, whereas in the end leaving the reader in expectation of a higher Davidic King who will, not like Solomon, set up an everlasting kingdom of peace and righteousness.
2. 1 and a pair of Kings teaches us what revival appears to be like like.
First and a pair of Kings feels very completely different than the e book of Acts. In Acts, God’s kingdom is surging ahead. In Kings, it typically appears languishing. However exactly for that cause, 1 and a pair of Kings could make a novel contribution to our understanding of reformation and revival among the many folks of God.
By learning these passages, we see what it appears to be like like when God brings a few revival of true faith after many years and even centuries of decadence. One thinks particularly of Jehoash’s repairing of the temple (2 Kings 11–12), and Josiah’s reforms (2 Kings 22–23). No surprise this e book was particularly vital to the Protestant Reformers!
Within the midst of the frustrations and failures of actual life, God is at work. Chaos doesn’t imply his absence.
3. 1 and a pair of Kings reveals us how God is at work throughout troublesome seasons.
1 and a pair of Kings spans the time from Israel’s highest second to her lowest—from the glory of Solomon to a burning rubble. There are some vibrant moments alongside the way in which, however the general image is one among division, decline, and continuous downward spiral.
It ends in utter devastation with Nebuchadnezzar’s remaining siege on Jerusalem. Town is razed, the leaders are executed, the individuals are deported. Even the temple is destroyed and its valuable metals stolen. The Babylonian exile is like an atomic bomb within the biblical storyline. To human eyes, it might seem like the story is over.
And but, within the midst of all of it, God was at work. His functions are by no means thwarted, and he’ll use even the exile to evaluate and purify His folks as historical past strikes ahead.
Studying 1 and a pair of Kings helps us trudge onward through the painful and grinding seasons of life. Within the midst of the frustrations and failures of actual life, God is at work. Chaos doesn’t imply his absence.
4. 1 and a pair of Kings reminds us how badly we’d like Jesus.
1 and a pair of Kings is properly titled. As a report of monarchical succession, it tells the story of Israel (and Judah) by the lens of her kings. The repeated introductory chorus, indicating the age, size of reign, and ethical high quality of every king, kinds the skeleton of the narrative, and the e book repeatedly emphasizes how every king in the end leads the folks both towards the Lord or idols.
On this manner, the e book of Kings binds up the destiny of the folks with the destiny of the chief. Good kings convey blessing to the complete folks, and unhealthy kings convey judgment. In the end, the complete nation suffers for lack of a godly ruler. But the story additionally ends with a glimmer of hope, as the discharge of the Judean King Jehoiachin from jail (2 Kings 25:27–30) indicators to discerning readers that the Davidic dynasty has not been snuffed out.
The resounding takeaway from 1 and a pair of Kings is how badly God’s folks want a Savior King, and the way grateful we ought to be that Jesus has come to be this for us.
Assume how issues have now modified! God’s individuals are not dwindling in repeated cycles of unfaithfulness and judgment. Jesus has ascended to the place of supreme authority. The Spirit has been poured out. The gospel is surging ahead. Jesus is, proper now, reigning in energy and glory, and interceding for his folks. And someday, maybe very quickly, he’s coming to finish the work.
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