Condemned By Conformity     2 Kings 14:8-14; 15:10, 13-14, 16      July 25, 2004

8 Amaziah then sent messengers to Jehoash son of Jehoahaz, son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, "Come, let us meet face to face." 9 King Jehoash of Israel sent [word] to Amaziah king of Judah, saying, "The thistle that was in Lebanon once sent [a message] to the cedar that was in Lebanon, saying, 'Give your daughter to my son as a wife.' Then a wild animal that was in Lebanon passed by and trampled the thistle. 10 You have indeed defeated Edom, and you have become overconfident. Enjoy your glory and stay at home. Why should you stir up such trouble that you fall--you and Judah with you?" 11 But Amaziah would not listen, so King Jehoash of Israel advanced. He and King Amaziah of Judah faced off at Beth-shemesh that belongs to Judah. 12 Judah was routed before Israel, and [Judah's men] fled, each to his own tent. 13 King Jehoash of Israel captured Judah's King Amaziah son of Joash, son of Ahaziah, at Beth-shemesh. Then Jehoash went to Jerusalem and broke down 200 yards of Jerusalem's wall from the Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate. 14 He took all the gold and silver and all the utensils found in the Lord's temple and in the treasuries of the king's palace, and the hostages. Then he returned to Samaria.

2 Kings 15:10, 13-14 & 16 (HCSB) 10 Shallum son of Jabesh conspired against Zechariah. He struck him down publicly, killed him, and became king in his place.

13 In the thirty-ninth year of Judah's King Uzziah, Shallum son of Jabesh became king; he reigned in Samaria a full month. 14 Then Menahem son of Gadi came up from Tirzah to Samaria and struck down Shallum son of Jabesh there. He killed him and became king in his place.

16 At that time, [starting] from Tirzah, Menahem attacked Tiphsah, all who were in it, and its territory. Because they wouldn't surrender, he attacked [it and] ripped open all the pregnant women. 2 Kings 15:10-16 (HCSB)

Introduction
Lessons that jump around are not easy to organize or teach. This lesson with the actions of Amaziah remind me of some teen age boys I knew during my youth. Mature men don't have to go around challenging others to a fight. Earlier Amaziah enjoyed a sizeable victory and from that his pride swelled. We do not find a record of Amaziah talking to God about this challenge to battle he offers, so we can conclude this challenge is a matter of false pride. Amaziah was condemned before he started; Condemned By Conformity to the ways of the world.
 

1.    Condemned By the Conformity Of . . Pride. v 8
    8 Amaziah then sent messengers to Jehoash son of Jehoahaz, son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, "Come, let us meet face to face."

    This verse proves the scriptural admonition "Pride comes before destruction," (Prov. 16:18). Everyone has pride, and some pride may be helpful but this pride causes condemnation for the king.
 

2.    Condemned By the Conforming To . . Past Victories. v 8

        A.    A Mocking . . Parable About Past Victories. v 9
            9 King Jehoash of Israel sent [word] to Amaziah king of Judah, saying, "The thistle that was in
            Lebanon once sent [a message] to the cedar that was in Lebanon, saying, 'Give your daughter to
            my son as a wife.' Then a wild animal that was in Lebanon passed by and trampled the thistle.

        B.    A Memorandum . . Parading Past Victories. v 10a
            10 You have indeed defeated Edom, and you have become overconfident.

        C.    A Message . . Positioning Past Victories. v 10b
            Enjoy your glory and stay at home. Why should you stir up such trouble that you fall--you
            and Judah with you?"

    The king of Israel sent a mocking parable to the king of Judah concerning his pride cause by significant, and yet insignificant victories. He accuses the King of Judah of being over confident. False pride always works this way. The king of Israel tries to deflate the swollen head of the king of Judah as his past victories caused him to be unreasonable proud.
 

3.    Condemned By the Conforming of . . Pretentious Adversaries. v 11-14

        A.    The . . Routing by Pretentious Adversaries. Vs 11-13a
            11 But Amaziah would not listen, so King Jehoash of Israel advanced. He and King Amaziah
            of Judah faced off at Beth-shemesh that belongs to Judah. 12 Judah was routed before Israel,
            and [Judah's men] fled, each to his own tent. 13 King Jehoash of Israel captured Judah's King
            Amaziah son of Joash, son of Ahaziah, at Beth-shemesh.

        B.    The . . Ransacking by Pretentious Adversaries. Vs 13b -14
            Then Jehoash went to Jerusalem and broke down 200 yards of Jerusalem's wall from the
            Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate. 14 He took all the gold and silver and all the utensils found in
            the Lord's temple and in the treasuries of the king's palace, and the hostages. Then he returned
            to Samaria.

        When pride caused the king to over extend himself he got routed by his enemy. The king of Judah never dreamed this kind of devastation would take place. To top off his personal defeat his capitol city and the temple was ransacked. It was a very sad day in the history of Jerusalem.
 
 

4.    Condemned By the Conforming of . . Persecuting Antagonists. 15:10, 13-14, 16
        A.    The . . Striking Down of Kings By the Persecuting Antagonist. v 10
            10 Shallum son of Jabesh conspired against Zechariah. He struck him down publicly, killed
            him, and became king in his place.

        B.    The . . Short Reign of Kings By the Persecuting Antagonist. v 13-14
            13 In the thirty-ninth year of Judah's King Uzziah, Shallum son of Jabesh became king; he
            reigned in Samaria a full month. 14 Then Menahem son of Gadi came up from Tirzah to
            Samaria and struck down Shallum son of Jabesh there. He killed him and became king in his
            place.

        C.    The . . Scandalous Actions of the Persecuting Antagonist. v 16
            16 At that time, [starting] from Tirzah, Menahem attacked Tiphsah, all who were in it, and its
            territory. Because they wouldn't surrender, he attacked [it and] ripped open all the pregnant
            women.

        Conforming to the world leads to one kind of terrorist or antagonist after another. Old Testament history reveals one king after another is struck down, and many ungodly kings reigned only a short time before someone killed them. The last verse of scripture in this lesson shares about some horrendous action of people failing to recognize the Lordship of Christ in their life. How could anyone in their right mind rip a baby out of the womb.  Surely we do not want to be Condemned By Conformity. Amen? Amen!