The Completer-Finisher (2 Kings 9)
This passage from 2 Kings 9 tells of Elisha commissioning a younger prophet to go and anoint Jehu, who is a captain in the army, as the next king in Israel. He goes from there and finds the King of Israel, Joram (Ahab’s son), and the Kings of Judah, Ahaziah (who’s mother was Ahab’s daughter) and kills them both. He then pursues Jezebel (the wife of the late Ahab) and sees her thrown down from a high window. All of this was prophesied by Elijah in 1 Kings 21: 21-23.
God will: _“utterly sweep you away, and will cut off from Ahab every male, both bond and free in Israel; 22 and I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah, because of the provocation with which you have provoked Me to anger, and because you have made Israel sin. Of Jezebel also has the LORD spoken, saying, ‘The dogs will eat Jezebel in the district of Jezreel.'”
It is quite a bloodthirsty passage, but what we have to see is that God is intent on bringing justice. He cares about the underdog, the oppressed, and downtrodden, the Naboth’s of this world. Even though there was a delay, He will fulfill his promises.
We see God’s mercy in sending his Son to preach "the gospel to the poor, proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed." (Luke 4)
But ultimately, it points us towards the return of Christ who will bring judgement on the earth. As in 2 Kings 9 it will happen quickly!
We talk a lot about God’s mercy and grace in Christ, but rarely talk about his ultimate judgement, even though Jesus spoke about it quite a lot! Why do you think this is? Have we become embarrassed by this very real part of God’s nature?
This passage also helps us to see that delay doesn’t mean that God had forgotten or was unable to fulfil what He had promised through his prophet. Have you experienced delay like this? What things you are waiting in faith for, believing that God has spoken and will fulfill?
Thinking about Christ’s return encourages us to be more urgent in inviting people to church, carol services and share our faith one to one. This passage shows us that after a long period of delay judgement came suddenly. We live in days of grace, where all people have the opportunity to repent and follow Christ. In fact, God delays the return of his son in order that more people can enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Discuss together how you could take more opportunities in sharing your faith with others.
Finally, worship together. When it seems like evil in the world goes unchecked, we have a certain hope for the future. God is in control and ultimately Christ will return and create a new heaven and earth. There will be no more evil, no more wars or oppression, but a just, loving God will rule us.