A Godly Influence.
“Then Jehoiada made a covenant between the LORD and the king and the people that they would be the LORD’s people. He also made a covenant between the king and the people.” – 2 Kings 11:17 NLT
Salt and light. That is what we have been called to be – providing an influence and making an impact on the society in which we live. As God’s chosen people we exist to influence. We can and should make a difference in our surroundings. We are His ambassadors, His change agents, who are indwelt and empowered by the very Spirit of God. Our presence in this society should be felt. Our lives should be making a difference. Just like Jehoiada did. Jehoiada was the high priest of God living in a time when the worship of God was waning. The people of Judah were worshiping Baal more than they were worshiping God. A line of kings had led them in rebellion against God and caused them to turn their hopes to false gods instead. Even in Jerusalem, home of the temple of God, they had erected a temple to the rival god, Baal. The queen, Athaliah, was a wicked woman who had ascended to the throne when her son Ahaziah had been killed. She did so by killing all the royal offspring – her own grandchildren – so that she would be the only heir left. But little did she know that God had preserved one son, Joash, by having him hidden in the temple, where he was protected for six years by Jehoiada, the high priest.
For six long years, Jehoiada kept the future king of Judah safe, providing him with around-the-clock protection. He knew that if Athaliah ever got wind that Joash was alive, she would have him destroyed. He had to keep him alive long enough so that he could grow old enough to crown him king. So when Joash turned seven, “Jehoiada brought out Joash, the king’s son, and placed the crown on his head. He presented Joash with a copy of God’s covenant and proclaimed him king. They anointed him, and all the people clapped their hands and shouted, ‘Long live the king!'” (2 Kings 11:12 NLT). Jehoiada had endured the wicked reign of Athaliah for six long years, but now it was time to make a change. During that time he must have been grooming this young boy, teaching him the law and telling him about Yahweh, the one true God. He must have told him all the stories about David, the one king of Israel who was a man after God’s own heart. He probably read him the writings of Solomon, the wisest king who had ever lived. He more than likely told him all the stories of God’s deliverance of the people of Israel from captivity, of His miraculous provisions during their wilderness wandering years, and of His provision of the Land of Promise. Behind the scenes, Jehoiada was preparing the next king of Judah to be a king who had a heart for God.
But Jehoiada’s influence didn’t stop there. He had Athaliah executed for her crimes against God and the royal family. “Then Jehoiada made a covenant between the LORD and the king and the people that they would be the LORD’s people. He also made a covenant between the king and the people” (2 Kings 11:17 NLT). He called the people back to God. He encouraged them to restore their commitment to God. And they took that commitment so seriously that they immediately tore down the temple of Baal and killed the high priest of Baal. Jehoiada’s godly influence was far-reaching. He made a difference. “So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was peaceful because Athaliah had been killed at the king’s palace” (2 Kings 11:20 NLT). The city was peaceful. The people rejoiced. A godly man had made a powerful impact on the society in which he lived. And he had not done so without risk. Everything he did was risky. But he was willing to do it because it was the right thing to do. Godly people living godly lives will have a godly influence. They will make a difference. What is God asking you to do today? What risk are you willing to take to stand up for God and against wickedness? You could be the difference maker.
Father, I want to make a difference. I want my life to make an impact on the world in which I live. Like Jehoiada, I want to be used by You to prepare the next generation to live for You and serve You. But to do that I am going to have to want to protect them from evil. I am going to have to take a stand for You. Don’t let me become complacent or content with my life the way it is. You have called me to serve You, not me. Show me what You would have me do to make a difference today. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men