Monday, March 10, 2014

Book 2 - Day 5 Jehosheba

Grabbing the baby and frantically running through the corridors towards the Temple, Jehosheba’s anxiety was at an extreme high.  Hearing the screams and rage coming from behind her, she focused on the task at hand.  Holding the baby close to muffle any cries, Jehosheba motioned for the baby’s nurse to hurry and follow her. 
“When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she proceeded to destroy the whole royal family.  But Jehosheba, the daughter of King Jehoram and sister of Ahaziah, took Joash son of Ahaziah and stole him away from among the royal princes, who were about to be murdered.  She put him and his nurse in a bedroom to hide him from Athaliah; so he was not killed.  He remained hidden with his nurse at the temple of the Lord for six years while Athaliah ruled the land.”         
Athaliah, a murderer and wicked woman who encouraged her son in “wrong doing” (2 Chronicles 22:3), thought she had annihilated the royal linage of King David, but she was mistaken.  God always has a plan and will always triumph.  This prideful, arrogant woman was no match for another who loved the Lord and followed after his ways.  Good verses Evil, hate versus love, wicked versus righteousness and pride versus humility.  Jehosheba ran to the very place, the place Hannah ran for comfort, the place were our High Priest sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for us (Hebrews 8:1-2), the Temple of the Lord.  Where else would you place a baby far away from wicked hands, but in the “secret place of the Most High” (Psalm 91:1).
Jehosheba reminds me of Mordecai’s words to Queen Esther, “Do not think because you are in the king’s house you along of all the Jews will escape.  For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish.  And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?” God will not let his people perish.
For six years, the young prince Joash remained hidden with his nurse at the temple of the Lord while a wicked woman ruled.  Christian, the bible never promises life without persecution or hatred, but on the contrary our Lord and Savior said we are to expect it and receive it with great joy, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (Matthew 5:11-12).
            I can only imagine what those six years were like.  Having to keep this child hidden, think of Jehochbed, from people who would intent him harm, to hide an infant, a child locked away from prying eyes and gossiping mouths, must have had Jehosheba on and her husband on high alert.  I am sure there were “sheep in wolves clothing” ready to messenger the latest uprising, gossip and revolt up to Athaliah.  Six years of praying, fasting and believing the Lord for protection and safety.  Six years of waiting for the right time to announce who the rightful king was.  Six years of private conversations, praying these men who stood beside Jehoiada the priest, Jehosheba’s husband, would not betray them or King David’s heritage.  How long are you willing to wait for the Lord?  Are you willing to stand up against evil, in such a time and season as this for our Jesus Christ our Lord? Are you Jehosheba?

            Joash was seven years old when he began to reign (2 Kings 11:21).  He reigned in Jerusalem forty years and did what was right in the Lord’s eyes instructed by Jehoiada the priest (2 Kings 12:1-2).  “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” (Proverbs 22:6).  Joash was trained in the way of the Lord and God’s eyes approved.  Because of one woman’s bravery, because of one woman’s quick thinking, because of one woman willing to risk her life for the Lord, for truth and righteousness, good conquered evil.  One woman. 
            I pray that I can be as Jehosheba.  I do not want to be afraid of those who can harm the body, but not kill the soul, for as Christ said, “Do not be afraid of them.  There is nothing concealed that will to be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.  What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs.  Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. Rather be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:26-28).
            Christian, we are living in a time where many desire to silence the church.  We are living in a time where there is no prayer in school for our children and where many refuse to say the Pledge of Allegiance for not to offend someone with the verse, “Under God”.  We are living in a time were Christians are being persecuted, killed, imprisoned and silenced because of the Gospel.  America is in a state of “luke-warmness”.  Where is the outrage of these atrocities? Where are the Christians who children attend public school campaigning for prayer? Where are the Christians who desire worship and praise instead of “ungodly, twerking, scantily clothed” concerts? Where are these Christians?  I pray your reputation precedes you as a Christian who spreads the Gospel, is unashamed to stand with Christ, who picks up her Cross daily and lives for a High Priest. 
            Do not think you are the only one.  As I write, I am reminded of what the Lord spoke to the prophet Elijah, “Yet I have reserved seven thousand in Israel – all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and all whose mouth have not kissed him.” (1 Kings 19:18).  Pray to the Lord for those who will stand with you, pray with you, encourage you and desire this same precious seed to spread.  I plead with you Christian, do not compromise and succumb to the world.  It may look like there is no hope, but our God is a very big God.  We serve Maker of Heaven and Earth, Jehovah Jirah, El-Shaddai, Adonai, and the Great I AM!  He will never leave you nor forsake you.  Fight the good fight and be as Jehosheba in faith, spread the Gospel and Truth of Jesus of Nazareth.

Let us Pray and CONFESS the Word of the Living God;

            I call on the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Maker of Heaven and Earth and the Father of a Savior Jesus Christ.  The Christ said whatever I ask for in faith will be given unto me if I continue to ask, seek and knock (Matthew 7:7-8).  I desire to ask as Solomon, Father I seek wisdom.  I desire the wisdom to fight this battle against righteousness and Truth.  I desire the wisdom to remember Scripture when I am confronted “worldly” attitudes, the love as Christ to share with all people and the belief you will give me the words to say when I need to say them.
            I do not want to be afraid of what others will say or do for we do not have a spirit of fear, but of power, of love and of a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7).  So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand (Isaiah 41:10). I know 1 John 4:18 writes, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” Continue to strengthen me so I am unashamed, unafraid and bold in love for the Gospel.
            Praise you Lord for your protection. I praise you Lord I can dwell in the secret place of the Most High, finding rest in the shadow of the Almighty.  You are my refuge, my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.  I know you will save me from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.  I know you will cover me with your feathers, and under your wings I will find refuge; your faithfulness will be my shield and rampart.  I will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.  Lord, a thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near me. 
            I will make the Most High my dwelling, the Lord who is my refuge, and no harm will befall me, no disaster will come near my tent.  For you will command your angels concerning me to guard me in all my ways and they will lift me up in their hands so that I will not strike my foot against stone.  Lord you will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent!  I know the bible says, “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.  He will call upon me and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.” (Psalm 91). Praise God! In the name of Jesus of Nazareth I pray, Amen!

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