Godly Leaders Bless A Nation :: By Grant Phillips

After the death of David then Solomon his son, Israel was split into a northern and southern kingdom. The northern kingdom continued to be called Israel while the southern kingdom was called Judah.

The northern kingdom consisted of 19 kings beginning with Jeroboam I to Hoshea, a period of 210 years. Of the 19 kings in the northern kingdom, none of them could be classified as good kings. All were bad. No wonder they were carted off to Assyria 135 years before the southern kingdom fell.

The southern kingdom consisted of 20 kings beginning with Rehoboam to Zedekiah, a period of 345 years. Of the 20 kings in the southern kingdom, eight (8) could be classified as good kings (40%). Each of the eight kings enjoyed revival to one degree or another. It is these eight kings I would like for us to consider.

ASA – 2 Chronicles 14:1-16:14

“Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the LORD his God.” (2 Chronicles 14:2)

When Asa became king, the Spirit of God came upon a man named Azariah. God gave Azariah a message to give to King Asa. The message in part was:

“…Listen to me, Asa and all Judah and Benjamin. The LORD is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.” (2 Chronicles 15:2)

The remainder of God’s message to Asa is in 2 Chronicles 15:3-7. Asa’s response continues with verses 9-18. In short, he listened to the word of God. In doing so, he obeyed God, cleaned out the trash, and got the people back to serving the one true God.

JEHOSHAPHAT – 2 Chronicles 17:1-21:1

Jehoshaphat continued his father Asa’s ways of serving God, and God was with him.

“The LORD was with Jehoshaphat because he followed the ways of his father David before him. He did not consult the Baals but sought the God of his father and followed his commands rather than the practices of Israel. The LORD established the kingdom under his control; and all Judah brought gifts to Jehoshaphat, so that he had great wealth and honor. His heart was devoted to the ways of the LORD; furthermore, he removed the high places and the Asherah poles from Judah. The fear of the LORD fell on all the kingdoms of the lands surrounding Judah, so that they did not go to war against Jehoshaphat.” (2 Chronicles 17:3-6, 10)

Please pay particular attention to verses 7-9.

“In the third year of his reign he sent his officials … to teach in the towns of Judah. With them were certain Levites … and the priests…

They taught throughout Judah, taking with them the Book of the Law of the LORD; they went around to all the towns of Judah and taught the people.” (2 Chronicles 17:7-9)

The key again is that King Jehoshaphat listened to God’s word and obeyed it.

JOASH – 2 Chronicles 24:1-27

“Joash did what was right in the eyes of the LORD all the years of Jehoiada the priest.” (2 Chronicles 24:2)

Obviously revival was with the people because of their leader’s wisdom in listening to and obeying God. How do I know he listened to God and obeyed Him? “He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.” Anything short of listening to and obeying God would not compel him to do “what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”

AMAZIAH – 2 Chronicles 25:1-28

“He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, but not wholeheartedly.” (2 Chronicles 25:2)

AZARIAH (or UZZIAH) – 2 Chronicles 26:1-23

“He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father Amaziah had done. He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success.” (2 Chronicles 26:4-5)

JOTHAM – 2 Chronicles 27:1-9

“Jotham grew powerful because he walked steadfastly before the LORD his God.” (2 Chronicles 27:6)

HEZEKIAH – 2 Chronicles 29:1-32:33

“Then Hezekiah repented of the pride of his heart, as did the people of Jerusalem; therefore the LORD’s wrath did not come on them during the days of Hezekiah.” (2 Chronicles 32:26)

JOSIAH – 2 Chronicles 34:1-35:27

“The king stood by his pillar and renewed the covenant in the presence of the LORD—to follow the LORD and keep his commands, statutes and decrees with all his heart and all his soul, and to obey the words of the covenant written in this book.

Then he had everyone in Jerusalem and Benjamin pledge themselves to it; the people of Jerusalem did this in accordance with the covenant of God, the God of their ancestors.

Josiah removed all the detestable idols from all the territory belonging to the Israelites, and he had all who were present in Israel serve the LORD their God. As long as he lived, they did not fail to follow the LORD, the God of their ancestors.” (2 Chronicles 34:31-33)

“Jeremiah composed laments for Josiah, and to this day all the male and female singers commemorate Josiah in the laments. These became a tradition in Israel and are written in the Laments.” (2 Chronicles 35:25)

I have listed the Scripture passages for each king so you may read about them at your leisure. I have also chosen a couple of verses (or one) as an emphasis on each king. Please notice when reading about them that none of them were perfect, they each had their own strengths and weaknesses, and each followed God to one degree or another, but all eight were obedient to God.

I am reminded of the Parable of the Talents and the Sheep and Goats judgment when Jesus comes in His glory. Each of us will be judged at one point or another based on one criteria; i.e. our obedience to God. That means, as an individual, did we honor His Son through our faith in Him? That also means, as nations, did we honor His Son through obedience to Him?

We in America are at a crossroads. Most of us, as is the rest of the world, are traveling the broad road to destruction, and we in turn are leading our blessed country toward destruction.

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)

As individuals, millions upon millions in this country are on the broad road and entering through the wide gate of destruction. Nothing but hell is ahead. Only a handful, in comparison, has chosen the narrow road that leads through a small gate to everlasting rewards in Heaven.

As a nation we have spit in the face of Almighty God even after He has so richly blessed us all these 243 years. The Lord God has not only been with us spiritually, but has also blessed us materially. We have never been a perfect country, but we have always looked toward Him for leadership, until the cancer of pride took its toll. Through our pride we no longer needed God and chose the back alleys of sinful pleasures to fill the void. Now we sit in our own rebellious drunken vomit thinking all is well since we make a pretense of being good little boys and girls.

Eight (8) kings out of 39 (Israel 19, Judah 20) chose to follow God, and during their reigns the country (Judah) blossomed. Eventually though, came pay day, and they all went into captivity. They came to the crossroad and chose the wide gate and destruction followed.

I have never seen so much pure undiluted hatred toward God and His ways as I am now seeing in our country.  Yet, God in His mercy has given us four years of hope in providing us a President (President Trump) who wants to follow Him. He certainly is not perfect, and neither were the eight kings mentioned above, but he shows a respect for God. I am thankful that God has given President Trump a tough skin, because he certainly needs it with all the satanic attacks that have been leveled against him.

I am ashamed of most of the Republican Party, but the Democratic Party has become so evil it is obvious for any Bible student that Satan is its god. I pray that somehow God allows us to retain President Trump for another four years, because if He doesn’t, the last nail will probably be fastened in our coffin. Even though I don’t expect it, I also pray that somehow we as individuals and as a nation come to our senses and repent.

Again, I have listed these eight kings (above) to show that God is with a nation that is obedient to Him, and not just Judah, but any nation. The opposite is also true. Each time a king came to power that honored God, God blessed Judah, and each time a bad king reigned, they were severely judged until finally they were led away captives. It is obvious that the leadership of a country can determine the path of an entire nation. Leaders who at least try to follow the one and only true God of the Bible can bring blessings upon a nation. By the same token, leaders who rebel against Him can bring disaster upon that same nation. However, we have become so smug we think we can ignore all that.

I pray that all of us who know Jesus as Savior and Lord will lift up our voices to Heaven in prayer for President Trump, those around him, and the safety of our country from those who are intent to destroy it.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)

Grant Phillips

Email: Phillip5769@twc.com

Pre-Rapture Commentary: http://grant-phillips.blogspot.com

Rapture Ready: https://www.raptureready.com/featured/phillips/phillips.html

Is God A Senile Tyrant? :: By Grant Phillips

Please notice that I am taking the road less traveled; the road that automatically declares “God is very real and does exist.” Only a fool would say, or even imply, that there is no God, but there are many fools who walk the earth.

“The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.” (Psalms 14:1)

So with the understanding that God does exist, what is God like? It seems to me there are four classes of people concerning ones perception of God.

  1. Those who believe there is no God
  2. Those who see God as a tyrant
  3. Those who see God as a doddering old fool and
  4. Those who see God as a loving Father, Savior and Lord, full of grace and mercy.

THOSE WHO BELIEVE THERE IS NO GOD

I don’t know the statistics, that’s God’s territory, but I’m sure most people in the world do not believe in God. Oh sure, there are many who believe in gods, but not the one and only true God of Israel and the Church. Even many who say they believe in God don’t act the part.

If mankind truly believed in God most of us would act like it, but most do not. I realize that none of us are without sin. None of us are perfect. If we were, we would not need a Savior, but thank God, One has been provided. Acknowledging that we are all sinners, I still must ask, “Why do so many profess with their lips, but live as if He does not exist?”

Many folks today live in blatant, open sin without as much as a twinge of conscience. Obviously, many of those do not believe in God and do not feel they should answer to a higher being of any kind because there is no higher being (in their mind). Perhaps those remaining of this group feel that God has gone soft and actually smiles down from Heaven His approval upon their lifestyle.

In my opinion, none of the previous generations, all the way back to Adam, have anything on us today when it comes to unadulterated conceit and outright stupidity. Surely we will be held more accountable since we have been provided the entirety of God’s Word (the Bible) and can look back and see how God has moved throughout the ages past. We can see the evidence of God’s hand at work. We can see His prophecies fulfilled before our very eyes, but yet our hearts are cold.

These people want nothing to do with God, so they refuse to acknowledge Him. Their sins are more important, so they conclude that if there is no God, there is no sin. They are wrong.

THOSE WHO SEE GOD AS A TYRANT

A host of ill-advised people today can see God only as a tyrant who sits in Heaven waiting for us to fail. Whatever the reason, maybe they had bad parents, they just don’t believe God enough to relax and trust Him.

Several of us who write Biblical articles speak of God’s judgment and our need to be aware of His warnings. However, we have also written of God’s unending love, His sacrifice for us all, and His patience that we might be saved. God is not a tyrant. He is not watching our every move as we would watch a fly we are ready to swat and kill. The truth is God sits in Heaven yearning for us to come to Him. He truly wants us to succeed, but the only way to succeed is to come to Him by faith in His Son Jesus.

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)

These folks want all to believe that God is always angry at us. He walks across Heaven with a club ready to beat us into submission. He has a short temper and enjoys making us miserable. None of that is true of course.

Manasseh was the fourteenth king of Judah. He reigned 55 years from 687 B.C. to 642 B.C. He may have been the most evil king Judah had. Please read 2 Chronicles 33:1-9. You will see that he was no choir boy. God said of him in the ninth verse:

“But Manasseh led Judah and the people of Jerusalem astray, so that they did more evil than the nations the LORD had destroyed before the Israelites.”

Now that’s bad. He was worse than the heathen nations around them that God had to judge.

Manasseh was so rotten God allowed Assyria to take him captive. After he was carted off in chains to Babylon with a hook in his nose, he turned to God in true repentance (see verses 12-13).

Now get this, God had every right to turn a deaf ear. Think about it. Manasseh sacrificed his own children upon a red-hot altar. He was extremely cruel. He deserved no mercy. However, what did God do?

“And when he prayed to him, the LORD was moved by his entreaty and listened to his plea; so he brought him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD is God.” (2 Chronicles 33:13)

If God is a tyrant, wouldn’t this have been a great opportunity to have been one? Instead, He showed mercy on a truly repentant heart.

THOSE WHO SEE GOD AS A DODDERING OLD FOOL

The popular thinking today seems to be that God winks at our sins. We are permitted, by God no less; to live anyway we choose as long as we seek politically correct avenues and never ever call anything “sin.” This false gospel is a false misunderstanding of Matthew 7:1, which says, “Judge not, that ye be not judged.”

This false interpretation has paved the way for followers of Satan to promote that which is sin as a lifestyle acceptable by God. Sins that have destroyed other generations and wiped out civilizations are now acceptable by those who refuse to see any error to their ways. The atrocities of Satan are being forced upon us all because of the sinful minds of a few. Unfortunately, the “few” is expanding to become the “many,” just as the proverbial rotten apple in the barrel infects the other apples in the barrel.

This crowd wants us to believe that God is a milquetoast, powderpuff, senile doddering old white haired man in the sky who goes along with anything we say or desire. Again, this is not true of God.

Uzziah (or Azariah) was Judah’s tenth king and reigned 52 years from 767 B.C. to 740 B.C. He was a good king.

“He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father Amaziah had done. He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success.” (2 Chronicles 26:4-5)

God really blessed Uzziah, but eventually he allowed pride to enter his heart and got too big for his britches.

“But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the LORD his God, and entered the temple of the LORD to burn incense on the altar of incense.” (2 Chronicles 26:16)

He knew the Law. He knew he was not permitted to enter the temple of the Lord and usurp the role of the priest, but he did it anyway. Now see what happened.

“Uzziah, who had a censer in his hand ready to burn incense, became angry. While he was raging at the priests in their presence before the incense altar in the LORD’s temple, leprosy broke out on his forehead.

When Azariah the chief priest and all the other priests looked at him, they saw that he had leprosy on his forehead, so they hurried him out. Indeed, he himself was eager to leave, because the LORD had afflicted him.

King Uzziah had leprosy until the day he died. He lived in a separate house—leprous, and banned from the temple of the LORD. Jotham his son had charge of the palace and governed the people of the land.” (2 Chronicles 26:19-21)

When God says “Don’t,” that is exactly what He means.

THOSE WHO SEE GOD AS A LOVING FATHER, SAVIOR AND LORD, FULL OF GRACE AND MERCY

The Bible is replete with warnings of God’s judgment and just as abounding in His message of love and grace. It speaks of sin as sin. It cuts no corners. It makes no exceptions. It plays no favorites. It tells the Truth, and in that Truth is the Gospel that calls all men to Jesus Christ to be saved. In Him we may be born again, new creations in God.

SUMMATION

  1. Freiedrich Nietzche was wrong. God is not dead. He is very much alive, and is the one and only true God. This is His world. He created everything and His Word is Law, regardless of what the naysayers may say.

We can legislate all the laws we want legalizing the murder of babies, homosexually and homosexual marriage, transgenderism, and any other law that is an affront to Almighty God, but there is only one Law that matters; God’s Law. There is only one opinion that counts, and that belongs to the one and only true God of Heaven and earth.

We can legislate God out of our midst until we are blue in the face, but He remains in charge. If we do not return to God, and quickly, we will find out soon enough if Freiedrich Nietzche was correct. Mr. Nietzche already has.

  1. God is not a tyrant. His judgment is just, and His mercy is undeserved. However, by His grace any who are willing may experience His love through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.

God would not be God if He did not punish sin and enforce His Laws. Is He a tyrant? A tyrant would never go to the lengths God has to provide salvation to all who will come to Him through His Son Jesus. A tyrant would not die for all so that all who come to Him through Christ can live.

  1. God is not a white-haired grandpa kowtowing to our sinful lusts. He is rich in grace and mercy, and He is also holy and righteous. He is truth and unchanging, meaning He does not change to accommodate our foolish opinions. Even now He temporarily holds back His judgment because of His love. He desires that none should perish.
  1. None of us are worthy to be saved. We are all sinful creatures with no redeeming qualities. We all deserve to be judged along with Satan and the fallen angels in hell. Nevertheless, Jesus has paid our sin debt. Any who come to God the Father through Him will be born again and receive everlasting life. All those who refuse will suffer in hell for eternity. God is God.

CONCLUSION

God says of Himself in Malachi 3:6, “I the LORD do not change…” He says also in Hebrews 13:8, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”

God is not a living being, document or anything else that changes with the wind. He is always the same. We are the ones who change, and we are headed in the wrong direction. Going against God is suicidal. We would have a greater chance of holding back Niagara Falls with one hand than causing God to change.

“God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.” This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 4:7)

Grant Phillips

Email: Phillip5769@twc.com

Pre-Rapture Commentary: http://grant-phillips.blogspot.com

Rapture Ready: https://www.raptureready.com/featured/phillips/phillips.html