JUNE 7 - Nº 158 2 Kings 11:17 – 12:16; 2 Chronicles 23:17 – 24:16
As soon as Athaliah was dead, Jehoiada, the high priest, made a three-way covenant between God, the new king, and the people of Judah. It obligated the king and the people to obey and serve God. Beyond that, the king was to serve the people (not vice versa). In keeping with this covenant, the people immediately tore down Athaliah’s temple that was dedicated to Baal. They smashed the altars and the idols, and they killed the false priest. Then Jehoiada led Joash from Solomon’s Temple, where he had been crowned, to the palace. Joash was only seven years old when he first sat on the throne of Judah in Jerusalem. As the child grew into a young man, Jehoiada, the high priest, faithfully taught him to love God and keep His commandments. When he was older, Joash realized that God’s Temple desperately needed repairs. Athaliah had stolen everything that was valuable from the sanctuary and used it for Baal worship. The Temple structure needed repair and many items needed to be replaced before it could function the way God wanted it to. But there was no money. For years no one had bothered collecting the annual tax that was supposed to pay for Temple maintenance. Joash sent priests and Levites to all the towns in Judah to collect it so that the repairs could begin right away. Even though they collected a lot of money, the priests never started the work! Instead, they used the money for their own expenses! It was clear that someone other than the priests needed to collect the money and take responsibility for the repairs. Jehoiada found a large chest and drilled a hole in the lid. He placed it beside the altar in the courtyard of the Temple. Then he instructed everyone to bring money for repairs when they came to Jerusalem. They were to deposit it in the chest before they made their sacrifices. When the chest was full, the money was to be counted and given to workmen who had been hired by the king. The construction workers proved to be much more honest in handling the money than the priests had been. Very efficiently, the Temple was repaired and rebuilt according to its original design. When the workers were finished, they handed over the rest of the money to the king and to Jehoiada. It was used to make the gold and silver articles that were used to serve God in the Temple. When everything was ready, burnt offerings were presented. The people continued to worship God for as long as Jehoiada lived. Jehoiada, the high priest, died at the age of 130. He had honored God his entire life. He was buried along with the kings in the City of David because of all the good things he had done for God and for His Temple.
Jehoiada knew that he would never be the king of Judah. But he diligently mentored and supported Joash in that role starting when he was just a young boy. Because of the high priest’s willingness to remain faithful behind the scenes, Joash was able to accomplish amazing things. Are you willing and content to help others become successful? God will honor you if you are!