Divided kingdom

The Story: Week 17

Note: At North Baptist Church we are currently on a 31 week journey through the entire Bible. Called The Story, this journey finds us discussing the same Bible passage in our personal reading time, the sermon, Adult Bible Fellowships, and Small Groups. I figured I would post a few thoughts each week as I go through my lesson prep.

Divided kingdomLast week in The Story we saw the collapse of the Northern Kingdom. This doesn’t come as a surprise in the Bible; from the beginning (1 Kings 12) the Northern Kingdom—led by a succession of pitiful kings—had forgotten Yahweh, instead worshipping the local deities. It was only a matter of time before God’s judgment was upon the North. So when the Assyrians show up in 722 BC and wipe Samaria off the map, the author tells us what we already know: the North rejected God and they are exiled. Meanwhile, the Southern Kingdom—led by the Davidic kings—is shown to be a little more faithful.

But that would not last long. The problem seen in the book of Kings is that the bad kings are really bad (see Manasseh) and the good kings just aren’t good enough (see Hezekiah). Instead of providing lasting change by returning the people back to Yahweh, often the reforms of the good kings are reversed in the next generation.

As we will see this Sunday in ABF, the good kings aren’t good enough to stop the nation from sliding towards idolatry and exile. Join us as we look at the ministry of Jeremiah and the implications of exile on God’s redemptive plan.

Brandon Schmidt

I am Brandon Schmidt: writer, husband, father, brother, reader, and laugher.

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