jehu's bow

Gefährlicher Eifer

Und er sprach: Komm mit mir und sieh meinen Eifer für den HERRN! Und er führte ihn auf seinen Streitwagen. (2. Könige 10,16)

Einer der seltsamsten Könige des alten Israels war ein Mann namens Jehu. Nachdem er zum König über die 10 nördlichen Stämme gesalbt worden war, griff Jehu zu Pfeil und Bogen und machte sich ans Werk. Als Vertreter von Gottes Gericht tötete er nicht nur Joram, den König von Israel, (2. Könige 9,24) sondern auch Ahasja, den König von Juda (2. Könige 9,27). Und als wenn das noch nicht genug wäre, tötete er auch noch die böse Frau des Ahasja, die alte Königin Isebel (2. Könige 9,33). Dann tötete er jeden der Familie Ahabs, den er kriegen konnte (2. Könige 10). Er war ein einmaliges Instrument für Gottes Gericht gegen das Haus Ahabs, und es klebte eine Menge Blut an Jehus Händen.

jehu's bow

Und genau dieser Mann sagte zu Jonadab: „Komm mit mir uns sieh meinen Eifer für den HERRN.“ Es ist wahr, dass Gott Jehu eine Mission des Gerichts gegen das Haus Ahabs gegeben hatte, und Jehu führte diese Mission mit großem Eifer aus. Diese Mission führte er im vollkommenen und ernergischen Gehorsam dem HERRN gegenüber aus, selbst wenn er dafür seine eigene Sicherheit und Annehmlichkeit außer Acht lassen musste.

Eifer ist gut. In vieler Hinsicht wünschen wir uns unter den Christen heute mehr davon. Paulus sagte: „Das Eifern ist aber gut, wenn es für das Gute geschieht“ (Galater 4,18). Jesus sagte den Laodizäern, dass sie eifrig sein sollen (Offenbarung 3,19).

Doch der Eifer des Jehu war gefährlich.

Erstens hatte Jehu nur Eifer für Konfrontation und Gewalt. Manche Menschen werden nur wenn es um Konflikte geht energisch. Es scheint als ob sie nur auf Konfrontation und Gewalt aus sind, selbst wenn es nur um verbale Gewalt auf den sozialen Medien geht. Pass auf, dass dein Eifer sich nicht nur gegen andere richtet.

Zweitens endete Jehus Eifer nicht in Gehorsam. 2. Könige 10,29-31 beschreibt den Ungehorsam von König Jehu. Auch heute sehen wir manchmal Christen mit vollem Eifer, der jedoch nicht zu dem grundlegenden Gehorsam eines christlichen Lebens führt. Wenn das so ist, läuft etwas falsch.

Drittens wurde Jehus Gehorsam durch Stolz verdorben. Ein demütiger Mensch würde niemals sagen: „Sieh meinen Eifer für den HERRN.“ Eifer ist nicht etwas womit wir angeben sollten. Wenn ich stolz auf meinen Eifer bin, ist das nicht gut – denn dann wird mein Eifer zu einer Show, mit der ich andere beeindrucken will. Das zeigt, dass der Eifer dann nicht im Dienst von Gottes Herrlichkeit ist, sondern damit wir gut dastehen.

Ich wünschte, dass mehr Christen mehr Eifer hätten. Den Jüngern von Jesus fiel der große Eifer des Erlösers auf (Johannes 2,17). Doch Eifer birgt auch Gefahren, und es scheint so, als ob viele Menschen in die Falle von gottlosem Eifer gehen und auf dieselbe Weise wie Jehu versagen.

Lasst uns dies beten: „Herr, mache mich zu einem eifrigen Christen – auf die beste Art und Weise.“

Successful Failure

The Successful Failure

However Jehu did not turn away from the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who had made Israel sin, that is, from the golden calves that were at Bethel and Dan. And the LORD said to Jehu, “Because you have done well in doing what is right in My sight, and have done to the house of Ahab all that was in My heart, your sons shall sit on the throne of Israel to the fourth generation.” But Jehu took no heed to walk in the law of the LORD God of Israel with all his heart; for he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, who had made Israel sin. (2 Kings 10:29-31)

Jehu was one of the most complicated men to serve as king over the ten northern tribes of Israel, of what was known as the kingdom of Israel (the kingdom of Judah in the south was made up of the two southern tribes).

Successful Failure

All in all, we would probably say that Jehu was the best of all the bad kings of Israel. In many ways he was good, but Jehu did not turn away from the sins of Jeroboam. Jehu aggressively worked against the worship of Baal in Israel. However, he promoted the false worship of the true God, after the pattern of Jeroboam who set up the golden calves that were at Bethel and Dan. He obeyed God – up to a point.

– Jehu carried out God’s will, but he went too far and executed more people than God intended.

– Jehu carried out God’s will, but he did it for personal glory and out of pride.

– Jehu carried out God’s will, but he only did it partially. He stopped the idolatry of Baal, but he continued the sinful idolatry of Jeroboam.

We might see Jehu as a great Israeli patriot. He protested against Joram and the house of Ahab for the harm they did to Israel, and knew that to be strong, Israel had to be cleansed of Baal worship. He knew that Israel had to come back to the true God, but he didn’t care how they did it. To Jehu it was just as good to worship God at Dan or Bethel, even though God commanded otherwise.

When we compare Jehu to the other kings of Israel, we see that he was the best of a bad group. No other king in Israel fought against idolatry as much as Jehu did; sadly, even he did not fight against it with all his heart.

By not taking heed to walk in the law of the LORD God, Jehu showed that he did not live a life of fellowship with God. He was a success in some ways, but he was really a successful failure. God used Jehu as His instrument, but Jehu never really seemed to have a real relationship with God himself.

Don’t fall into the half-way trap. Don’t be a successful person who ends up failing in the most important things.

Click here for David’s commentary on 2 Kings 10

Henrietta Mears

The Decision of Henrietta Mears

Dear Pastor, Preacher, or Bible Teacher –

This last week I taught at a family camp at Forest Home in the mountains of Southern California. It was a great time, and I’m happy to return there for another family camp in 2020. Forest Home has a notable founder, the late Henrietta Mears.

Henrietta Mears

A lot could be said about this remarkable woman of God, but today I just want to give you something I found on the last page of a Bible belonging to the late Dr. J. Edwin Orr (who also had a fascinating connection to Forest Home). On that last page, was written the following:

Henrietta C. Mears
Personal Dedication to Christ
Regarding her first Sunday School Class

I will win the personal allegiance
of every one of my class
to the Lord Jesus Christ;
I will walk; I will write; I will pray.

I will remain close to them
until they are established;
I will associate with them in fellowship;
I will make myself available to them always;
I will see that they are committed to some definite task.

I will put the Cross back into my Christianity,
and I will pray as I have never prayed before
for a new vision of God.

I will spend and be spent in this battle,
and will not seek rest or ease;
I will seek fellowship with the Man of Sorrows
as He walks through this stricken world.

And I Will Not Fail.

Obviously, none of this can be done except by the Spirit of God (Zechariah 4:6) – I’m sure Henrietta Mears understood that. I just hope you are inspired by her determination and dedication to the cause of influencing others for Jesus Christ and His kingdom.

Blessings to You in Jesus’ Name – David Guzik

Click Here to Receive Email from David for Pastors, Preachers, and Bible Teachers

jehu's bow

Dangerous Zeal

Then he said, “Come with me, and see my zeal for the LORD.” So they had him ride in his chariot. (2 Kings 10:16)

One of the strangest kings of ancient Israel was a man named Jehu. After he was anointed as king of the 10 northern tribes, Jehu took a bow and arrows and got busy. As an agent of God’s judgment, Jehu not only killed Joram the King of Israel (2 Kings 9:24), but he also killed Ahaziah the King of Judah (2 Kings 9:27). If that wasn’t enough, he then killed the wicked wife of Ahab, old Queen Jezebel (2 Kings 9:33). He then killed everyone he could from the family of Ahab (2 Kings 10). He did this as a unique instrument of God’s judgement against the House of Ahab, and there was a lot of blood on Jehu’s hands.

jehu's bow

This was the man who said to Jehonadab, “Come with me, and see my zeal for the LORD.” It’s true that God gave Jehu a mission of judgement and Jehu carried it out with great zeal. In this work of judgment against the House of Ahab he had a complete and energetic obedience to the LORD, even to the disregard of his own safety and comfort.

Zeal is good. In many ways, we want to see more zeal among Christians today and not less. Paul said that “it is good to be zealous in a good thing always” (Galatians 4:18). Jesus told the Christians of Laodicea to be zealous (Revelation 3:19).

Still, the zeal of Jehu was dangerous in several ways.

First, Jehu had zeal only for confrontation and violence. Some people only feel energized by conflict. They seem to always want confrontation and violence, even if it is only verbal or social media violence. Make sure your zeal isn’t only against others.

Second, Jehu’s zeal did not result in obedience. 2 Kings 10:29-31 describes some of the disobedience of King Jehu. It’s possible today to see some Christians who seem to be full of zeal, but somehow that zeal doesn’t lead to basic obedience in the Christian life. When that is true, something is wrong.

Third, Jehu’s zeal was corrupted by pride. A humble man doesn’t say, “see my zeal for the LORD.” Zeal isn’t something we put on to show off. When I am proud of my zeal, I am in a bad place – because my zeal becomes a show that I display to impress others. It shows that our zeal is not in the service of God’s glory, but in the service of making me look good.

I wish that more Christians had more zeal. The disciples of Jesus noticed the Savior’s great zeal (John 2:17). But zeal has its dangers, and it seems that many people fall into the trap of an ungodly zeal, failing in the same ways Jehu did.

Let’s make this our prayer: “Lord, make me a zealous Christian – in the very best way.”

Click here for David’s commentary on 2 Kings 10

Sake of Another

Um jemand anderes willen


Und er wandelte auf dem Weg der Könige von Israel, wie es das Haus Ahabs tat, was böse war in den Augen des HERRN. Aber der HERR wollte Juda nicht verderben um seines Knechtes Davids willen, wie er ihm verheißen hatte, ihm unter seinen Söhnen allezeit eine Leuchte zu geben. (2. Könige 8,18-19) Diese Verse […]

the lord reigns

The LORD Still Reigns

Now when you arrive at that place, look there for Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, and go in and make him rise up from among his associates, and take him to an inner room. Then take the flask of oil, and pour it on his head, and say, “Thus says the LORD: ‘I have anointed you king over Israel.’” Then open the door and flee, and do not delay. (2 Kings 9:2-3)

In the days of Elijah and Elisha, there was some kind of association for the training of young men in the service of the LORD. It was something of a “school of the prophets” and the men who were part of the association were called “sons of the prophets.”

the lord reigns

The words of 2 Kings 9:2-3 are from the Prophet Elisha to one of these sons of the prophets. The elder prophet gave this young man something of a class assignment: go to Ramoth Gilead and find Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat.

After he found Jehu, he was to take him to an inner room and, in a ceremony of anointing for leadership, pour oil upon the head of Jehu. As the oil flowed down Jehu’s head, the young prophet was to say: “Thus says the LORD: ‘I have anointed you king over Israel.’”

Now at that time, there was already a king over Israel – a man named Joram, the son of Ahab. But as far as God was concerned, the reign of Joram and the dynasty he represented was over. Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat would be the next king.

I think this is remarkable. The kingdom of Israel – the ten northern tribes – had thoroughly rejected God. It was hard to think of a worse king than Ahab, and his son Joram would be just as bad. Even though they had abandoned God, God had not abandoned them. The LORD would still raise up kings and cast down kings as He pleased.

Sometimes people think that they can really get away from God. They think that if they ignore God and pretend He doesn’t exist, that God will ignore them and pretend they don’t exist. It doesn’t work that way. The LORD God reigns over all the earth. We can accept it or reject it; we can believe it or deny it; but He will still reign no matter what we do.

Let that truth give you some peace today. Why do we struggle against God? Why are we so discouraged when others seem to resist Him? We need a greater confidence in the truth that God refuses to leave His throne just because some people don’t recognize His reign.

Who was that young prophet that Elisha sent to Jehu? We don’t know. Some old Jewish traditions say that it was Jonah, but we don’t know for certain. What we do know is that God was still showing that He was and is God.

Click here for David’s commentary on 2 Kings 9