Online Bible Commentary
Listening to Bad Advice
2 Chronicles 24: 17 After the death of Jehoiada, the officials of Judah came and paid homage to the king, and he listened to them. 18 They abandoned the temple of the LORD, the God of their ancestors, and worshiped Asherah poles and idols. Because of their guilt, God’s anger came on Judah and Jerusalem. 19 Although the LORD sent prophets to the people to bring them back to him, and though they testified against them, they would not listen. 20 Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: ‘Why do you disobey the LORD’s commands? You will not prosper. Because you have forsaken the LORD, he has forsaken you.’ ” 21 But they plotted against him, and by order of the king they stoned him to death in the courtyard of the LORD’s temple. 22 King Joash did not remember the kindness Zechariah’s father Jehoiada had shown him but killed his son, who said as he lay dying, “May the LORD see this and call you to account.” 23 At the turn of the year, the army of Aram marched against Joash; it invaded Judah and Jerusalem and killed all the leaders of the people. They sent all the plunder to their king in Damascus. 24 Although the Aramean army had come with only a few men, the LORD delivered into their hands a much larger army. Because Judah had forsaken the LORD, the God of their ancestors, judgment was executed on Joash. 25 When the Arameans withdrew, they left Joash severely wounded. His officials conspired against him for murdering the son of Jehoiada the priest, and they killed him in his bed. So he died and was buried in the City of David, but not in the tombs of the kings. (NKJV)
King Joash of Judah had been faithful to the Lord for most of his life, and he, and his country, had been blessed. But then, at the age of forty-seven, he allowed himself to be persuaded by some bad advisors. He listened to them and decided it would be best for his country to worship idols instead of the God of his fathers. In doing so, he brought God’s anger upon Judah and Jerusalem (vv.17-18).
However, God did not give up on his people, since they had been so faithful over the years. He sent men of God, prophets, to warn them and to try to turn them from their evil ways. But the people would not listen (v.19).
Then God, the Holy Spirit, sent the prophet Zachariah who pronounced judgment upon the people. He told them that they had disobeyed God and would not prosper. He said since they had forsaken God, God had forsaken them (v.20).
King Joash then ordered Zechariah to be stoned to death, and as Zechariah lay dying he uttered "May the LORD see this and call you to account" (vv.21-22). The Lord did hold Joash accountable and he was ultimately put to death for his actions. Two of his servants put him to death in 838 B.C. while he lay in his bed at the fortress of Millo, after he had been wounded in battle.
In forsaking God, Joash brought judgment against his country and himself. It turned out to be a bad decision. He listened to some bad advice, and he and his country paid the price.
This appears to be the road that our country is headed down, as our people and our leaders forsake the God of our fathers. Our president, our congress, and, especially, our courts have made decisions based on bad advice. They are bad decisions. These leaders, and our country, have turned their backs on God.
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10). Such a simple and powerful verse in the Bible, and yet so often ignored by those who think they are wise. Everything we do should originate with this verse. We should always ask ourselves “Would the Lord approve?” If we receive advice to the contrary, it is bad advice, and should be ignored.