The Story Of King Jehu In The Bible
KEY SCRIPTURES: 1 Kings 19-16-17; 2 Kings 9;10
1 Kings 19:16-17 “And Jehu the son of Nimshi shall you anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abelmeholah shall you anoint to be prophet in your room. 17“And it shall come to pass, that him that escapes the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay: and him that escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay.”
King Jehu was the son of Jehoshaphat and his grandfather was Nimshi. He was first mentioned in 1 Kings 19: 15-17 when God instructed Prophet Elijah to anoint him as King of Israel who will help enact judgement over the household of Ahab and his wife, Jezebel for all the evils done by them in the land of Israel and the sins they made Israel to commit during his reign. Prophet Elijah couldn’t carry out the assignment before he was taken and God instructed Prophet Elisha to do it who in turn sent one of the sons of the prophet to anoint Jehu as King of Israel even though he was a Commander in the army of King Ahab. After the anointing, he proceeded to take steps in ensuring the throne. King Joram, son of King Ahab was the King of Israel who was recovering from the wounds sustained from war against the Arameans at Jezreel when King Jehu ordered his men to seal the city so that King Joram wouldn’t hear about his anointing as King. King Jehu proceeded to kill King Joram and threw his body at Naboth field as prophesied and also killed King Ahaziah, king of Judah who was visiting king Joram at that time, King Ahaziah was carried back to Jerusalem to be buried in the tomb with his father’s in the city of David.
After the killing of the two kings, he proceeded to Jezebel’s palace in Jezreel and when she saw King Jehu at the window, she insulted him, King Jehu made a declaration and at his commandment, the eunuchs threw Jezebel down from the window, her blood splattered over the pavement. By the time Jehu’s men went to bury the body, the Bible tells us, “they found nothing more of her than the skull and the feet and the palms of her hands.” (2 Kings 9:35). As prophesied by Elijah, the body of Jezebel had been eaten by the dogs (1 Kings 21:23-24).
According to God’s prophecy, King Jehu destroyed all the people associated with King Ahab, his seventy sons, his priests, his great men, and his close acquaintances. He also executed all the 42 brothers of King Ahaziah, the King of Judah at Beth Eked. King Jehu also slaughtered all the worshippers and priests of Baal, destroying their temple and their sacred stone too. King Jehu was bold, zealous, cunning and God used him to eradicate Baal worship from the nation of Israel. For King Jehu’s faithfulness, God promised him that four generation of him will sit on the throne but King Jehu was not careful to walk in the law of the Lord, the God of Israel, with all his heart; he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, which he made Israel sin” (2 Kings 10:31). His neglect in removing the high places at Bethel proved costly, as the size of Israel gradually decreased and portions of the land God had promised to His people were surrendered to Hazael of Syria and other foreign leaders in the years that followed (2 Kings 10:32-33). King Jehu reigned for 28 years, died and was buried in Samaria. There are biblical lessons to learn from the story of King Jehu as believers and in this article, some of the lessons will be discussed.
- GOD REQUIRES FULL COMMITMENT
King Jehu was obedient and faithful to the prophecy of God and he carried it out to the fullness but he was not total commitment to God. He never developed his faith in God by removing the little sins in his life. As a king ordained by God, after destroying Baal temple and his worshippers, he was meant to draw Israelites back to the true God but rather his heart went to another idol which affected his reign and also decreased the people of Israel. As believers, we are required to be fully committed to worshipping the only true God. We are not just to destroy idols but we are meant to draw people to worshipping the only true God. Our lifestyle and action must draw to God.
2. GOD REWARDS JUSTLY
God rewarded King Jehu for his obedience by allowing four generations of him to sit on the throne and also punished him for not following his laws. As Christians, even though Jesus Christ had died for our sins, there are always consequences for any ungodly actions we took. God will reward believers according to their works. Our eternal rewards should push us to live lives that honor God in every detail.
3. GOD HONOURS HIS WORD
God is a God that doesn’t joke with his spoken words. The prophecy regarding Ahab and his wife, Jezebel was given to Prophet Elijah but even after He was taken, the prophecy came to pass through his successor, Prophet Elisha. All of the prophecy came to pass. As believers, we are meant to complete trust in the spoken word of God concerning all areas of our lives. We are meant to depend on God’s word because he honours his word more than his name. God is not a man that will lie or repent. Once he has said it, it will surely come to pass. We are not to be weary or tired but wholly lean on his promises.
4. GOD CAN USE ANYONE HE PLEASES
Despite the fact that King Jehu wasn’t a true believer of God, God told Prophet Elisha to anoint him as King of Israel in order to use him to destroy the evil works of Ahab and his wife, Jezebel together with all the people associated with their evils. God can use anyone to accomplish his purpose on earth. God will never accommodate sin in the life of his chosen one and as believers, we are saved to save others from the wrath of hell. If as Christians, we are destroying the lives of people instead of saving them, God will use another person to preach redemption to his people and reward us as deem fit.
We can be used for God’s service if we surrender ourselves to be used. We should endeavor to live right and adapt to a life that is pleasing to God. We must be conscious of our actions here on earth so that we can affect our generation positively. Our personal character gives power for God’s service. We must be thoroughly consecrated to God. We must be vessels to meet for the Master’s use.