Scripture Memorization for January – Proverbs 4
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 121
Read “Ten Pillars for Spiritual Leaders” by Pastor Paul Chappell
A Study of Women in the Bible
Athaliah, A Wicked Mother and Grandmother
And the inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son king in his stead: for the band of men that came with the Arabians to the camp had slain all the eldest. So Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah reigned. Forty and two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Athaliah the daughter of Omri. He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab: for his mother was his counsellor to do wickedly. Wherefore he did evil in the sight of the LORD like the house of Ahab: for they were his counsellors after the death of his father to his destruction. (2Chronicles 22:1-4)
But when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the seed royal of the house of Judah. But Jehoshabeath, the daughter of the king, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him from among the king’s sons that were slain, and put him and his nurse in a bedchamber. So Jehoshabeath, the daughter of king Jehoram, the wife of Jehoiada the priest, (for she was the sister of Ahaziah,) hid him from Athaliah, so that she slew him not. And he was with them hid in the house of God six years: and Athaliah reigned over the land. (2Chronicles 22:10-12)
Athaliah was the daughter of Israel’s wicked king Ahab. Instead of being a godly mother, the Bible tells us she encouraged her son Ahaziah, to do wrong. After becoming king of Judah, Ahaziah joined Joram, king of Israel, in a battle against Hazael, king of Aram. Jehu killed many of Ahaziah’s heirs and wiped out Judah’s king.
When Athaliah heard the news, she sought to kill off all her grandchildren so she could gain the throne. This power-hungry woman literally sacrificed her family on the altar of her own ambition. If she had been successful, the line of the Messiah would have been destroyed. So, God place a faithful woman, Jehosheba, by Ahaziah’s son Joash. For years the child remained in hiding at the temple while his grandmother ruled.
And when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the seed royal. But Jehosheba, the daughter of king Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him from among the king’s sons which were slain; and they hid him, even him and his nurse, in the bedchamber from Athaliah, so that he was not slain. And he was with her hid in the house of the LORD six years. And Athaliah did reign over the land. And the seventh year Jehoiada sent and fetched the rulers over hundreds, with the captains and the guard, and brought them to him into the house of the LORD, and made a covenant with them, and took an oath of them in the house of the LORD, and shewed them the king’s son. (2Kings 11:1-4)
And he brought forth the king’s son, and put the crown upon him, and gave him the testimony; and they made him king, and anointed him; and they clapped their hands, and said, God save the king. And when Athaliah heard the noise of the guard and of the people, she came to the people into the temple of the LORD. And when she looked, behold, the king stood by a pillar, as the manner was, and the princes and the trumpeters by the king, and all the people of the land rejoiced, and blew with trumpets: and Athaliah rent her clothes, and cried, Treason, Treason. But Jehoiada the priest commanded the captains of the hundreds, the officers of the host, and said unto them, Have her forth without the ranges: and him that followeth her kill with the sword. For the priest had said, Let her not be slain in the house of the LORD. And they laid hands on her; and she went by the way by the which the horses came into the king’s house: and there was she slain. (2Kings 11:12-16)
And he sat on the throne of the kings. And all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was in quiet: and they slew Athaliah with the sword beside the king’s house. (2Kings 11:20)
Athaliah’s actions are shocking, or are they? Few women would sacrifice their child or grandchild to gain power. But with our fast paced lives causes us to sacrifice our time and attention with family. If our jobs always come first with long hours or travel, or when we need to place our child in the care of others, we’ve begun to make the same mistake as this wicked queen. We don’t have to serve a pagan god or want to rule a kingdom to get our priorities mixed up.
If we fail, we are not a wicked Athaliah, but we should get it right by confessing our wrong and find a way to make a change. It might be reorganizing our time, refusing a promotion, or working part-time. I know in today’s world, with needing two pay checks or being a single mom, many women must work. But let’s do whatever it takes, not to sacrifice our families to get ahead. In the end we won’t be ahead at all, we’ll lose it.
I John 5:13
Posted in Just for Ladies by Phil Erickson with 1 comment.