Sons who did not Listen to Dad

2 August 2020 PM – 2Kings 23:31 – Kings20 – Scott Childs
Introduction: Last week, we looked at the last kings of Israel before Israel went into captivity. This evening, we pick up the history of Judah over 100 years later. As we do, we are going to look at the last four kings of Judah before Judah went into captivity to Babylon. Three of these men were the sons of Josiah, one of the most godly kings that ever reigned in Judah. The third was his grandson, whom Josiah may have adopted as one of his own sons, for he is called Josiah’s son in Matthew 1:11. Sadly, not one of these four sons listened to their godly Dad. God tells us that each of them did evil in the sight of the LORD.
Transition: As we look at these four kings, I want us to note problems they faced because they refused to listen to their godly Dad.
  1. Jehoahaz (Shallum), 609 BC, 3 months
a.         His reign (2Ki 23:31-34; 2Ch 36:1-4)
1)         He was the son of Josiah (1Ch 3:15). His mother’s name was Hamutal. He was not the normal heir to the throne. Nothing is said of his eldest brother. Perhaps he had died.
2)         The people of the land anointed him king when he was 23 years old (2Ki 23:30-31).
3)         God tells us that he did evil in the sight of the LORD (v.32).
b.         His problems
1)         Jeremiah says he was not like his godly father. (Jeremiah 22:17) “But thine eyes and thine heart are not but for thy covetousness, and for to shed innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence, to do it.” See Jeremiah 22:11-17.
2)         The king of Egypt thought it unsafe to leave Judah unpunished after Josiah meddled in his battle plans. Thus, he heavily taxed Judah.
3)         He took Jehoahaz captive to Egypt, placed him in chains and there he died.
2.        Jehoiakim (Eliakim), 609-598 BC, 11 years
a.         His reign
1)         He was Josiah’s eldest living son and rightful heir to the throne. The king of Egypt placed him as king when he captured his younger brother Jehoahaz (2Ki 23:34).
2)         He was 25 years old when he began to reign.
3)         He did evil in the sight of the LORD (2Ki 23:37).
b.         His problems
1)         Jeremiah warned him of coming judgment (Jer 25:1; 26:1; 27:1; 35:1; 36:1).
2)         He killed Urijah the prophet for preaching judgment to come (Jer 26:20f)
3)         This wicked king is the one who took Jeremiah’s book of prophesy against Judah’s sins, cut the book in pieces and burned it in the fire (Jer 36:23).
a)         Many since have tried to burn all the Bibles, but God’s Word cannot be destroyed.
b)         Even if, man could destroy the written Word of God, every word will still be fulfilled. (Psalms 119:89) “For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.
4)         In 606 BC, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon conquered him. This is when Daniel and his friends were taken to Babylon. He served Nebuchadnezzar for three years and then rebelled (2Ki 24:1-2).
5)         For his rebellion, the king of Babylon bound him to take him to Babylon (2Ch 36:6). However, 2Ki 24:6 says he slept with his fathers. Evidently, he died before reaching Babylon.
6)         Jeremiah described his burial. (Jeremiah 22:18-19) “Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah; They shall not lament for him, saying, Ah my brother! or, Ah sister! they shall not lament for him, saying, Ah lord! or, Ah his glory! He shall be buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem.
3.        Jehoiachin (Jeconiah, Coniah), 598 BC, 3 months
a.         His reign
1)         He was 18 when he began to reign (2Ki 24:8). However, 2Ch36:9 says he was eight when he began to reign. Explanations for this difference include the following.
a)         Though he was 18, he had been a son of Nebuchadnezzar for 8 years after Nebuchadnezzar conquered his father. During those 8 years, he was a vassal crown prince.
b)         When subdued by Nebuchadnezzar, Jehoiakim may have anointed his son to succeed him to prevent his brother from taking the throne 8 years before he died.
2)         He did evil in the sight of the LORD (2Ki 24:9).
b.         His problems
1)         Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem (2Ki 24:10).
2)         Jehoiachin surrendered and was taken to Babylon in the 8th year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign (2Ki 24:12). This was in 597 BC. Ezekiel was among the captives of this second deportation to Babylon.
3)         Strangely, after 37 years in prison, God allowed Jehoiachin to be released from prison and treated kindly until his death (2Ki 25:27-30; Jer 52:31-34).
4)         God is so merciful. All the other kings, his uncles, were killed. God allowed him to live and eventually allowed him to be released from prison. (Psalms 89:1) “I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations.
4.        Zedekiah (Mattaniah), 597-586 BC, 11 years
a.         His reign
1)         The king of Babylon placed Mattaniah on the throne of Judah and changed his name to Zedekiah (2Ki 24:17). The king made him swear by God to be loyal (2Ch 36:13).
2)         He was 21 when he became king and he reigned for 11 years. His mother’s name was Hamutal. He was the younger full brother of Jehoahaz.
b.         His problems
1)         He and his people continued to anger God (2Ki 24:20).
2)         He broke his vow and rebelled against the king of Babylon and in the ninth year of his reign, Nebuchadrezzar came and besieged Jerusalem (2Ki 25:1-2; Jer 52:4-5).
3)         After two years, in 586 BC, the people were starving so Zedekiah and some of the people tried to escape. They were caught and taken to the king of Babylon in Riblah near Mt Hermon (2Ki 25:6)
4)         The king made him watch the execution of all of his sons and then the king put out his eyes, bound him with brass fetters and carried him to Babylon.
5)         One month later, Jerusalem was burned, the temple was torn down, and the walls of the city were broken down (2Ki 25:8-10).
6)         All but the poorest of the land are killed or marched off to Babylon for 70 years of captivity. How sad!
Conclusion: Josiah was an amazingly godly king, but for some reason his sons all became very evil, even his grandson. They did not listen to Dad. The wickedness of the world overcame them. This is a reminder to parents to live a godly example before your children, teach them God’s way, pray for them earnestly, and especially guard their hearts from the evil influences of the world. (Proverbs 4:23) “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.
            Each of us must embed the consequences of sin in our minds. Engrave them in our memories. Ponder them in our thoughts. Fear them in our hearts. The devil wants us to forget that disobeying God leads to a dreadful end. Jehoahaz died a captive in Egypt. Jehoiakim died a donkey’s death on his way to Babylon. Jehoiachin spent 37 years in prison. Zedekiah saw his sons killed, was blinded and spend the remainder of his life as a slave. It never pays to disobey God. Spare yourself endless heartache by doing right! (Proverbs 13:15) “Good understanding giveth favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.
Song: The Fight is on 404 #2