In yesterday’s post, we recounted the story of the Queen of Judah, Athaliah, and the murderous manner is which she captured the Throne of King David. She reigned for seven years and profaned the Temple with worship of other gods. Eventually her grandson Joash (or Jehoash), the only one to escape her murderous escapades, emerged from hiding and became, at age 7, the light of rebellion and restoration of right worship in the Temple.
Joash reigned for 40 years – and 38 of them were good, holy and righteous. And then his mentor Jehoiada, chief priest of the Temple passed away. At that point, the princes of the royal court held sway and King Joash was persuaded to leave the path of holiness and righteousness. When Jehoiada’s son the prophet Zechariah called the king to repentance, he was murdered at the king’s command. “And as Zechariah was dying, he said, ‘May the LORD see and avenge.’”
He was avenged by an army of invading Arameans who took and ransacked Jerusalem. He lost the throne in the aftermath and was denied burial in the Tomb of Kings.
38 good years. 2 bad years. It makes a difference how you finish.