2 Kings 23: 31—25: 30
Well, this should not come as a shock, God told them that if they did not stick to the Law the Land would vomit them out. Here comes big bad king Nebuchadnezzar (whom, we will call king Neb). It takes some work, but finally the inhabitants of Jerusalem are carted off in Exile. We get to read more fully about the Exile when we get into the prophets. They will be like flashbacks in our story to this spot on Israel’s timeline.
Now remember, they are God’s Chosen People and He made an everlasting covenant with them. This Exile is God’s discipline for their idol worship. They cannot enjoy their fellowship with God while worshipping other gods. But just in case we were going to be confused and think that God cast them off forever because of their sin, we read the story about king Jehoiachin’s blessing from king Evilmerodach. One of God’s everlasting promises to Israel is that the Everlasting King would come from the line of David. God is showing us that He is preserving that line because this blip on Israel’s timeline is not the end. God’s promise to make them His Chosen People does not rest on their obedience; it rests on HIS WORD. And all the sinners on earth rejoiced because we all know if our relationship with God rested on our obedience we would be LOST.
And so, 2 Kings ends in Exile. God is faithful to His Word. They fell into idol worship and the Land vomited them out.
Acts 22: 17—23: 10
Paul is the apostle to the Gentiles. The Romans are Gentiles. Paul was raised to be a Pharisee and in fact worked with them so devotedly he approved of them killing Stephen. Paul is a Jew by birth. These Pharisee’s and Sadducees know he was trained by the renowned Gamaliel. But the Pharisee’s and Sadducee’s are so vehemently denying Jesus that they are more of a danger to Paul than the Romans. Look what God did there!!!! He knows the Jews are rejecting him, it is not a surprise. He needs Paul to go to the Gentiles and offer the free gift of Salvation, so what does God do? Puts Paul right in the hands of the Roman government. This opportunity will not be wasted.
I don’t know about you, but I so need this reminder that God is working all things out for our good and His glory. Our only job is to trust Him. And He has proven Himself so faithful that we can confidently trust Him.