Today you should read: 2 Chronicles 11
Pretty cool moment to open this chapter: God uses a prophet named Shemaiah to avert a civil war. Wouldn’t you love to be that guy? Well, you can be. Here’s all we know about him up until this point: he was a man of God (v.2). That seemed to be enough for the Lord to use him in a huge way. The bloodshed that could have been caused among God’s people would have been horrific. He delivered this simple message: “This is what the Lord says: ‘Do not fight against your relatives. Go back home, for what has happened is my doing!’” And what happened? “So they obeyed the message of the Lord and did not fight against Jeroboam.”
The schism in Israel caused lots of issues. As Abraham Lincoln once put it, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” This, in many ways, was proved true by the infighting of Jeroboam and Rehoboam. People moved in order to take sides, and surely there were plenty of hard feelings to go around. But the Lord used this to continue His sovereign plan of redemption through Jesus Christ.
What can we learn from this in a spiritual sense? I think we can draw parallels to our homes from this time in Israel’s history. Our houses must be marked by the gospel. This must include virtues such as accountability, unity, fellowship, compassion, and mission. We must fight against this type of schism in our Christian homes. Far too many husbands and wives live in discord, much to the detriment of their kids. But I think we can also draw these same parallels to the body of Christ. I love what Augustine of Hippo says in this vein: “In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.” This is what the world needs to see in the Church. And frankly, this is what Christians need to believe about the Church, because this is what the Church gets right when yielding to the Spirit and being engulfed in the gospel.
What did the Lord teach you through this passage? I’d love to read about it in the comments section below.
Posted by: Todd Thomas