2 Kings 12:17 At that time King Hazael of Aram went up, fought against Gath, and took it. But when Hazael set his face to go up against Jerusalem, 18 King Jehoash of Judah took all the votive gifts that Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, and Ahaziah, his ancestors, the kings of Judah, had dedicated, as well as his own votive gifts, all the gold that was found in the treasuries of the house of the Lord and of the king’s house, and sent these to King Hazael of Aram. Then Hazael withdrew from Jerusalem.
We’re told in v.18 that King Jehoash of Judah handed over most of the material wealth of Judah accumulated under four kings (himself included) to buy off King Hazael of Aram. There are echoes here of King Rehoboam who handed over to the Egyptians the massive wealth his father Solomon and grandfather David had accumulated.
Here today, gone tomorrow…
I like “stuff” as much as the next person, but our hold on material things is tenuous at best. And in a consumer culture there is great temptation to focus on “things” rather than the Lord. It’s as Jesus taught in a parable about a wealthy man storing up his crops in barns:
Luke 12:20 But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.”
Gracious God, by any global or historical measure we are a materially blessed people – which can be a blessing or a curse. Keep our hearts and minds focused on you, dear Lord. We want to use the resources you’ve given to us in a manner that is pleasing to you, for you are the source of all good things. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.