TOO HIGH

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THE IMPOSSIBLE GOAL

Kings try every solution in Judah and Israel, and we see many different results demonstrated.  Amaziah takes his father’s place in Judah, and repeats many of his ways.

Amaziah was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem.  And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, but not with a perfect heart.  Now it came to pass, when the kingdom was established to him, that he slew his servants that had killed the king his father.  But he slew not their children, but did as it is written in the law in the book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, saying, The fathers shall not die for the children, neither shall the children die for the fathers, but every man shall die for his own sin.  2 Chronicles 25:1-4

Another young king begins to lead Judah in the right direction, yet his heart is not perfect.  This has always led the kingdom to a long downhill slide.  He executes judgment on his father’s killers without getting carried away.  He begins to organize the kingdom as well.

Moreover Amaziah gathered Judah together, and made them captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, according to the houses of their fathers, throughout all Judah and Benjamin: and he numbered them from twenty years old and above, and found them three hundred thousand choice men, able to go forth to war, that could handle spear and shield.  He hired also an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel for an hundred talents of silver.  But there came a man of God to him, saying, O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee; for the LORD is not with Israel, to wit, with all the children of Ephraim.  But if thou wilt go, do it; be strong for the battle: God shall make thee fall before the enemy: for God hath power to help, and to cast down.  And Amaziah said to the man of God, But what shall we do for the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel? And the man of God answered, The LORD is able to give thee much more than this.  Then Amaziah separated them, to wit, the army that was come to him out of Ephraim, to go home again: wherefore their anger was greatly kindled against Judah, and they returned home in great anger.  2 Chronicles 25:5-10

So Amaziah has three hundred thousand troops, and feels compelled to hire another one hundred thousand from Israel.  This displeases God, who points out their idolatry.  He is told to let them have the money and to send them home.  The army from Israel is insulted and angry with Amaziah now.

And Amaziah strengthened himself, and led forth his people, and went to the valley of salt, and smote of the children of Seir ten thousand.  And other ten thousand left alive did the children of Judah carry away captive, and brought them unto the top of the rock, and cast them down from the top of the rock, that they all were broken in pieces.  But the soldiers of the army which Amaziah sent back, that they should not go with him to battle, fell upon the cities of Judah, from Samaria even unto Bethhoron, and smote three thousand of them, and took much spoil.  2 Chronicles 25:11-13

Judah has victory in battle, but the angry army from Israel turned against Judah now.  The Israelis attacked the cities of Judah.  Their act may be justified in part by Amaziah’s own idolatry.

Now it came to pass, after that Amaziah was come from the slaughter of the Edomites, that he brought the gods of the children of Seir, and set them up to be his gods, and bowed down himself before them, and burned incense unto them.  Wherefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against Amaziah, and he sent unto him a prophet, which said unto him, Why hast thou sought after the gods of the people, which could not deliver their own people out of thine hand?  And it came to pass, as he talked with him, that the king said unto him, Art thou made of the king’s counsel? forbear; why shouldest thou be smitten? Then the prophet forbare, and said, I know that God hath determined to destroy thee, because thou hast done this, and hast not hearkened unto my counsel.  2 Chronicles 25:14-16

If this situation isn’t bad enough, Amaziah has decided to backslide to the gods of wood and stone.  A prophet challenges his decision to take gods that had already failed his enemies.  The king threatens to strike the prophet and he is warned of his pending doom. 

Then Amaziah king of Judah took advice, and sent to Joash, the son of Jehoahaz, the son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, Come, let us see one another in the face.  And Joash king of Israel sent to Amaziah king of Judah, saying, The thistle that was in Lebanon sent to the cedar that was in Lebanon, saying, Give thy daughter to my son to wife: and there passed by a wild beast that was in Lebanon, and trode down the thistle.  Thou sayest, Lo, thou hast smitten the Edomites; and thine heart lifteth thee up to boast: abide now at home; why shouldest thou meddle to thine hurt, that thou shouldest fall, even thou, and Judah with thee?  But Amaziah would not hear; for it came of God, that he might deliver them into the hand of their enemies, because they sought after the gods of Edom.  2 Chronicles 25:17-20

This states that Amaziah took advice, not that it was good advice.  So he listened to fools who told him to challenge the king of Israel.  King Joash of Israel (Same name as Amaziah’s father) points out how Amaziah is prideful in this challenge.  He describes an offensive weed that presumes to be equal in stature to the mighty cedar trees of Lebanon.  He suggests that the proud thistle is to be destroyed by a wild beast.  He suggests that a minor victory over lesser enemies does not guarantee victory against the armies of Israel.  King Joash tries to warn him away from this war against their own family who are the armies of this divided Israel. 

A wise person would react to only a single word of wisdom, but Amaziah is not one of these.  In this case God has already decided his doom because he had surrendered to false gods.  A good king has been tempted by pride, and this only because he was previously tempted to abandon the God of Abraham for idols. 

So Joash the king of Israel went up; and they saw one another in the face, both he and Amaziah king of Judah, at Bethshemesh, which belongeth to Judah.  And Judah was put to the worse before Israel, and they fled every man to his tent.  And Joash the king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah, the son of Joash, the son of Jehoahaz, at Bethshemesh, and brought him to Jerusalem, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem from the gate of Ephraim to the corner gate, four hundred cubits.  And he took all the gold and the silver, and all the vessels that were found in the house of God with Obededom, and the treasures of the king’s house, the hostages also, and returned to Samaria.  2 Chronicles 25:21-24

The end of this is predictable; Judah is routed by Israel and they lose treasures from the house of God.  Amaziah outlived Joash of Israel, but there was no joy in this.  He had lost the blessing of God and the treasures of the temple.  Amaziah’s end comes in a conspiracy as his father’s did. 

And Amaziah the son of Joash king of Judah lived after the death of Joash son of Jehoahaz king of Israel fifteen years.  Now the rest of the acts of Amaziah, first and last, behold, are they not written in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel?  Now after the time that Amaziah did turn away from following the LORD they made a conspiracy against him in Jerusalem; and he fled to Lachish: but they sent to Lachish after him, and slew him there.  And they brought him upon horses, and buried him with his fathers in the city of Judah.  2 Chronicles 25:25-28

How often do we know that salvation is available to people who just cannot see it?  The testimony of Jesus has been presented to western civilization for thousands of years.  Christian holidays proclaim the message and it does not reach the majority of our world. 

God does offer his invitation, and predestinates some to follow him.  We should keep this hope that we will offer the gospel to some who will receive it.  We obey to offer hope, and God prepares his lost sheep to know their master’s voice.  These scriptures will be the bread of life to his sheep.

THE RIGHT GETS LEFT

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THE LONG SLIDE

Can a child be saved?  Perhaps a child could save us if he shares the testimony of God.  But a child needs godly training and we hope adult leaders have all had this kind of upbringing.  Joash had a good beginning and pointed Judah to a righteous path.  Jehoida the priest had provided some of the godly instruction that he needed.

Joash was seven years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Zibiah of Beersheba.  And Joash did that which was right in the sight of the LORD all the days of Jehoiada the priest.  And Jehoiada took for him two wives; and he begat sons and daughters.  And it came to pass after this, that Joash was minded to repair the house of the LORD.  And he gathered together the priests and the Levites, and said to them, Go out unto the cities of Judah, and gather of all Israel money to repair the house of your God from year to year, and see that ye hasten the matter. Howbeit the Levites hastened it not.  2 Chronicles 24:1-5

Joash did well as long as Jehoida his teacher was alive.  He initiated the repair of the temple, but the priests had to be motivated to get the job done.  He made sure the message got delivered.

And the king called for Jehoiada the chief, and said unto him, Why hast thou not required of the Levites to bring in out of Judah and out of Jerusalem the collection, according to the commandment of Moses the servant of the LORD, and of the congregation of Israel, for the tabernacle of witness?  For the sons of Athaliah, that wicked woman, had broken up the house of God; and also all the dedicated things of the house of the LORD did they bestow upon Baalim.  And at the king’s commandment they made a chest, and set it without at the gate of the house of the LORD.  And they made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in to the LORD the collection that Moses the servant of God laid upon Israel in the wilderness.  And all the princes and all the people rejoiced, and brought in, and cast into the chest, until they had made an end.  2 Chronicles 24:6-10

Joash reminded the priests to undo the damage done by the demonic queen who had tried to kill him earlier.  Once the repair funding was started everyone rejoiced to see a restoration beginning.

Now it came to pass, that at what time the chest was brought unto the king’s office by the hand of the Levites, and when they saw that there was much money, the king’s scribe and the high priest’s officer came and emptied the chest, and took it, and carried it to his place again. Thus they did day by day, and gathered money in abundance.  And the king and Jehoiada gave it to such as did the work of the service of the house of the LORD, and hired masons and carpenters to repair the house of the LORD, and also such as wrought iron and brass to mend the house of the LORD.  So the workmen wrought, and the work was perfected by them, and they set the house of God in his state, and strengthened it.  And when they had finished it, they brought the rest of the money before the king and Jehoiada, whereof were made vessels for the house of the LORD, even vessels to minister, and to offer withal, and spoons, and vessels of gold and silver. And they offered burnt offerings in the house of the LORD continually all the days of Jehoiada.  2 Chronicles 24:11-14

The people gave generously and set the repairs in motion.  Workers did the repairs and there was enough to restore furnishings to the temple.  As long as Jehoida lived the temple prospered, and Judah with it.

But Jehoiada waxed old, and was full of days when he died; an hundred and thirty years old was he when he died.  And they buried him in the city of David among the kings, because he had done good in Israel, both toward God, and toward his house.  Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king hearkened unto them.  And they left the house of the LORD God of their fathers, and served groves and idols: and wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem for this their trespass.  Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again unto the LORD; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear.  2 Chronicles 24:15-19

When Jehoida the priest died, minor leaders of Judah petitioned Joash to leave the worship of god, to introduce religious tolerance.  Joash gave in to political pressure and Judah backslid away from God to idolatry.  God still sent prophets to call them back to righteousness but they refused to listen.

And the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, which stood above the people, and said unto them, Thus saith God, Why transgress ye the commandments of the LORD, that ye cannot prosper? because ye have forsaken the LORD, he hath also forsaken you.  And they conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of the LORD.

Thus Joash the king remembered not the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but slew his son. And when he died, he said, The LORD look upon it, and require it.  And it came to pass at the end of the year, that the host of Syria came up against him: and they came to Judah and Jerusalem, and destroyed all the princes of the people from among the people, and sent all the spoil of them unto the king of Damascus.  For the army of the Syrians came with a small company of men, and the LORD delivered a very great host into their hand, because they had forsaken the LORD God of their fathers. So they executed judgment against Joash.  2 Chronicles 24:20-24

The son of Jehoida was faithful to God, and Joash rewarded him with a death sentence.  The king commanded the people to stone the son of his mentor the high priest.  Zechariah prayed that God would be his vengeance, and the Syrian army fulfilled his petition.  The Syrians slew the minor politicians who had led Joash and Judah to backslide.  Joash was left with sickness and judgment was close behind. 

And when they were departed from him, (for they left him in great diseases,) his own servants conspired against him for the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest, and slew him on his bed, and he died: and they buried him in the city of David, but they buried him not in the sepulchres of the kings.  And these are they that conspired against him; Zabad the son of Shimeath an Ammonitess, and Jehozabad the son of Shimrith a Moabitess.  Now concerning his sons, and the greatness of the burdens laid upon him, and the repairing of the house of God, behold, they are written in the story of the book of the kings. And Amaziah his son reigned in his stead. 2 Chronicles 24:25-27

Joash was slain by his own servants, seeking revenge for the death of Jehoida’s sons.  They fulfilled the prayer of Zechariah, but were still guilty of murder themselves.  They brought the son of Joash to power, and began another chapter in the story of Judah.

MOTHER OF GODLESSNESS

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DESTINATION DOOM

What would my family tree look like if my grandmother decided to kill all the babies?  We will meet a mother who foreshadows the horrors of modern news reports.  Destiny for Ahaziah was not for glory, but rather to become part of the winds of change in Israel and Judah.  He had been a survivor of the Arabian raid, but other events would further change Judah.

And the inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son king in his stead: for the band of men that came with the Arabians to the camp had slain all the eldest. So Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah reigned.  Forty and two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Athaliah the daughter of Omri.  He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab: for his mother was his counsellor to do wickedly.  Wherefore he did evil in the sight of the LORD like the house of Ahab: for they were his counsellors after the death of his father to his destruction.  He walked also after their counsel, and went with Jehoram the son of Ahab king of Israel to war against Hazael king of Syria at Ramothgilead: and the Syrians smote Joram.  2 Chronicles 22:1-5

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:  Ahaziah of Judah was king of Judah, and the son of Jehoram and Athaliah, the daughter (or possibly sister) of king Ahab of Israel. He is also called Jehoahaz (2 Chronicles 21:17; 25:23).

You may remember the name Jehoahaz from the previous chapter, so now you see that this is the same person.  There is enough confusion when kings of Judah and Israel have the same names.  The status of Athaliah is also questioned, so bear with us as we unwind this tale!

And he returned to be healed in Jezreel because of the wounds which were given him at Ramah, when he fought with Hazael king of Syria. And Azariah the son of Jehoram king of Judah went down to see Jehoram the son of Ahab at Jezreel, because he was sick.  And the destruction of Ahaziah was of God by coming to Joram: for when he was come, he went out with Jehoram against Jehu the son of Nimshi, whom the LORD had anointed to cut off the house of Ahab.  And it came to pass, that, when Jehu was executing judgment upon the house of Ahab, and found the princes of Judah, and the sons of the brethren of Ahaziah, that ministered to Ahaziah, he slew them.  And he sought Ahaziah: and they caught him, (for he was hid in Samaria,) and brought him to Jehu: and when they had slain him, they buried him: Because, said they, he is the son of Jehoshaphat, who sought the LORD with all his heart. So the house of Ahaziah had no power to keep still the kingdom.  2 Chronicles 22:6-9

From the book of Kings we may recall the furious ride of Jehu who wrought judgment by slaying the evil leaders of Israel.  He also found Ahaziah visiting his relative the king of Israel he too was targeted.  He was permitted a proper burial as a son of a righteous king, but he had strayed and become an enemy of God.  His mother took the affairs of Judah into her own hands. 

But when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the seed royal of the house of Judah.  But Jehoshabeath, the daughter of the king, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him from among the king’s sons that were slain, and put him and his nurse in a bedchamber. So Jehoshabeath, the daughter of king Jehoram, the wife of Jehoiada the priest, (for she was the sister of Ahaziah,) hid him from Athaliah, so that she slew him not.  And he was with them hid in the house of God six years: and Athaliah reigned over the land.  2 Chronicles 22:10-12

Athaliah would kill her own grandchildren to become the sole ruler of Judah.  One son, Joash, is hidden from her madness by a daughter of the king.  The wife of a priest hid the boy from Athaliah in the temple for the six years that Athaliah reigned.  

And in the seventh year Jehoiada strengthened himself, and took the captains of hundreds, Azariah the son of Jeroham, and Ishmael the son of Jehohanan, and Azariah the son of Obed, and Maaseiah the son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat the son of Zichri, into covenant with him.  And they went about in Judah, and gathered the Levites out of all the cities of Judah, and the chief of the fathers of Israel, and they came to Jerusalem.  And all the congregation made a covenant with the king in the house of God. And he said unto them, Behold, the king’s son shall reign, as the LORD hath said of the sons of David.  2 Chronicles 23:1-3

Now the priest Jehoida assumed a military role and formed a force of warriors.  He gathered support among the priests and people to honor God’s intent for the house of David to rule.  Athaliah could not be considered to be a son of David.  Jehoida issued instructions to his allies.

This is the thing that ye shall do; A third part of you entering on the sabbath, of the priests and of the Levites, shall be porters of the doors;  And a third part shall be at the king’s house; and a third part at the gate of the foundation: and all the people shall be in the courts of the house of the LORD.  But let none come into the house of the LORD, save the priests, and they that minister of the Levites; they shall go in, for they are holy: but all the people shall keep the watch of the LORD.  And the Levites shall compass the king round about, every man with his weapons in his hand; and whosoever else cometh into the house, he shall be put to death: but be ye with the king when he cometh in, and when he goeth out.  2 Chronicles 23:4-7

The normal operation of the Temple excluded most from the inner areas.  The people were alerted to help guard against possible invasion by those loyal to the queen.  It was all fairly normal for them to be excluded from the holy areas, but the precaution would protect special proceedings to come.  The young king would be closely guarded.

So the Levites and all Judah did according to all things that Jehoiada the priest had commanded, and took every man his men that were to come in on the sabbath, with them that were to go out on the sabbath: for Jehoiada the priest dismissed not the courses.   Moreover Jehoiada the priest delivered to the captains of hundreds spears, and bucklers, and shields, that had been king David’s, which were in the house of God.  And he set all the people, every man having his weapon in his hand, from the right side of the temple to the left side of the temple, along by the altar and the temple, by the king round about.  Then they brought out the king’s son, and put upon him the crown, and gave him the testimony, and made him king. And Jehoiada and his sons anointed him, and said, God save the king.  2 Chronicles 23:8-11

From within the temple weapons were available from the treasures of David.  Thus the guards would have weapons without alerting anyone to the unusual events shaping up.  Armed guards were positioned and the king was safely brought in under full guard.  The young king was anointed by the priests as David his ancestor had been.  The celebration soon reached the queen’s ears. She indulged a practice previously neglected by going to church to learn what was going on. 

Now when Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the king, she came to the people into the house of the LORD:  And she looked, and, behold, the king stood at his pillar at the entering in, and the princes and the trumpets by the king: and all the people of the land rejoiced, and sounded with trumpets, also the singers with instruments of musick, and such as taught to sing praise. Then Athaliah rent her clothes, and said, Treason, Treason.  Then Jehoiada the priest brought out the captains of hundreds that were set over the host, and said unto them, Have her forth of the ranges: and whoso followeth her, let him be slain with the sword. For the priest said, Slay her not in the house of the LORD.  So they laid hands on her; and when she was come to the entering of the horse gate by the king’s house, they slew her there.  2 Chronicles 23:12-15

A queen who murdered her own family is not in a good position to cry “treason”.  She and her followers were removed from the temple before she was slain.  The idolatry that mislead them was also destroyed.

And Jehoiada made a covenant between him, and between all the people, and between the king, that they should be the LORD’s people.  Then all the people went to the house of Baal, and brake it down, and brake his altars and his images in pieces, and slew Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars.  Also Jehoiada appointed the offices of the house of the LORD by the hand of the priests the Levites, whom David had distributed in the house of the LORD, to offer the burnt offerings of the LORD, as it is written in the law of Moses, with rejoicing and with singing, as it was ordained by David.  And he set the porters at the gates of the house of the LORD, that none which was unclean in any thing should enter in.  And he took the captains of hundreds, and the nobles, and the governors of the people, and all the people of the land, and brought down the king from the house of the LORD: and they came through the high gate into the king’s house, and set the king upon the throne of the kingdom.  And all the people of the land rejoiced: and the city was quiet, after that they had slain Athaliah with the sword.  2 Chronicles 23:16-21

Jehoida the priest cleansed the land and established a covenant with the people to serve god as in David’s day.  They restored the Levites as guards to keep the temple holy.  Now the king was established to rule in his own house, and moved to that location.  There was change for good in Judah, which restored peace to Jerusalem.

DESIGN FOR DEFEAT

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MIXED RESULTS

Jehoshaphat has been a king of some wisdom.  He has done much of what God has desired of him, and his mistakes were not the sum of his life.  His people could witness some blessing with his success, and some evidence of what god does not want.  Some of his sons may have desired the good, but one turned to the bad.

Now Jehoshaphat slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. And Jehoram his son reigned in his stead.  And he had brethren the sons of Jehoshaphat, Azariah, and Jehiel, and Zechariah, and Azariah, and Michael, and Shephatiah: all these were the sons of Jehoshaphat king of Israel.  And their father gave them great gifts of silver, and of gold, and of precious things, with fenced cities in Judah: but the kingdom gave he to Jehoram; because he was the firstborn.  Now when Jehoram was risen up to the kingdom of his father, he strengthened himself, and slew all his  brethren with the sword, and divers also of the princes of Israel.  2 Chronicles 21:1-4

The firstborn has been the traditional heir, even though most of the good kings were not firstborn.  Jehoram takes no chances and eliminates any younger competition.  He has chosen the path of Cain.

Jehoram was thirty and two years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eight years in Jerusalem.  And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, like as did the house of Ahab: for he had the daughter of Ahab to wife: and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of the LORD.  Howbeit the LORD would not destroy the house of David, because of the covenant that he had made with David, and as he promised to give a light to him and to his sons for ever.  In his days the Edomites revolted from under the dominion of Judah, and made themselves a king.  Then Jehoram went forth with his princes, and all his chariots with him: and he rose up by night, and smote the Edomites which compassed him in, and the captains of the chariots.  So the Edomites revolted from under the hand of Judah unto this day. The same time also did Libnah revolt from under his hand; because he had forsaken the LORD God of his fathers.  2 Chronicles 21:5-10

If you’re going to do evil, then copy the masters of evil.  The kings of Israel were the pattern of rebellion, and Ahab was their king.  His daughter was also of Jezebel, likely a princess of darkness.  The result of their fall into darkness was the rebellion of subject nations.  Beyond idolatry, he forced Judah to join his false beliefs. 

Moreover he made high places in the mountains of Judah and caused the inhabitants of Jerusalem to commit fornication, and compelled Judah thereto.  And there came a writing to him from Elijah the prophet, saying, Thus saith the LORD God of David thy father, Because thou hast not walked in the ways of Jehoshaphat thy father, nor in the ways of Asa king of Judah,  But hast walked in the way of the kings of Israel, and hast made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to go a whoring, like to the whoredoms of the house of Ahab, and also hast slain thy brethren of thy father’s house, which were better than thyself:  Behold, with a great plague will the LORD smite thy people, and thy children, and thy wives, and all thy goods:  And thou shalt have great sickness by disease of thy bowels, until thy bowels fall out by reason of the sickness day by day.  2 Chronicles 21:11-15

God can speak for himself, and he does so through his prophet.  A specific punishment is spelled out.  To the godless this may seem like an empty threat, as they are incapable of true belief.  But when these words are fulfilled, they bring their own belief.

Moreover the LORD stirred up against Jehoram the spirit of the Philistines, and of the Arabians, that were near the Ethiopians:  And they came up into Judah, and brake into it, and carried away all the substance that was found in the king’s house, and his sons also, and his wives; so that there was never a son left him, save Jehoahaz, the youngest of his sons.  And after all this the LORD smote him in his bowels with an incurable disease.  And it came to pass, that in process of time, after the end of two years, his bowels fell out by reason of his sickness: so he died of sore diseases. And his people made no burning for him, like the burning of his fathers.  Thirty and two years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years, and departed without being desired. Howbeit they buried him in the city of David, but not in the sepulchres of the kings.  2 Chronicles 21:16-20

My experience with warfare was long ago.  But no one will forget the fear that comes when an enemy is close to or actually breaking into your defensive lines.  Someone is in your area with violent capabilities, and the night belongs to fear.  Stories of units that were overrun are hard to read from history or from current events.  For Jehoram the violation of his house and family would have been considerably grievous.  http://www.g2mil.com/lost_vietnam.htm

http://www.bravecannons.org/stories.html

To this nightmare the fulfillment of disease was added.  I may not have had the same disease, but I did have a serious disease of the same system.  We take for granted the function of digestion until it stops working.  I required surgery that did not go well, and I did not get relief from the medical answers then.  I did get something that Jehoram did not receive.  Prayer brought a visitation of the Lord to my hospital room, and I was healed immediately that night.  I walked to the nurse’s station and asked for some food to eat.  The medical staff was amazed at my recovery, but I knew the source of it.  I had assurance of the source of my hope. 

Had Jehoram shown repentance, he could have had mercy from God, as so many before and since have found.  The darkness that he chose ruled his life and his death instead of the prosperity that God would offer to his people.