Today’s passage: 2 Kings 24:1-20
- In the midst of all this decline and invasion, the Word of God notes that these kings did evil in the sight of the Lord. Man looks at the outward appearance. The Lord looks on the heart.
- In verse 12, the date is counted according to the king of Babylon, not any king of Judah. This marks the transition to the rule of Babylon and the end of Judah.
- The Babylonians left the lower class behind in the regions they conquered and elevated them to positions of power. This was their method of obtaining their loyalty.
- When Nebuchadnezzar changed Mattaniah’s name, he was demonstrating his authority over him.
- Mattaniah/Zedkiah was Josiah’s son. He also lived wickedly and not long after tried to rebel against Nebuchadnezzar as well.
Questions to consider:
- What does this continual weakening and continual “rebellion” look like from our perspective when we look at this period in the history of Judah? Do they look strong? Who are they truly rebelling against?
- How did the conquest of Babylon differ from that of Assyria (Chapter 17)? What did these kings do with the people and the lands? How did these different approaches shape the future of the region (Judea and Samaria), even to the time of Christ?
- In a normal defeat like this, the gods of the people would be shown to be inferior. What is true of all these events? How is God showing his sovereignty? Why was Nebuchadnezzar “successful?” Are other nations (or even our own) outside of God’s control today simply because they don’t believe or follow him?