God’s Kingdom Forsaken? (2 Kings 17:1-17 & 2 Kings 24:8 – 25:12) (2 Kings 17:1-17, 2 Kings 24:8-25:12)Francis Blight, 22nd October 2023
Part of the Autumn teaching 2023 - Kingdom Come series, preached at a Fordham Sunday Service service
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17:2 He did evil in the eyes of the Lord , but not like the kings of Israel who preceded him.
17:3 Shalmaneser king of Assyria came up to attack Hoshea, who had been Shalmaneser's vassal and had paid him tribute.
17:4 But the king of Assyria discovered that Hoshea was a traitor, for he had sent envoys to So king of Egypt, and he no longer paid tribute to the king of Assyria, as he had done year by year. Therefore Shalmaneser seized him and put him in prison.
17:5 The king of Assyria invaded the entire land, marched against Samaria and laid siege to it for three years.
17:6 In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria captured Samaria and deported the Israelites to Assyria. He settled them in Halah, in Gozan on the Habor River and in the towns of the Medes.
17:7 All this took place because the Israelites had sinned against the Lord their God, who had brought them up out of Egypt from under the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. They worshiped other gods
17:8 and followed the practices of the nations the Lord had driven out before them, as well as the practices that the kings of Israel had introduced.
17:9 The Israelites secretly did things against the Lord their God that were not right. From watchtower to fortified city they built themselves high places in all their towns.
17:10 They set up sacred stones and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every spreading tree.
17:11 At every high place they burned incense, as the nations whom the Lord had driven out before them had done. They did wicked things that provoked the Lord to anger.
17:12 They worshiped idols, though the Lord had said, "You shall not do this."
17:13 The Lord warned Israel and Judah through all his prophets and seers: "Turn from your evil ways. Observe my commands and decrees, in accordance with the entire Law that I commanded your fathers to obey and that I delivered to you through my servants the prophets."
17:14 But they would not listen and were as stiff-necked as their fathers, who did not trust in the Lord their God.
17:15 They rejected his decrees and the covenant he had made with their fathers and the warnings he had given them. They followed worthless idols and themselves became worthless. They imitated the nations around them although the Lord had ordered them, "Do not do as they do," and they did the things the Lord had forbidden them to do.
17:16 They forsook all the commands of the Lord their God and made for themselves two idols cast in the shape of calves, and an Asherah pole. They bowed down to all the starry hosts, and they worshiped Baal.
17:17 They sacrificed their sons and daughters in the fire. They practiced divination and sorcery and sold themselves to do evil in the eyes of the Lord , provoking him to anger.
24:9 He did evil in the eyes of the Lord , just as his father had done.
24:10 At that time the officers of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon advanced on Jerusalem and laid siege to it,
24:11 and Nebuchadnezzar himself came up to the city while his officers were besieging it.
24:12 Jehoiachin king of Judah, his mother, his attendants, his nobles and his officials all surrendered to him. In the eighth year of the reign of the king of Babylon, he took Jehoiachin prisoner.
24:13 As the Lord had declared, Nebuchadnezzar removed all the treasures from the temple of the Lord and from the royal palace, and took away all the gold articles that Solomon king of Israel had made for the temple of the Lord .
24:14 He carried into exile all Jerusalem: all the officers and fighting men, and all the craftsmen and artisans-a total of ten thousand. Only the poorest people of the land were left.
24:15 Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin captive to Babylon. He also took from Jerusalem to Babylon the king's mother, his wives, his officials and the leading men of the land.
24:16 The king of Babylon also deported to Babylon the entire force of seven thousand fighting men, strong and fit for war, and a thousand craftsmen and artisans.
24:17 He made Mattaniah, Jehoiachin's uncle, king in his place and changed his name to Zedekiah.
24:18 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. His mother's name was Hamutal daughter of Jeremiah; she was from Libnah.
24:19 He did evil in the eyes of the Lord , just as Jehoiakim had done.
24:20 It was because of the Lord 's anger that all this happened to Jerusalem and Judah, and in the end he thrust them from his presence. Now Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon.
25:1 So in the ninth year of Zedekiah's reign, on the tenth day of the tenth month, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon marched against Jerusalem with his whole army. He encamped outside the city and built siege works all around it.
25:2 The city was kept under siege until the eleventh year of King Zedekiah.
25:3 By the ninth day of the fourth month the famine in the city had become so severe that there was no food for the people to eat.
25:4 Then the city wall was broken through, and the whole army fled at night through the gate between the two walls near the king's garden, though the Babylonians were surrounding the city. They fled toward the Arabah,
25:5 but the Babylonian army pursued the king and overtook him in the plains of Jericho. All his soldiers were separated from him and scattered,
25:6 and he was captured. He was taken to the king of Babylon at Riblah, where sentence was pronounced on him.
25:7 They killed the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes. Then they put out his eyes, bound him with bronze shackles and took him to Babylon.
25:8 On the seventh day of the fifth month, in the nineteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan commander of the imperial guard, an official of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem.
25:9 He set fire to the temple of the Lord , the royal palace and all the houses of Jerusalem. Every important building he burned down.
25:10 The whole Babylonian army, under the commander of the imperial guard, broke down the walls around Jerusalem.
25:11 Nebuzaradan the commander of the guard carried into exile the people who remained in the city, along with the rest of the populace and those who had gone over to the king of Babylon.
25:12 But the commander left behind some of the poorest people of the land to work the vineyards and fields.