2 Chronicles 24:2 Joash did what was pleasing in the Lord’s sight throughout the lifetime of Jehoiada the priest.
2 Chronicles 24:17-25 But after Jehoiada’s death, the leaders of Judah came and bowed before King Joash and persuaded him to listen to their advice. They decided to abandon the Temple of the Lord, the God of their ancestors, and they worshiped Asherah poles and idols instead! Because of this sin, divine anger fell on Judah and Jerusalem. Yet the Lord sent prophets to bring them back to him. The prophets warned them, but still the people would not listen.
Then the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands and keep yourselves from prospering? You have abandoned the Lord, and now he has abandoned you!”
Then the leaders plotted to kill Zechariah, and King Joash ordered that they stone him to death in the courtyard of the Lord’s Temple. That was how King Joash repaid Jehoiada for his loyalty—by killing his son. Zechariah’s last words as he died were, “May the Lord see what they are doing and avenge my death!”
In the spring of the year the Aramean army marched against Joash. They invaded Judah and Jerusalem and killed all the leaders of the nation. Then they sent all the plunder back to their king in Damascus. Although the Arameans attacked with only a small army, the Lord helped them conquer the much larger army of Judah. The people of Judah had abandoned the Lord, the God of their ancestors, so judgment was carried out against Joash.
The Arameans withdrew, leaving Joash severely wounded. But his own officials plotted to kill him for murdering the son of Jehoiada the priest. They assassinated him as he lay in bed. Then he was buried in the City of David, but not in the royal cemetery.
O: Joash started out very well, restoring the temple, calling the people back to the Lord. Yet when his mentor Jehoiada died, he went astray, and when Zechariah ben Jehoiada confronted him on it, instead of repenting, he had Zechariah killed.
As a result, he lost the battle with the Arameans, his kingdom, and his life.
A: Joash only committed murder. David had committed adultery and murder. Yet God forgave David (though he had to suffer the consequences of his sin) and still called David a man after His own heart because when the prophet Nathan confronted David, he quickly repented.
It is good to start strong -- like both Joash and David did -- but even more important is to finish well. Like David, we may succumb to sin along the way. But if so, we must quickly repent and return to the Lord.
P: Father, may I finish well, staying steadfast in Christ. When I sin, may I not delay but quickly repent and return to You. In Jesus' name, amen.
Note: this is using the SOAP method. For more information, see this page (not written by me.)