Daily Bible Radio

Holiness and Treason

2 Chronicles 23:12-15 :

When Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the king, she came to the people into Yahweh’s house. Then she looked, and, behold, the king stood by his pillar at the entrance, and the captains and the trumpets by the king. All the people of the land rejoiced, and blew trumpets. The singers also played musical instruments, and led the singing of praise. Then Athaliah tore her clothes, and said, “Treason! treason!”

Jehoiada the priest brought out the captains of hundreds who were set over the army, and said to them, “Bring her out between the ranks; and whoever follows her, let him be slain with the sword.” For the priest said, “Don’t kill her in Yahweh’s house.” So they made way for her. She went to the entrance of the horse gate to the king’s house; and they killed her there.

Jehoiada and the Levites were successful. Athaliah was not only removed from power, she was killed by them. Notice that Athaliah accused the people of treason. A usurper of power will often try to convince people that they are in the wrong to oppose the government. As I have already explained, resisting Athaliah was actually showing obedience to God, the real source of governmental authority. It was Athaliah that was committing treason against God. Notice that Jehoiada didn't even pay attention to this accusation.

What Jehoiada did do, was to make a very clear division between good and evil. Jehoiada's separation had teeth. He told the army to kill anyone who follows the queen. There was no middle ground. The people were to either follow the queen or God's king. That's how it really is for us spiritually today. You can't be half Christian and half worldly. These two systems are opposed to each other. It is possible to believe you are in one when you are actually the other, but they don't mix. We must decide whether we will follow Jesus or follow the ways of this world. In the end, those who follow this world will be killed. When leaders make a clear distinction between the world and Jesus, it helps those who follow them to face up to the seriousness of their choices. It is the responsibility of Christian leaders to preach holiness. They must teach people to turn from their sin or they cannot be recognized as being part of the church.

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