The history of the ten tribes realm is tragic. One after the other king is murdered, “bloodshed follows bloodshed” (Hos 4:22[There is] swearing, deception, murder, stealing and adultery.
They employ violence, so that bloodshed follows bloodshed.
). The murderer becomes the new king. All sin and do Israel sin, but it is getting worse and worse. Baasha hears the prophet Jehu express God’s judgment on him. If kings become unfaithful, God sends prophets. If kings become unfaithful, the people also become unfaithful. The prophet Jehu – so not to be confused with the king who bears this name – is the son of the prophet Hanani (2Chr 16:77At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah and said to him, “Because you have relied on the king of Aram and have not relied on the LORD your God, therefore the army of the king of Aram has escaped out of your hand.).
Jehu reminds Baasha that he owes his kingship not to himself, but to God, and that God has raised him up from deep meanness. Here again we see God’s sovereignty on the one hand and man’s responsibility on the other. We cannot combine these two sides, but God knows how to bring them together, doing perfect justice to both sides. Baasha is a servant who has become king. The earth quakes under such a person (Pro 30:21-22a21Under three things the earth quakes,
And under four, it cannot bear up:
22Under a slave when he becomes king,
And a fool when he is satisfied with food,
). True kings are not only appointed by God, but also formed by Him.
He provoked the LORD to anger, as Jeroboam did. He is also judged for the murder of Jeroboam (verse 77Moreover, the word of the LORD through the prophet Jehu the son of Hanani also came against Baasha and his household, both because of all the evil which he did in the sight of the LORD, provoking Him to anger with the work of his hands, in being like the house of Jeroboam, and because he struck it.). God had determined that Jeroboam’s house had to be eradicated. He even raised Baasha from the dust to be leader (verse 22“Inasmuch as I exalted you from the dust and made you leader over My people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam and have made My people Israel sin, provoking Me to anger with their sins,). But the motives Baasha used were not right. He did it for himself and not because the LORD had said it. He also did more than the LORD had said. The judgment was announced on all that was male (1Kgs 14:1010therefore behold, I am bringing calamity on the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam every male person, both bond and free in Israel, and I will make a clean sweep of the house of Jeroboam, as one sweeps away dung until it is all gone.), but Baasha killed the whole house of Jeroboam.
We see more often that an instrument in the hand of God, by whom He executes the judgment over others, is himself punished by God. Jehu brings God’s judgment over the house of Ahab, but is also judged himself for the anger with which he does so. Also the Assyrians who are used by God to discipline His people are in turn judged by God, because of their wicked conduct (Isa 10:7,12-167Yet it does not so intend,
Nor does it plan so in its heart,
But rather it is its purpose to destroy
And to cut off many nations.
12So it will be that when the Lord has completed all His work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, [He will say], “I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria and the pomp of his haughtiness.”13For he has said,
“By the power of my hand and by my wisdom I did [this],
For I have understanding;
And I removed the boundaries of the peoples
And plundered their treasures,
And like a mighty man I brought down [their] inhabitants,
14And my hand reached to the riches of the peoples like a nest,
And as one gathers abandoned eggs, I gathered all the earth;
And there was not one that flapped its wing or opened [its] beak or chirped.”
15Is the axe to boast itself over the one who chops with it?
Is the saw to exalt itself over the one who wields it?
[That would be] like a club wielding those who lift it,
[Or] like a rod lifting [him who] is not wood.
16Therefore the Lord, the GOD of hosts, will send a wasting disease among his stout warriors;
And under his glory a fire will be kindled like a burning flame.