2 Kings
Introduction 1-11 Ahab Offspring killed 12-14 The Brothers of Ahaziah Killed 15-16 Jehonadab 17 Jehu Completes His Commission 18-28 The Worshipers of Baal Exterminated 29-33 Reward and Punishment 34-36 The Death of Jehu
Introduction

In this chapter we see several sides of Jehu. We see how on the one hand he goes too far by killing people for whom God has not instructed him to kill them. On the other hand, he did not go far enough. He eradicated the Baal service, but not the golden calves, which he continues to serve. He often does the work of God, but pursues actually his own interests. It seems that he is more of an instrument than a servant. He knows how to handle the sword excellently when it comes to judging evil. What he has not learned, however, is to apply the sword, applied in a spiritual sense, to himself.

He is a useful instrument as long as God’s interests correspond to his own. If God’s interests are not in line with his interests, he goes his own way.


Ahab Offspring killed

1Now Ahab had seventy sons in Samaria. And Jehu wrote letters and sent [them] to Samaria, to the rulers of Jezreel, the elders, and to the guardians of [the children of] Ahab, saying, 2“Now, when this letter comes to you, since your master’s sons are with you, as well as the chariots and horses and a fortified city and the weapons, 3select the best and fittest of your master’s sons, and set [him] on his father’s throne, and fight for your master’s house.” 4But they feared greatly and said, “Behold, the two kings did not stand before him; how then can we stand?” 5And the one who [was] over the household, and he who [was] over the city, the elders, and the guardians of [the children], sent [word] to Jehu, saying, “We are your servants, all that you say to us we will do, we will not make any man king; do what is good in your sight.” 6Then he wrote a letter to them a second time saying, “If you are on my side, and you will listen to my voice, take the heads of the men, your master’s sons, and come to me at Jezreel tomorrow about this time.” Now the king’s sons, seventy persons, [were] with the great men of the city, [who] were rearing them. 7When the letter came to them, they took the king’s sons and slaughtered [them], seventy persons, and put their heads in baskets, and sent [them] to him at Jezreel. 8When the messenger came and told him, saying, “They have brought the heads of the king’s sons,” he said, “Put them in two heaps at the entrance of the gate until morning.” 9Now in the morning he went out and stood and said to all the people, “You are innocent; behold, I conspired against my master and killed him, but who killed all these? 10Know then that there shall fall to the earth nothing of the word of the LORD, which the LORD spoke concerning the house of Ahab, for the LORD has done what He spoke through His servant Elijah.” 11So Jehu killed all who remained of the house of Ahab in Jezreel, and all his great men and his acquaintances and his priests, until he left him without a survivor.

The events follow each other in quick succession. Jehu acts energetically. After Jezreel, he also wants Samaria at his side. Seventy sons of Ahab live in Samaria. This will mean all his male offspring which he has conceived with his many wives, and also his grandsons. All these sons are a danger to Jehu’s kingdom. They must therefore be eliminated. He devises a clever plan for this. He sends letters to Samaria, to the city council. The content of his letter is very challenging, there is bravura in it. It is the language of the confident man who knows his own power and also knows the weak spot of his opponent.

He speaks to them as people who still see their “lord” in Ahab. He also points out to them their military strength. As capital they have access to “the chariots and horses and a fortified city and the weapons”. His proposal is that they should only put the best of Ahab’s sons on the throne and under his leadership will fight with him. He tells them to appoint a kind of counter king and then, in a fight with him, decide who the real king is.

The fact that Jehu dares to say and present all this shows that he is certain of his case. He knows the sons of Ahab. They are weak guys, just like the leaders of the city. The leaders are men of the kind of elders and distinguished men of Jezreel who have danced to the tune of Jezebel and killed Naboth in response to her letter (1Kgs 21:8-148So she wrote letters in Ahab’s name and sealed them with his seal, and sent letters to the elders and to the nobles who were living with Naboth in his city.9Now she wrote in the letters, saying, “Proclaim a fast and seat Naboth at the head of the people;10and seat two worthless men before him, and let them testify against him, saying, ‘You cursed God and the king.’ Then take him out and stone him to death.”11So the men of his city, the elders and the nobles who lived in his city, did as Jezebel had sent [word] to them, just as it was written in the letters which she had sent them.12They proclaimed a fast and seated Naboth at the head of the people.13Then the two worthless men came in and sat before him; and the worthless men testified against him, even against Naboth, before the people, saying, “Naboth cursed God and the king.” So they took him outside the city and stoned him to death with stones.14Then they sent [word] to Jezebel, saying, “Naboth has been stoned and is dead.”).

The language of the letter is such that Jehu presents himself as the undisputed king and that whoever dares to dispute it should go ahead. As far as he is concerned, the results are fixed. The choice is up to the leaders of Samaria. Like Jehoram, they will know what kind of man Jehu is, who is known by all as a “furious” rider (2Kgs 9:2020The watchman reported, “He came even to them, and he did not return; and the driving is like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi, for he drives furiously.”), a man who is afraid of nothing and nobody and who goes aside for nothing and nobody. It is possible that the messengers also told how Jehu raced in Jezreel and what fate Jehoram, Ahaziah and Jezebel underwent. In any case, they refer to it as acts that cause terror.

Would they dare to take the sword against such a man? Their mind says they shouldn’t do that. It is much wiser to join Jehu. That is what they do. They let him know that they join him. They do so in words that imply total submission to him. This is exactly what he wants. Now he can use them to exterminate the offspring of Ahab without getting dirty hands himself.

When Jehu has received news from the leaders of Samaria that they promise him their support, he writes them a second letter (verse 66Then he wrote a letter to them a second time saying, “If you are on my side, and you will listen to my voice, take the heads of the men, your master’s sons, and come to me at Jezreel tomorrow about this time.” Now the king’s sons, seventy persons, [were] with the great men of the city, [who] were rearing them.). He gives them a command that allows them to prove that they mean what they say. Jehu begins his letter with words similar to those he said to the officials of Jezebel: “If you are on my side” (cf. 2Kgs 9:3232Then he lifted up his face to the window and said, “Who is on my side? Who?” And two or three officials looked down at him.). He is only interested in who is for him. When they are for him, they will listen to his voice. Listening to the voice of the LORD is not an issue. He now makes these elders allies and instructs them to kill the sons of Ahab.

The question remains how his command in this second letter is to be understood. His writing may be ambiguous. That is, “the heads of the men, your master’s sons” does not mean the literal heads, but the most important sons, the most influential. They should then take the men from the city with them and arrive at Jehu tomorrow around the same time as today. The men of the city literally understand what the letter says and Jehu may have meant it that way. When the heads are cut off, they are sent to Jerusalem. The elders do not bring the heads themselves to offer them personally. They would like to remain at a distance.

Jehu gets a message that the heads are delivered. Then he orders the heads to be placed in two heaps near the city gate. When the people of the city go out of town to work, they see the heads. But Jehu is there to give the explanation of this sinister sight. In the words he uses, he is diplomatic and insincere. He is straightforward when it comes to the sword, but he is not straightforward in his language.

He declares the people innocent. As for himself, he denies any involvement in the murder of these men. Certainly, he killed Jehoram, but that is because he had to do so because the LORD ordered it, although he does not pronounce it here clearly. Who has been working in this case? No, he wouldn’t be able to say that. He plays the innocent, the ignorant. Although he is directly responsible for the murder, his question designates others as murderers. He says nothing about the instruction he has given.

To camouflage his innocence and ignorance even more, he gives a pious twist to his story (verse 1010Know then that there shall fall to the earth nothing of the word of the LORD, which the LORD spoke concerning the house of Ahab, for the LORD has done what He spoke through His servant Elijah.”). They should not be too concerned about who did this. It all falls under the administration of the LORD. After all, the LORD’s revenge has been carried out, hasn’t it? What he in fact does is to blame the LORD.

Verse 1111So Jehu killed all who remained of the house of Ahab in Jezreel, and all his great men and his acquaintances and his priests, until he left him without a survivor. is a kind of conclusion. Jehu kills all who are left of the house of Ahab. But he also goes further. He also killed “all his great men and his acquaintances and his priests”. He was not commissioned to do so. We must never go further than the Lord tells us, no matter how justified certain things may seem. Jehu wants to confirm his kingship and clears away everything that could hinder him. What is the power of his actions? The flesh, he acts for himself. The power of the flesh can work in spiritual things, but then there is always done more than the Lord’s command.


The Brothers of Ahaziah Killed

12Then he arose and departed and went to Samaria. On the way while he was at Beth-eked of the shepherds, 13Jehu met the relatives of Ahaziah king of Judah and said, “Who are you?” And they answered, “We are the relatives of Ahaziah; and we have come down to greet the sons of the king and the sons of the queen mother.” 14He said, “Take them alive.” So they took them alive and killed them at the pit of Beth-eked, forty-two men; and he left none of them.

Nor did Jehu receive a command from the LORD to kill the princes of Judah. Ahaziah is a son of the evil Jehoram and Athaliah and therefore a grandson of Ahab and rightly killed. The brothers of Ahaziah are not literal brothers, because Ahaziah did not have anymore (2Chr 21:16-1716Then the LORD stirred up against Jehoram the spirit of the Philistines and the Arabs who bordered the Ethiopians;17and they came against Judah and invaded it, and carried away all the possessions found in the king’s house together with his sons and his wives, so that no son was left to him except Jehoahaz, the youngest of his sons.). They may be cousins of him. The fact that the men are killed is justified in God’s governmental ways, because they deserved to be killed. They were friends of the house of Ahab.


Jehonadab

15Now when he had departed from there, he met Jehonadab the son of Rechab [coming] to meet him; and he greeted him and said to him, “Is your heart right, as my heart is with your heart?” And Jehonadab answered, “It is.” [Jehu said], “If it is, give [me] your hand.” And he gave him his hand, and he took him up to him into the chariot. 16He said, “Come with me and see my zeal for the LORD.” So he made him ride in his chariot.

As Jehu continues, there is a sudden meeting with Jehonadab. In response to Jehu’s question about the rightness of his heart, Jehonadab answers that his heart is indeed right. He has a right heart, but not so much in relation to Jehu as in relation to God. What the rightness of Jehu’s heart is worth, shows his performance, especially in the way he will soon eradicate the worshippers of Baal.

Jehonadab is a remarkable man. He is of the family of Rechab, of the people of Kenites. So he is not from origin from God’s people, but descends from a Canaanite people (Gen 15:18-1918On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying,
“To your descendants I have given this land,
From the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates:
19the Kenite and the Kenizzite and the Kadmonite
), so from those peoples God had said they should be eradicated. Now not all Kenites lived in Canaan and therefore not all Kenites fell under the judgement. Several of them lived among God’s people (Jdg 1:1616The descendants of the Kenite, Moses’ father-in-law, went up from the city of palms with the sons of Judah, to the wilderness of Judah which is in the south of Arad; and they went and lived with the people.; 4:1717Now Sisera fled away on foot to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite, for [there was] peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite.; 1Sam 15:66Saul said to the Kenites, “Go, depart, go down from among the Amalekites, so that I do not destroy you with them; for you showed kindness to all the sons of Israel when they came up from Egypt.” So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.; 1Chr 2:5555The families of scribes who lived at Jabez [were] the Tirathites, the Shimeathites [and] the Sucathites. Those are the Kenites who came from Hammath, the father of the house of Rechab.).

In Jeremiah 35 we read extensively about Jehonadab and his descendants and God’s appreciation for him and his family. There it turns out that Jehonadab was a faithful servant of the LORD and that his faithfulness is rewarded by the LORD. We have seen before that the period of Jehu can be compared to the period of Sardis in Revelation 3 (Rev 3:1-61“To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.2Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.3So remember what you have received and heard; and keep [it], and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.4But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.5He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.6He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’). It is remarkable that we not only find Jehu, but also Jehonadab in Sardis.

In Sardis we recognize Jehu in those who say they have the name to live (Rev 3:1b1“To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.). Jehu testifies of himself that he lives before the LORD when he says to Jehonadab “see my zeal for the LORD”. Israel is said to be “zealous for God, but not in accordance with knowledge” (Rom 10:22For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.). That also applies to Jehu. It is not a language of faith to so point at himself in his zeal for the LORD, but pride.

It must therefore be said of Jehu that his deeds have not been found completed in the sight of God (Rev 3:2b2Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.). Jehu may be eradicating the Baal service, but the golden calves still exist. Jehu returns, so to speak, to Jeroboam and not to David. Thus, the period of Sardis is in a sense a relief after the period of Thyatira – although Sardis and Thyatira coexist in church history – but Sardis does not return to the word of the apostles and prophets. Sardis remains, so to speak, ‘hanging’ in Pergamus, that is to say, the time in which the church takes in the world.

Jehonadab we recognize in the “few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments” (Rev 3:4a4But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.). They receive a promise (Rev 3:4b4But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.), just as Jehonadab also receives a promise from the LORD (Jer 35:18-1918Then Jeremiah said to the house of the Rechabites, “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Because you have obeyed the command of Jonadab your father, kept all his commands and done according to all that he commanded you;19therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, “Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not lack a man to stand before Me always.”‘“). Jehonadab is not in Judah, in Jerusalem, or near the temple, the dwelling-place of God; but he is one of the faithful among the ten apostate tribes. Jehu would also like to insure himself of his company. Jehonadab is an influential man because of his consistent attitude to life and lifestyle. This will appeal to the conservative subjects in his empire.

Jehu makes Jehonadab his friend because of the political advantage this gives him. He uses Jehonadab to strengthen his own position. When Jehu says “give your hand”, it means more than just that he can help him climb up his car. It is also symbolic for the call for his help in his acquisition of the kingship.

Jehonadab is standing by Jehu’s side; he climbs up into the chariot with him. Yet he takes a clear place of separation in the ten tribes. This is clear from Jeremiah 35. He does not drink wine, which indicates that he has no part in the joys of the apostate people. He doesn’t even plant a vineyard, because he doesn’t want to be tempted to drink wine either. He doesn’t even have a house or a field, but lives in tents. He does not want to be connected to the land in any way. For this whole behavior, this consistent attitude, which can also be seen in his descendants, he receives God’s appreciation and reward (Jer 35:12-1912Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, saying,13“Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Go and say to the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, “Will you not receive instruction by listening to My words?” declares the LORD.14“The words of Jonadab the son of Rechab, which he commanded his sons not to drink wine, are observed. So they do not drink [wine] to this day, for they have obeyed their father’s command. But I have spoken to you again and again; yet you have not listened to Me.15Also I have sent to you all My servants the prophets, sending [them] again and again, saying: ‘Turn now every man from his evil way and amend your deeds, and do not go after other gods to worship them. Then you will dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your forefathers; but you have not inclined your ear or listened to Me.16Indeed, the sons of Jonadab the son of Rechab have observed the command of their father which he commanded them, but this people has not listened to Me.’”‘17Therefore thus says the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Behold, I am bringing on Judah and on all the inhabitants of Jerusalem all the disaster that I have pronounced against them; because I spoke to them but they did not listen, and I have called them but they did not answer.’”18Then Jeremiah said to the house of the Rechabites, “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Because you have obeyed the command of Jonadab your father, kept all his commands and done according to all that he commanded you;19therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, “Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not lack a man to stand before Me always.”‘“).

We see something similar in Protestantism. New churches are formed there, which are separated from the evil in Sardis. They arise as a protest against the prevailing evil. We recognize that in our days, for example, in the restored reformed church. It is a place of separation, although within the boundaries of Sardis, of the ten tribes.


Jehu Completes His Commission

17When he came to Samaria, he killed all who remained to Ahab in Samaria, until he had destroyed him, according to the word of the LORD which He spoke to Elijah.

In this verse the historian tells us that Jehu arrives in Samaria and completes his commission there. There he kills all those who “remained to Ahab”. With this he fulfills “the word of the LORD which He spoke to Elijah” (cf. 1Kgs 21:2121Behold, I will bring evil upon you, and will utterly sweep you away, and will cut off from Ahab every male, both bond and free in Israel;).


The Worshipers of Baal Exterminated

18Then Jehu gathered all the people and said to them, “Ahab served Baal a little; Jehu will serve him much. 19Now, summon all the prophets of Baal, all his worshipers and all his priests; let no one be missing, for I have a great sacrifice for Baal; whoever is missing shall not live.” But Jehu did it in cunning, so that he might destroy the worshipers of Baal. 20And Jehu said, “Sanctify a solemn assembly for Baal.” And they proclaimed [it]. 21Then Jehu sent throughout Israel and all the worshipers of Baal came, so that there was not a man left who did not come. And when they went into the house of Baal, the house of Baal was filled from one end to the other. 22He said to the one who [was] in charge of the wardrobe, “Bring out garments for all the worshipers of Baal.” So he brought out garments for them. 23Jehu went into the house of Baal with Jehonadab the son of Rechab; and he said to the worshipers of Baal, “Search and see that there is here with you none of the servants of the LORD, but only the worshipers of Baal.” 24Then they went in to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had stationed for himself eighty men outside, and he had said, “The one who permits any of the men whom I bring into your hands to escape shall give up his life in exchange.” 25Then it came about, as soon as he had finished offering the burnt offering, that Jehu said to the guard and to the royal officers, “Go in, kill them; let none come out.” And they killed them with the edge of the sword; and the guard and the royal officers threw [them] out, and went to the inner room of the house of Baal. 26They brought out the [sacred] pillars of the house of Baal and burned them. 27They also broke down the [sacred] pillar of Baal and broke down the house of Baal, and made it a latrine to this day. 28Thus Jehu eradicated Baal out of Israel.

Jehu now focuses on the idolatrous worship of Baal. Here he does again what is good, according to the instruction of the LORD who has said that every idolatry must be cut off from the land (Deu 13:12-1812“If you hear in one of your cities, which the LORD your God is giving you to live in, [anyone] saying [that]13some worthless men have gone out from among you and have seduced the inhabitants of their city, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods’ (whom you have not known),14then you shall investigate and search out and inquire thoroughly. If it is true [and] the matter established that this abomination has been done among you,15you shall surely strike the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying it and all that is in it and its cattle with the edge of the sword.16Then you shall gather all its booty into the middle of its open square and burn the city and all its booty with fire as a whole burnt offering to the LORD your God; and it shall be a ruin forever. It shall never be rebuilt.17Nothing from that which is put under the ban shall cling to your hand, in order that the LORD may turn from His burning anger and show mercy to you, and have compassion on you and make you increase, just as He has sworn to your fathers,18if you will listen to the voice of the LORD your God, keeping all His commandments which I am commanding you today, and doing what is right in the sight of the LORD your God.). Only Jehu works in cunning. That is not the work of the LORD. It is a representation of the situation whereby it seems that the lie promotes God’s work (cf. Rom 3:88And why not [say] (as we are slanderously reported and as some claim that we say), “Let us do evil that good may come”? Their condemnation is just.). God never uses man’s lie to maintain His truth as truth. What a contrast with Elijah who did everything in public (1Kgs 18:21-24,3021Elijah came near to all the people and said, “How long [will] you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” But the people did not answer him a word.22Then Elijah said to the people, “I alone am left a prophet of the LORD, but Baal’s prophets are 450 men.23Now let them give us two oxen; and let them choose one ox for themselves and cut it up, and place it on the wood, but put no fire [under it]; and I will prepare the other ox and lay it on the wood, and I will not put a fire [under it].24Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the LORD, and the God who answers by fire, He is God.” And all the people said, “That is a good idea.”30Then Elijah said to all the people, “Come near to me.” So all the people came near to him. And he repaired the altar of the LORD which had been torn down.). Also in this part we see that Jehu acts more out of the ‘anti-Ahab’ thought than out of the ‘pro-LORD’ thought.

He frames the case in such a way that there is no reference to the will of the LORD. Imagine that the Name of the LORD would be mentioned. Then the idolaters would immediately smell danger and his plan would fall to pieces. His plan works. “All the worshipers of Baal came.” Possibly under the good influence of Jehonadab, who is present here, he ensures that no servant of the LORD can be found among the worshipers of Baal. Every worshiper of Baal must dress with the clothing of Baal. Thus every worshiper of Baal becomes known. Jehu lets an inspection be carried out to see if there is not inadvertently one of the servants of the LORD among the idolaters.

If all worshipers of Baal and only worshipers of Baal are in the house of Baal, all these worshipers offer “sacrifices and burnt offerings”. After they have made their sacrifices, Jehu sends the men he has prepared and instructed, inside, with the instruction to kill every worshiper of Baal. His language is also threatening. Anyone who lets someone escape will have to pay for it with their own lives.

The men of Jehu execute their task thoroughly. All those who are in the house of Baal are killed. The bodies are thrown out. Then everything devoted to Baal is destroyed. Baal’s house is demolished and turned into a latrine, the most despicable place in the city.

The result is impressive. It is a good result, but obtained by bad methods. In the ways of God, the end does not justify the means. The means must also be in accordance with His Word. We must fight lawfully (2Tim 2:55Also if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not win the prize unless he competes according to the rules.). Jehu is not committing murder here. What he does is to execute idolaters by the command of God. Only the method he uses is false. The Spirit will never urge anyone to bring people together under the pretext of making a sacrifice to the idols.


Reward and Punishment

29However, [as for] the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which he made Israel sin, from these Jehu did not depart, [even] the golden calves that [were] at Bethel and that [were] at Dan. 30The LORD said to Jehu, “Because you have done well in executing what is right in My eyes, [and] have done to the house of Ahab according to all that [was] in My heart, your sons of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel.” 31But Jehu was not careful to walk in the law of the LORD, the God of Israel, with all his heart; he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, which he made Israel sin. 32In those days the LORD began to cut off [portions] from Israel; and Hazael defeated them throughout the territory of Israel: 33from the Jordan eastward, all the land of Gilead, the Gadites and the Reubenites and the Manassites, from Aroer, which is by the valley of the Arnon, even Gilead and Bashan.

As has already been mentioned, Jehu’s works have not been found complete before God. He eradicated the Baal’s service, but he left the golden calves untouched. It is even so that he persisted in the sins of Jeroboam in serving the golden calves in Bethel and Dan. In it he preceded the people on the way of sin.

When the balance of Jehu’s life is taken, we see in verses 30-3130The LORD said to Jehu, “Because you have done well in executing what is right in My eyes, [and] have done to the house of Ahab according to all that [was] in My heart, your sons of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel.”31But Jehu was not careful to walk in the law of the LORD, the God of Israel, with all his heart; he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, which he made Israel sin. the two sides of God’s judgment. Good is rewarded, this is first mentioned by God (verse 3030The LORD said to Jehu, “Because you have done well in executing what is right in My eyes, [and] have done to the house of Ahab according to all that [was] in My heart, your sons of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel.”). The reward is that his offspring will be on the throne until the fourth generation. This also means that it will not be permanent, as it would have been if he had been faithful. The LORD appreciates what was good with Jehu. God does not only see the wrong.

Yet it must follow “but” because of the unfaithfulness of Jehu (verse 3131But Jehu was not careful to walk in the law of the LORD, the God of Israel, with all his heart; he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, which he made Israel sin.). As a result, the judgment comes in the following verses. For this the LORD uses Hazael as His rod of discipline. It is in reality, as it says here, the LORD Himself who punishes Israel. He began “to make Israel smaller”. All the tribes of Israel on the wilderness side of the Jordan fall into the hands of the Syrians. This is the result of this revival. Jehu has been a sham revival.


The Death of Jehu

34Now the rest of the acts of Jehu and all that he did and all his might, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? 35And Jehu slept with his fathers, and they buried him in Samaria. And Jehoahaz his son became king in his place. 36Now the time which Jehu reigned over Israel in Samaria [was] twenty-eight years.

These verses are the end of the description of Jehu’s life. He has accomplished much and has been mighty. What all this has been, has been recorded by others. What is important to us is described in the two chapters we have just considered. It concerns the extermination of the house of Ahab and the religion associated with that house. Then his time is over and he dies. He is buried in Samaria, the place he coveted for the exercise of his power. According to the promise of God, he is succeeded by his son Jehoahaz.

The duration of his government is given right at the very end of his life. Usually this happens already at the beginning of the reign of a king. This may have something to do with the fact that his accession to the throne is not clearly mentioned anywhere in his history.


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