We have come to a turning point in the history of the kings of the ten tribes realm. The house of Ahab will be exterminated. To this end God calls Jehu. It is a special calling. It is said three times of Jehu that he is anointed king by the LORD (verses 3,6,123Then take the flask of oil and pour it on his head and say, ‘Thus says the LORD, “I have anointed you king over Israel.”‘ Then open the door and flee and do not wait.”6He arose and went into the house, and he poured the oil on his head and said to him, “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel, ‘I have anointed you king over the people of the LORD, [even] over Israel.12They said, “It is a lie, tell us now.” And he said, “Thus and thus he said to me, ‘Thus says the LORD, “I have anointed you king over Israel.”‘“). He is the only one of all the kings of the ten tribes of whom that is said. No one of the other kings was anointed. His anointing is therefore unique and means that he is called to a special task.
At the same time we see that, although God calls someone, God does not approve of everything that that person does. God can also use unbelievers and even Satan. In this history we learn how the hand of God is in these things. He leads history, He chooses His instruments and executes judgment through them. Perhaps we can compare Jehu with Nebuchadnezzar who is also an instrument of God and at the same time acts willful. Another question is, what kind of instrument it is, to what extent the anointed Jehu has been guided by the LORD. Was he a believer?
In Hoshea 1 we see the evaluation of all Jehu’s actions (Hos 1:44And the LORD said to him, “Name him Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will punish the house of Jehu for the bloodshed of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.). There is talk about blood debt on the house of Jehu, in which the three following generations are included. But it started with Jehu. He shed a lot of blood from people for whom God did not order him to shed their blood.
Why does God call such a man? Because Jehu is the least bad of all the bad guys. He knew and hated the idolatry of Jezebel. He is very energetic. But whoever has a commission from the LORD has no license to do what he wills. For the execution one has to depend on Him step by step. The energy of Jehu is not that of faith, but of the flesh. One may have a command from the Lord, but yet not always be in dependence on the Lord. This is the case with Jehu.
In the history of the church on earth, which we see presented in Revelation 2-3 in the seven churches, we have arrived with Jehu in the phase of Sardis. Sardis follows Thyatira as Jehu follows Jezebel. We see much agreement between Jehu and Sardis. The Lord tells Sardis that she has the name to live, but she is dead (Rev 3:11“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.). The expressions of life are seen, but it is only a semblance of life. Also, the works were not found to be perfect (Rev 3:22Wake 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.). This does not mean that something is missing, but that more is being done than has been said. Too much has been done and that is a sin. That is how it was in the emerging Protestantism. Protestantism has dealt with the idolatry of Rome. There is much that is of God. That is the reformation. But there is also a lot of the flesh and that is protestantism.
An example of the combination of man’s responsibility in a negative sense and God’s actions can be seen in the judgment of Ahaziah. In 2 Chronicles 22 we read about the downfall of Ahaziah as a decree by the LORD (2Chr 22:7-97Now the destruction of Ahaziah was from God, in that he went to Joram. For when he came, he went out with Jehoram against Jehu the son of Nimshi, whom the LORD had anointed to cut off the house of Ahab.8It came about when Jehu was executing judgment on the house of Ahab, he found the princes of Judah and the sons of Ahaziah’s brothers ministering to Ahaziah, and slew them.9He also sought Ahaziah, and they caught him while he was hiding in Samaria; they brought him to Jehu, put him to death and buried him. For they said, “He is the son of Jehoshaphat, who sought the LORD with all his heart.” So there was no one of the house of Ahaziah to retain the power of the kingdom.). There the death of Ahaziah is seen from the side of God. Jehu did not receive the instruction to kill also Ahaziah the king of Judah. With that he does more than he should. But that does not mean that God is losing control. It is the problem of the relation between man’s responsibility and God’s hand. Ahaziah was killed because he had sinned against God. What God uses from the handling of man does not change the responsibility of man.