2 Kings 15
Well, what can you say about a chapter like 2 Kings 15? It’s nothing but a discouraging report of a succession of evil kings—each one seemingly worse than the last! Plus, it seemed to be the same story over and over again: A king comes to the throne, is evil, and doesn’t reign very long until he is assassinated. Then, the person who assassinated the previous king comes to the throne, is evil, and doesn’t reign very long until he is assassinated. Over and over again.
One thing is for sure: God tells the whole truth. In the record of His dealings with human history, He hasn’t whitewashed the truth. He hasn’t ignored the details. Instead, He deals squarely with reality. If it were me, I think that would be hard sometimes. I mean, God gave His all to the Israelites in trying to build them up as a nation. And, instead of agreeing to be His people, they ran after false gods and became some of the most depraved people you can imagine. When you read this chapter, it would be easy to conclude that God was a failure.
This is one of the things I love most about God, though. He always deals in reality, even when that reality is really, really bad. When there is a problem, He doesn’t ignore it. He doesn’t pretend like it doesn’t exist. Instead, He rolls up His sleeves and wades right in, taking the problem on firsthand. He doesn’t care if He looks like a failure for the evil path that Israel ultimately chose to head down. He only cares if His children are in trouble, and dealing with the reality of the problem is the first step to solving it.
For me personally, this is also one of the ways I know the Bible isn’t a manufactured fake. It isn’t some rosy-posy account of history, in which God proclaims that He is great and all His people are wonderful and everything smells like perfume. No. It’s ugly. It’s awful. But it’s the truth. And fortunately, God can handle the truth.