Amaziah and the Counsel of the Lord

Read Time: 8 Minutes

We are always faced with the choice of heeding the Word of God or the words of men. It is not always clear that we have the choice yet it is still present. We have seen from numerous records that when the Kings followed the counsel of the Lord they prospered and did well. When they heeded men's counsel they ran into trouble.

II Chronicles 25
:1 Amaziah was twenty and five years old when he began to reign,
    and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem.
    And his mother's name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem.
:2 And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD,
    but not with a perfect heart.

Amaziah King of Judah started out doing that which was right. His first counselor was his mother, a Believer. We saw how an idolatrous mom (Athaliah) swayed Ahaziah to walk away from God (II Kings 8:25, 26). Conversely, a believing mom has great benefit. Think back to Moses; even though he lived in the house of Pharaoh's daughter his real mom was hired to nurse him and care for him. He grew up believing God amidst the false god's of Egypt.

Amaziah did that which was right in the eyes of the Lord, however, he didn't remove the temples that the people used to worship idols. In II Kings 14:3 God tells us that he did right in sight of the Lord "yet not like David his father: he did according to all things as Joash his father did." On a five senses wise (the books of Kings) he didn't act like David. In a spiritual sense (the books of Chronicles) he didn't have a perfect heart.

After a while Amaziah starts walking by his five senses, not consulting the man of God. Amaziah strengthens himself and setup captains over hundreds throughout Judah and Benjamin. His army consisted of 300,000 choice men that were able to fight. His intention is to attack Edom, always a sore spot for God's people. He doesn't believe that his army is adequate so he hires 100,000 mighty men of valor out of Israel. In order to protect God's people God sends a prophet in to tell Amaziah that incorporating those unbelieving Israelites into his army will cause his downfall. He should rely on God to go to battle with him, not the unbelievers.

Amaziah's reaction:

II Chronicles 25
:9 And Amaziah said to the man of God,
        But what shall we do for the hundred talents
        which I have given to the army of Israel?
    And the man of God answered,
        The LORD is able to give thee much more than this.
:10 Then Amaziah separated them,
    to wit, the army that was come to him out of Ephraim, to go home again:
    wherefore their anger was greatly kindled against Judah,
    and they returned home in great anger.
:11 And Amaziah strengthened himself,
    and led forth his people,
    and went to the valley of salt,
    and smote of the children of Seir ten thousand.
:12 And other ten thousand left alive did the children of Judah carry away captive,
    and brought them unto the top of the rock,
    and cast them down from the top of the rock,
    that they all were broken in pieces.
:13 But the soldiers of the army which Amaziah sent back,
        that they should not go with him to battle,
    fell upon the cities of Judah,
        from Samaria even unto Bethhoron,
    and smote three thousand of them,
    and took much spoil.
:14 Now it came to pass, after that Amaziah was come from the slaughter of the Edomites,
    that he brought the gods of the children of Seir,
    and set them up to be his gods,
    and bowed down himself before them,
    and burned incense unto them.

Now doesn't this make a lot of sense? He has just seen God help him in battle yet he is drawn away by the gods of Edom. If they couldn't protect the children of Seir what makes him think they would have any power? This was his downfall.

:15 Wherefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against Amaziah,
    and he sent unto him a prophet, which said unto him,
        Why hast thou sought after the gods of the people,
            which could not deliver their own people out of thine hand?
:16 And it came to pass, as he talked with him,
    that the king said unto him,
        Art thou made of the king's counsel?
        forbear; why shouldest thou be smitten?
    Then the prophet forbare, and said,
        I know that God hath determined to destroy thee,
        because thou hast done this,
        and hast not hearkened unto my counsel.

Amaziah refuses to listen to the prophet, he has been swayed/deceived. He put more weight on his personal counselors than on what God says. The prophet stops trying to convince him of his error and delivers God's message that it will be his undoing. Because Amaziah has walked away from God he is no longer protected like he was in Edom.

Amaziah's counselors are steering him down the wrong path. They think that since they took Edom they can conquer Israel.

:17 Then Amaziah king of Judah took advice,
    and sent to Joash, the son of Jehoahaz,
    the son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying,
        Come, let us see one another in the face.

He is picking a fight against Israel. Probably because of the trouble that the Israelites he had hired caused on their way home. Joash King of Israel sends a reply warning him that an attack on Israel would be folly but Amaziah didn't listen. God said he would be delivered into the hands of his enemies (God knows in advance what is to happen-God knew he would not change his mind that is why He could make that statement).

:21 So Joash the king of Israel went up;
    and they saw one another in the face,
        both he and Amaziah king of Judah,
        at Bethshemesh, which belongeth to Judah.
:22 And Judah was put to the worse before Israel,
    and they fled every man to his tent.
:23 And Joash the king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah,
        the son of Joash,
        the son of Jehoahaz, 
    at Bethshemesh,
    and brought him to Jerusalem,
    and brake down the wall of Jerusalem
        from the gate of Ephraim to the corner gate,
            four hundred cubits. [about 600 feet]
:24 And he took all the gold and the silver,
    and all the vessels that were found in the house of God with Obededom,
        [Obededom-the temple treasurer]
    and the treasures of the king's house,
    the hostages also,
    and returned to Samaria.
:25 And Amaziah
        the son of Joash king of Judah
    lived after the death of Joash
        son of Jehoahaz king of Israel
    fifteen years.

The consequences of Amaziah's rejection of the counsel of God was devastating. He brought calamity upon Judah by his actions.

Take heed unto your counselors. Who are the people that advise you? Who are the people you surround yourself with? They have an effect on you whether you like it or not.

Jeremiah 17
:5 Thus saith the LORD;
        Cursed be the man that trusteth in man,
        and maketh flesh his arm,
        and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
:6         For he shall be like the heath in the desert,
            and shall not see when good cometh;
            but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,
                in a salt land
                and not inhabited.
:7     Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD,
        and whose hope the LORD is.
:8     For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters,
            and that spreadeth out her roots by the river,
            and shall not see when heat cometh,
            but her leaf shall be green;
            and shall not be careful in the year of drought,
            neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

Let God and His Word be your counselor. Surround yourself with likeminded Believers then you will stand strong and be prosperous.

Ephesians 3
:20 Now unto him
        that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think,
        according to the power that worketh in us,
:21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages,
    world without end.