Reading through the Bible together

Thursday, May 9, 2013

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The story of Jehoram in this chapter reads like one of the ancient Greek stories which were called tragedies. Even all the gloom and doom in these Greek stories they were not as tragic as we read in this chapter about Jehoram.  That's because the Greek tragedies were fiction but this is real life and involves actual flesh and blood, not paper and ink.


Though you could take different approaches to this sad story, the one point that jumps out at me is how the damage done by sin isn't restricted just to the sinner. This story would be tragic enough were it only about Jehoram's pathetic ending, a painful death in which "his bowels came out."  But the impact of sin almost never begins and ends with the sinner. If the sin of even the humblest of us can spread out and hurt others (often those nearest to us, and often those whom we love the most), think about how much more damaging the sin of those in positions of power and of those who have wide-ranging influence.


As we can see in this chapter, Jehoram's violence—killing all his brothers—and his apostasy and idolatry by following the example of Ahab in Israel, not only brought pain upon himself but upon his immediate family and upon the nation of Judah.  It's seems unfair, but no one ever said that sin was fair or rational or understandable. As Ellen White said, "It is impossible to so explain the origin of sin as to give a reason for its existence. . . . Sin is an intruder, for whose presence no reason can be given. It is mysterious, unaccountable; to excuse it, is to defend it" {GC88 492).


We can't explain sin; what we can know, and what the tragic story of Jehoram tellsus is that we need to claim the power and grace of God, who "is able to keep you from falling, and present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy" (Jude 24).


Justin McNeilus
Generation. Youth. Christ.