Life-Study of 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Estherby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Prayer: Lord, how we thank You for a time to be with You and with saints from around the globe. What a chance, Lord, to have a blending not only among ourselves but also a blending with You. Hallelujah, what a blending that we, the tripartite man, can be blended with the Triune God! Lord, give us a heart to treasure this time. We would not let You go and we would not let ourselves go until we have some blending with You. We believe that we are under Your anointing, the anointing of the compound, all-inclusive, life-giving Spirit, who is the consummation of the Triune God dwelling within us. Lord, we praise You that we are living in this most blessed day, the day that will close this age and bring You back. Lord, thank You for Your presence. Thank You for opening up Your Word. Thank You that we have not only the printed Word but also the opened and interpreted Word. Your Word has been opened up to us, and You are waiting for us to take it. Help us, Lord. We are weak, we are nothing, and we need You. Amen.
The supplement to the history of the kings of Judah recorded in 2 Chronicles shows us that the kings in Judah stood on the proper ground—Jerusalem—the ground chosen, ordained, and established by God (Deut. 12:5-18). God’s choosing of this ground according to His ordination is clearly seen in Deuteronomy 12, a chapter that we need to study carefully.
Jerusalem is the place chosen by God to be His worship center for the whole earth. Today statesmen and world leaders are debating about who the rightful owner of Jerusalem is. This debate is foolish, and those who are debating do not know what they are talking about, for they do not know that God is the owner of Jerusalem. Jerusalem, the center of God’s worship, belongs to the Triune God.
We may say that God’s choice of Jerusalem as the worship center began with His word to Abraham in Genesis 22:2. God told Abraham to go to the land of Moriah and to offer Isaac (a type of Christ) upon one of the mountains of which God would tell him. The place—Mount Moriah—where Abraham offered Isaac was also the site—Mount Zion—selected by God for the temple (2 Chron. 3:1; 2 Sam. 24:25). Zion is actually a peak of Mount Moriah. When Solomon was about to build the temple, there was no need for him to select a place because the place had already been selected by God and made known to David. I believe that this site was the very spot where Isaac was offered to God by his father. The choice of this place was God’s ordination.
The kings of Judah remained on the proper ground, Jerusalem, chosen by God, but the kings of Israel abandoned the God-ordained ground. Jeroboam even set up other worship centers in Bethel and Dan (1 Kings 12:29-30). This action was an abomination in the eyes of the Lord. The kings of Judah were right with respect to the ground. The proper ground, the unique ground, the ground chosen, ordained, and established by God, signifies the ground on which we should practice the church life today.
The kings of Judah also kept their belief in the Word of God given by Moses. Therefore, regarding their faith they were fundamental. Thus the kings of Judah were right in two things: remaining on the proper ground and keeping the fundamental faith in God’s Word.
The proper ground and the fundamental faith were attractions for a good number of God’s people, especially the priests and the Levites. During the reign of Rehoboam, the Levites abandoned their pasture lands and their property and went to Jerusalem (2 Chron. 11:13-14). Moreover, “those from all the tribes of Israel who set their hearts to seek Jehovah, the God of Israel, came after them to Jerusalem to sacrifice to Jehovah, the God of their fathers” (v. 16). Not only the priests and Levites but all those who sought Jehovah in other tribes gave up their property and came to the worship center in Jerusalem. Later, during the reign of Asa, “many from Israel threw in their lot with him when they saw that Jehovah his God was with him” (15:9). They were attracted to Jerusalem because the kings of Judah stood on the proper ground and kept the fundamental faith.
However, this is not all that we should have. We have seen that the kings of Judah were on the proper ground of Jerusalem and that they kept the fundamental faith, but now we need to consider how they behaved themselves.
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