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From Rebellion To Redemption

person wearing tan sweatshirt standing on a balcony overlooking a lake with their hands folded
May 13, 2020
Caroline Burk

The past few weeks I’ve been reading about the different kings in the Bible. I’ve never really read in-depth about these individuals; in fact, I even remember only skimming over the kings’ stories or completely skipping them altogether because I figured they didn’t have anything relevant to teach me.

Spoiler alert: I was 100% wrong.

Actually reading the stories of the different Old Testament Kings made me realize that God wanted us to learn from them, more specifically learn from their mistakes.

2 Chronicles 12 is a brief story of only one of the many kings, but it holds such a profound message that I had to share. This chapter explains how Rehoboam, a King of Judah, rebelled against God and deliberately chose to disobey His commands, leading the people he was put in charge of away from the Lord. God responded to Rehoboam through the prophet Shemaiah who told the king and his advisors that the Lord had abandoned them and was going to hand them over to the King of Egypt.

After consistently rebelling against God, Rehoboam’s response to Lord was surprising, to say the least; he simply said: “the Lord is just.”

I don’t know about you, but my response to knowing I was going to be destroyed by the King of Egypt would have definitely included some crying, a major breakdown, with a side of begging God to save me.

But Rehoboam didn’t do any of those things. Instead, he humbly accepted that he had done wrong and that God was righteous in the consequences He had given him. What’s even more impactful is how God responded to Rehoboam’s humility by offering deliverance from the king of Egypt. 2 Chronicles 12:7 says God told Rehoboam that “Since they have humbled themselves, I will not destroy them but will soon give them deliverance. My wrath will not be poured out on Jerusalem through Shishak.”

I had to reread this part a couple of times to fully understand that Rehoboam had constantly and deliberately disobeyed God and led the people of Judah away from Him, yet God still decided to redeem him.

Aren’t we all just like Rehoboam? Haven’t we all been there? Every one of us has sinned, time and time again. Yet, every time we go against God, He is ready and waiting to redeem us. He doesn’t hold a grudge or need a few days to think about it, He is eager to forgive and forget our sins.

Personally, this is something I struggle to remember. I often think I need to somehow work my way towards earning God’s grace. But thanks to Rehoboam’s story, I’m slowly realizing that we will be so much more free to give love if we humbly and eagerly accept the love given to us by God.

Psalm 103: 10-12: He has not punished us as we deserve for all our sins, 11 for his mercy toward those who fear and honor him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. 12 He has removed our sins as far away from us as the east is from the west.

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