When the doorbell rings at my house,
I don't rush to answer it.
Maybe it's a sign of the times.
Maybe it's that I don't have that many
friends who typically pop in, unannounced.
But to be honest,
we don't live in the world
of June and Ward Cleaver.
She, with her pearls and tray of cookies.
He, with his kind, quirky smile
and always crisp white shirt and tie.
We no longer live where it's safe
to just leave the door unlocked
so neighbors can actually
walk in the back door unannounced
to borrow a cup of sugar.
No, when the doorbell rings at my house,
I become strangely curious,
and we all get kind of quiet inside.
For if it was someone we knew,
they wouldn't even make it half-way
up the sidewalk without texting us first.
Which is why I vote to re-instate
You know, so you could climb up high
and look out over your home
to see who is coming,
who is out there...
if there's safety all around.
But I think the neighbors would
consider me crazy if I started building one.
Maybe even paranoid.
I guess that's why people install
But I prefer the grandeur of the tower.
Kings and castles have towers.
Today we even got a report from one...
Now a watchman
stood on the tower in Jezreel,
and he saw the company of Jehu
as he came, and said,
“I see a company of men.”
2 Kings 9:17 NKJV
There were two kings
gathered together at Jezreel.
King Joram of Israel and
King Ahaziah of Judah.
These, the northern and
southern kingdoms divided,
that now seemed to be acting
somewhat as allies.
And they had just come home
for a bit of rest and recovery,
as Joram was injured in battle
against the Syrians.
And these kings were not expecting company.
So just as when my doorbell rings,
this alert from the watchman
caused them concern.
So they asked for reports from him.
Surely, they didn't want that Syrian king,
or any of his men coming there to finish
what they started.
They also sent a messenger to meet
this company of men, inquiring,
"Thus says the king, 'Is it peace?'"
But after the messenger reached
the oncoming visitors, he did not return.
The watchman said that he simply
fell in the ranks behind them.
The curiosity of the two kings was heightened
as this procession continued near.
Another messenger was sent to meet them
and inquire of their business at Jezreel, saying
"Thus says the king, 'Is it peace?'"
But he did not return either.
So the watchman reported, saying,
“He went up to them and is not coming back;
and the driving is like the driving of Jehu
the son of Nimshi, for he drives furiously!”
2 Kings 9:20
Don't you just love that...
Jehu's driving of a chariot is distinct.
I mean, he is the commander of Israeli troops.
So I guess he stands a bit taller in his chariot.
And maybe he's a bit more courageous,
a bit more fearless in his demeanor
But what these kings didn't know...
was that Jehu, had just been anointed
by Elijah as the next king of Israel.
That probably would have been
of keen interest to Jorem....
since he was the present king of Israel.
And it could also be
why Jehu was driving furiously.
Because he needed to reach these kings
before they heard this prophecy.
So, to not belabor, the point.
both kings called for their own chariots.
And in their own ridiculous,
and irresponsible curiosity,
went to meet this company of men
to see... if they came in peace.
They just went.
They just opened the door
after someone rang the bell.
Without so much as putting on any armor,
or considering any outcomes.
They wanted to know who was coming forth
so furiously in this chariot.
They only thought it's Jehu,
but were not certain.
This was only the opinion of the watchman.
And not until they neared Jehu's chariot
and asked him of his business,
did they realize he was not there
for a social call
And he killed both of them...
as God had appointed it.
(see 2 Chronicles 22:7-9)
Two kingdoms changed in a moment.
Two kings killed in one day.
The northern Israel
the southern Judah.
Divided by God as consequence of evil,
committed by kings long before
who chose pagan gods over Him.
Gone were the days when kings
called upon the name of the Lord.
Gone were the kings who inquired of Him,
praised and worshiped Him,
wrote psalms and songs unto Him.
Those kings were no more.
Not once, did either of these kings
call upon the name of the Lord.
Nor inquire of the Lord,
praise or worship Him,
write psalms or sing unto Him.
These kings religiously relied upon
the watchman in their tower.
These kings were stirred stiffly by
the curiosity that could not be quenched.
These kings had built a house
unto their pride,
unto their vanity,
unto their downfall.
Unless the Lord builds a house,
its builders labor over it in vain;
unless the Lord watches over a city,
the watchman stays alert in vain.
Let us not be like these kings
who rode curious chariots
to their own demise.
Let us not rush out into our trouble today,
uncertain, unprepared, and unarmed.
Let us not continually call
to the watchtower of worry,
sending the messengers of our mind
out to fail us.
Let us not be like kings
of our own kingdoms,
illuded by the false pretenses
of pride, wealth and fame.
But rather be servants in this household
built by the Lord...
heirs to His rich glory,
children of the King.
we are rescued from our troubles,
safe in His strong tower,
sheltered and secure,
guarded and sure.
Word of God,
train me, today...
to first, and only look to You
for the tools and materials,
plans and strength
to build this house.
to seek, cry out, and wait upon You
rather than any high thing
this world has to offer.
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