Series: Thru the Bible
Message – Asa, a godly king in Judah
***Video is HERE***
Asa, a godly king in Judah
In our last ‘Thru the Bible’ teaching we ended a little shy of the end of our topic. 2Chron. 12 had the second account of the reign of Rehoboam (Solomon’s son) over Judah so we will begin with that before learning about the rule of Asah.
2Chron. 12:1-16, “(1) When the rule of Rehoboam was established and he was strong, he abandoned the law of the LORD, and all Israel with him. (2) In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, because they had been unfaithful to the LORD, Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem (3) with 1,200 chariots and 60,000 horsemen. And the people were without number who came with him from Egypt—Libyans, Sukkiim, and Ethiopians. (4) And he took the fortified cities of Judah and came as far as Jerusalem. (5) Then Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and to the princes of Judah, who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said to them,
“Thus says the LORD, ‘You abandoned me, so I have abandoned you to the hand of Shishak.’”
(6) Then the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, “The LORD is righteous.” (7) When the LORD saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the LORD came to Shemaiah: “They have humbled themselves. I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance, and my wrath shall not be poured out on Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. (8) Nevertheless, they shall be servants to him, that they may know my service and the service of the kingdoms of the countries.”
(9) So Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem. He took away the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the king’s house.
He took away everything. He also took away the shields of gold that Solomon had made, (10) and King Rehoboam made in their place shields of bronze and committed them to the hands of the officers of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house. (11) And as often as the king went into the house of the LORD, the guard came and carried them and brought them back to the guardroom.
(12) And when he humbled himself the wrath of the LORD turned from him, so as not to make a complete destruction. Moreover, conditions were good in Judah.
(13) So King Rehoboam grew strong in Jerusalem and reigned. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city that the LORD had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel to put his name there.
His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite.
(14) And he did evil, for he did not set his heart to seek the LORD.
(15) Now the acts of Rehoboam, from first to last, are they not written in the chronicles of Shemaiah the prophet and of Iddo the seer? There were continual wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam. (16) And Rehoboam slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David, and Abijah his son reigned in his place.”
Abijah Reigns in Judah
2Chron. 13:1-22, “(1) In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, Abijah began to reign over Judah. (2) He reigned for three years in Jerusalem.
His mother’s name was Micaiah the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah.
Now there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam.
(3) Abijah went out to battle, having an army of valiant men of war, 400,000 chosen men. And Jeroboam drew up his line of battle against him with 800,000 chosen mighty warriors.
(4) Then Abijah stood up on Mount Zemaraim that is in the hill country of Ephraim and said, “Hear me, O Jeroboam and all Israel! (5) Ought you not to know that the LORD God of Israel gave the kingship over Israel forever to David and his sons by a covenant of salt? (6) Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, a servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up and rebelled against his lord, (7) and certain worthless scoundrels gathered about him and defied Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was young and irresolute and could not withstand them. (8) “And now you think to withstand the kingdom of the LORD in the hand of the sons of David, because you are a great multitude and have with you the golden calves that Jeroboam made you for gods. (9) Have you not driven out the priests of the LORD, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves like the peoples of other lands? Whoever comes for ordination with a young bull or seven rams becomes a priest of what are not gods. (10) But as for us, the LORD is our God, and we have not forsaken him. We have priests ministering to the LORD who are sons of Aaron, and Levites for their service. (11) They offer to the LORD every morning and every evening burnt offerings and incense of sweet spices, set out the showbread on the table of pure gold, and care for the golden lampstand that its lamps may burn every evening. For we keep the charge of the LORD our God, but you have forsaken him.
(12) Behold, God is with us at our head, and his priests with their battle trumpets to sound the call to battle against you. O sons of Israel, do not fight against the LORD, the God of your fathers, for you cannot succeed.”
(13) Jeroboam had sent an ambush around to come upon them from behind. Thus his troops were in front of Judah, and the ambush was behind them. (14) And when Judah looked, behold, the battle was in front of and behind them. And they cried to the LORD, and the priests blew the trumpets. (15) Then the men of Judah raised the battle shout. And when the men of Judah shouted, God defeated Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.
(16) The men of Israel fled before Judah, and God gave them into their hand. (17) Abijah and his people struck them with great force, so there fell slain of Israel 500,000 chosen men. (18) Thus the men of Israel were subdued at that time, and the men of Judah prevailed, because they relied on the LORD, the God of their fathers.
(19) And Abijah pursued Jeroboam and took cities from him, Bethel with its villages and Jeshanah with its villages and Ephron with its villages. (20) Jeroboam did not recover his power in the days of Abijah. And the LORD struck him down, and he died.
(21) But Abijah grew mighty. And he took fourteen wives and had twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters.
(22) The rest of the acts of Abijah, his ways and his sayings, are written in the story of the prophet Iddo.”
1Kings 15:1-12, “(1) Now in the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam the son of Nebat, Abijam began to reign over Judah.
(2) He reigned for three years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom.”
These names sometimes are difficult to deal with. In 2Chronicles she is referred to as Maacah and here as Micaiah. The two names in Hebrew are very similar and that may be all there is to it, but it is also possible that her name may have been altered as was customary once her son became king.
As far as her father being at once Uriel of Gibeah and Abishalom here is the account of how. Abishalom (was also called by the name of Absalom in 2Chorn. 11:20). This man is generally supposed by the Jews to be THE Absalom, the son of David, who conspired against and divided the kingdom. Absalom had only one daughter, Thamar (2Sam. 14:27), who was fifty years old when Solomon died. Maacah must have been a daughter of this Thamar, who had married Uriel of Gibeah, and therefore was a grand-daughter of Absalom. This account is also sustained by the noteworthy Jewish Historian Josephus (Ant. viii. 10, 1).
“(3) And he walked in all the sins that his father did before him, and his heart was not wholly true to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father. (4) Nevertheless, for David’s sake the LORD his God gave him a lamp in Jerusalem, setting up his son after him, and establishing Jerusalem, (5) because David did what was right in the eyes of the LORD and did not turn aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, except in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.
(6) Now there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all the days of his life. (7) The rest of the acts of Abijam and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? And there was war between Abijam and Jeroboam. (8) And Abijam slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place.”
There seems to be a difference between these two accounts given of Abijah (Abijam). Both are true. Just as we learned last time regarding Rehoboam, a man’s heart may be inclined to the Lord in some areas, without being fully loyal to Him. Just because Abijah sided with the Lord in matters of war, does not mean the Lord owned his heart and we know He didn’t from what is recorded of him.
While it is clear that God honored his trust that God would deliver Judah though the odds were clearly in Israel’s favor, he still did not serve the Lord with all his heart. He continued with the sexual idolatry supported and allowed by his father Rehoboam.
Asah reigns in Abijah’s place
“(9) In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Asa began to reign over Judah, (10) and he reigned forty-one years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom. (11) And Asa did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, as David his father had done.
(12) He put away the male cult prostitutes out of the land and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.
(13) He also removed Maacah his mother from being queen mother because she had made an abominable image for Asherah. And Asa cut down her image and burned it at the brook Kidron.
(14) But the high places were not taken away. Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true to the LORD all his days. (15) And he brought into the house of the LORD the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels.”
2Chron. 14:1-15, “(1) Abijah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place.
In his days the land had rest for ten years. (2) And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the LORD his God.
(3) He took away the foreign altars and the high places and broke down the pillars and cut down the Asherim (4) and commanded Judah to seek the LORD, the God of their fathers, and to keep the law and the commandment.
(5) He also took out of all the cities of Judah the high places and the incense altars. And the kingdom had rest under him.
(6) He built fortified cities in Judah, for the land had rest. He had no war in those years, for the LORD gave him peace.
(7) And he said to Judah,
“Let us build these cities and surround them with walls and towers, gates and bars. The land is still ours, because we have sought the LORD our God. We have sought him, and He has given us peace on every side.”
So they built and prospered. (8) And Asa had an army of 300,000 from Judah, armed with large shields and spears, and 280,000 men from Benjamin that carried shields and drew bows. All these were mighty men of valor.
(9) Zerah the Ethiopian came out against them with an army of a million men and 300 chariots, and came as far as Mareshah. (10) And Asa went out to meet him, and they drew up their lines of battle in the Valley of Zephathah at Mareshah.
(11) And Asa cried to the LORD his God,
“O LORD, there is none like you to help, between the mighty and the weak. Help us, O LORD our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this multitude. O LORD, you are our God; let not man prevail against you.”
(12) So the LORD defeated the Ethiopians before Asa and before Judah, and the Ethiopians fled.
(13) Asa and the people who were with him pursued them as far as Gerar, and the Ethiopians fell until none remained alive, for they were broken before the LORD and his army. The men of Judah carried away very much spoil. (14) And they attacked all the cities around Gerar, for the fear of the LORD was upon them. They plundered all the cities, for there was much plunder in them. (15) And they struck down the tents of those who had livestock and carried away sheep in abundance and camels. Then they returned to Jerusalem.”
2Chron. 15:1-19, “(1) The Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded, (2) and he went out to meet Asa and said to him,
“Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: The LORD is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you, but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. (3) For a long time Israel was without the true God, and without a teaching priest and without law, (4) but when in their distress they turned to the LORD, the God of Israel, and sought Him, He was found by them. (5) In those times there was no peace to him who went out or to him who came in, for great disturbances afflicted all the inhabitants of the lands. (6) They were broken in pieces. Nation was crushed by nation and city by city, for God troubled them with every sort of distress. (7) But you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded.”
(8) As soon as Asa heard these words, the prophecy of Azariah the son of Oded, he took courage and put away the detestable idols from all the land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities that he had taken in the hill country of Ephraim, and he repaired the altar of the LORD that was in front of the vestibule of the house of the LORD. (9) And he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, and those from Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who were residing with them, for great numbers had deserted to him from Israel when they saw that the LORD his God was with him. (10) They were gathered at Jerusalem in the third month of the fifteenth year of the reign of Asa.
(11) They sacrificed to the LORD on that day from the spoil that they had brought 700 oxen and 7,000 sheep. (12) And they entered into a covenant to seek the LORD, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and with all their soul, (13) but that whoever would not seek the LORD, the God of Israel, should be put to death, whether young or old, man or woman. (14) They swore an oath to the LORD with a loud voice and with shouting and with trumpets and with horns. (15) And all Judah rejoiced over the oath, for they had sworn with all their heart and had sought him with their whole desire, and he was found by them, and the LORD gave them rest all around.
(16) Even Maacah, his mother, King Asa removed from being queen mother because she had made a detestable image for Asherah. Asa cut down her image, crushed it, and burned it at the brook Kidron. (17) But the high places were not taken out of Israel. Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true all his days. (18) And he brought into the house of God the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels. (19) And there was no more war until the thirty-fifth year of the reign of Asa.”
1Kings 15:16-24, “(16) And there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days. (17) Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and built Ramah, that he might permit no one to go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.
(18) Then Asa took all the silver and the gold that were left in the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the king’s house and gave them into the hands of his servants. And King Asa sent them to Ben-hadad the son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, king of Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying,
(19) “Let there be a covenant between me and you, as there was between my father and your father. Behold, I am sending to you a present of silver and gold. Go, break your covenant with Baasha king of Israel, that he may withdraw from me.”
(20) And Ben-hadad listened to King Asa and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel and conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel-beth-maacah, and all Chinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali. (21) And when Baasha heard of it, he stopped building Ramah, and he lived in Tirzah.
(22) Then King Asa made a proclamation to all Judah, none was exempt, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber, with which Baasha had been building, and with them King Asa built Geba of Benjamin and Mizpah.
(23) Now the rest of all the acts of Asa, all his might, and all that he did, and the cities that he built, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah?
But in his old age he was diseased in his feet. (24) And Asa slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place.”
2Chron. 16:1-14, “(1) In the thirty-sixth year of the reign of Asa, Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and built Ramah, that he might permit no one to go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.
(2) Then Asa took silver and gold from the treasures of the house of the LORD and the king’s house and sent them to Ben-hadad king of Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying,
(3) “There is a covenant between me and you, as there was between my father and your father. Behold, I am sending to you silver and gold. Go, break your covenant with Baasha king of Israel, that he may withdraw from me.”
(4) And Ben-hadad listened to King Asa and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel, and they conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel-maim, and all the store cities of Naphtali.
(5) And when Baasha heard of it, he stopped building Ramah and let his work cease.
(6) Then King Asa took all Judah, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber, with which Baasha had been building, and with them he built Geba and Mizpah.
(7) At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah and said to him,
“Because you relied on the king of Syria, and did not rely on the LORD your God, the army of the king of Syria has escaped you. (8) Were not the Ethiopians and the Libyans a huge army with very many chariots and horsemen? Yet because you relied on the LORD, he gave them into your hand.
(9) For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. You have done foolishly in this, for from now on you will have wars.”
(10) Then Asa was angry with the seer and put him in the stocks in prison, for he was in a rage with him because of this. And Asa inflicted cruelties upon some of the people at the same time.
(11) The acts of Asa, from first to last, are written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel. (12) In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was diseased in his feet, and his disease became severe. Yet even in his disease he did not seek the LORD, but sought help from physicians. (13) And Asa slept with his fathers, dying in the forty-first year of his reign.
(14) They buried him in the tomb that he had cut for himself in the city of David. They laid him on a bier that had been filled with various kinds of spices prepared by the perfumer’s art, and they made a very great fire in his honor.”
The SHORT reign of Israel’s kings Nadab, Baasah, Elah, Zimri & Omri
The 2 year reign of Nadab
1Kings 15:25-34, “(25) Nadab the son of Jeroboam began to reign over Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah, and he reigned over Israel two years. (26) He did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and walked in the way of his father, and in his sin which he made Israel to sin. (27) Baasha the son of Ahijah, of the house of Issachar, conspired against him. And Baasha struck him down at Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines, for Nadab and all Israel were laying siege to Gibbethon. (28) So Baasha killed him in the third year of Asa king of Judah and reigned in his place. (29) And as soon as he was king, he killed all the house of Jeroboam. He left to the house of Jeroboam not one that breathed, until he had destroyed it, according to the word of the LORD that he spoke by his servant Ahijah the Shilonite. (30) It was for the sins of Jeroboam that he sinned and that he made Israel to sin, and because of the anger to which he provoked the LORD, the God of Israel. (31) Now the rest of the acts of Nadab and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? (32) And there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days.”
The 24 year reign of Baasha
“(33) In the third year of Asa king of Judah, Baasha the son of Ahijah began to reign over all Israel at Tirzah, and he reigned twenty-four years. (34) He did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and walked in the way of Jeroboam and in his sin which he made Israel to sin.”
1Kings 16:1-28, “(1) And the word of the LORD came to Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha, saying,
(2) “Since I exalted you out of the dust and made you leader over my people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam and have made my people Israel to sin, provoking me to anger with their sins, (3) behold, I will utterly sweep away Baasha and his house, and I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat. (4) Anyone belonging to Baasha who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone of his who dies in the field the birds of the heavens shall eat.”
(5) Now the rest of the acts of Baasha and what he did, and his might, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? (6) And Baasha slept with his fathers and was buried at Tirzah, and Elah his son reigned in his place.
(7) Moreover, the word of the LORD came by the prophet Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha and his house, both because of all the evil that he did in the sight of the LORD, provoking him to anger with the work of his hands, in being like the house of Jeroboam, and also because he destroyed it.”
The 2 year reign of Elah
“(8) In the twenty-sixth year of Asa king of Judah, Elah the son of Baasha began to reign over Israel in Tirzah, and he reigned two years. (9) But his servant Zimri, commander of half his chariots, conspired against him. When he was at Tirzah, drinking himself drunk in the house of Arza, who was over the household in Tirzah, (10) Zimri came in and struck him down and killed him, in the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, and reigned in his place. (11) When he began to reign, as soon as he had seated himself on his throne, he struck down all the house of Baasha. He did not leave him a single male of his relatives or his friends. (12) Thus Zimri destroyed all the house of Baasha, according to the word of the LORD, which he spoke against Baasha by Jehu the prophet, (13) for all the sins of Baasha and the sins of Elah his son, which they sinned and which they made Israel to sin, provoking the LORD God of Israel to anger with their idols. (14) Now the rest of the acts of Elah and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?”
The 7 day reign of Zimri
“(15) In the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, Zimri reigned seven days in Tirzah. Now the troops were encamped against Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines, (16) and the troops who were encamped heard it said, “Zimri has conspired, and he has killed the king.” Therefore all Israel made Omri, the commander of the army, king over Israel that day in the camp. (17) So Omri went up from Gibbethon, and all Israel with him, and they besieged Tirzah. (18) And when Zimri saw that the city was taken, he went into the citadel of the king’s house and burned the king’s house over him with fire and died, (19) because of his sins that he committed, doing evil in the sight of the LORD, walking in the way of Jeroboam, and for his sin which he committed, making Israel to sin. (20) Now the rest of the acts of Zimri, and the conspiracy that he made, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?”
The 12 year reign of Omri
“(21) Then the people of Israel were divided into two parts. Half of the people followed Tibni the son of Ginath, to make him king, and half followed Omri. (22) But the people who followed Omri overcame the people who followed Tibni the son of Ginath. So Tibni died, and Omri became king. (23) In the thirty-first year of Asa king of Judah, Omri began to reign over Israel, and he reigned for twelve years; six years he reigned in Tirzah. (24) He bought the hill of Samaria from Shemer for two talents of silver, and he fortified the hill and called the name of the city that he built Samaria, after the name of Shemer, the owner of the hill. (25) Omri did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and did more evil than all who were before him. (26) For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and in the sins that he made Israel to sin, provoking the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger by their idols. (27) Now the rest of the acts of Omri that he did, and the might that he showed, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? (28) And Omri slept with his fathers and was buried in Samaria, and Ahab his son reigned in his place.”
I hope this teaching will challenge you and encourage you to place your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
You have a special place in God’s family & kingdom. If you do not know Him, please use our ‘Contact Us‘ page and reach out so we may have the privilege of introducing you to the Lord. Neither money nor attendance at our church will be mentioned.
If you have been spiritually fed by this ministry and wish to give, we truly appreciate that and you may do so here, but all outreaches of this ministry are FREE for you and anyone to enjoy at no cost.