“Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. He did evil in the eyes of the Lord his God and did not humble himself before Jeremiah the prophet, who spoke the word of the Lord. He also rebelled against King Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him take an oath in God’s name.” 2 Chronicles 36:11-13.
There are so many warning signs to see.
How easy for me to dismiss Zedekiah as an isolated someone who gets everything wrong.
Sadly, I am too often like Zedekiah. The bits and pieces of his life have similarities in my own life. The biggest takeaway is to see what those bits and pieces look like when they are gathered together. I certainly would not want to go where Zedekiah’s life choices led, but am I aware of the steps in his direction that I take?
Zedekiah “did evil” consistently. There were no “brakes” in his lifestyle. It was what he did without change. There are times in my life where I know that something I’ve done, or am doing, is flat-out wrong. When I realize that something is wrong, I have choices. I can continue, or I can discontinue. There have been times in my life where I’ve messed that up……..and continued.
Zedekiah was alerted by God, through Jeremiah, that he needed to cease and desist. He wouldn’t listen. I read Scripture almost every day and look for things that I can run with. I am almost constantly being warned of what godlessness looks like and what it’s consequences can be. I’m not uninformed! I can read things and then ignore them. Why? Like Zedekiah, I don’t want to admit I’m wrong and change.
Zedekiah aggravated someone (Nebuchadnezzar) who could punish him. Nebuchadnezzar had put Zedekiah in charge. He had Zedekiah swear that he would be loyal. Now Zedekiah is in rebellion. When I deliberately disobey God, I act like Zedekiah. I say that I love God, but do I live that out? God is not mocked. He knows everything that I do. He can/will punish me. Only a fool would expect otherwise.
Zedekiah is the perfect example of what NOT to do. I must be aware of moments where I become like him and react in a Godly manner. Evil must be confronted. Listening to God, and obeying, is paramount.
Conclusion: I must learn from the life of Zedekiah.