Day 170: Joash's Downfall

2 Kings 1-25 This book continues the chronology of the history of Judah and Israel from 1 Kings. Most of the succeeding kings struggled with idolatry and found themselves in opposition to neighboring nations and even with the fellow tribes of Israel themselves.

Ch 1:1-18 Ahaziah, King of Israel, was punished because he consulted pagan prophets instead of an authentic prophet chosen by God. The consumption of the soldiers by fire from Heaven is referred obliquely in the Gospels when James and John, the sons of Zebedee, asked Christ if they should call “fire down from heaven” to destroy the Samaritans who had refused to receive Christ and his disciples (cf. Lk 9:54).

2 Chronicles 24:1-26 When Joash began to exercise his kingly authority upon reaching adulthood, he proved to be a faithful king who undertook a major restoration of the Temple. As was common to many kings of Judah, he turned away from the Lord later in life and slipped into idolatry.

Psalm 69 Figuratively drowning and possibly nearing death, the psalmist pleaded with God for help against overwhelming opposition. He professed his innocence and wanted justice. 

Zeal for your house has consumed me: The disciples of Christ brought this verse to mind and applied it to him as he drove the vendors out of the Temple courts (cf. Jn 2:17); this dramatic display revealed Christ’s deep love for the Temple as a house of prayer.

You know my drink: Verses 19-21 were fulfilled in the Passion of Christ as he was abandoned, treated shamefully, insulted, and given bitter wine and gall to drink while on the Cross (cf. Mt 26:40-41; Jn 16:32; Mt 27:34-48). (CCC 584)

(*The Didache Bible RSV-CE Ignatius Edition, 2006)

Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in Heaven, we give you praise and we thank you. We thank you for your faithfulness, your faithful love, and the fact that, Lord, in your compassion you do not hide your face from us. There are so many times when in the midst of distress, in the midst of our brokenness, in the midst of failure on our part, you remain present even when we cannot see you or feel you, we declare with faith that you are still there. Even when you are hidden, you are active. Even when we cannot see you, you are still present. And so we praise your name. We glorify you. We say Lord continue to be present. Continue to help us to cling to you when all else has failed and when everyone else has failed us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.”