In the Bible, when someone was banished, they were exiled from their country. In our verse for today, it says that God decided to banish Judah from His presence. How can a person or a country be banished from the presence?
These disasters happened to Judah because of the Lord’s command. He had decided to banish Judah from his presence because of the many sins of Manasseh, who had filled Jerusalem with innocent blood. 2 Kings 24:3-4
When my brother and I were young, a couple of times we made our mom very angry. She was so angry that she uttered the words, “get out of my sight. I don’t want to see you right now.”
That definitely gives you the feeling that you have really messed up. Enough so, that even your mother didn’t even want to deal with you.
Isn’t that the same thing the Lord did as recorded in this verse? Wasn’t He saying get out of my sight? I’m not sure how that can happen when God is everywhere? Listen to what David said on the matter.
I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. Psalm 139:7-8
What I see here is, we can’t get away from the presence of God, but He can turn His back on us. When Jesus hung on the cross, Mark recorded this;
Then at three o’clock Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” Mark 15:34
Why Judah was Banished from the Presence of God?
What happened during King Manasseh’s reign over Judah? The scripture says he did evil in the eyes of the Lord.
King Manasseh of Judah has done many detestable things. He is even more wicked than the Amorites, who lived in this land before Israel. He has caused the people of Judah to sin with his idols. . . . Manasseh also murdered many innocent people until Jerusalem was filled from one end to the other with innocent blood. This was in addition to the sin that he caused the people of Judah to commit, leading them to do evil in the Lord’s sight. 2 Kings 21:11,16
When Manasseh sinned, It resulted in all of Judah’s banishment from the presence of God. The actions of one person ruined the fate of the entire nation. Not only that but, he also caused the people of Judah to commit sins.
Let’s Learn From History
It is important that we learn from this piece of history. A Leader of a country can change its direction and priorities. They can also be influential in changing the attitude its society. We are seeing that happen in our country.
The United States started as one country under God. Then in just a little over 200 years, it moved to being semi-godly. Now its leaders’ influence would like it to move away from godliness and even move toward lawlessness.
This is why the Bible tells us to pray for our leaders. Paul mentioned this when he wrote to Timothy.
I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. 1 Timothy 2:1-2
Lord, today we lift up the leaders of our country. We pray for their salvation. Also so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. Our gracious God, we want to continually stay in your presence.
Prayer is powerful. Here is a related post on prayer. The Necessity Of Powerful Intercessory Prayer.
You will also like this related post on evangelism called How To Reach Lost People For The Kingdom Of God
Take a moment to read 2 Kings 24.
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