Monday, June 17. 1 Kings 14 – 16

Books of the Bible claim to be from God, but they were written by men. There is no contradiction here, for the Bible says these writers “spoke from God as they were guided by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21). That text does not, however, say how the Holy Spirit influenced them. However it came about, there was work and research on the part of the writers.

Our eyes were opened to this in 1 Kings 12 with the comment (at the division of the kingdom) “so Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day” (vs. 19). Kings was written at least twenty years into the Babylonian captivity. By that time, the northern kingdom of Israel has been extinct for nearly two hundred years. How could they have been in rebellion “to this day” if they were not existent? In all likelihood, the writer of Kings is copying a document written many years before when Israel was existent.

What document was it?

We don’t know, but 1 Kings 14 mentions two documents accessible to him: the “annals of the kings of Israel” and the “annals of the kings of Judah.”

Chapter fourteen serves as a lasting reminder of the certain and sometimes crushing and often severe judgment of God. It is interesting that, to God, allowing you to be buried could be a blessing. That would happen to Jeroboam’s youngest son. The others would be “burned as one burns dung, until it is all gone. Dogs will eat those belonging to Jeroboam who die in the city and birds will feed on those belonging to Jeroboam who die in the country.”

Surely the father of Jesus could not be so cruel.

But even Jesus spoke of a judgment where the wicked would be “thrown into hell where the worms who eat them do not die and the fire is not quenched.” All who would deny an eternal torment have a theology that vastly underestimates the seriousness and long-term consequences of God’s judgment.