“Hitler was a cruel man,” Edward said, tossing down his history. “It is always better to love our enemies, isn’t it Grandpa?”
“Depends on what enemies you are talking about,” Grandpa said with a smile. “Once God needed a hard-handed man to do His work….”
Ruthless for Right
(Reference: 2 Kings 9-10.)
It was a bloody day when Jehu, the captain of the army, was anointed king of Israel. Trouble and wickedness had filled the land while Ahab, and his son Joram, reigned. The big problem was Queen Jezebel and her idols of Baal. There were priests and temples everywhere and all the worshippers of the true God were being killed off. So God sent a prophet to give Captain Jehu a job. “I have anointed you king of My people to smite the house of Ahab until none is left,” He said.
And Jehu wasn’t slow to get to work. “Jehu is king!” his men cried, and off he dashed to Jezreel to overthrow King Joram. The king drove out to meet Jehu and asked, “Is it peace?” “How can it be peace when the land is full of your mother’s wickedness?” Jehu answered, and shot him through with an arrow. He rode on to the palace with the nervous guards following.
“Who is on my side?” Jehu shouted from below the queen’s window. Several servants came and tossed the wicked Queen Jezebel out, and the prancing horses trampled her to death. As God had said, she was eaten by dogs and there was none to bury her.
But Jehu wasn’t done yet—Ahab still had seventy sons living in Samaria. When the lords of the city heard how King Joram had been killed, they were frightened. “We will do whatever you say,” they told Jehu. So the seventy sons were beheaded, and Jehu rode to Samaria.
“If your heart is for the right as mine is, come along,” he said to Jehonadab, who came out of the city to meet him. Soon not a single person in all the family of Ahab was left. Finally the wicked rule had been broken!
Now Jehu gathered all the people together, for he had a plan. “We will worship Baal with a great sacrifice,” he cried, and ordered that every single priest and servant of Baal should come to the house of Baal. “We want only Baal-worshippers. Search to be sure none of God’s servants are here,” he said.
Perhaps many wondered if they would get in trouble for loving God when they heard what the stern new king said. But how sad for those that were afraid to do right, for Jehu sent soldiers into that wicked house to cut down every idol worshipper with the sword! And so the land was freed from the worship of Baal that day.
The children sat wide-eyed when the story was over. “Well, do you think Jehu did the right thing?” Grandpa asked.
“I guess they were so wicked they just had to be killed,” Alice said slowly. “But it didn’t sound very nice.”
“Are we suppose to kill all the bad people, too?” asked Edward, puzzled. “I thought God wanted us to be kind to everybody.”
“God loves everybody,” said Sammy.
“He does,” agreed Grandpa. “But this story is a lesson to show us how to fight our spiritual enemies, like anger and selfishness, and not let a single one live.”
“How can we fight them? We can’t chop them down with a sword,” said Edward.
“But you can determine not to listen to any self-pity or ‘poor me’ thoughts. A good sword for that is, ‘In every thing give thanks.’ (1 Thessalonians 5:18) ”
“And not to complain or wish we could be like others,” added Alice. “I guess there is a lot of fighting to do.”
“And sometimes is it hard, like having to share when I don’t want to,” said Edward. “Chopping down my enemies is a big job.”
“But when we fight for the right, God is able to help us win,” said Grandpa.