Lately I’ve been reading through the book of 2 Chronicles in the Bible, and something has struck me. With each new king, we are given a one sentence summary of his life. In that synopsis, we are told whether or not that particular king honored God.
We are either given a positive summation like, “And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord according to all that his father David had done,” or we are told a condemning statement such as, “And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, according to the abominations of the nations whom the Lord drove out before the people of Israel”.
Such statements reveal the heart of these kings. In fact, nothing else is really important about their lives in comparison to how they lived in the sight of the Lord. The same could be said about our lives. Only how we live according to God’s estimation really matters.
What would a one sentence summary of my life reveal? Would the summation of my life describe me as a person who lived like Jesus and walked with God, or would I be regarded as someone who failed to honor God with my life?
In the book of 2 Chronicles we also see a revealing description of another group of people besides the kings. In chapter 30, we are told that “the Levites and the priests praised the Lord day by day, singing with all their might to the Lord.” What a wonderful picture of a life lived in worship to God! Is this description true of me – that I am living out my days praising the Lord and singing to Him with all my might? A life lived in such a way would surely draw others to Christ as they saw such joyful worship in me.
Herein lies an important point. As we live our lives, other people will follow our example. In 2 Chronicles, we learn that the people of God followed the example set by the kings – whether good or bad. Each generation was either led to honor or dishonor God depending on what the king did.
When the king set up places for false worship, the people worshipped false gods and walked away from worship of the One true God. However, when a king came along like Josiah, who “began to seek the God of David” and “made a covenant before the Lord, to walk after the Lord and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes, with all his heart and all his soul,” the people also followed. Because of Josiah’s example, we are given this description of how the people of Israel served God. “All his days they did not turn away from following the Lord, the God of their fathers” (2 Chronicles 34).
How did Josiah know how to honor God? He read the Book of the Law – God’s Word. So, must we. Daily reading of the Scriptures is vital, and through it, God will enable us to live out what He reveals to us in His Word. The Bible is not only completely reliable, but it is also sufficient in every way to teach us how to live for God.
If we want to live like Jesus, we must be people of the Bible, who are seeking to apply what we learn from it. The only summation of our lives that will matter for eternity is whether or not we lived rightly in the eyes of the Lord.