Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years. He passed away, to no one’s regret, and was buried in the City of David, but not in the tombs of the kings.
2 Chronicles 21:20
When your timeis over, how will you be rememberd? Do you want said of you what was said of Jehoram, “he died, to no one’s regret”? I highly doubt it. Jehoram made a catastrophic mistake by choosing to follow a destructive path as opposed to a constructive, holy path. We all have the same choice. Choose wisely.
Jehoram is a biblical example where a foolish choice was made. He chose to follow the wicked examples of those who came before him rather than the wise examples of Jehosaphat and Asa. This decision proved disastrous not only for him, but also those under his influence. Know that you have people under your influence, too. Your life decisions will have far reaching effects beyond your own life. Jehoram’s foolish decision made light of the enormous responsibility placed on his shoulders. While you and I may not be a king, God has given us an enormous responsibility as bearers of his image to a hurting world.
Being adopted into God’s family and being commissioned to the world as his ambassador is a phenomenal responsibility. The hurt and pain in the world is astounding. The Enemy has put before the world countless examples of pseudo-success and false-joy. The layers of complexity is astounding. Trying to walk holy lives is treacherous; trying to do so while following bad examples, like Jehoram, is impossible and foolish. His legacy proved such. No one mourned his passing.
Jehoram’s example offers a great opportunity for personal reflection. Jehoram followed wicked leaders. His own life walked the wicked way, and at the end he was not missed. I believe no one truly treads their own path. To think so is incredibly arrogant. The writer of Ecclesiastes says that there’s nothing new under the sun. I’m willing to bet the issues I face (and you face) have been faced by countless billions since the dawn of time. Take time to learn from wise leaders, whether ancient or modern. Are those we admire ones whose legacy honors them?
Most importantly, and most supremely, learn from Christ. Jesus’ three years of public life, three years of loving, self-sacrificial-servant-leadership, altered the course of human history (Mk 10:45). His presence then and now (through his Holy Spirit indwelling His body, the Church) shows the world what true wise living looks like, a life that seeks to meet the needs of others before personal needs (Phil. 2:4).
Jehoram chose poorly. His life was detrimental; Christ’s life, who followed perfectly the character of God, was redemptive on a cosmic scale.
The two options are set before us today: life and death. Moses says, “This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live” (Dt. 30:19)
*Image from public domain