Thursday, September 23, 2010

(Don't) Follow the Leader

The nation of Israel was in its glory days about 1000 B.C. under the kingship of David and Solomon, but one king later, the nation divided into two, a Northern set of 10 tribes (aka "Israel") and a Southern set of two (aka "Judah").

Over the next couple of centuries, the leadership of the Northern Israel was particularly neglectful of living as YHWH would have them live, which eventually resulted in God using the nation of Assyria to conquer and punish Israel.

We see in the Biblical book of the Kings how the leadership of the nation leads up to this:
2 Kings 15:17ff Menahem son of Gadi became king over Israel. ... Sin for sin, he repeated the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, who led Israel into a life of sin.
2 Kings 15:23ff Pekahiah son of Menahem became king of Israel. ... In YHWH's eyes he lived an evil life. He stuck to the old sin tracks of Jeroboam son of Nebat, who led Israel into a life of sin.
2 Kings 15:27ff Pekah son of Remaliah became king of Israel in Samaria. ... In YHWH's view he lived an evil life; he didn't deviate so much as a hair's breadth from the path laid down by Jeroboam son of Nebat, who led Israel into a life of sin.
We see that King Jeroboam led Israel into a life of sin, and these three kings followed in his footsteps.

After Israel is taken into captivity, this is what God says:
The exile came about because of sin: The children of Israel sinned against YHWH, their God, who had delivered them from Egypt and the brutal oppression of Pharaoh king of Egypt. They took up with other gods, fell in with the ways of life of the pagan nations YHWH had chased off, and went along with whatever their kings did.
What I find significant here is the suggestion that if the people had not gone along with their leadership, they would not have been sent into exile from their homeland.

What does this say about following our governmental leadership?

I'm just askin'....