2 Chronicles 25:15 (ESV): 15 Therefore the Lord was angry with Amaziah and sent to him a prophet, who said to him, “Why have you sought the gods of a people who did not deliver their own people from your hand?”
2 Chronicles 24-26 tell a sad story of three kings who started well, following God, yet who ended sadly.
Joash was the first. After being saved from murderous Athaliah by Jehoiada the priest and then ascending to the throne, Joash led the people in living for God. The Temple was repaired.
But after Jehoiada died, Joash turned from God and even killed the priest’s son for standing up to his sin. Joash himself was assassinated not long after.
Joash’s son Amaziah then reigned and led the people well over all, although not totally following God. God provided an amazing victory against his enemies because Amaziah trusted him. 20,000 enemy soldiers perished. But Judah also suffered a raid in which 3,000 people were killed and much spoil was taken.
Amaziah turned from God and refused to listen to God’s counsel through his prophet. He attacked Israel and was badly beaten. Not long after, Amaziah was assassinated.
His son Uzziah then reigned for many years, seeking after God. But after growing strong, Uzziah became proud. He sought to offer incense in the Temple, and was struck by God with leprosy. He lived the rest of his life in a separate house.
A grave danger we face spiritually is that after having received God’s blessing we do not become proud and forsake him for other gods, or even for our own wisdom.
It is my understanding that John Wesley lamented this phenomenon in his day, noting that people converted to Christ tended to prosper greatly, and their prosperity then led their hearts away from God.
Heavenly Father, help me to live true to you all my life. I do not want to start strong and then turn from you. Let my life be marked by humility, self-discipline and faithfulness to you. Amen.