Verses 1-4 – Joash was the seventh king of Judah. Joash was under Jehoiada’s guidance while he grew up and when he reached adulthood, Joash decided it was time to repair God’s temple. It had been ignored for many years.
Verse 5 – Joash commissioned the Levites to travel throughout Judah to collect money for the renovation. However, the Levites took their time carrying out the king’s order. A tax for keeping the temple in order was not only the kings wish, but God’s commandment (Exodus 30:11-16). You would think that the Levites would have made this a priority since the temple was a source of their lively hood.
Verses 8-10 – When Joash saw the Levites were taking their time about collecting money, he sent them out instead to require the people to come to Jerusalem and deposit the money in a chest that Joash had placed at the gate. The people gladly came and gave.
Verse 14 – When the construction was done and the workers were paid they had enough money left over to replace the utensils.
Verses 15, 16 – When Jehoiada died at 130 years old, he was buried with high honors where only kings were buried.
Verses 17-19 – As soon as Jehoiada died, the leaders of Judah came to the king and gave him very bad advise, and he listened.They persuaded the king to abandon the Lord and return to idolatry. Judah had been prosperous until this happened. Then scripture says that “wrath” came against Judah and Jerusalem. Nevertheless, God sent a prophet to convince them to return to the Lord. God gave them another chance by pursuing them with a prophet.
Prosperity can be both a blessing and a curse. While it can be a sign of God’s blessing to those who follow Him, it carries with it the potential for moral and spiritual decline. Prosperous people are tempted to become self-sufficient and proud, taking God for granted by saying, “I worked hard for this. I deserve it!”
(The prophet Joel may have been one of these prophets that God sent to Joash during his reign) (835-796BC).
Verses 20-22 – Zechariah, the son of Jehoiada (this is not the same as the Zechariah in the Book of Zechariah because he was the son of Berechiah and a different time period), made a speech confronting the people with their idolatry. The Bible says, God’s spirit took control of Zechariah as he stood before the people of Judah. The people, like most today, didn’t want to hear how they had abandon God. So they stoned him in the courtyard of the temple, with Joash’ permission. This is the same Zechariah that Jesus referred to in Luke 11:47-51, where He accused those leaders of hypocrisy and killing the prophets.
Verses 23, 24 – There had been no direct conflict between Judah and Aram since the time Asa bought off Ben-hadad. With a weak king on the throne, and absent of the Lord’s protection, the Arameans were able to conquer Jerusalem with a very small force and carry off valuables again. How sad. Kind of like us; if we build our lives on sinking sand (without Christ) and a storm comes through and destroys it, we will ask, why.
Verse 25 – Joash was so despised by the Arameans that when they saw that he was severely wounded, they left him on his bed to die in agony. His servants took advantage of the situation and killed him. So he died and they buried him without ceremony outside the tomb of the kings.