Topic: Finish Well!
[DCLM Daily Manna 22 August 2020 Devotional by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi]
Text: 2 Chronicles 20:31-37 (KJV)
31 And Jehoshaphat reigned over Judah: he was thirty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty and five years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Azubah the daughter of Shilhi.
32 And he walked in the way of Asa his father, and departed not from it, doing that which was right in the sight of the LORD.
33 Howbeit the high places were not taken away: for as yet the people had not prepared their hearts unto the God of their fathers.
34 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, first and last, behold, they are written in the book of Jehu the son of Hanani, who is mentioned in the book of the kings of Israel.
35 And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly:
36 And he joined himself with him to make ships to go to Tarshish: and they made the ships in Eziongeber.
37 Then Eliezer the son of Dodavah of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, Because thou hast joined thyself with Ahaziah, the LORD hath broken thy works. And the ships were broken, that they were not able to go to Tarshish.
Key Verse: “And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly” (2 Chronicles 20:35).
History has records of several men and women who had wonderful sum of accomplishments at the beginning of their lives but ended with one shameful blemish or the other. They are like sprinters who start off strong in a race only to stumble close to the finish line. All these go to prove that though starting well matters, finishing well and strong is more important.
King Jehoshaphat had the record of being one of Judah’s most successful kings. He was able to rally the nation back to God, carried out some reforms and led the nation out in faith against strong and powerful nations in battle.
But as the story of his life ends in our passage today, it concluded with a dent in his character. He got into alliance with the ungodly King Ahaziah in a business deal. God demonstrated His displeasure against this ungodly and unequal yoke by causing the business to suffer a serious damage and to fail.
Christians ought to be more careful with their lives, especially at a time when they seemed to have reached the peak of their career. The tendency at such time is to relax, take off the guard and become less careful. It is at such times that the devil often takes advantage to sneak in and deal a damaging blow.
God does not permit at the end of our lives the things He forbids at the beginning. If He condemned unequal yoke, worldliness, divorce, etc., at the beginning, He still does today and will do till the end of the race. It will be so unfortunate and very tragic if at a time that we are very close to the finishing line of our race, we allow ourselves to fumble and stumble. This will rubbish all the good records we have and the effort we have put into the race. Therefore, stay on your guards. Keep your convictions strong. Avoid compromise and do not give in to ungodly associations.
Thought For The Day: It is not enough to start well; it is more important to end well.
The Bible In One Year: Psalm 11-18