Coronation of Joash

2 Kings 11  •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 10
This interesting event as detailed in 2 Kings 11 we cannot but regard as a striking type of the recognition and welcome of the Lord Jesus Christ in the day when He takes to Himself His great power and begins His reign. A vile woman, Athaliah, type of the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth, contrived to massacre all the royal seed, except the one child in question. For this act, and her other idolatrous crimes, she is described as “that wicked woman” (2 Chron. 24:77For the sons of Athaliah, that wicked woman, had broken up the house of God; and also all the dedicated things of the house of the Lord did they bestow upon Baalim. (2 Chronicles 24:7)) Joash, while an infant, was rescued by his aunt Jehosheba, the high priest's wife, and with his nurse, was conveyed secretly to the house of Jehovah, where he remained hidden for six years. He thus foreshadows our blessed Lord and Savior, in His present position. Jesus indeed was hated and rejected by man, who wished to put Him away altogether; but by the glory of the Father He was raised from the dead, and seated at His own right hand on high.
In the case of Joash, three persons only were in the secret as to this child's identity, that there was still a King in Judah. They were the high-priest, the aunt and the nurse; all the rest were ignorant of the real son of David in the royal branch who was going to reign. May we not compare these three personal witnesses with the three favored individuals, who were permitted to behold the Lord in His ascended glory? They were Stephen, (Acts 7:55, 5655But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, 56And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. (Acts 7:55‑56)), Saul of Tarsus, (1 Cor. 15:88And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. (1 Corinthians 15:8)), and John in Patmos (Rev. 1:1313And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. (Revelation 1:13)).
There may have been some few faithful souls during the reign of Athaliah, who remembered the prophecy of the dying patriarch Jacob, “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver... until Shiloh come.” Believers might rest on the promise, assured that God had His rightful king, although they could not see him, and that in due time he would be manifested. This of course was walking by faith, not by sight; and their number must have been small.
For six years only was the vile usurper permitted to occupy her false position. This indicates how thoroughly man's day was hers; since man attains but to the number six (Rev. 13:1818Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. (Revelation 13:18)), whereas God's number is seven for spiritual perfection. In the seventh year the priest Jehoiada (who seems to indicate the action of the Holy Ghost, because He takes of the things of Christ, and shows them unto us, John 16:1313Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. (John 16:13)) called together the officers of the army into the house of Jehovah; and premising that he had a most important communication to make to them, he required that they should take an oath to be entirely at his bidding, and do exactly as he ordered.
This oath having been taken, it was confirmed by a covenant, which in those days was ratified by cutting a victim in halves, the contracting parties then passing between the parts. This shows how important the shedding of blood, or taking of life, was considered then. No testament, again, was in force as long as the testator lived (Heb. 9:1717For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth. (Hebrews 9:17)). In this case too the testator must die. In our case the Lord Jesus died and rose again. Thereon God has made with His people an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and sure (2 Sam. 23:55Although my house be not so with God; yet he hath made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure: for this is all my salvation, and all my desire, although he make it not to grow. (2 Samuel 23:5)).
The priest, having obtained the complete submission of these captains and officers, drew aside a veil and revealed to them a little child, whom he presented as their lawful king and rightful lord. Does not this show forth the wonderful privilege which each believer has of beholding by faith Christ who will surely come out of the heavens although as yet His manifested kingdom is wholly future? These officers were then told that, as their privileges were great, their responsibilities were equally deep. They were instructed to guard their young king night and day, to watch him when he went out, and came in, and on no account to let a single enemy come near him. Does not this declare to the believer his direct responsibility, to walk with the Lord, and to be in constant subjection to and communion with Him?
Jehoiada served out to all the faithful warriors king David's spears and shields, those which had been in many a severe battle already, and each one of them long tried and proved. This blessedly reveals how every Christian ought to be equipped with the whole armor of God; and king David's psalms still contain the divine magazine of supply as they afford the soul the experiences of a most varied and eventful life. No matter what the state of the soul may be, there can always be found a psalm portraying these same experiences. Our blessed Lord quoted entirely from this book when in His last conflict with the devil, and the still deeper forsaking of God on the cross.
How long this state of things continued, we are not told; but the eventful day for the revelation of the young king at last dawned. What a day for each faithful, devoted, loyal heart! and what a day for the murderess on the throne, and her idolatrous crew! What a day will it be when “Christ is revealed from heaven, with His mighty angels in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ!”
“They brought forth the king's son, and put the crown upon him, and gave him the testimony and made him king and anointed him, and they clapped their hands, and said, God save the king.'“ Thus while joy and honor became the privilege of everyone who had owned Joash in his rejection, awful judgment and terrible vengeance became the doom of those who had supported the wicked creature whose reign had been so suddenly and completely cut short. Q.