II Chronicles 34-36
The end is near.
We see one more honorable king arise, as Josiah attempts to right the wrongs of the years of rebellion. In fact, he tears down the altars, crushes the idols, and repairs the house of God. Then, when they find the Mosaic scrolls of the law buried in the house of God, he tears his clothes and repents before the Lord. They then celebrate the most complete Passover since the days of Samuel.
So God doesn’t allow Josiah to be captured, but the next few years steadily march toward the final destruction of the temple and Jerusalem itself.
The kings who follow Josiah are evil. Babylon besieges enough to set up their own choice for king, so corruption is a definite outcome. Then, when Zedekiah doesn’t honor God or the king of Babylon, the final end comes.
The treasures of the house of God, the king himself, his officers, and all of his treasures are carried away to Babylon. Then the invaders burn the house of God, break down the walls of Jerusalem, and burn all of the buildings with fire. Total destruction of God’s great city.
At the end of chapter 36 there is a quick note that eventually Cyrus, the King of Persia – in order to fulfill the Word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah – sends some people back to restore Jerusalem.(36:22). However, that is 70 years away.
The next portion of Jewish history is sad, indeed. God’s special people, the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob have rebelled to the point where they have been carried off into captivity. They are in Babylon now, slaves of a worldly king.
Before this happens, many prophets warn the Jewish people to turn back to God, but the people won’t listen. Later we will get to the books of prophecy which explain this aspect of God’s plan.
In the meantime, we have a few more books on the history of the Jews. Bit by bit, we are putting the puzzle pieces into place so that we can see the big picture.
John 19: 1-22
Pilate is nervous! He excitedly goes to the priests again and again saying, “I find no guilt in this man.”(V. 4) But the priests won’t be hindered in their desire to crucify Him.
When they say, “He calls himself the Son of God,” Pilate really gets nervous. He rushes back into Jesus saying, “Where are you from?”(v. 9)
Jesus plainly tells Pilate that Rome has no authority over Him unless it was given from above. Now Pilate is indeed in a frenzy.
Pilate makes efforts to release Jesus, but he gets manipulated once again by the priests, and gives in. But not before washing his hands in protest of the operation.
In the meantime, the Jewish leaders think that their ends are being met, but instead, God’s plan is working perfectly.
His Passover Lamb is about to be slain. God’s people are about to be set free from the penalty of sin for all time.