Remember when we talked about Athaliah, that wicked woman. She was the mean, ruthless, power-hungry queen who killed all the heirs in her royal family so she could reign on the throne alone. 2 Kings 11:1-3 tells us about it:
When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal heirs. But Jehosheba, the daughter of King Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king’s sons who were being murdered; and they hid him and his nurse in the bedroom, from Athaliah, so that he was not killed. So he was hidden with her in the house of the Lord for six years, while Athaliah reigned over the land.
This story can also be found in 2 Chronicles 22:10-12. God had promised David that his descendants would reign as kings forever and his throne would be established for all eternity. Athaliah thought that she had killed all the royal heirs, but that was not the case. When she started on her murderous rampage, God had Jehosheba in place to save Joash so that the royal line could continue and His promise would not be broken. Unlike her Baal-worshipping stepmother Athaliah, Jehosheba was married to the high priest, and she feared the Lord. Here are two things we can learn from her.
1. Jehosheba did not let her ancestors define her. Despite being surrounded by evil people who did not love God at all: her grandmother was Jezebel, her grandfather Ahab, her (step)mother was Athaliah, and her father was Joram; Jehosheba did not let them stop her from being a Godly woman. She did not let their wicked lifestyles be an example for her. She even married a Godly man – the high priest, Jehoiada. Jehosheba came from a family of unimaginable darkness, yet she managed to walk in the light.
We too must realize that we are constantly surrounded by wickedness and darkness. Whether it be bad choices made by family members, close friends, or complete strangers, do not let the failures of others shape your future or the person you become. While we cannot escape evil, we don’t have to let it affect us. Others may turn away from God, but you can still love, serve, and stay close to Him. Though blackness may increase on every side of you, stay in the light.
2. Jehosheba was a protector. If Athaliah had succeeded in killing all of the royal heirs, she would have made it impossible for God to keep the promise He had made to David. Jesus the Christ, the future Messiah of Israel and all the world, would not have been able to come from the royal line of the tribe of Judah. Matthew Henry’s Commentary says about Jehosheba: her “interest in the temple gave her an opportunity to preserve the child, and her interest in the royal family gave him an opportunity to set him on the throne.” Jehosheba protected her nephew from being eliminated before his time. Because of her concern, compassion, and future thinking, a child’s life was saved, evil averted, and a promise preserved.
Every woman has a place in God’s Kingdom, including me and you. Twice in the Old Testament, God used women to save a future generation: Pharaoh’s daughter in the case of Moses and Jehosheba in the case of Joash. Esther saved her entire nation from destruction. Jael and Deborah were instrumental in delivering Israel from the Canaanites. You are not just here to exist. You were created for a specific purpose and to make a difference in the world around you. God can use you in a big way too.