“In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it.”
Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it
During Jehoiakim’s reign, Nebuchadnezzar assaulted Jerusalem in about 605 B.C. He took the city and carried captives to Babylon. Daniel and his three friends were among this first group of captives.
Jehoiachin became king of Judah after Jehoiakim died. He rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar in 597 B.C. when Nebuchadnezzar again besieged Jerusalem. Jehoiachin and all the vessels of the house of the Lord were taken to Babylon, along with a larger group of captives. Ezekiel was among this latter group (2 Kg 24:6-16).
Jehoiachin’s uncle Zedekiah became king and also rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar, who then destroyed the temple and burned Jerusalem. Nebuchadnezzar killed Zedekiah’s sons in his presence and then put out Zedekiah’s eyes. Nebuchadnezzar carried him to Babylon with yet another group of captives in 588 or 587 B.C. This fulfilled a prophecy of Jeremiah (Je 25:8-13).
Nebuchadnezzar ruled forty-three years (605-562 B.C.) during the Neo-Babylonian period. He was an outstanding statesman, military strategist and builder. The book of Daniel calls him “king” in a proleptic (anticipatory) sense because he was shortly to become king (as does Jeremiah in 27:6). He was co-sovereign with his father until he returned to Babylon. They summoned him to Babylon on the death of his father Nabopolassar this same summer and crowned him on September 6th.
The wheels of God’s justice grind exceedingly slow but also exceedingly sure.
Ignoring God’s Word and God’s principles ultimately bring judgment on the believer. God always warns before judgment. His discipline never comes unexpectedly. No one can escape His judgments.
God takes no pleasure in executing judgment. He pleads for erring Israel to turn back to Him (Ezek 18:23; 33:11). It is never too late to turn to God. God will extend grace toward those who come to Him.
Jonah 3:5-10, 5 “So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them. 6 Then word came to the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne and laid aside his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. 7 And he caused it to be proclaimed and published throughout Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything; do not let them eat, or drink water. 8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily to God; yes, let every one turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. 9 Who can tell if God will turn and relent, and turn away from His fierce anger, so that we may not perish? 10 Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it.”
When the world captures the hearts of Christians, they do not capture the world for Christ.