Read 2 Chronicles 22:10-24:27
The Importance of Righteous Associations
It has been said that if you want to know what type of person you will be in a few years, pay attention to the people you spend the most time with. The influence they have over you will shape who you will become.
Joash was crowned king at the age of seven, and the Scriptures tell us that he “did what was right in the sight of the Lord all the days of Jehoiada the priest” (2 Chronicles 24:2). Jehoiada had devoted himself to doing what was right. “Then Jehoiada made a covenant between himself, the people, and the king, that they should be the Lod’s people” (2 Chronicles 23:16).
Part of that covenant included safeguarding the king against Athaliah, who had “destroyed all the royal heirs of the house of Judah” (2 Chronicles 22:10), except for Joash. In addition to that act of protection, Jehoiada, along with “all the people went to the temple of Baal and tore it down. They broke in pieces its altars and images, and killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars” (2 Chronicles 23:17).
At seven years old, it is doubtful Joash understood the full significance of everything going on at this time. But as the boy grew, under the influence of Jehoiada, “Joash set his heart on repairing the house of the Lord” (2 Chronicles 24:4). The people of Judah brought collections to assist in the repairs of the temple. “And they offered burnt offerings in the house of the Lord continually all the days of Jehoiada” (2 Chronicles 24:14).
Sadly, upon the death of the priest, Joash fell prey to the influence of men who were not righteous. “Now after the death of Jehoiada the leaders of Judah came and bowed down to the king. And the king listened to them. Therefore they left the house of the Lord God of their fathers, and served wooden images and idols; and wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem because of their trespass” (2 Chronicles 24:17-18).
Are you being led astray by your closest friends? Take an honest look at the people who surround you the majority of the time. Are they leading you to a closer walk with God? Are they encouraging your journey to eternity? Or are they dragging you down and hindering your spiritual growth?