2 Kings 23-25…A flicker of hope.
The end of this reading (particularly the conclusion of 2 Kings 25) is something like that faint breeze of hope in an otherwise dark landscape. The previous section ended with a bleak picture of loss and sadness for the nation of Judah: no land, no city, and no temple. Some were killed brutally, others taken into exile. And we were left wondering if Judah would ever be restored? Would it all be darkness from here on? Then we come to end of this book of 2 Kings and there is a flicker of hope.
A new king of Babylon took the throne and a change occurred. Jehoiachin, king of Judah, was released from prison. The Babylonian king, Scripture says, “spoke kindly to him and gave him a seat of honor” in Babylon. Jehoiachin was permitted a place at the king’s table where he ate well “for the rest of his life.” Moreover, Jehoiachin was given a regular allowance to support himself and his family.
In the face of the utter darkness of 2 Kings 25:1-26, we get not a floodlight of promise, but still a glimmer of hope. Perhaps the reader is expected to remember God’s everlasting promises to Judah in 2 Samuel 7:13-16 and 1 Kings 11:39. Judah may have forgotten God, but God had not forgotten His people.
Of course, it would still be another five centuries of ongoing oppression under foreign nations, but eventually, out of that darkness, the Light of Christ would come (see Matt. 1:12-16). The book of 2 Kings ends with a glimpse of that coming glorious restoration.