“God save the king!” whispered the three people who knew about it,
Yet they had to be extremely careful not to shout it.
For at the time, a very wicked queen ruled Judah’s land.
She put her grandchildren to death so she could rule as planned.
Death and destruction overtook the country known as “Praise.”
As evil screamed for recognition, death ruled many days.
Meanwhile, sequestered in a room until six years had passed,
One boy remained protected from the bad queen’s vicious blast.
“God save the king!” whispered the three people who knew about him.
Of course, to save him from the queen, they dared not shout about him.
The little king was very much alive, that much they knew.
His whereabouts stayed veiled to all, except the chosen few.
The king would live as long as he remained obscure, unknown
Until the day arrived for him to sit upon the throne.
That’s when a larger group convened to help protect the king.
Before a larger audience His praises they would sing.
When finally, they fetched him, shielded well on every side,
And placed him in the temple, evil found no place to hide.
The trumpets blew. “God save the king!” his subjects now declared.
The mean queen’s ears picked up on it. Soon she was running scared.
She rushed into the temple, tore her clothes, and yelled “Unfair!”
“It’s treason!” she announced to see the true king standing there.
“It’s like a resurrection, but of course it can’t be real.
I killed them all. No one survived. Before me all must kneel!”
The priest who oversaw the celebration told his men
To drag her from God’s house, never to enter it again.
Out by the horse’s gate they went and slew her with the sword.
Deliverance took place that day as they obeyed the LORD.
And that’s how evil Athaliah finally met her doom.
Because the king still lived, her deadly reign had no more room,
For as the crowd rejoiced in him, the fear of her did cease,
Replaced by shouts of joy and unimaginable peace.
The story in II Kings chapter 11 tells how young King Joash escaped the murderous clutches of his evil grandmother. He remained hidden in God’s house for six years while Athaliah ruled the land, just as King Jesus remained hidden from Herod who tried to have him killed.
We live in an information age where keeping secrets has become very difficult. It can tempt us to share too much of what we know. But sometimes truths need to be kept hidden for a while, until the time is right to share them.
In some ways, the truth of Jesus’ resurrection has been hidden from the church – not in the sense that His followers don’t believe He rose from the dead but in the sense that they don’t act as if He’s truly alive. Rather than expecting Him to empower them the way He empowered the early church, they reason that God no longer does the same miracles He did back then. They have allowed the spirit of death epitomized in Athaliah to dash their hopes and kill their faith. To them the true identity of the real king remains hidden.
But as the time of deliverance draws near, those of us who know our king will be strong and do exploits (Daniel 11:32). We will share the awesome truths God shows to us with those who are willing to help us defend it, just as Jehoiada gathered numerous commanders to guard the young king. The difference is, we don’t need to cry “God save the king!” because King Jesus doesn’t need saving. He gave His life to save us. As we lift our hands and rejoice in Him, the devils in our lives will exposed themselves just as Athaliah heard the people’s praise and exposed herself. That’s because Satan wants to be worshiped and will always complain when we worship Jesus, who IS the resurrection and the life (John 11:25).
A sword of metal killed Athaliah. To cast out devils, we have God’s Word, the truth that’s found in Christ. The Holy Spirit makes His resurrection power real to us. (Acts 1:8; Romans 8:11)
There’s nothing to worry about because Jesus has won the victory for us.
“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetimes subject to bondage.” (Hebrews 2:14-15)