2 Chronicles 35

2 Chronicles 35 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

Armchair Quarterback (noun) a person who offers advice or an opinion on something in which they have no expertise or involvement

How many people do you know who have lots of great ideas but very little action? You know what I’m talking about. We all know them. They are the armchair quarterbacks. The hindsight critic. In the business world, the concept that opposes this is “having skin in the game.” It’s easy to speculate from the sidelines, but once you put forth the effort and get involved, you have just become accountable to your own criticism. This is why so many would rather do nothing because they can hide behind their excuses! I’m going to keep it real today. Jesus didn’t like armchair quarterbacks.

Spiritually, Jesus aggressively called out those who wanted to follow but refused to go all in. He called it sacrifice. In fact, a critical component of His message was exemplifying that people can faithfully trust Him with everything – even when it made no sense.

When Jesus heard this, He said to him, “One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess and distribute it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

Luke 18:22 NASB

“Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28 “For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it?

Luke 14:27-28 NASB

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

Romans 12:1 NASB

So how does this relate to the chapter? Hang on, I’m about to tell you!

Josiah contributed to the lay people, to all who were present, flocks of lambs and young goats, all for the Passover offerings, numbering 30,000 plus 3,000 bulls; these were from the king’s possessions.

2 Chronicles 35:7 NASB

Josiah was one of the kings who led the people in celebrating Passover. Of course, in order to do this, they needed to sacrifice their best lambs for the feast. Normally, the animals came from the people. In fact, you may remember the story of Jesus going to the temple and flipping tables with his whip. This was because moneychangers had begun buying and selling within God’s temple in order to provide traveling families with an animal they could sacrifice. So, in the end, the high priest and their families took the monetary benefit either by renting the space in the temple or by having their family members participate in the exchange.

Contrast the heart of these high priests in the New Testament with King Josiah in the Old Testament. It was not Josiah’s responsibility to provide his own animals for others to sacrifice. However, he did so out of his joy and love for God. The value he placed on these animals was low compared to the spiritual fruit that would come from all the people being able to participate in Passover.

Josiah not only contributed, but he gave to all those who were present! Although this is a great feat, it really does serve as an illustration to what is happening with so many churches across this nation. In these cases, the leadership is contributing above and beyond so that the laypeople can be fed. Although this is noble and really is the right thing to do, it is not how Jesus designed the church to function!

So, the question is simple. Are you armchair quarterbacking your pastors and their leaders? Are you a hindsight critic of the ministries that are being offered? Honestly, I used to be an armchair quarterback. Several years ago, while being employed in a para-church ministry, I refused to go to church. I hid behind a critical spirit and was able to find something wrong with every church I walked into. No one was doing church “the right way.” Looking back, I was an idiot (I told you I was going to keep it real). This decision severely affected my spiritual maturity and the growth of my family.

Jesus gave us all gifts and calls us to contribute and function together as His tangible body. When I read Scripture, I see that as the picture of a solid, thriving church. God help us not to be armchair quarterbacks but to prayerfully seek where we are holding back and preventing Your Kingdom from going forward.

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