Bible Time Period: Exile
You punished first Israel, then Judah, with exile. Prophets brought a message of hope: In my exile due to sin, show me the way home.
Much of King Hezekiah’s good will be undone by his son Manasseh (ch. 22). 2 Chronicles tells us that Manasseh was humbled near the end of his reign and tore down the pagan altars and tried to make amends. But it was too little, too late for Judah.
NOTE: During the Divided Kingdom period, the word “Israel” referred specifically to the kingdom in the north. After the exile of Israel, all that remains is what had been Judah–and the prophets start referring to the southern kingdom as Israel. The name retains its original connotation of “God’s people”–a designation that is not confined to geographic boundaries. The messianic hopes of Israel include the belief that the 12 tribes of Israel will one day be fully restored under a Davidic king. In Romans 11, when Paul says “all Israel” will be saved, he means all 12 tribes — including descendants or representatives of the people of the diaspora, those from the northern kingdom who were scattered in exile.
Key Verses to Remember from the Period of the Exile
“The people of Israel walked in all the sins which Jeroboam did; they did not depart from them, until the Lord removed Israel out of his sight, as he had spoken by all his servants the prophets. So Israel was exiled from their own land to Assyria until this day” (2 Ki 17:22-23).
Take note of the eventual end of Judah and the cause of its demise. What ray of hope can be found in the final verses of 2 Kings?
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