This is part of a series. I recommend starting with the first installment.
In the first part of this series we laid out the dilemma that Hosea presents that suggests God sought revenge for an act that he both commanded and praised.
And the Lord said to him, “Call his name Jezreel, for in just a little while I will punish the house of Jehu for the blood of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel. (Hosea 1:4)
In the second and third part of the series, we examined ways some commentators attempt to get out of this dilemma and how they do not work.
In this installment we will examine another, related premise, as to how the dilemma may be solved.
The third related premise is that Jehu exceeded his mandate when he killed the worshippers of Baal.
After Jehu has managed to secure his claim to the throne of Israel through the killing of Jehoram and others in the line of Ahab, he begins to wipe out the Baal cult (2 Kings 10:18-28).
The way Jehu went about this itself was rooted in deceit. He called together the people and claimed that he would follow Baal even more than Ahab had. In gathering the Baal worshippers together, under the pretense of a major sacrifice, as well as the threat of death for missing it, Jehu has them all slaughtered.
The wiping out of the Baal worshipers is cited in an AiG article (emphasis added) as part of the solution to the dilemma presented in Hosea (link).
Jehu also slaughtered a large gathering of Baal worshipers and essentially “destroyed Baal from Israel” (2 Kings 10:28). Yet, as far as we know, God never commanded Jehu to do this, even though the Lord despised the worship of Baal. Jehu was never commended for this action either.
In Gill’s exposition of the 2 Kings passage, he argues that the ends were valid but that the means were not (link).
… because thou hast done well in executing that which is right in mine eyes: in rooting out the idolatry of Baal, which was right in the sight of God, and was materially a good work, though it might not be done from a good principle, nor every step taken in doing it justifiable
In this article, from Ligonier, we find the author agreeing that Jehu was right in wiping out the worshipers of Baal (link).Continue reading