John Ecob 

It took 1,656 years from Adam to Noah  before God judged this world with a  universal flood and God waited 400  years until the iniquity of the Amorites  was full before He destroyed the  nations in the land of Canaan. 

The northern kingdom of Israel lasted  271 years before it was taken away  captive to the cities of the Medes  and the southern kingdom of Judah  survived 486 years before it was  destroyed and carried off to Babylon. 

The Jews returned in 536BC and  606 years later, in AD70, the Romans  scattered the Jews among the nations. 

Gentile nations have exhausted the  patience of God. Babylon lasted 72  years, Persia 206 years, Greece 269  years and Imperial Rome 539 years  before God sent enemies to destroy  them. 

The fact is that God is the King of nations  and sovereign over all His creation.  Hannah, the mother of Samuel prayed: 

“The adversaries of the LORD shall  be broken to pieces; out of heaven  shall he thunder upon them: the  LORD shall judge the ends of the  earth” (1Sam.2:10). 

Scripture indicates that there is a day  coming when the Lord will come in  glory and power and He will judge the  nations of earth as His patience runs  out. 

More than 4,000 years have passed  since the Lord destroyed the world  

with a flood and time is running out for  this old world. The day of reckoning is  fast approaching. 

Why Does God Allow Wickedness? 

Often we hear the cry, If there is a God  in heaven, why does He allow such evil  men to exist. Why does He not step  down and destroy these vile men? It  is the patience of God. He is not soon  angry for His desire is to give men time  to repent. He is  

“longsuffering to us-ward, not willing  that any should perish, but that  all should come to repentance.”  (2Pet.3:9). 

Take the example of King Joram who  reigned for 12 years over the northern  kingdom of Israel. 

Joram was the son of Ahab one of the  wickedest kings of Israel. His mother  was Jezebel, perhaps the wickedest  queen who ever lived. Ahab built a  temple and altar for the god Baal and  his mother supported 450 prophets of  Baal and 400 prophets of Ashtaroth,  the sex godess. She was a whore and  a witch and she slew the prophets of  the Lord. 

Brought up in such a home one would  expect Joram to be evil yet God had  compassion on him and many times  sought to turn him away from the  wickedness of his family. 

Joram saw Ahab, his father die in  fulfilment of the prophesy of Micaiah.  Ahab’s idolatrous prophets said he  would be victorious against the Syrian  army but Micaiah spoke the word of the  Lord and Ahab died in the battle. 

Joram knew godly King Jehoshaphat,  king of Judah and was related to him 

by marriage. His sister Athalia had  married Jehoshaphat’s son. 

After Ahab died his eldest son Ahaziah,  reigned for 2 years before he fell out of  the window and was seriously injured.  Probably at Jezebel’s suggestion he  sent messengers to the god Baal-zebub  at Ekron; a Philistine city, to enquire if  he would live or die. 

Elijah the prophet met the messengers  and sent them back with the message  that Ahaziah would die. 

Ahaziah was furious and sent 50  soldiers to capture Elijah but fire came  down from heaven and consumed the  50. 

Ahaziah sent another 50 soldiers and  the same thing happened to them. 

A third 50 soldiers went and pleaded  with Elijah for mercy. Elijah went with  them to Ahaziah and told him that he  would die, which he did and Joram  came to the throne. 

About that time the prophet Elijah was  taken up and Elisha was given a double  portion of the Spirit that rested on Elijah.  Immediately Elisha began to perform  miracles in the name of the Lord which  the false prophets could never do. He  crossed Jordan on dry ground, healed  the waters at Jericho and when he was  mocked by a crowd of children, two she  bears slew 42 of them. 

With such evidence of the power of God  one would think Joram would turn to the  Lord and serve him with all his heart but  he only partially sought the Lord. He  ceased to worship Baal but continued  the worship of the two golden calves  brought by Jeroboam from Egypt. 

Still God was patient with Joram. The  Moabites rebelled against Israel and  Joram contacted Jehoshaphat. He  had him agree to take their armies and  suppress the Moabites. The Edomites  joined them and they approached Moab  from the south through the desert.  When the three armies ran out of water  Joram believed God was judging them  but Elisha was present and he told them  to did trenches and God would fill them  with water. God did this for the sake  of Jehoshaphat and the Moabites were  defeated. 

Then one day Naaman, the captain of  the Syrian Army turned up at Joram’s  door with a letter from Benhadad, King  of Syria. 

Naaman had become infected with  leprosy and an Israelite maid who had  been taken captive and srved Naaman’s  wife, told Naaman that if he went to  Samaria the prophet Elisha would heal  him. 

Benhadad sent Naaman to Joram and  Joram sent him to Elisha. Naaman  was told to dip seven times in Jordan  and when he did he was healed of  his leprosy. Joram could not help to  be impressed by the power of God  especially when Naaman testified:  

Now I know that there is no God  in all the earth, but in Israel”  


If a heathen idolator could turn  completely to the Lord, why could  not Joram? Yet he continued with the  worship of the golden calves of Egypt. 

Next we find that Benhadad King  of Syria sent his soldiers into Israel  in order to capture King Joram. He  gathered intelligence of where Joram 

would be at a particular time and had his  soldiers there ready to take him captive.  But the Lord showed Elisha the plans of  Benhadad and again and again he was  able to warn Joram and thus save his  life. 

When this occured several times  Benhadad suspected there was a spy  in his camp who was warning Joram but  one of his servants said it was Elisha  who was warning Joram. So the order  went out to capture Elisha who was in  Dothan at that time. 

When the Syrians surrounded Dothan  God temporarily blinded them and  Elisha led the blinded soldiers to Joram  who fed them and sent them home to  Syria with a clear message that the God  of Israel was not to be messed with. 

But Benhadad was a devotee of the  god Rimmon and he decided to go up  to besiege Samaria while there was a  famine in Samaria and their food stores  were empty. 

People in Samaria were starving and  two women agreed to eat their children. 

Joram was furious and blamed Elisha. He  ordered Elisha be put to death and sent  soldiers to take him captive. However  when they came to Elisha’s door he had  a message from God that the next day an  abundance of food would be available  at the gate of Samaria. 

Four lepers were located outside the  gate and they went tinto the camp of the  Syrians only to find the Syrians had fled.  God had made them to hear a noise  like an approaching army that terrified  them and there was an abundance of  food available at the gate the next day  according to the word of the Lord! 

Joram must have been impressed and  so he called Gehazi, the servant of Elisha  in and asked him about all the miracles  performed by Elisha. 

This was at the end of a seven year  drought and just as Gehazi was telling  Joram about how Elisha had raised the  Shunamite woman’s son from death, they  both walked in, returning from seven  years in Philistine country because of the  drought.  

“And Gehazi said, My Lord, O king,  this is the woman, and this is her son,  whom Elisha restored to life. And when  the king asked the woman, she told  him” (2Kings 8:5-6). 

Was there any need for additional proof  that the Lord was the only true and living  God? How many times must Joram see  the evidence that the Lord God of israel  was the only true God? 

The patience of God had expired and  Elisha was told to send a young prophet  to Ramoth-gilead where the Israeli army  was located and to anoint Captain Jehu  to be King of Israel. At this time, Joram  was back with his evil mother Jezebel in  Jezreel recovering from wounds received  in his latest skirmish with the Syrians. 

When Jehu arrived at Jezreel, Joram  went out in his chariot to meet him and  Jehu shot him with an arrow. 

Joram had had every opportunity to turn  from his wicked idolatrous worship of the  golden calves and had failed to repent  and believe on the Lord alone. Judgment  finally overtook him. 

Joram stands as a solemn warning to all  who procrastinate and who fail to seek  the Lord “while He may be found and call  upon Him while He is near” (Isa.55:7).  There is a limit to the patience of God!