Honesty


 
The Lord’s temple in Jerusalem had been ransacked and damaged by previous kings, so when Joash became king, he commanded that the temple be repaired. This was going to take a lot of work and a lot of money. Nonetheless, Joash ordered the work to be done.

“Joash said to the priests, “Collect all the money that is brought as sacred offerings to the temple of the Lord – the money collected in the census, the money received from personal vows and the money brought voluntarily to the temple. Let every priest receive the money from one of the treasurers, and let it be used to repair whatever damage is found in the temple. But by the twenty third year of King Joash the priests still had not repaired the temple” (2 Kings 12:4-6).

Joash had the money for the repairs but not the workforce; the priests just weren’t skilled tradesmen, so he came up with another plan. “He gave the money to men appointed to supervise the work on the temple. With it they paid those who worked on the temple of the Lord – the carpenters and builders, the masons and stonecutters. They purchased timber and dressed stone for the repair of the temple of the Lord, and met all the other expenses of restoring the temple” (2 Kings 12:11-12).

Now the temple was once again going to be a symbol of honor to God instead of a symbol of disgrace. There was a lot of responsibility placed on these supervisors, and it was also a lot of money going through their hands. So, did Joash appoint a watchdog committee to keep an eye on these guys? No, the best part of this whole account is this statement: “They did not require an accounting from those to whom they gave the money to pay the workers because they acted with complete honesty” (2 Kings 12:15).

“They acted with complete honesty”; wow, what a complete turnaround from the vandals of the past. How that must have pleased Joash and God to have such a trustworthy group of men to do such an honorable work. A point to take away from this: honesty builds honor not overnight. It’s a construction project, but in the end you will have earned the trust of both kings and God.

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