Lesson 7 – SPOILS OF WAR WARDROBE
“And the men which were expressed by name rose up, and took the captives, and with the spoil clothed all that were naked among them, and arrayed them, and shod them, and gave them to eat and to drink, and anointed them, and carried all the feeble of them upon asses, and brought them to Jericho, the city of palm trees, to their brethren: then they returned to Samaria” (2 Chr. 28:15).
In 2 Chronicles, chapter 28, the Lord describes how the leaven of Ahaz spread to all Judah so the people of Judah spoiled their own wardrobe like the wicked northern nation of Israel. It is a very short chapter with only twenty-seven verses. We learn that Ahaz was a son of Jotham and the 11th king of Judah (2 Kings 15:38,16). He was an ungodly king who promoted the worship of Molech, with its pagan rites of human sacrifice (2 Chr. 28:1-4). Judah worshipped molten images of Baalim and offered their own children as sacrifices to false gods in the valley of Hinnom. What was God’s response? He delivered them into the hands of the king of Syria, who “smote them” and carried the multitude away as captives to Damascus.
God also delivered them into the hands of the king of Israel, who slaughtered many. The children of Israel carried away captive of their own brethren, 200,000 women, sons and daughters of the slaughtered men and took much spoil before they brought them to Samaria. Amazing as it may seem, a prophet of the Lord was there whose name was Oded, who told them plainly that God had delivered Judah into their hands because He was angry with them; however, God’s wrath would be upon Israel if they did not let them go free. Israel had purposed to keep the people of Judah for slaves, but Oded reminded them of their own wickedness and how they had better show mercy to Judah.
Certain of the leaders stood up against the Israelite army and warned them they also were in jeopardy of being punished the same way because of their own sins. If they added this evil to their record, they surely would bring wrath from the Lord upon the entire nation. With a complete change of heart, the army of Israel left the captives and the spoil in front of the princes and all the congregation of the Israelite people and went to correct this grievous error. What did they do? They took the spoil they had taken in battle and used it to clothe the captive women, children and old people and carry them back to their homes. Who ever heard of such? They took that same spoil, which their victorious army had brought away, to clothe, feed, shoe, and anoint, these distressed people, set the feeblest of them upon asses, and escort them safely to Jericho.
God had delivered Judah into the hands of their enemies because their king had made them to sin. He humbled them and made them naked before the world so they could learn a lesson. Then, as if nothing had been learned at all, Ahaz committed one more sin, which was to take gold and precious things from the house of the Lord to try to buy allegiance from Assyria, but Assyria did not help him when the enemy came to attack again. At his death, Ahaz was buried without honor in Jerusalem. He was not thought worthy of a burial in the kings’ tombs (2 Chr. 28:27). Surely Ahaz spoiled his own wardrobe and caused Judah to follow his evil example.
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (2 Chr. 7:14).
- What was a major sign God gave to show Ahaz that he was displeased with him and Judah (2 Chr. 28:4-5)?
- What did Ahaz cause Judah to do in their worship (2 Chr. 28:2-3)?
- Of what did God’s prophet (Oded) remind the children of Israel when they took Judah captive (2 Chr. 28:9-11)?
- What New Testament principle do we see in this example (James 2:13)?
- Who were the main ones who listened to God’s warning (2 Chr. 28:12)?
- What did the Samaritans do to show they believed God’s warning (2 Chr. 28:15)?
- What does God require us to do today to our enemies? ( 5:44-45)
- What further sin did Ahaz commit to show he had faith in men but not in God (2 Chr. 28:19-25)?
- What did God do after Ahaz’ death to show He was angry with him? (2 Chr. 28:27)?
- RESEARCH QUESTION: Using Naves’ Topical Bible at:
Look up the various accounts of times when spoil was taken.
- From the scriptures given, list the things that were taken.
- Explain how the spoil was divided between the ones who fought and the ones who did not (of the Israelites, including priests and Levites).
- Finally, explain how some of it was dedicated to the Lord and by whom.
In some Bible dictionaries, the word spoil will have a cross reference to take you to the word booty. Notice the definition of spoil/booty: plunder and spoils of war. Booty consisted of everything of value taken in battle-gold and silver, clothing, food, household items, weapons, implements of agriculture, camels, sheep, cattle, as well as men, women, and children to be used as slaves (Gen. 14:11-12; Jer. 49:32).