Shist List

In the fifty-second year of Azariah king of Judah, Pekah son of Remaliah became king of Israel in Samaria, and he reigned twenty years. (2 Kings 15:27)

Another new king. Yippee. Maybe this guy will do better than the morally dwarfed megalomaniac before him? Maybe—maybe not. It’s pretty much a crap shoot; the only trend seems to be, you win some, you lose some.

Just one verse after his jump to the crown, new king Pekah gets dissed: “He did evil in the eyes of the Lord.” This is the Bible’s way of saying that Pekah was a major jerk. He may have done a few popular or even successful things, but the Biblical assessment is a blanket DUD.

Considering that Israel was God’s country, you’d think Pekah would be an unusual case. Think again, baby. Israel’s history (and her little sister Judah’s too) is a ping pong of good kings and bad kings that can make your head spin.

A partial overview:

Saul “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
David “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
Solomon “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Judah “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Asa “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
Nadab “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Baasha “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Zimri “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Omri “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Ahab “did [record levels of] evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Jehoshaphat “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
Ahaziah “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Joram “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Jehoram “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Joash “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
Jehoahaz “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Jehoash “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Amaziah “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
Jeroboam “did evil in the eyes of the Lord.”
Azariah “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”

The Biblical list continues (and continues and continues), but you get the picture. It ain’t a pretty one either. God’s “leaders” have a shoddy record when it comes to managing the political affairs of the nation. Just in the partial list above the bad guys outnumber the good guys 14 to 6. The good guys don’t even have enough time to clean up the mess.

Hmm. I wonder how the Bible writers would rate the US presidents. I wonder how we would.

1. George Washington did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
2. John Adam  did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
3. Thomas Jefferson did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
4. James Madison did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
5. James Monroe did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
6. John Quincy Adams did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
7. Andrew Jackson did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
8. Martin Van Buren did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
9. William Henry Harrison did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
10. John Tyler did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
11. James Knox Polk did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
12. Zachary Taylor did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
13. Millard Fillmore did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
14. Franklin Pierce did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
15. James Buchanan did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
16. Abraham Lincoln did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
17. Andrew Johnson did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
18. Ulysses S. Grant did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
19. Rutherford B. Hayes did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
20. James Garfield did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
21. Chester Arthur did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
22. Grover Cleveland did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
23. Benjamin Harrison did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
24. Grover Cleveland did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
25. William McKinley did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
26. Theodore Roosevelt did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
27. William Howard Taft did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
28. Woodrow Wilson did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
29. Warren Harding did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
30. Calvin Coolidge did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
31. Herbert Hoover did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
32. Franklin D. Roosevelt did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
33. Harry S Truman did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
34. Dwight D. Eisenhower did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
35. John F. Kennedy did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
36. Lyndon Johnson did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
37. Richard Nixon did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
38. Gerald Ford did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
39. James Carter did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
40. Ronald Reagan did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
41. George H. W. Bush did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
42. William J. Clinton did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
43. George W. Bush did ______ in the eyes of the Lord.
44. Barack H. Obama does ______ in the eyes of the Lord.

Go ahead.  Roll your dice.

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