Jehoshaphat was a good king in Judah. He ruled and lived much as his father Asa had done, and worshipped rightly, except for the high places where the people offered sacrifices and burned incense. He also made peace with the king of Israel. He engaged in war, and he banished perverted persons from the land. He ruled Edomite with a deputy of Israel. When Jehoshaphat died, his son Jehoram reigned in his place.
Ahaziah the son of Ahab reigned in his father’s place in the severnteenth year of Jehoshaphat. He only reigned two years, and did much evil, like his parents. He served Baal, and provoked the Lord with everything he did.
Here, as with so many Judah/Israel king comparisons, is the story of two very different men. Jehoshaphat was a godly man, and Ahaziah was not. Jehoshaphat ruled long, and Ahaziah did not. However, the thing that is noteworthy is that Jehoshaphat made peace and had a positive relationship with the king of Israel, when there had been enmity prior to their time. It reminds me of a family squabble or even a feud, where family members cannot seem to get along. The thing to remember is this: no matter how angry or disappointed you may be with a family member, he or she is still part of your family. You are not required to condone their actions or feed their foolishness, but you must love and pray for that family member. If you cut them off, you will never have the opportunity to influence their lives for good or for the Lord.