In this daily Bible reading is the account of the reign of Joash, King of Judah. Joash was seven years old when he became King, and he served 41 years as King.
Joash had a counselor named Jehoida who was a priest. Jehoida orchestrated putting Joash on the throne in place of the evil woman Athaliah. As long as Jehoida was Joash’s counselor, Joash was a good king who obeyed God. He restored the implements of worship that Athaliah had taken, and he had the Temple restored from its deterioration.
After Jehoida died, Joash listened to bad counsel and turned away from God to demonic worship. Jehoida’s son Zechariah, who was a prophet, brought messages to Joash from God to turn back to God. However, Joash would not listen. He had Zechariah killed. God punished Joash and Judah. Joash was killed by his servants at the young age of 48.
Joash started well, but he did not finish well. Again it is important how one finishes one’s life. It is indeed vital. I believe one’s entry into Heaven will be conditioned on how one finishes their life on Earth.
The Salvation journey is difficult. It requires endurance for the long run. One must cling tenaciously to the Word of God. One must also wear the ‘full armor of God’ to stand against evil and survive spiritually in this world.