(33 verses, 4:45 to read)
What I am about to READ
The Lord tested Hezekiah by sending Assyria against Jerusalem. Hezekiah prayed to the Lord, and the Lord delivered him. Later, however, Hezekiah became proud. Yet he repented, and the Lord spared Judah during Hezekiah’s life.
MARK and LEARN
- Verse 1: “After . . . these acts of faithfulness . . .” – Being faithful to the Lord doesn’t mean He will never send hardships into our lives to test us.
- Hezekiah strengthened his defenses. He blocked up the springs so the Assyrians could not find water. He repaired the walls and built new ones, manufactured weapons, and appointed military leaders over the people. Yet even as he established his defensive strategy, he encouraged the people to trust in the Lord. And the people were strengthened by his words.
- The letter the king of Assyria sent to Hezekiah contained a striking error. Hezekiah didn’t remove God’s altars. He removed idol Although the gods of other nations couldn’t deliver their people from Assyria, the God of Israel was different.
- The Lord saved Jerusalem. An angel of the Lord destroyed the Assyrian army. Sennacherib’s sons killed him in the temple of his god. Ironically, his own god couldn’t save him from the hand of his sons even though he was standing in his god’s own temple!
- Hezekiah suffered from the problem that afflicted previous kings. But, when it became clear that God was angry with him, Hezekiah repented of his pride.
Christians rightly denounce the obvious sins of murder, hatred, adultery, and theft. But, perhaps the most dangerous sin of all is pride. It’s a secret, hidden sin. It’s a terrible deception – that our strength can be found within, rather than in Christ alone. Sinful pride gives rise to all sorts of evil. It’s a weakness, not a strength, and it must be repented of daily – as we live humbly before our merciful and forgiving Lord.
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Pastor Kevin Zellers, Jr.