And for this cause Hezekiah the king, and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz, prayed and cried to heaven. And the Lord sent an angel, which cut off all the mighty men of valour, and the leaders and captains in the camp of the king of Assyria. So he returned with shame of face to his own land. And when he was come into the house of his god, they that came forth of his own bowels slew him there with the sword. Thus the Lord saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and from the hand of all other, and guided them on every side (II Chr. 32:20-22).
After the death of Ahaz, his son Hezekiah became king of the Southern Kingdom of Judah. Unlike the peaceful, prosperous kingdom that Ahaz had inherited nearly two decades earlier, Hezekiah assumed leadership of a battered and war-torn country. God's Temple had been stripped of all its valuables and abandoned, and God's people worshiped the idols that had been installed by Ahaz. Furthermore, Ahaz had aligned his kingdom as a vassel state of Assyria, the seemingly invincible world power that had already captured Israel and Syria.
Instead of dwelling on the unchangeable past, Hezekiah gave the future over to God. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before (Phil. 3:13). He restored the Lord's Temple (II Chr. 29:3) and instituted a godly revival amongst his people (31). Lastly, he stood courageously against Sennacherib, king of Assyria, saying: Be strong and courageous, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that is with him: for there be more with us than with him: With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah (32:7-8).
Through his unwavering faith in God, Hezekiah led Judah in the most amazing turn around that the nation had ever seen. His zeal for the Lord was contagious, and soon God's praises were once again being heard throughout the land (32:23). His effort to return the nation's focus to the will of the Lord resulted in national prosperity for the entirety his 29-year reign (29:1; 32:27-30).
Hezekiah was honored because He trusted in the Lord God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him. For he clave to the Lord, and departed not from following Him, but kept His commandments, which the Lord commanded Moses (II Kings. 18:5-6). We live in a world today that has largely turned it's back to God. Many Christian's have thrown up their hands in despair and have chosen to withdraw from the secular world instead of trying to reintroduce God into it. Through the life of Hezekiah, God is showing us how much of a difference one man can make. With God by your side, nothing is impossible!
I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me (Phil. 4:13).
Thought for Today:
What is our work worth without prayer?
By Hezekiah's offering of the king's portion (share) of his substance for the Burnt Offerings (II Chr. 31:3). Burnt Offerings were wholly consumed, symbolic of total surrender, and offered as a sweet savour to the Lord (Lev. 8:28; Num. 15:3). God offered His King's portion in Christ Jesus who, in total surrender on the cross, was wholly consumed, even unto death. Christ . . . hath given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour (Eph. 5:2).
31:10 store = abundance; 31:14 oblations = free will offerings; 31:16 courses = assigned tasks; 31:18 set office = appointed office; 31:19 every several city = every city; 32:6 comfortably = encouragingly; 32:8 rested themselves = relied; 32:17 rail on = belittle; denounce; 32:18 affright = frighten; 33:11 fetters = chains.
Pray For Government Official: Rep. Steve Israel (NY) Country: Oman (3,154,134) Southeastern coast of Arabia Major Languages: Arabic, English, Baluchi, Urdu, Indian Dialects Fewer restrictions on Christian activity than most of its neighbors 75% Ibadhi Muslim; 25% Other (Sunni and Shia Muslim, Hindu, Christian, Buddhist, Sikh, Baha'i) Prayer Suggestion: Kneel in a humble spirit of reverence as you pray to the Lord (I Kings 8:54).
James 1: 8 - 14
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.
Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:
But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.
For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.