Friday, October 28, 2016

Good Among the Bad

O. T. #860 "Good Among the Bad"
Oct. 28, 2016
2 Kings 18


The reign of the godly King Hezekiah is described as one of the most exciting periods in Judah's history. I say the good was among the bad in the lists of kings of this divided kingdom. Israel had fallen into the hands of the Assyrian Empire, but now their enemy was attacking Judah. (They have 7 more kings before Babylon conquers Judah, about 129 years after Israel fell.)

Now this is a relief after reading about all those wicked kings of Israel and Judah.
Here is some insight as we look into the deeds of this man who became king of Judah next:
  • At age 25, Hezekiah became king of Judah while Hoshea was reigning his third year as king in Israel. He reigned 29 years in Judah. (verse 1)
  • He did what was right in the Lord's sight. (verse 3)
  • He trusted in the LORD God of Israel. (verse 5a)
  • Not one of the kings of Judah was like him, either before or after him. (verse 5b) This refers to the time of the divided kingdom.
  • He remained faithful to Yahweh and did not turn from following Him but kept the commands the LORD had commanded Moses. (verse 6)
  • The LORD was with him, and wherever he went he prospered.
  • He rebelled against the king of Assyria and did not serve him. (verse 7)
  • He defeated the Philistines as far as Gaza and its borders, from watchtower to fortified city. (verse 8)
Judah was sandwiched between two world powers, Egypt and Assyria. Controlling both Israel and Judah meant controlling the vital crossroads of trade in the ancient Near East. Judah's control would be an economic and military advantage over its rivals. Due to Ahaz, Hezekiah's father, and his submission to Assyria, they controlled Judah when Hezekiah began to reign. Maybe knowing Israel's fate resulted in Hezekiah's reforming his own nation.

Being a good king, a faithful king, and a devout believer is a good reputation and legacy to leave. He trusted in God, kept His commands, and didn't turn away. Thus, God blessed this king.
Will He also bless us for those same ways?


Life Application Study Bible gives a summary of Hezekiah's accomplishments:
  • a devout follower of God, with a powerful prayer life,
  • wrote several chapters in the book of Proverbs,
  • reopened the Temple doors,
  • purified the Temple, as well as destroyed the altars, idols, and pagan temples,
  • reinstated priest and their duties,
  • organized an orchestra to aid worship,
  • destroyed idols (including Moses's bronze serpent),
  • celebrated the Passover and invited northerners to participate,
  • constructed large public waterworks,
  • was given 15 extra years of life,
(Although, King Hezekiah did something foolishly, which we will get into later.)


Be a faithful follower of God, in spite of those around me.

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