Today's Devotions

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Showcase: Worry

  • Worry +

    Do we trust God to take care of each and every one of our troubles, or do we act like Read More
  • One Prayer Away: Yolanda Adams +

    Yolanda Adams effectively portrays the experiences of brokenness and longing for change I know there are times in your life,When Read More
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Don  Carsonhttp://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/2-kings/20.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/hebrews/2.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/hosea/13.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/psalms/passage.aspx?q=psalm+137;psalm+138

2 Kings 20; Hebrews 2; Hosea 13; Psalms 137–138

2 KINGS 20 IS ONE OF the sadder chapters of Scripture. It pictures a man who has been faithful in the past, now withering away in the complacency of selfishness.

King Hezekiah ruled over Judah, the southern kingdom, in the waning days of the northern kingdom of Israel. Once the Assyrians had defeated Israel and transported its leading citizens, leaving behind only a shattered wreck of a nation, there was plenty of reason for discouragement in the south. But in truly heroic fashion, Hezekiah, guided in part by the prophet Isaiah, withstands the withering siege of King Sennacherib of Assyria, simply relying on the mercy of the Lord God. Sent by God himself, plague sweeps through the Assyrian camp, killing almost two hundred thousand people. Jerusalem and Judah are spared (2 Kings 18–19; Isa. 36–37). Moreover, Hezekiah's commitment to God in the early years of his reign was not characterized by the typical compromise, which maintained some sort of allegiance to Yahweh while not touching the high places and other sites of pagan worship. Far from it: he cleaned things up, earning the judgment, "He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father David had done" (2 Kings 18:3–4). He even recognized that the bronze serpent Moses had made (Num. 21:4–9) had now become a superstitious snare, and destroyed it.

Then he fell ill and wept bitterly. Somehow he got himself into the position where he thought his righteous deeds meant that God owed him a long and prosperous life (2 Kings 20:2–3). In his mercy, God assigned him fifteen more years, and gave him a miraculous sign to confirm the promise (20:1–11). During that fifteen-year span, however, Hezekiah failed an important test: when emissaries came from Babylon, instead of seeking the Lord's face and walking humbly, Hezekiah played the role of a proud potentate, showing off the kingdom's rising wealth. Everything was duly recorded in the books of Babylon, in preparation for the day, more than a century later, when Babylon would be the superpower and crush Jerusalem and send her people into exile (2 Kings 20:12–18).

But this is not Hezekiah's most grievous lapse. When Isaiah the prophet tells him what will happen, the king does not repent of his arrogance, or seek forgiveness, or intercede with God. The threatened judgment is slated for the future: Hezekiah refuses to accept any deeply felt responsibility. He piously comments, "The word of the LORD you have spoken is good"—while the writer comments, "For he thought, 'Will there not be peace and security in my lifetime?'" (2 Kings 20:19). Hezekiah has become a moral and strategic pygmy.

Far better to die young after genuine, godly, achievements, than to die old and embittered, poisoning your own heritage.

http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/loveofgod/2013/11/07/2-kings-20-hebrews-2-hosea-13-psalms-137%e2%80%93138/

Reflections to Consider

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Publications

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Music

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Audio & Video

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Favorites

  • Prayer by Alex Kirk, Chatham Community Church +

    What role does prayer play in our lives? What is prayer, anyway? Alex Kirk, pastor of Chatham Community Church, gives Read More
  • How to be Mary in a Martha world by Jim Abrahamson, Chatham Community Church +

    Jim Abrahamson spoke at Chatham Community Church on an essential of the Christian walk Who/what is our savior? What is Read More
  • Christ the King Sunday by Art Going (Holy Trinity Chatham) +

    A thoughtful discussion of how we function as colonizers for Christ the King.  Read More
  • MY STUPID MOUTH by Steve Tamayo of Chatham Community Church +

    Tremendous sermon on the liabilities of our tongue, both in what we say and don't say. Read More
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Hidden Blessings

  • Witnesses for Jesus by Tim Keller (Mark 15) +

    Tim Keller discusses the significance of the women and men who saw Jesus die, buried, and resurrected.  Read More
  • Prayer-bringing light into darkness by NT Wright +

    NT Wright discusses the importance of prayer in maintaining a relationship with Jesus. Read More
  • After darkness, light-the reformation by Michael Reeves +

    Michael Reeves discusses the transformative power of bringing Jesus to the world at the heart of the Reformation. Read More
  • The Esther Option-Living in a fallen world by Mike Cosper +

    The following is an excerpt from an article on The Gospel Coalition website. Read More
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