An Ancestral Advent Day 19: The Son of Hezekiah.

Matthew 1:9. and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah

Besides the reigns of David and Solomon, there is one other king of Judah whose reign stands out for its glory, wisdom, and strength.

Hezekiah.

2 Kings 18:5-6. 5[Hezekiah] trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel, so that there was none like him among all the kings of Judah after him, nor among those who were before him. 6For he held fast to the Lord.

King Hezekiah completely reversed the course of the nation of Judah following the rule of his wicked father, Ahaz. He destroyed the high places of the false gods, reinstated the Passover feast, re-employed priests at the temple, and restored musical worship there as well. He defeated the surrounding Philistines, and he completed an engineering marvel that secured Jerusalem’s water supply. Hezekiah was a great king. But in a terrible time.

The Assyrian empire was on the rampage. Having already conquered northern Israel, Judah was next on their hit list. But Hezekiah refused to bow to the Assyrians even though it would cost him and the nation dearly. It didn’t take long for the Assyrians to begin a siege of Jerusalem. A siege that would test Hezekiah’s faith in God.  

When Hezekiah was surrounded he did the only thing he could do – he prayed.

2 Kings 19:15-19. 15 And Hezekiah prayed before the Lord and said: “O Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth. 16 Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. 17 Truly, O Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands 18 and have cast their gods into the fire, for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands, wood and stone. Therefore, they were destroyed. 19 So now, O Lord our God, save us, please, from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you, O Lord, are God alone.”

That very night God answered Hezekiah’s prayer.

2 Kings 19:35 And that night the angel of the Lord went out and struck down 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians.

In his waiting Hezekiah bowed to the Lord. In his waiting Hezekiah prayed for deliverance. In his waiting Hezekiah sought the glory of God. And God sent Jesus (the Angel of the Lord) to fight for Hezekiah and Judah. And he will do the same for you and for me. Christ in you is fighting for you. Breaking the enemy’s siege works that surround our hearts. Pulling down strongholds.

Has our enemy surrounded you? Has he besieged your hope, slowly starving it to death? Maybe try a prayer of faith like Hezekiah’s. Not for salvation (Jesus has already given you that; all 185,000 of your enemies are powerless against you), but for assurance. For peace. For joy in the plunder that is yours in Christ.  

Questions.

Has this Christmas season given you hope, or stolen your hope? Have you prayed? What do you pray for? Is it a prayer like Hezekiah’s?

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