Read Isaiah 27
God deals out "tough love" to Israel (Is. 27:11) and Judah (29:1-6). It is futile to rely on Egypt: Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help . . . but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel (31:1-3; 30:1-5).
Sennacherib, the ruthless king of Assyria, was marching toward Judah with the intent of conquering it and reducing its people to slavery (II Kin. 18:13; II Chr. 32:1). The danger was very real and imminent. What was King Hezekiah to do? How was Judah to stand against Assyria, the world's most powerful monarchy at that time? If you were to ask Hezekiah's "policymakers," they would all say: "There can be no question about the intent of Assyria and the defeat of the Kingdom of Judah." The "policymakers" would agree that the only way to save Judah from defeat was to obtain the alliance and armies of some powerful nation. This was exactly what the rulers of Judah agreed to do. They entered into an alliance with the king of Egypt for military strength and security instead of praying and asking God to help them. The prophet Isaiah reproved them, saying: Woe to the rebellious children, saith the Lord, that take counsel, but not of Me. . . . For the Egyptians shall help in vain. . . . this is a rebellious people . . . that will not hear the Law of the Lord. . . . thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not. . . . blessed are all they that wait for Him (Is. 30:1,7,9,15,18).
Fearing an Assyrian attack, King Hezekiah sent his ambassadors to Egypt with a large amount of wealth. They were requesting military aid and desiring to make a treaty with Egypt, a nation that had been a great world power for centuries. From a human point of view, this seemed to be the only possible means of security against Assyria. Egypt had a great military system, including numerous chariots and horses. In addition, Ethiopia was closely associated with Egypt, and the combined armies of these two powerful nations would seem invincible.
When danger threatens, do we immediately look to our friends and professional advisers? Or do we, through daily searching of His Word, discern the principles of God for direction and then, in prayer, trust Him wholeheartedly to enlighten our understanding concerning the specific problem before us?
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Matt. 6:24).
Thought for Today:
Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the Name of the Lord our God (Ps. 20:7).
As the precious (Chief) Corner Stone, a sure foundation (Is. 28:16; Eph. 2:20-21; Matt. 21:42; Acts 4:10-12; Rom. 9:33; I Pet. 2:6-8).
27:1 piercing swift; 28:21 strange awesome, unusual; 28:22 bands be made strong punishment be made greater; 30:1 cover with a covering live an offering; 30:3 confusion humiliation, your undoing; 30:24 ear blow.
Pray for International Broadcasts in memory of Iva Ann McElroy (Dr. John Hash's mother) • Government Official: Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC) • Country: Sierra Leone (5 million) in western Africa • Major language: English • Increasing restrictions on Christian work in some areas • 50% belief in river spirits, medicine men, and witchcraft; 39% Muslim; 7% Protestant; 2% Roman Catholic • Prayer Suggestion: Declare the wondrous works of God with thanksgiving (Ps. 26:6-7).
Memory Verse for the Week: