Read II Chronicles 25 -- 27
In Today's Reading:
Amaziah reigns in Judah; war against Edom; Israel defeats Judah; Uzziah reigns in Jerusalem; Uzziah stricken with leprosy
After Joash was murdered by his servants, his son Amaziah became king of Judah. As he began his reign, he did not wholeheartedly serve the Lord. The mixed motives in Amaziah's life eventually destroyed him. On one occasion he hired 100,000 idol worshipers from the northern kingdom of Israel to help him fight against Edom in an effort to regain lost territory. After he was rebuked by a prophet for not fully trusting in the Lord, he dismissed the Israelite army and was successful in defeating the Edomites. But, instead of his victory bringing him closer to God, he set up the false gods of Edom and worshiped before them. After Amaziah turned from following the Lord, a conspiracy was formed against him and they put him to death.
One of the most successful kings in Judah's history was his 16-year-old son Uzziah. The key to his success was unmistakable: He worshiped God throughout the lifetime of the prophet Zechariah, who encouraged him to fear God. Because of this, he became very successful. But, as he became successful, he also became very proud and entered the Temple of the Lord and burned incense Only priests were qualified to offer incense to God; but Uzziah refused to stop, even when rebuked by Azariah and 80 other priests. Consequently, God struck Uzziah with leprosy. Even though he was a great king, God still judged him, for no one is above the Law of God. During the last 10 years of his life, Uzziah was an outcast from his own palace as well as the Temple because of his leprosy.
Few sins are as deceptive and destructive as pride — overestimating one's importance. We should never forget that whatever success we have and all that we accomplish is made possible by the Lord, who gave us our abilities to glorify Him.
Devotional commentary also refers to: II Kings 12:21; Romans 12:3.
By Azariah the high priest who stood between Uzziah and the altar, because only the priests were qualified to offer incense to the Lord God of Israel (see II Chronicles 26:17-18). Jesus, our great High Priest (see Hebrews 4:14), is the only Mediator between God and man. No one, not even a king, is an exception. Jesus made this clear when He said that no one comes to the Father except through Me (see John 14:6).
25:21 saw one another in the face = faced each other in battle; 26:10 husbandry = the soil.
Staff: Letha Hash · Bible Literature International · the International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in honor of Rick Hash · Government Officials: Rep. Steve King (IA) and Rep. Tom Petri (WI) · Country: Croatia (5 million) in southeastern Europe · Major language: Serbo-Croatian · Religious freedom · 73% Roman Catholic; 15% Serbian Orthodox; 5% Muslim · Prayer Suggestion: Pray for those who have hurt you (see Matthew 5:44)
Optional Reading: I Corinthians 15
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 119:9,11