Read II Chronicles 28 -- 30
In Today's Reading:
Ahaz reigns in Judah; Syria (Aram) and Israel defeat Judah; death of Ahaz; Hezekiah's reign; worship restored in the Temple
Ahaz had the wonderful heritage of a godly father Jotham. But Ahaz was one of the most evil, ungodly kings in Judah's history. He lived like the kings of Israel and also made pagan idols to the false gods of the Baals. He even burned his children alive to the pagan gods as the heathens often did.
God made it clear that, because of the great wickedness of King Ahaz, the kingdom of Judah continued to suffer serious losses of territory. The Edomites gained their independence from Judah on the southeast. The Philistines raided the cities in the southwest and occupied them, and thousands of his people were taken as slaves into other countries. Regrettably, the many defeats of Ahaz never caused him to humble himself and repent. He fiercely rejected the Lord and refused to allow worship of the One True God in the Temple. He also made altars to false gods on every street corner in Jerusalem and in every city of his kingdom.
In this tragic account of Ahaz, king of Judah, the Lord is warning us of the awful fate of those who turn from Him. Just as Ahaz attempted to suppress the worship of the One True God, the unsaved world, with all of its deceptive attractions, attempts to suppress our loyalty and obedience to the Lord. To overcome these hindrances and remain faithful we need to pray each day to our Father in heaven to keep us from temptation and to deliver us from evil. Regardless of how long we have been a Christian, it is of utmost importance to follow His instructions with all our hearts — that we read His Word daily and pray that we do not get sidetracked with the pleasures of this world or become devoted to what is worthless.
Devotional commentary also refers to: Luke 11:4; Psalm 119:34-37.
By King Hezekiah who offered intercessory prayer foreveryone that desired to please the Lord with his whole heart (see II Chronicles 30:18-19). Jesus Christ our King is now seated at the right hand of God to intercede in prayer for all who desire to please our Heavenly Father (see John 17:9; Romans 8:34; Colossians 3:1).
28:3 Hinnom was later called Gehenna, which Jesus used to illustrate the place of eternal punishment; 28:10 keep under = subdue; 28:15 shod them = gave them sandals; 28:25 several = single; 30:6 posts = runners, couriers; 30:22 comfortably = encouragingly; 30:23 took counsel = agreed.
Staff: George Kopchak · Audrey Ward and the Bible Pathway Radio Broadcasts on WCVJ-FM, Jefferson OH · Government Officials: Rep. Jeb Hensarling (TX) and Rep. Jerry Moran (KS) · Country: Cuba (11 million) on the northern rim of the Caribbean · Major language: Spanish · Strict government surveillance of all true Christian activities · 41% Roman Catholic; 2% various spiritists; 1% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray in secret before God, not seeking human praise (see Matthew 6:6).
Optional Reading: I Corinthians 16
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 119:9,11