Saturday, June 7, 2014

Isaiah-Ahaz Shut the Doors of the Temple

By Mary Vee
II Kings 16, II chronicles 28

From the Journals of Isaiah

Photo courtesy
King Ahaz was still afraid of Pekah, king of Israel and Rezin, king of Aram. And so he should be since he hasn't stopped worshiping the Baals.

Rather than ask God for help, he sent a message to the king of Assyria. He knew better than to side with that wicked and powerful king, but he did it anyway.

Along with the letter, Ahaz took silver and gold from the temple of the Lord and riches from the palace treasury and sent them with his note. 

In the note Ahaz said, "Please come save us from our enemy, the king of Aram and the king of Israel. I am your servant."

If only Ahaz would have been an honorable servant of the Lord, the powerful Sovereign God, he wouldn't have had problems. But, noooo. He didn't.

Tiglath-Pileser, king of Assyria accepted Ahaz's gifts then sent his army to attack king Rezin and captured his cities. The soldiers took the people of Aram to Kir to be slaves and killed their king. 

Pleased with the news, Ahaz traveled to Damascus to meet Tiglath-Pileser and to thank him for his help. While there Ahaz saw a magnificent altar which the people of Aram used to worship their gods. It was stunning.

Ahaz had one of his men draw a sketch of the altar and sent it to Uriah, one of his priests, along with this note. "Make me this same altar."

Sadly, Uriah followed the instructions and had the altar finished by the time king Ahaz returned to Jerusalem. Ahaz was impressed with Uriah's work. He offered sacrifices on the altar to the gods of Aram.

Let's think this through. If God was not pleased with Ahaz for worshiping the Baals, He definitely would not be happy to see Ahaz worshiping the gods from Aram. If only Ahaz would listen to my counsel.

But Ahaz said, "If I worship the gods of Aram, maybe their gods will protect us from their next attack."

Foolish man. Those very gods are what led to the downfall of Aram. Only God can help Judah.

Ahaz wanted no more offerings or worship to take place in the temple of the Lord. He removed all the important objects and shut the doors of the Lord's temple. In every town in Judah he set up places for the people to offer sacrifices to gods.

This angered the Lord, the God of his fathers. God is sure to punish Judah for Ahaz's choices.

1. Who was king Ahaz afraid of? ___________ and ___________
2. Who should king Ahaz have asked for help? _____________________
3. Who did king Ahaz ask to help protect Judah? _____________________
4. What did king Ahaz give this king for payment? ____________________
5. What happened to king Rezin and his people? ________________
6. What did Ahaz like so much he wanted one made for himself? ___________
7. When Ahaz came back home what doors did he close and not allow to be opened? ____

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