Saturday, July 19, 2014

Hezekiah- Pride and Punishment

By Mary Vee
II Chronicles 32

From the Journals of Hezekiah

Photo Courtesy
God had healed my terrible illness. I felt so much better.

The people in Judah seemed happy. We had everything we needed. 

I went about my work, enjoying the people, doing my kingly business. All the reports I received said the country was doing well. 

We ate, had celebrations, did our chores.
I felt really good about it. Yep, I was a great king.

One day the prophet Isaiah came to my chambers. He couldn't have any bad messages. Everyone in the country seemed happy and no one had attacked us. I was doing a great job.

"King Hezekiah, You have been wicked."

I couldn't believe my ears. I have not been wicked. "What do you mean?"

"You have been prideful in your heart. You have not shown God thankfulness for what He has given to you. Instead you take all the credit yourself, calling yourself a great king. Therefore the Lord's wrath is on you and Jerusalem and Judah."

I could hardly speak. I thought about what I had been doing since the Lord healed me from my illness. Isaiah spoke the truth. I have been full of pride. I dropped to my knees. "You are right. I have been full of pride. Please forgive me."

These words would not be enough, I knew right away. I ran out of the palace and to the temple where I could call all the people of Jerusalem together. "People of Jerusalem and Judah, I am guilty of pride. I have been calling myself a great king because of how well things are here in our city and country. 

"I am not the one who has kept us safe and prosperous. It was the Lord, the Almighty God. I ask you to join me in repenting of our ways and asking the Lord to forgive us."

The people joined me. We all put on sackcloth and repented. Cries of sorrow and tears flowed. We prayed to God, asking for His forgiveness.

While I still sat in sorrow, the prophet Isaiah came to me. "The Lord has a message for you. He has seen your repentance and the tears of the people. He has decided to hold off the punishment while you still live."

"I will change and work to serve the Lord in all my ways."

1.  What happened in Judah after Hezekiah was healed?
2.  What did Hezekiah do wrong?
3.  Who told him?
4.  What did Hezekiah do about it?
5.  What did the people of Jerusalem and Judah do?
6.  What did God say after Hezekiah led the people to the right answer?
7.  What did Hezekiah decide to do?

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