Friday, May 8, 2015

Journal Through the Bible: Week 97 Tuesday

II Chronicles 31:11-32:22

Once Hezekiah saw how much food the people were providing the priests in their offering and how much of it the priests were wasting he commanded storerooms to be prepared in the Temple. It reminds me of the plan of Joseph to provide for the lean years during the years of plenty. And like in the days of Joseph in Egypt, Hezekiah appointed men to distribute as needed.

Several years later Sennacherib, king of Assyria, came against Judah and Hezekiah. Hezekiah and his wise men stopped the conduits of water that he had established so that the Assyrian army would not find adequate water supplies for their use. He also fortified the defenses and restocked the armory. But the best thing he did to win the battle was to remind the people that Assyria could not defeat them unless the LORD gave Judah into its hands. Hezekiah did not believe that this would happen so he encouraged his people in their time of fear. The people believed him.

The Assyrians blasphemed God by saying that He is nothing more than the other gods of the nations that Assyria had conquered. This insult led Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah to pray for deliverance. The LORD then sent His angel who killed many of the Assyrian men of valor which caused the defeated army to return to their own land in disgrace. Judah had not fired a single shot!

Does God issue any commands?

  • God did not command Hezekiah to establish storehouses or to appoint men to distribute to the priests and Levites their provisions according to their ministrations but He had commanded Moses how to do it. Hezekiah was carrying out what had already been commanded in the Law of Moses.

Does God make any promises?

  • Because Hezekiah and the people freely gave for the provision of  the priests and Levites God blessed them greatly. He often made promises in His Word concerning this principle. God blesses givers.
  • Because the people prayed and trusted God when the Assyrians blasphemed Him God fought their battle for them.

Does this passage teach anything about Jesus?

  • Hezekiah was a ruler of God's people who actually led spiritually, too. He encouraged the people to worship God and told them that God would lead and protect them. Jesus delivered the same kind of message when He was in Jerusalem. He told His disciples not to fear but to see what God would do for them.

Does this passage teach anything about yet-future events?

  • Just as the people of God were victorious in battle by the hand of the LORD and not by their own might their enemies were defeated. This is similar to the battle in Revelation where Jesus leads His army but defeats the opposition with His double-edged sword. His army does not fire a single shot.

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Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.
Psalms 19:14 (KJV)