Thursday, August 21, 2014

Lessons from the battlefield, part 7: Young Hezekiah

2 Chronicles 29:1 - 28


Hezekiah became king when he was twenty-five years old.  His father Ahaz had been king for sixteen years.  His was an ungodly rule, during which he burned his sons (Hezekiah’s brothers) as sacrifices to idols.  Almost certainly, the ungodly rule of his father affected Hezekiah’s choices as leader, but perhaps Hezekiah also remembered his grandfather King Jotham, who was a godly king.  Although Jotham died when Hezekiah was only a boyhis grandfather Jotham had become mighty because he ordered his way before the Lord.  (1 Chr. 27:6)

Hezekiah must have remembered the more peaceful, prosperous time when his grandfather was king, and perhaps he longed to restore peace to his homeland.  During the first month of his reign, Hezekiah reopened the doors to the temple which his father had shut, began the repairs, and called the priests and Levites to consecrate themselves and cleanse the temple.  He set the tone and direction for his administration.  Hbegan his reign by making his first alliance, not with the Arameans or the Philistines, but with Jehovah.

At last, the temple was ready and the time of sacrifice could begin.  Hezekiah provided the animals for sin offering for all of Israel, perhaps as a way of acknowledging the responsibility of his family in leading the people astray.  When the offering was completed, he filled the temple with music.  Praise!Can you imagine how relieved the people must have been for evil to be replaced by righteousness, turmoil to give way to peace, chaos to flee before order?  

What characterizes your life?  As you begin each day, you have the opportunity for a fresh start.  Each day, you can choose how you will order the rest of your life. Choose well.