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June 4 – A sobering message

“In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death, and he prayed to the LORD; and He spoke to him and gave him a sign. But Hezekiah did not repay according to the favor shown him, for his heart was lifted up; therefore wrath was looming over him and over Judah and Jerusalem. Then Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the LORD did not come upon them in the days of Hezekiah.” – 2 Chronicles 32:24-26 

Scripture reading: Isaiah 39:1-8

In Chapter 38 Hezekiah is severely sick. God sends Isaiah to tell him to prepare to die. But Hezekiah prays fervently that God will spare him from dying so soon. Isaiah comes back to Hezekiah with an amazingly gracious message from God. “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will add to your days fifteen years. I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria, and I will defend this city” (Isa. 38:5-6).

The king of Babylon hears what happened to Hezekiah and sends a congratulatory note regarding his miraculous recovery. Hezekiah, in turn, thinks highly of himself. As a result, he is overwhelmed by a desire to impress the messengers and he ends up showing everything he has to them. He leaves nothing out.

It’s easy, like Hezekiah, to become inflated with ideas of personal accomplishment when we are especially blessed by God. The apostle Paul had the same problem so God had to give him a thorn in the flesh. God responds by sending Hezekiah a sobering warning that Babylon would soon ruin Israel and bring them into captivity. Hezekiah, in turn, meekly acknowledges God’s undeserved mercy in sparing him further personal suffering.

God gives us a good reminder here to not so easily trust those who don’t put their trust in Him. Be thankful that He is a God Who, in grace, works to pierce our inflated views of ourselves so that we can serve Him with humility.

Suggestions for prayer

God tells us that the prayers of a righteous man avail much. Thank Him for being a God who hears and answers prayers. Pray also for grace to keep you from being inflated with pride on account of God’s blessings and to humble yourself if you are.

Pastor Maurice Luimes serves as the pastor of the Immanuel Reformed Church (recently relocated to Bolton, ON). Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at NTGDevotional.com.


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