Psalm 34: 9-14
9 Fear the LORD, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing.
10 The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
11 Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
12 Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days,
13 keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies.
14 Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
The stories of the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah are our stories. And in the middle of the Kingdoms and towards the end, life has a lot of work and many opinions and options. Yet the direction saving the Kings, the Kingdoms, the people swept in events is to worship Him corporately and in His Word. Seeing good, turning away from voluntarily handing Him our messes to clean up and to truly trust Him.
Hezekiah was King. No one doubted that. And Hezekiah found from time to time that his good life was lacking. Hezekiah was as prosperous as Solomon. With fewer blemishes. I sometimes wonder why we fuss so over Moses and Solomon. Joshua swept up a mess, surely we understand working with the events life gives us with Trust and Effort.
Hezekiah had all kinds of bad advice from his environmental upbringing. His generational sin was.... heavy. And Hezekiah said to his late father's memory, sure you wanted me to strip the Temple of Gold and hand that to the Assyrians, but really when I got to the point of that abomination - that felt wrong for me. And we realize Hezekiah had help from golden Isaiah. Well... um notice with me Isaiah had three other Kings that Isaiah was learning the ropes with. Wow. Like we learn as we get older how things work. And older people have some wisdom.
Well. Sometimes. Because we see a lot of the Kings ran after perceived power and other pursuits of 'wisdom'.
Hezekiah had time to make mistakes and recover.
Now also notice being King has perks. And some really awful exposure. And this. None of us is immune to judgement, we all feel like we lack in some circumstances. We grow weak with the same circles we think and trod. We grow Spiritually hungry and don't perceive that need clearly. We feel the love of LIFE has left. Give us the Day! Has Fled without Hope for many good days.
God asks us what decision will we make when we are tried again. Because the truth is Isaiah was working with his fourth King when Hezekiah came along. Isaiah isn't recorded as being "generational -sins- flop- for- Hezekiah's- daddy." (Yet we could make a case for that, but we like Isaiah and give him the nod instead of the magnifying glass.)
God asks us what we will do with our beliefs, our efforts. What King do you pick for your life? Yes, of course the answer is Jesus. In reality, we cannot ever do what Jesus did, because we are not HIM. He was without sin, to forgive our sins.
... are you the right side or the left side? Because unlike Joshua, sometimes we don't get to pick the middle! Of course we are supposed to be balanced, but not all bicycles have the same training wheels in true circumstances. A lot depends on where your alligators are placed. And which metaphor do you like?
In the end, we get to be just like Hezekiah who felt like his nice life was about to be invaded, stamped out, rubbed raw, and you just didn't get the fair shake afforded to that dratted Solomon.
Why did Hezekiah prevail? He did something every day... He went out and thundered to the guy next to him about the LORD. Muscular Christianity to the extreme. Nope. The Scriptures record he wept, cried, complained, plotted, thought it out again, fretted, fussed, WHILE HEZEKIAH WAS PRAYING. And he put papers before the Lord and said... what am I to do. Sometimes, even rarely, Hezekiah decided to hush and wait upon the LORD. Because even kings get picked on by other kings. Perils of life.
In the end the Kings that prevailed did this...
Fear the LORD, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing.
We get so backward over this. Kings of Israel wanted to stuff HIM behind a curtain. Even David did this. People who understand God believe what we say when we say The Kingdom, The Power and The Glory are Yours.
And Hezekiah went forth Thundering Witnesses to this... No. Instead Hezekiah did this...
Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies.
Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
Hezekiah spoke to the Lord, and of the Lord, rather quietly, but used his words, and his actions to reveal his belief that God would work with Hezekiah. And the Word of God says, He does this routinely when we place our trust in HIM.
God help me to be one too. In Jesus we pray, Amen.