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July 15, 2019

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
Christian Standard Bible for 2019

Text: Proverbs 7-9
Audio: Proverbs 7-9

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

2 Kings 16 (ESV)

In the seventeenth year of Pekah the son of Remaliah, Ahaz the son of Jotham, king of Judah, began to reign. Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. And he did not do what was right in the eyes of the Lord his God, as his father David had done, but he walked in the way of the kings of Israel. He even burned his son as an offering, according to the despicable practices of the nations whom the Lord drove out before the people of Israel. And he sacrificed and made offerings on the high places and on the hills and under every green tree.

Then Rezin king of Syria and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came up to wage war on Jerusalem, and they besieged Ahaz but could not conquer him. At that time Rezin the king of Syria recovered Elath for Syria and drove the men of Judah from Elath, and the Edomites came to Elath, where they dwell to this day. So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your son. Come up and rescue me from the hand of the king of Syria and from the hand of the king of Israel, who are attacking me.” Ahaz also took the silver and gold that was found in the house of the Lord and in the treasures of the king’s house and sent a present to the king of Assyria. And the king of Assyria listened to him. The king of Assyria marched up against Damascus and took it, carrying its people captive to Kir, and he killed Rezin.

10 When King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, he saw the altar that was at Damascus. And King Ahaz sent to Uriah the priest a model of the altar, and its pattern, exact in all its details. 11 And Uriah the priest built the altar; in accordance with all that King Ahaz had sent from Damascus, so Uriah the priest made it, before King Ahaz arrived from Damascus. 12 And when the king came from Damascus, the king viewed the altar. Then the king drew near to the altar and went up on it13 and burned his burnt offering and his grain offering and poured his drink offering and threw the blood of his peace offerings on the altar. 14 And the bronze altar that was before the Lord he removed from the front of the house, from the place between his altar and the house of the Lord, and put it on the north side of his altar. 15 And King Ahaz commanded Uriah the priest, saying, “On the great altar burn the morning burnt offering and the evening grain offering and the king’s burnt offering and his grain offering, with the burnt offering of all the people of the land, and their grain offering and their drink offering. And throw on it all the blood of the burnt offering and all the blood of the sacrifice, but the bronze altar shall be for me to inquire by.” 16 Uriah the priest did all this, as King Ahaz commanded.

17 And King Ahaz cut off the frames of the stands and removed the basin from them, and he took down the sea from off the bronze oxen that were under it and put it on a stone pedestal. 18 And the covered way for the Sabbath that had been built inside the house and the outer entrance for the king he caused to go around the house of the Lord, because of the king of Assyria. 19 Now the rest of the acts of Ahaz that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? 20 And Ahaz slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David, and Hezekiah his son reigned in his place.

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Next: 2 Kings 17

Back: 2 Kings 15

This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. [King Ahaz] walked in the way of the kings of Israel. He even burned his son as an offering, according to the despicable practices of the nations whom the Lord drove out before the people of Israel (2 Kings 16:3)

    Despicable Practices of the (our) Nation

    When we read the context of Ahaz burning his son as an offering, this was done in the context of an offering (as part of the ritual worship of Molech). Molech was the god of the Moabites and children were sacrificed. 

    In writing about Ahaz walking in the way of the kings of Israel, John MacArthur writes, this "does not necessarily mean that Ahaz participated in the calf worship introduced by Jeroboam I at Bethel and Dan, but that he increasingly brought pagan, idolatrous practices into the worship of the Lord in Jerusalem. These are specified in vv. 10–16 and parallel those of Jeroboam I in the northern kingdom. This included idols to Baal (2 Chr. 28:2)."

    MacArthur, J., Jr. (Ed.). (1997). The MacArthur Study Bible (electronic ed., p. 543). Nashville, TN: Word Pub.

    In an article on the "Sanctuaries at Dan and Bethel", Jonathan Greer writes, "Jeroboam I, the first ruler of the newly seceded northern kingdom of Israel, established two sanctuaries to rival the temple of Solomon in Jerusalem: Dan, along his northern border, and Bethel, along his southern border not far from Jerusalem. He commissioned the construction of two golden calves and installed one at each shrine. He also ordained a new priesthood and established a pilgrimage festival on a date of his own choosing. These shrines are portrayed as active places of worship throughout the duration of the northern kingdom (2Kgs 10:29, Amos 4:4, Amos 8:14) and, in the case of Bethel, afterward as well (2Kgs 17:24-28).

    "In the biblical account, these shrines provoke vehement censure (1Kgs 13:1-14:18), and “the sin(s) of Jeroboam” become paradigmatic for northern apostasy culminating in the fall of the kingdom (1Kgs 14:16, 1Kgs 16:31, 2Kgs 3:3). The narrative in the book of Kings also bears striking similarities to the account of Aaron’s construction of a golden calf in Exodus 32, highlighting the negative portrayal of Jeroboam’s religion. Later reflections preserved  in 1Kgs 12:32-33 and in the book of Chronicles, amplify this condemnation."

    When we think of our nation and all the things that are legal and even championed but go against God, it's clear the "gathering darkness" is not limited to Judah or this ancient part of history. 

    We may not sacrifice our sons (or daughters) as part of the ritual worship of Molech today but how many young lives are brutally murdered because of a "woman's right to choose?" This popular slogan puts a positive spin on the horrific torture of babies who can't defend themselves against the evil practices of murderers who are more commonly known as a pregnant woman exercising their "right to choose" and her doctor who has the authority, skill and desire to carry out such a barbaric practice. 

    I'm sure no one considers Planned Parenthood a place of worship but human sacrifices are performed for women who are worshiping themselves and their right to kill their babies. While it's true some abortions are performed due to a medical emergency, many are done for birth control and convenience. 

    Here are two videos which I believe pull back the curtain on this evil practice and the expanding "darkness" allowed (perpetrated) by our government.

    Virginia Democrat House Delegate Kathy Tran on abortion:

    Here is the Democrat Governor of Virginia's response:

    After posting my comment today, pro-life advocates were targeted by counter protesters in Wisconsin. Here is the video:

    And less than an hour ago, an article posted on Fox News that the new abortion rule deals a “devastating blow” to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, who sued the Trump administration (and 20 states and the District of Columbia) attempting to stop Health and Human Services from diverting Title X family planning funding going to abortions. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, with two judges appointed by Trump, rejected the plea.

    While this is a regular topic in the news cycle, I still find the timing of this interesting.

  2. I never thought about abortion as human sacrifice, but that's exactly what it is. 

    These videos made me angry, worried and even more afraid of what is happening in the world today. I'm frightened by the people who aren't Christians coming into power. I have been a bit troubled about the future for awhile now. 

    I know that God doesn't want us to worry, but to lay our problems and concerns at His feet, and I try, I really do. 

    So many times it's much easier said than done. I worry for my Family, and especially for Michael. I have to do whatever is necessary to protect them. 

    Will I be strong enough? I know that in my weakness, I am strong. I know that Jesus is always with me, and He doesn't want me to give in to fear. That can be so difficult. 

    I fear the government; it makes me feel unsafe, and I thank God that I have Christ, because if I didn't, it would be like the old days – I'd be paralyzed by fear, depression, and anxiety. 

    A personal relationship with Jesus saved me from that and so many other things, and I practice trusting Him when the fear creeps in. 

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