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July 17, 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 13-15
Audio: Proverbs 13-15

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

2 Kings 18 (ESV)

In the third year of Hoshea son of Elah, king of Israel, Hezekiah the son of Ahaz, king of Judah, began to reign. He was twenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Abi the daughter of Zechariah. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done. He removed the high places and broke the pillars and cut down the Asherah. And he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had made offerings to it (it was called Nehushtan). He trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel, so that there was none like him among all the kings of Judah after him, nor among those who were before him. For he held fast to the Lord. He did not depart from following him, but kept the commandments that the Lord commanded Moses. And the Lord was with him; wherever he went out, he prospered. He rebelled against the king of Assyria and would not serve him. He struck down the Philistines as far as Gaza and its territory, from watchtower to fortified city.

In the fourth year of King Hezekiah, which was the seventh year of Hoshea son of Elah, king of Israel, Shalmaneser king of Assyria came up against Samaria and besieged it, 10 and at the end of three years he took it. In the sixth year of Hezekiah, which was the ninth year of Hoshea king of Israel, Samaria was taken.11 The king of Assyria carried the Israelites away to Assyria and put them in Halah, and on the Habor, the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes, 12 because they did not obey the voice of the Lord their God but transgressed his covenant, even all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded. They neither listened nor obeyed.

13 In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah, Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and took them. 14 And Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria at Lachish, saying, “I have done wrong; withdraw from me. Whatever you impose on me I will bear.” And the king of Assyria required of Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold.15 And Hezekiah gave him all the silver that was found in the house of the Lord and in the treasuries of the king’s house. 16 At that time Hezekiah stripped the gold from the doors of the temple of the Lord and from the doorposts that Hezekiah king of Judah had overlaid and gave it to the king of Assyria. 17 And the king of Assyria sent the Tartan, the Rab-saris, and the Rabshakeh with a great army from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. And they went up and came to Jerusalem. When they arrived, they came and stood by the conduit of the upper pool, which is on the highway to the Washer’s Field. 18 And when they called for the king, there came out to them Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebnah the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder.

19 And the Rabshakeh said to them, “Say to Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the great king, the king of Assyria: On what do you rest this trust of yours? 20 Do you think that mere words are strategy and power for war? In whom do you now trust, that you have rebelled against me? 21 Behold, you are trusting now in Egypt, that broken reed of a staff, which will pierce the hand of any man who leans on it. Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who trust in him. 22 But if you say to me, “We trust in the Lord our God,” is it not he whose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and to Jerusalem, “You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem”? 23 Come now, make a wager with my master the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses, if you are able on your part to set riders on them.24 How then can you repulse a single captain among the least of my master’s servants, when you trust in Egypt for chariots and for horsemen? 25 Moreover, is it without the Lord that I have come up against this place to destroy it? The Lord said to me, “Go up against this land and destroy it.”’”

26 Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and Shebnah, and Joah, said to the Rabshakeh, “Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, for we understand it. Do not speak to us in the language of Judah within the hearing of the people who are on the wall.”27 But the Rabshakeh said to them, “Has my master sent me to speak these words to your master and to you, and not to the men sitting on the wall, who are doomed with you to eat their own dung and to drink their own urine?”

28 Then the Rabshakeh stood and called out in a loud voice in the language of Judah: “Hear the word of the great king, the king of Assyria! 29 Thus says the king: ‘Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you out of myhand. 30 Do not let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord by saying, The Lord will surely deliver us, and this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.’ 31 Do not listen to Hezekiah, for thus says the king of Assyria: ‘Make your peace with me and come out to me. Then each one of you will eat of his own vine, and each one of his own fig tree, and each one of you will drink the water of his own cistern, 32 until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of grain and wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees and honey, that you may live, and not die. And do not listen to Hezekiah when he misleads you by saying, “The Lord will deliver us.” 33 Has any of the gods of the nations ever delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? 34 Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim, Hena, and Ivvah? Have they delivered Samaria out of my hand? 35 Who among all the gods of the lands have delivered their lands out of my hand, that the Lord should deliver Jerusalem out of my hand?’”

36 But the people were silent and answered him not a word, for the king’s command was, “Do not answer him.” 37 Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebna the secretary, and Joah the son of Asaph, the recorder, came to Hezekiah with their clothes torn and told him the words of the Rabshakeh.

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Next: 2 Kings 19

Back: 2 Kings 17

This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done (2 Kings 18:3).

    Hezekiah Did What Was Right

    I don't know about you but I don't like to go to the doctors. I don't like to get blood work the day before, or the scale, or little johnny you have to put on. When I went last week, after the doctor came in the room, I realized I had it on backwards. 

    But getting past the embarrassment (and humiliation), I'm always glad I went. When I'm focused (as I am now) and "on track" with eating healthy and taking care of myself (again), I don't mind going. I'm not saying I enjoy going to the doctor but it's not as bad as it is when I've drifted off-course and have to face the music. 

    I other words, when I do what is right, I don't mind it so much. 

    In today's chapter, we learn of Hezekiah who not only "did what was right in the eyes of the Lord," but he went further than others before him (except David who is mentioned in verse 3). 

    1. He removed the high places
    2. He broke the pillars
    3. He cut down the Ashera
    4. He broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made
    5. He trusted in the Lord
    6. He held fast to the Lord
    7. He did not depart from following him
    8. He kept the commandments that the Lord commanded Moses

    The result? 

    2 Kings 18:7 "And the Lord was with him; wherever he went out, he prospered."

    Charles Spurgeon writes, "We are not to worship any other god, and we are not to worship the true God by the use of representative symbols. He is a Spirit and is to be worshiped in spirit and in truth, and not by the use of visible imagery. The human mind since the fall finds it hard to keep to this. There is much idol breaking to be done in the church of God. For example, we are all too apt as Christians to place some degree of reliance on those God in his infinite mercy raises up to be leaders in the Christian church. We ought to be thankful for the Paul who plants so well and the Apollos who waters so ably, but the danger is that we look to the person not only with the respect that is due to him as God’s ambassador but with some degree of superstitious reliance on his authority and ability. Do not be content to say, 'That is true, for such-and-such a man of God has said it.' An old Puritan quaintly says, 'Suppose a loving husband were to give to his wife many rings and jewels out of love to her, and she should come to think so highly of the love tokens that she sat and looked at them, and admired them, and forgot her husband?' So with our graces and our enjoyments; if we think too much of them, the iconoclastic hammer will come in, and these things will vanish because they have provoked the Lord to jealousy.""

    Spurgeon. (2017). The Spurgeon Study Bible: Notes (pp. 494–495). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

    Let's be like Hezekiah and do what is right in the eyes of the Lord!

  2. I know I will always fall short of obeying God perfectly, but I still strive for it. 

    I always find myself feeling so badly for those who don't know Jesus, and for those who never will. I can't stand to think of anyone suffering for eternity. 

    It's very difficult to realize that some people I love very much may never "get it." I will keep praying! 

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