MOCKED AND REVILED

Today's devotion from 2 Kings 19.

Sennacherib has not forgotten Hezekiah. Again he sends his emissary to mock and ridicule the faith of Judah's king. Again the obvious power of the enemy causes Hezekiah to question and doubt. Even though Isaiah attempts to reassure him, Judah's king is concerned. In fact, the king is concerned enough to do something that few have done. He goes beyond simply seeking an answer from a prophet. He goes to God in prayer personally.

In spite of the fact that this is such a dire situation, it is beautiful to see the king bowing to the Lord in the temple. It is powerful to realize that he is laying the message from Sennacherib before the Lord as an offering. Hezekiah's affirmation of God's universal sovereignty is particularly important in light of the taunting of Assyria. The messenger has constantly reminded Hezekiah of the fates of other nations and their gods, but Hezekiah trusts that God is much more than those others.

God is with Hezekiah, but it is when the king himself bows in prayer that God truly divulges His plans. God rewards the king's petition by filling him in on the events that are about to unfold. In doing so, God reassures the king, but He goes a step further. God mocks the mocker and reviles the reviler. "I will put my hook in your nose and my bit in your mouth." These words paint the picture of a beast being broken by a master. What is it the Master will do? He will, "turn you back on the way by which you came." In short, Sennacherib is nothing more than an annoyance to be turned back.

But that is not all. God offers signs to Hezekiah to reassure him. However, the signs are not the most powerful piece of the discussion. Instead, look at verse 34. We read, "For I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for the sake of my servant David." God will personally defend the city and save it, not because the people deserve it, but because He decrees it.

Our God opposes the powerful, and defends the humble. He defeats the arrogant mocker, but saves the meek and prayerful.