“And Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the LORD, and spread it before the LORD. Then Hezekiah prayed before the LORD, and said: ‘O LORD God of Israel, the One who dwells between the cherubim, You are God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Incline Your ear, O LORD, and hear; open Your eyes, O LORD, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to reproach the living God…Now therefore, O LORD our God, I pray, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the LORD God, You alone.’ ” ~ 2 Kings 19:14-16, 19
I was humbled and somewhat ashamed when I read this passage. When King Hezekiah received these tidings of bad news, he did not “shoot the messengers”. He did not immediately call his friends to rant and worry, obsess and rail, about what Sennacherib had threatened to do to him and to the people he shepherded. He did not shake his fist at God, or cry out “Why?” I wish I could say I never did that when faced with a crisis…
Hezekiah instead went directly to the LORD. He knew what to do, where to go, and from Whom his help would come. Oh my soul, you need to remember these truths as well!
” ‘Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left.’ ” ~ Isaiah 30:21
“A Song of Ascents. I lift up my eyes to the hills— from whence comes my help? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul. The LORD shall preserve your going out and your coming in from this time forth, and even forevermore.” ~ Psalm 121
Isn’t the prayer Hezekiah prayed before his LORD God beautiful? It is a wonderful model for us today.
– He acknowledged God’s greatness, His power, His sovereignty; HE IS the creator of all things and the One True God.
– He requested that God hear the words of his prayer, see the troubles Israel faced, again hear the abominable things being threatened, and save them.
– He asked for the right reason, “that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the LORD God, You alone”.
Jesus told His disciples, ” ‘And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.’ ” ~ John 14:13
When we are in trouble, don’t you think God wants to hear from us? He longs to be the first place we turn, the first ear to hear our cries, our first choice for refuge in a storm. And when we ask for help, with the right heart, “in His name” – with the heart of Jesus – He will answer. He will keep and preserve us.
P.S. God sent help for Hezekiah and the nation of Israel. He actually sent an angel army! Our God is amazing, don’t you agree?