Lesson Ten | Devotion #2: Hezekiah
Joshua Combs | Lead Pastor
2 Kings 18:5 says, “…there was none like him among all the kings of Judah after him, nor among those who were before him.”
Here the Scripture declares Hezekiah as the greatest king in the history of Judah. The question is why? What distinguished him from among the twenty total kings the nation would have? The answer is found in the same passage. Hezekiah was certainly not flawless, but to understand why the Lord would crown him, not just king, but the best of all kings is a powerful lesson to each of us. Here are a few reasons the Bible gives for King Hezekiah’s success.
1. He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord – 2 Kings 18:3
2. He removed the high places and all other idols – 2 Kings 18:4
3. He trusted the Lord – 2 Kings 18:5
4. He held fast to the Lord and kept the commandments – 2 Kings 18:6
5. The Lord was with him – 2 Kings 18:7
That is a stunning spiritual resume. As noted earlier, Hezekiah was not perfect; however, the Lord prospered this great king.
We live in a time far removed from the culture, geography, and history of Hezekiah, yet our differences of principle are not too far off. Like Hezekiah, we too must choose whose standard of right we will follow. One of the great indictments of the Scripture is the idea of people doing “…what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 17:6). A purely subjective and relativistic view of right and wrong has always doomed society. God’s objective truth must always be the standard by which we determine right and wrong.
Similarly, Hezekiah had to deal with pagan idol worship along with religious idol worship (See 2 Kings 18:4). The people had begun to worship both pagan gods and goddesses, but also they had begun to worship the bronze serpent that Moses had lifted up in the wilderness. Something God had used had been perverted and transformed into an idol. When we honestly look at culture and the church, the number of idols is stunning. They certainly go by different names and look differently than Hezekiah’s time, but are nonetheless idols that we have given our worship (See Romans 1:25). We must strike them down and remove them from our lives. God refuses to occupy the same space or compete with an idol.
The Scripture tells us that Hezekiah “prospered.” Many people, both Christian and non-Christian, desire to prosper. Sadly, however, we want God’s blessings and presence without trusting Him or obeying Him. Other kings before and after Hezekiah felt entitled to God’s provision, blessings, and protection, yet God refused to bless them because they were prideful, rebellious, and wicked. More and more we encounter this today in the church. We find “God’s people” living sinful and rebellious lives, demanding with an entitled mentality God’s help. We have turned God into a waiter who must meet our every need when we call for His attention. This is simply wrong and not the way “it” works. We must, as Hezekiah did, “hold fast to the Lord.”