Messages

Sun, Jul 23, 2017

He Sees Your Tears

Text Print read
2 Kings 20:1-19  “He Sees Your Tears!”

Chronology explanation here:

·      Hezekiah reigned 29 years, so the following events must have taken place near the middle of his reign.

o  Just before the onslaught of the Assyrian Army  [1]

2 Kings 18:2    He was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Abi the daughter of Zechariah.

 

2 Kings 18:13   And in the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah, Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the fortified cities of Judah and took them.

 

·      May have been God’s reaction to Hezekiah’s pride concerning his wealth and riches.

2 Chronicles 32:25–26

25 But Hezekiah did not repay according to the favor shown him, for his heart was lifted up; therefore wrath was looming over him and over Judah and Jerusalem.

26 Then Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the Lord did not come upon them in the days of Hezekiah.

 

1 In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death.

And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Set your house in order, for you shall die, and not live.’ ”

·      Hezekiah is laying in his death bed – Isaiah has been called to perform “last rites”?

o  Isaiah didn’t have much of a Hospital bed manner

o  Right to the point

§  He doesn’t offer to pray, no Scripture reading, no comfort or sympathy.

·      Prophets weren’t usually kind people.

§  No anointing the sick with oil and the prayer of faith.

 

We have a “God-calculated” life span.

·      It’s not up to us when we are conceived or when we die physically.

·      God knows we must not live forever in bodies of sin and corruption.

Psalm 39:4–5

4 Lord, make me to know my end,

And what is the measure of my days,

That I may know how frail I am.

5 Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths,

And my age is as nothing before You;

Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor.

Selah

 

2 Then he turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, saying,

·     Prayer can change the result of a prophecy!

o  Prayer moves the throne of God!

o  Prayer adds to life!

§  Quality – absolutely

§  Quantity – on occasion, if God wills.

3 Remember now, O Lord, I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what was good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

 

Hezekiah’s request for healing with the Lord stated these things:

1.   I walked in truth – always been truthful about my sins and who I am.

a.  Don’t lie about others – bearing false witness.

b.  Don’t make a habit of lying to others.

c.  Don’t embellish stories or testimonies.

2.   I walked in loyalty – faithful to the end – “a loyal heart”

a.  I never gave up on You

b.  I have praised You in the good times and bad times, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, praising You until I die.

3.   I did what was good in Your sight

a.  My testimony is one of faithfulness and good works.

b.  I have not been ashamed of the Gospel of Peace.

c.  I have believed what You have told me and waited on Your promises (even reminding You on occasion).

 

Chowchilla Women’s Prison – Friday night, April 3rd, 1992

·      I was late arriving at the Prison to teach the Bible College class.

o  A troublesome pool cleaning broke my heart that day.

o  1 hour traveling north on Hwy 99 from Hanford, CA.

·      A woman named Blanca stopped me in the main yard.

o  “I have a word from the Lord for you!”, she said as she stood in front of me, not allowing me to go any further.

Hebrews 6:10   For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

·      Called to CCSM on Sunday afternoon, April 5, 1992

 

4 And it happened, before Isaiah had gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying,

·      Possibly 5-10 minutes later!

o  Isaiah had only made it out as far as the middle court of the Palace.

5 “Return and tell Hezekiah the leader of My people,

‘Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father:

I have heard your prayer,

I have seen your tears;

surely I will heal you.

On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord.

6 And I will add to your days fifteen years. I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for My own sake, and for the sake of My servant David.” ’ ”

7 Then Isaiah said, “Take a lump of figs.”  [2]

So they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered.

·      Ulcerous boils

Job 2:7   So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head.

 

o  Perhaps on one of his legs, preventing him from walking.

o  Infected wound, infected mosquito bite, infected spider bite?

o   The word shechin, from the Arabic sachana, to be hot, signifies an inflammatory tumour, or burning boil; and some think that Hezekiah’s malady was a pleurisy; others, that it was the plague; and others, the elephantiasis, a species of leprosy, as one of the Hexapla versions renders in Job 2:7. A poultice of figs might be very proper to maturate a boil, or dismiss any obstinate inflammatory swelling; but we need not discuss its propriety in this case, because it was as much the means which God chose to bless for his recovery, as the clay which Christ moistened to anoint the eyes of the blind man; for in both cases, without Divine interposition the cure could not have been effected.   [3]

·      Very common in those days.

 

Hezekiah’s Song after Isaiah told him that he would recover

Isaiah 38:9–39:1

9 This is the writing of Hezekiah king of Judah, when he had been sick and had recovered from his sickness:

10 I said, “In the prime of my life I shall go to the gates of Sheol;

I am deprived of the remainder of my years.”

11 I said, “I shall not see Yah, The Lord in the land of the living;

I shall observe man no more among the inhabitants of the world.

12 My life span is gone, Taken from me like a shepherd’s tent;

I have cut off my life like a weaver. He cuts me off from the loom;

From day until night You make an end of me.

13 I have considered until morning —

Like a lion, So He breaks all my bones;

From day until night You make an end of me.

14 Like a crane or a swallow, so I chattered;

I mourned like a dove;

My eyes fail from looking upward. O Lord, I am oppressed;

Undertake for me!

15 “What shall I say? He has both spoken to me,

And He Himself has done it.

I shall walk carefully all my years

In the bitterness of my soul.

16 O Lord, by these things men live;

And in all these things is the life of my spirit;

So You will restore me and make me live.

17 Indeed it was for my own peace

That I had great bitterness;

But You have lovingly delivered my soul from the pit of corruption,

For You have cast all my sins behind Your back.

18 For Sheol cannot thank You,

Death cannot praise You;

Those who go down to the pit cannot hope for Your truth.

19 The living, the living man, he shall praise You,

As I do this day;

The father shall make known Your truth to the children.

20 “The Lord was ready to save me;

Therefore we will sing my songs with stringed instruments

All the days of our life, in the house of the Lord.”

21 Now Isaiah had said, “Let them take a lump of figs, and apply it as a poultice on the boil, and he shall recover.”

 

8 And Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “What is the sign that the Lord will heal me, and that I shall go up to the house of the Lord the third day?”

·      Apparently the boil made Hezekiah unclean to enter the House of the Lord.

o  Hezekiah longed to return to God’s house.

 

9 Then Isaiah said, “This is the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do the thing which He has spoken: shall the shadow go forward ten degrees or go backward ten degrees?”

10 And Hezekiah answered, “It is an easy thing for the shadow to go down ten degrees; no, but let the shadow go backward ten degrees.”

11 So Isaiah the prophet cried out to the Lord, and He brought the shadow ten degrees backward, by which it had gone down on the sundial of Ahaz.

Many ideas about how this could happen.

·      In the end we have no idea!

·      God is not confined within the laws of science.

 

·      The Lord healed Hezekiah through accepted medical practice in those days.

o  God heals through accepted medical practices.

§  Take your prescriptions as they are prescribed!

§  You are not a Doctor – don’t self medicate.

§  Needing surgery is not a failure of faith!

 

12 At that time Berodach-Baladan the son of Baladan, king of Babylon, sent letters and a present to Hezekiah, for he heard that Hezekiah had been sick.

·      On the premise that Hezekiah’s sickness was a concern for Babylon they came to spy out the riches of Israel.

2 Chron 32:31 (NIV)  But when envoys were sent by the rulers of Babylon to ask him about the miraculous sign that had occurred in the land, God left him to test him and to know everything that was in his heart.   [4]

 

13 And Hezekiah was attentive (showing off) to them, and showed them all the house of his treasures—the silver and gold, the spices and precious ointment, and all his armory—all that was found among his treasures. There was nothing in his house or in all his dominion that Hezekiah did not show them.

14 Then Isaiah the prophet went to King Hezekiah, and said to him, “What did these men say, and from where did they come to you?” So Hezekiah said, “They came from a far country, from Babylon.”

15 And he said, “What have they seen in your house?” So Hezekiah answered, “They have seen all that is in my house; there is nothing among my treasures that I have not shown them.”

·      Hezekiah made no attempt to hide what he had done from Isaiah who had been sent by God to inquire about the visitors. The king of Judah likely did not think that his desire to form an alliance with Babylon was either an expression of lack of confidence in God or a foolish move politically.  [5]

 

·      Some believe this statement regarding Hezekiah’s pride and humility fit best here.

2 Chronicles 32:25–26

25 But Hezekiah did not repay according to the favor shown him, for his heart was lifted up; therefore wrath was looming over him and over Judah and Jerusalem.

26 Then Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the Lord did not come upon them in the days of Hezekiah.

 

16 Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the Lord:

17 ‘Behold, the days are coming when all that is in your house, and what your fathers have accumulated until this day, shall be carried to Babylon; nothing shall be left,’ says the Lord.

18 ‘And they shall take away some of your sons who will descend from you, whom you will beget; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.’ ”

19 So Hezekiah said to Isaiah,

“The word of the Lord which you have spoken is good!”

For he said, “Will there not be peace and truth at least in my days?”

·      Why would this word be good – it predicts the fall of Jerusalem

o  125 years until time of Daniel – Hezekiah’s great grandsons would be hauled to Babylon and castrated to work in the Palace of Nebuchadnezzar.

o  Couldn’t this prophecy be changed through prayer?

§  Can’t always undo what you have already done!

 

·      It is good – because Hezekiah is told that he will have several sons!

o  No previous children recorded up to this point

o  Manasseh was 12 years old when Hezekiah died.  (21:1)

§  Born 3 years into Hezekiah’s 15 years of extended life.



[1]  For data relative to the earlier date for Hezekiah’s illness and Merodach-Baladan’s embassy, see J.B. Payne, “Chronology,” ZPEB, 1 843–44; Young, Isaiah, pp. 212–13.

For a discussion favoring the 703 b.c. date, see Bright, History, p. 267; and Saggs, Greatness, pp. 118f.

Still a third position is favored by Thiele (Mysterious Numbers, p. 159; cf., p. 465), who holds that Hezekiah’s sickness and Merodach-Baladan’s embassy came after the Battle of El Tekeh and subsequent to the withdrawal of Sennacherib in 701 b.c. According to this theory Merodach-Baladan, who was reduced to fighting guerrilla warfare in his exiled status, hoped to find in Hezekiah a new ally for a renewed bid for a wide-ranging anti-Assyrian coalition (cf. Jos. Antiq. X, 10 [ii.1]). In addition to the grave chronological problems his theory encounters, it must also face the problem of how Hezekiah could have shown Merodach-Baladan’s embassy much in the way of treasury (cf. vv.13, 15) when he had previously stripped away everything to give tribute to Sennacherib (18:14–16). Moreover since Sennacherib hunted Merodach-Baladan unmercifully after 703 b.c., it is doubtful that he was in much of a position to send an embassy to Hezekiah. 
R. D. Patterson and Hermann J. Austel,
“1, 2 Kings,” in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Job, ed. Frank E. Gaebelein, vol. 4 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1988), 273.

 

[2]  The use of figs to draw an ulcerated sore is ancient, attested as early as the Ras Shamra Tablets. Pliny (Natural History 22.7) mentions such a remedy. See Keil, pp. 462–63. 
R. D. Patterson and Hermann J. Austel,
“1, 2 Kings,” in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Job, ed. Frank E. Gaebelein, vol. 4 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1988), 274.

[3] B. Blayney, Thomas Scott, and R.A. Torrey with John Canne, Browne, The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, vol. 1 (London: Samuel Bagster and Sons, n.d.), 270.

[4] The Holy Bible: New International Version (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1984), 2 Ch 32:31.

[5] Thomas L. Constable, “2 Kings,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 1 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985), 579.