2 Kings 16:1-9

Ahaz Reigns over Judah

16 In the seventeenth year of Pekah the son of Remaliah, Ahaz the son of Jotham, king of Judah, became king. Ahaz was twenty years old when he became king, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem; and he did not do what was right in the sight of the Lord his God, as his father David had doneBut he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, and even made his son pass through the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom the Lord had [a]driven out from before the sons of Israel. He sacrificed and burned incense on the high places and on the hills and under every green tree.

Then Rezin king of Aram and Pekah son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came up to Jerusalem to wage war; and they besieged Ahaz, but could not [b]overcome him. At that time Rezin king of Aram recovered Elath for Aram, and cleared the Judeans out of [c]Elath entirely; and the [d]Arameans came to Elath and have lived there to this day.

Ahaz Seeks Help of Aram

So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your son; come up and deliver me from the [e]hand of the king of Aram and from the [f]hand of the king of Israel, who are rising up against me.” Ahaz took the silver and gold that was found in the house of the Lord and in the treasuries of the king’s house, and sent a present to the king of Assyria. So the king of Assyria listened to him; and the king of Assyria went up against Damascus and captured it, and carried the people of it away into exile to Kir, and put Rezin to death.

After several mediocre kings, Ahaz becomes king of Judah and turns completely away from God to idol worship. Then ironically, he is attacked by two idolatrous nations, Israel and Aram, and turns to a third, Assyria, for help. Rather than return to God, who had helped Israel so many times in the past, Ahaz tries to find his own way. He trusted in the strength of men, and he could see no other way of escape.

We are not so different, as we often look to our own devices, and other people for help long before we lean on God our Father. Instead, we need to remember that He knows us best, and has a plan for our lives, a very good plan, and nothing we could do would improve upon it. We will not know fulfillment until we learn to know God and His ways. Only then can we find our “way of escape” when times of trial come. And we’ll find more than that, as we are faithful to the One who formed us in our mother’s womb.

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