Pastor Randy delivered the “Character Studies” message today on King Hezekiah; a good king, but one who struggled at the end.
Scripture: 2 Kings 18:1-12; 2 Kings:19:14-19; 2 Kings 19:32-37; 2 Kings 20:1-21; 1 Corinthians 10:11-13
- Read 2 Kings 18:1-12. Pastor Randy began by saying that God is less concerned about where we come from than where we are going. King Hezekiah’s father, King Ahaz, was one of the worst kings in the history of Judah yet King Hezekiah was a good king, Pastor Randy asked, “What is your Christian heritage?” How would you answer this question? It is said that “hurt people hurt people.” What do you think this means? Do you agree or disagree? How would you explain this to someone who has experienced serious hurt in their lives?
- Read 2 Kings 19:14-19 and 2 Kings 19:32-37. The king of Assyria at the time of Hezekiah was Sennacherib, perhaps the meanest of all the kings of Assyria. As he was planning to attack Judah, he sent a threatening letter to Hezekiah, mocking God. Instead of meeting with his military leaders he takes the letter before God and asks God to help Judah. What happened as a result of his prayer? Why do you think this is significant? What are some reasons we hesitate to take our problems to God first?
- Read 2 Chronicles 30:13-23. Pastor Randy said, “God doesn’t need significant people, He needs obedient people, people who are willing to work.” Following the great victory of God over the Assyrians, Hezekiah cleansed the temple of the idols, and restored it to a house of worship, Hezekiah then gathered the people to celebrate the seven day Passover feast (even though it was not the right time for this feast). The people were so filled with joy, they repeated it for another seven days, the first and only time this was ever done. How do you celebrate God’s answered prayer? Do you think it was appropriate for Hezekiah to celebrate this feast (twice!) at the wrong time? Why or why not? (hint: Romans 14:5 and Colossians 2:16).
- Read 2 Kings 20:1-21. Pastor Randy said that while King Hezekiah was, for the most part, a good king, he didn’t finish strong. In our “Character Studies,” we saw that, like Hezekiah, both Solomon and Joash failed to finish strong. What are some of the things that might prevent us from finishing strong, spiritually? How can we keep from going astray? (hint: Philippians 3:13-14)
- Read I Corinthians 10:11-13. Pastor Randy concluded by saying, “When we think we’ve got it all together, that’s when we are at risk.” Paul the apostle is reminding us that the stories in the Bible, such as the one about King Hezekiah are there as examples for each of us. What is the warning in verses 11-12? What is the promise in verse 13? Take a few minutes to thank God for His faithfulness.