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‘This is that king Ahaz.’
2 Chronicles 28:22
I. This is good King Hezekiah’s father— a man who grieves the heart of God and who sets His commandments at defiance.—Strange that such a parent should have such a child! It is a lesson to me that nothing is too hard for my Lord. What a terrible chapter! The good of the previous reign was scattered to the winds. The worst atrocities of heathenism were imported into Israel. Babes flung into the brazen caldrons, amid the noise of the horrid drums that drowned their cries, while all kinds of abominations were perpetrated in the groves. People and king alike forsook the God of their fathers. A graphic picture of the sins and miseries of the time is given by Isaiah, whose righteous soul was sorely vexed by what was transpiring around him. Then, disaster and chastisement befell. First, at the hand of the king of Syria, then of the king of Israel, then of the Edomites. ‘The Lord brought Judah low because of Ahaz king of Israel; for he had dealt wantonly in Judah, and trespassed sore against the Lord.’ How infatuated and precipitate his course! Bribing the king of Assyria, but it helped him not. Sacrificing to the gods of his conquerors, though they were the ruin of him. Shutting up the house of God, and so cutting off the gracious help that would have accrued from his Almighty Helper. Drowning men catch at straws, but if they would only lie back and trust, they would float.
II. If God he against us, who can be for us?—When we are right with God, we are strong against a world in arms; when we are wrong with Him, vain is the help of man. What a sweet contrast is presented by Israel’s treatment of the captives!
‘Out of Dr. Brown’s “Life of Bunyan” I cull a little paragraph: “Looking at all his unpromising surroundings,” he says, “there comes into our minds a rustic story told about the father of this child by quaint old Thomas Archer, the rector of Houghton Conquest, parish next neighbour to Elstow itself. The delightful old man kept a sort of chronicon mirabile of the little rural world in which his tranquil days were spent, and in his record, as a curiosity of natural history, he sets down this: “Memorandum.—That in Anno 1625 one Bonion of Elsto, clyminage of Rookes neasts in the Bery wood ffound 3 Rookes in a nest, all white as milke and not a blacke fether on them.” And Dr. Brown adds that the surprise on Thomas Bunyan’s face, out in the Ellensbury Wood, was symbol and presage of a wider world’s wonder than his, the wonder with which men find in the rude nest of his own tinker’s cottage a child all lustrous with the gifts of genius and with the beauties of grace. So, with such a God as mine, I will not despair, either of myself or of anybody else.’
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Nisbet, James. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 28". The Church Pulpit Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week of Advent