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Living Life

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  • October 2017
2017. 10. 12 | Threats from the Enemy (Isaiah 36:1~12)         Speakers Jacob Jeon

1 In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah's reign, Sennacherib king of Assyria attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them.
2 Then the king of Assyria sent his field commander with a large army from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. When the commander stopped at the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Washerman's Field,
3 Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary, and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went out to him.
4 The field commander said to them, "Tell Hezekiah, "`This is what the great king, the king of Assyria, says: On what are you basing this confidence of yours?
5 You say you have strategy and military strength -- but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me?
6 Look now, you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces a man's hand and wounds him if he leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him.
7 And if you say to me, "We are depending on the LORD our God" -- isn't he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, "You must worship before this altar"?
8 "`Come now, make a bargain with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses -- if you can put riders on them!
9 How then can you repulse one officer of the least of my master's officials, even though you are depending on Egypt for chariots and horsemen?
10 Furthermore, have I come to attack and destroy this land without the LORD? The LORD himself told me to march against this country and destroy it.'"
11 Then Eliakim, Shebna and Joah said to the field commander, "Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don't speak to us in Hebrew in the hearing of the people on the wall."
12 But the commander replied, "Was it only to your master and you that my master sent me to say these things, and not to the men sitting on the wall -- who, like you, will have to eat their own filth and drink their own urine?"

 

Reflection

The King’s Confidence (36:1–7)

Hezekiah faces a threat of war orchestrated by Assyria, a military superpower of the time. In view of the great challenge before him, Hezekiah appears to be helpless. The other fortified cities of Judah have already been captured, and Jerusalem’s military power cannot match the might of Assyria. Moreover, Hezekiah had hoped that the Egyptians would come to his rescue, but it seems he may not be able to rely on them either. The Assyrian field commander mocks King Hezekiah and tries to undermine his confidence in the LORD. This is an age-old strategy of Satan—one that he still uses against believers today. In order to defend ourselves against the enemy’s lies, we must keep our eyes fixed on Jesus’ victory on the cross and on what God’s Word teaches us about His supreme power.

 

What is the basis of your confidence in your work life, ministry life, and personal life? How can you remain vigilant against Satan’s lies and stand firm in the victory Jesus has won for you?

 

Combating Doubt (36:8–12)

Sennacherib’s envoy does not stop at threatening the king’s representatives. He deliberately speaks in Hebrew so the people on the wall can understand him. His plan is to demoralize the entire community and influence them to turn against King Hezekiah. The people now face a choice to believe either the enemy’s words or the LORD’s. God had promised that the Assyrians would not destroy Judah (10:24–27), but the Assyrians now attempt to plant seeds of doubt in the people’s hearts. In desperate situations like this, it is easy to forget God’s promises. But if we look to our faithful God and not to our changing circumstances, He will keep our faith strong.

 

How can you be strong in the face of doubt? What words and Scriptures will you use to combat the enemy’s lies?

 

A letter to God 

Father, my hope and confidence are in You. You are the sure source of my victory. Because of You, I will face today’s challenges with courage. Thank you that You are always with me. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

 

 

* All Copyrights of the text in Living Life belong to Duranno Books.