Scripture Reading: 2 Kings 19:14-28
After Hezekiah received the letter and read it, he went up to the Lord’s Temple and spread it out before the Lord. (2 Kings 19:14 NLT)
Can you hear and feel the threatening tone, the arrogance, the utter disdain directed toward Israel’s God in the letter from King Sennacherib of Assyria. It was enough to put a chill down your spine. It sounded like disaster was about to strike. What a dilemma!
What would King Hezekiah do? How would he react to this dilemma? Would he give in to temptation and take the deal? Let’s apply the situation to our own dilemmas! How do we deal with the dilemmas of life when they occur such as: a child who is hopelessly handicapped and can’t speak or take proper care of himself. It may be through no fault of his own, nevertheless, the burden of responsibility hangs over our heads like a cloud. We may ask, “Lord, will I ever be free of this burden? Will there ever be a time when he/she will be able to live outside the home? It is a supreme test of the depth of our love and commitment. At times, we may be tempted to throw up our hands in despair and cry out, “How long, O Lord, must I bear this burden?” I wonder, “Was that how Hezekiah felt?”
God saw the open letter full of accusations, false promises, and blasphemous words and sent a message through his prophet, Isaiah saying, “His armies (speaking of Sennacherib) will never enter Jerusalem to shoot their arrows. They will not march outside the gates with their shields and build banks of earth against its walls. For my own honor and for the sake of my servant David, I will defend it” (2 Kings 19:32,34 NLT).
The Scriptures tell us, “That night the angel of the Lord went out to the Assyrian camp and killed 185,000 Assyrian troops. When the surviving Assyrians woke up the next morning, they found corpses everywhere. Then King Sennacherib of Assyria broke camp and returned to his own land. He went home to his capital of Nineveh and stayed there.” (2 Kings 19:35-36 NLT ) Later he was killed by two of his own sons, who then escaped to Ararat.
What kind of dilemma are you facing today? Is it in a tangible form, such as a threatening letter? Is the situation taxing your faith? Are you in need of wisdom, courage, or direction? Write it on a piece of paper. Spread your open letter on the floor, and bow before the Lord in honest, pleading, persistent prayer.
Prayer: Dear Lord, you know the dilemma I face. You know that I don’t have a solution. You alone offer rescue from desperate situations. I come to you first, not as a last resort.