2 Kings 16

2 Kings 16 has Ahaz taking over the throne of Judah.  “He did not do what was right in the eyes of the Lord” and continued to follow the ungodly practices of the nations that should have been destroyed generations earlier but since they hadn’t been completely removed, their ungodly ways were still alive and well in the Judah.  Ahaz goes a bit further in that “he even burned his son as an offering” and continued with making offerings on the high places and “under every green tree”.

Ahaz takes his poor leadership to an entirely different level.  Rezin, king of Syria, and Pekah, king of Israel, both come and wage war on Jerusalem.  Ahaz is able to hold them off but knows the siege will eventually work unless he is able to somehow defeat these two armies.  So he sends messengers to the king of Assyria asking for help.  “I am your servant and your son. Come up and rescue me”.  Sounds like Ahaz is willing to give up control but just not to the Syrians or Israelites.

So the Assyrians attack Damascus in Syria and take that city as well as killing Rezin their king.  Ahaz is pretty pleased and has a drawing of the altar of the Assyrians taken back to Uriah, priest in Judah, so he can fashion one just like it in God’s temple.  And that was to become the temple used for worship – a pagan design of an altar to do sacrifice for a Holy God.  Can you see how that really isn’t going to go well?  But Ahaz isn’t satisfied and tells Uriah that “the bronze altar that was before the Lord be removed from the front of the house”.

Uriah the priest did all this, as King Ahaz commanded”.  From outward appearances, it seems Ahaz is doing everything possible to make God angry and to move as far as he could from the practices of David and his forefathers.  Seems like a pretty bold way to live.  God doesn’t react or respond at this time.  Ahaz managed to stay on the throne for sixteen years before he died.  “Hezekiah his son reigned in his place” and we’ll see in a couple chapters that he changes the game for Judah through obedience.

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