Thursday, January 6, 2011

WHAT IF HE HAD NOT HAVE PRAYED?

In my reading the Bible all the way through for the third time (I think), I am in Isaiah.  Specifically I just completed chapter 37 and that is where I will reference from in this writing.

The following is a combination of paraphrasing and quoting from Isaiah 37.  Hezekiah had received an intimidating letter from Sennacherib, king of Assyria and this was Hezekiah's response.

Hezekiah spread out the letter before God and prayed.......

Master of Everything, God of Israel, who has not been dethroned, you are sovereign.  You are Creator God.  Please see me and hear me as I read this insulting letter from Sennacherib to you. [Letter is read]

It is true God that his army has laid waste to the nations around us.  The Assyrians have even claimed victory over each nation's god, which is not that hard seeing that they are made out of wood and stone.  Prove that you are God, Maker of the Wood and Stone that the other gods were made from and Creator of all things and deliver us from his hands.

The LORD's reply was - "Because you have prayed to me concerning Sennacherib king of Assyria, this is the word the LORD has spoken against him:" (v. 21-22)

" 'He will not enter this city or shoot an arrow here.  He will not come before it with shield or build a siege ramp against it.  By the way that he came he will return; he will not enter this city,' declares the LORD.
'I will defend this city and save it, for my sake and for the sake of David my servant!' " (v.33-35)

So, evidently the LORD Himself deemed this worthy enough to get directly involved.  He told us He would in the verse above - "I will defend this city and save it, for my sake..." and then He manifests Himself as the Angel of the LORD in the next verse.

"Then the angel of the LORD went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp.  When the people got up the next morning - there were all the dead bodies!" (v.36)

For the "angel of the LORD" in many theological camps is considered the second person of the Trinity, Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God and many Scriptures do not make sense without this rendering/interpretation.

The LORD could have answered in countless ways, but His will was this way, a direct approach.  Who knows what would have happened if Hezekiah had not prayed at all.

Your issue and my issue no matter how great or small can always be laid out before God like this letter.  It can even be read out loud to God.  Then God's attributes can be told back to Him.  God's promises in Scripture can be quoted back to him and then our plea or request can be made.  All of this through prayer.  Look at the response that you might even get - a direct manifestation of God's presence, WHEW!  I hope you don't even consider NOT praying about things when issues arise in your life.  I'm learning to FIRST lean on Jesus too and submit everything to Him in prayer.