Daily Encouragement

July 1 – Sennacherib vs. Hezekiah

2 Kings 18:13-19:37
Acts 21:1-17
Psalm 149:1-9
Proverbs 18:8

2 Kings 18:13 — This is one of the most documented miracles in the Bible. Come with me as we explore this passage, or if you want to wait for 2 Chronicles 32 or Isaiah 33, we can do that as well. To introduce you to Sennacherib, I will leave Milwaukee and head down I-94 to Chicago, past the Sears (now Willis) Tower, and into the University of Chicago campus. John D. Rockefeller spent millions building this educational institution, and one of his projects was the Oriental Institute. Speaking of Rockefeller, there is the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem, and it has many artifacts too – but it’s cheaper (and faster) for me to go to the Oriental Institute. As you enter the museum, and turn left, you’ll see at the end of the hall a giant “lamassu” or winged bull staring at you from the far end. If you approach the lamassu and turn your head slightly to the right, you will see one of the attendants of the palace of Sargon in Khorsabad and his son Sennacherib (he’s the one with the fancy beard).

2 Kings 18:14 — As we continue our journey through the Oriental Institute, we will follow the door near Sennacherib, and walk through the passageway until we see a “prism” that contains some wedged shaped cuneiform writing on it. I’ve taken the trouble to provide you with a translation of what was written (my Assyrian is a bit rusty). On the second column I point out that he talks about Hezekiah the Judahite near the bottom.

Now Hezekiah was asked for 300 talents of silver and 30 talents of gold, but it appears Hezekiah gave him far more than was asked for (2 Kings 18:15). The prism talks about the tribute on the 3rd panel.

2 Kings 18:15 — Where did Hezekiah get the silver from? The house of the LORD! What if instead of stripping the house of the LORD, he would have prayed?

2 Kings 18:17 — Sennacherib defeated the forces at Lachish. If we go to the British Museum, we can see what Sennacherib did: he built a siege ramp to capture the city and then declared victory. He commemorated his victory with a massive monument.

2 Kings 18:22 — Rabshekah misunderstands what Hezekiah did. He didn’t get rid of altars to the LORD; he removed the forbidden altars.

2 Kings 18:35 — Rabshekah challenges the LORD.

2 Kings 19:35 — Yes, the LORD judges as well as exercises mercy.

Acts 21:13 — Paul was willing to suffer and die for the name of Jesus. Are we willing to live for the name of Jesus?

Psalm 149:4 — The blessings of the immanence of the LORD.

Proverbs 18:8 — May we not wound others with our talebearing.

Share how reading through the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.

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