June 24, 2022: Day 134 – II Chronicles 27-30 and Psalm 122-123

The flip-flopping from kings who love and serve God and those who do not follow his ways finds its extreme in these chapters.  Ahaz was one of those kings who not only did not serve the Lord but aligned himself so completely with other nations that they invaded Jerusalem and took people captive to the tune of hundreds of thousands.  Judah was becoming a wasteland.  Ahaz at one point says: “Because the gods of the kings of Aram helped them, I will sacrifice to them so that they may help me.”  We also read in 28:3 that Ahaz “made his sons pass through fire”, which is a euphemism for child sacrifice.  This was the most abonimable thing that one could think of if you were an Israelite.  As you should expect.  God was not happy.

Then along comes Hezekiah.  Not only did he do what was right in the eyes of the Lord, but he tried to rally all the other Israelites that were spread out across the land to do what was right in the eyes of the Lord.  A type of diaspora had already taken place, Jews were spread out as a result of being conquered under Ahaz all over the region and beyond.  So Hezekiah sends out notice that passover will be celebrated, even though it was the wrong month and the people were unclean, we will celebrate Passover regardless.  

It reminds me a bit of when we were locked down under covid and one of the first things we missed was Easter and I said when this is finally over we will come back and celebrate Easter together.  I don’t care what time of the year it is, we will declare it to be Easter.  Well, that never happened because instead of ending all at once, Covid just kind of kept on going and going and going.  But this is what Hezekiah did.  When he sent out notice most of the Jews spread out mocked him and made fun of him.  

But they did Passover and it was a glorious thing and the Lord was with them and that began another detente with the Lord and His people.  In the Psalms that we look at for today they are both Psalms of ascent which means that they are Psalms for those who were rising up, like pilgrims as they made their way up to Jerusalem, as if Hezekiah had called the people and they were rising up to make their way into Jerusalem which is at the top of the hill.  Very appropritae.

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