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    Faith | 3 min read

    Kings of Judah, Part 1

    "The vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah son of Amoz saw during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah." -Isaiah 1:1
    Isaiah begins his book by naming the four kings that reigned over Judah during his lifetime—Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. Each of their lives provides insight into the ways of God and man. Over the next few weeks, we’ll look at their walks with God and reflect on their victories and defeats.
    When he started out, Uzziah walked in the fear of the Lord. He wanted to honor God, and God blessed him because of his faithfulness.
    "He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father Amaziah had done. He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success." -2 Chronicles 26:4-5
    Uzziah served God faithfully for a number of years, but eventually got caught up in worldly desires and crashes at the end of his life because he began to think he was special.
    "But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the Lord his God ... ." -2 Chronicles 26:16a
    God’s purpose can only be accomplished as we walk in God’s ways. As we live by faith in God’s ways, our Heavenly Father is free to guide us in His purposes for our good and His glory. Listen to a few of the responses that resulted in Uzziah humbling his way and doing things God’s way.
    • “God helped him against the Philistines ... .”-2 Chronicles 26:7
    • “... he had become very powerful.”-2 Chronicles 26:8
    • “... he had much livestock ... .”-2 Chronicles 26:10
    • “Uzziah had a well-trained army ... .”-2 Chronicles 26:11
    God told Uzziah and the people of Judah to follow Him so that He could lead them and bless them. And Uzziah did. The text says that his fame spread far and wide.
    But Uzziah got cocky. He thought he was special—He answered to no one, everything he touched worked out great, and he began to think that it really was about him and not about God.
    Soon, Uzziah started stealing God’s glory. He thought God was fortunate to have him in this position, and the Lord should be happy with all his abilities and successes.
    Remember verse 16? With this pride came his downfall. Uzziah’s once humble spirit grew into an arrogant spirit. He began to think that what he did for God—instead of what God did through him—was the key to his success.
    He thought that he was so powerful that he could do as he pleased—even play the role of priest, which God strictly prohibited. Uzziah paid the price of disobedience. He died a lonely, old leper who could never go into God’s temple again.
    The first king under Isaiah didn’t finish well.  We need to learn from his life and walk humbly with God all the days of our lives.
    "For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?" -1 Corinthians 4:7
    If God has blessed you, worship Him. If God has disciplined you, be grateful. If God has withdrawn from you, repent.

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    John Maisel

    John's travels for ministry behind the Iron Curtain led him to found East-West Ministries International in 1993. John and his wife, Susie, live in Dallas, Texas and have a grown daughter and two grandchildren.