Greetings from Helena!
Are you seeking God’s direction in your life? Are you really seeking it? In the Home Office Weekly Update below, UCG President Rich Shabi shares one of his favorite scriptures in the Old Testament regarding the king of Judah, Uzziah. The story is in 2 Chronicles 26. His favorite verse is
2 Chronicles 26:5 NKJV – He sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God; and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him prosper.
I also like the New Living Translation:
2 Chronicles 26:5 NLT – Uzziah sought God during the days of Zechariah, who taught him to fear God. And as long as the king sought guidance from the LORD, God gave him success.
The story of Uzziah is quite interesting.
One item interesting to me about Uzziah is that he was only 16 when he became King. And it appears at that early time in his life he listened to his mother – mentioned below – and another wise, Godly person – Zechariah, mentioned above in verse 5:
2 Chronicles 26:3 NLT – Uzziah was sixteen years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-two years. His mother was Jecoliah from Jerusalem.
2 Chronicles 26:4 NLT – He did what was pleasing in the LORD’s sight, just as his father, Amaziah, had done.
If you read the story of his Father, Amaziah, in chapter 25, you will find that although Amaziah started out pleasing God, he turned away and started to serve idols later in life.
2 Chronicles 25:20 NLT – But Amaziah refused to listen, for God was determined to destroy him for turning to the gods of Edom.
2 Chronicles 25:27 NLT – After Amaziah turned away from the LORD, there was a conspiracy against his life in Jerusalem, and he fled to Lachish. But his enemies sent assassins after him, and they killed him there.
So when Uzziah took the throne at age 16 things were not going well for Judah. His father had done things that incurred God’s displeasure and brought problems on Judah and Jerusalem. So Uzziah started out pretty humble and meek, and willing to listen to wise advice. And so he sought God, and did what was pleasing to God. And God BLESSED him for it.. exceedingly.
Unfortunately, the story doesn’t end there. Uzziah lost his humility and meekness and became proud.
2 Chronicles 26:16 NLT – But when he had become powerful, he also became proud, which led to his downfall. He sinned against the LORD his God by entering the sanctuary of the LORD’s Temple and personally burning incense on the incense altar.
The priests of God tried to stop him, but in his pride he became very angry with them. Verse 19 says he was “raging at the priests” when God caused him to break out with leprosy:
2 Chronicles 26:19 NLT – Uzziah, who was holding an incense burner, became furious. But as he was standing there raging at the priests before the incense altar in the LORD’s Temple, leprosy suddenly broke out on his forehead.
So there are a number of lessons to be learned from this story. First, from his Father Amaziah, not to turn to idols.. (and, ironically, idols of a king and nation that God helped him destroy). Second, to STAY humble and CONTINUE to SEEK GOD your entire life. And third, after receiving God’s blessings for obedience and seeking Him, NOT to become prideful and presumptuous.
Let’s remember these examples written in the Old Testament are there for us to learn from. Those men were not very different than we are… so we should learn from their mistakes.
1 Corinthians 10:11 NLT – These things happened to them as examples for us. They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age.
1 Corinthians 10:12 NLT – If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.
1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT – The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.
Let’s be sure we follow the positive example of YOUNG Uzziah, and continue to seek God our ENTIRE LIFE!
Wishing you all a good Sabbath!
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