Featured Passage: 2 Kings 15-20
Isaiah was a prophet during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah in the Kingdom of Judah. The northern kingdom of Israel had not listened to the warnings of the prophets to turn from their evil practices, so God allowed them to be conquered and taken into captivity by the mighty Assyrian empire. God told Isaiah to warn the people of Judah that if they did not give up their idolatry and fully turn to God He would allow them to suffer the same consequences that Israel had suffered. King Hezekiah was on the throne at the time when the Assyrians conquered the northern Kingdom. Though his father Ahaz had been an evil king, Hezekiah was determined to follow God. He understood that the Assyrians would soon be coming after Judah, but he also remembered God’s promises, of which Isaiah helped remind him at a most decisive moment in the history of the kingdom of Judah.
- There is a parallel account of the story of King Hezekiah in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 36-39). Compare the account with the one in 2 Kings. Does Isaiah add any details to the story?
- How was King Hezekiah different from the three previous kings of Judah? Why do you think God was with him (2 Kings 18:7)?
- When the Assyrian King Sennacherib threatened to destroy Jerusalem how did Hezekiah express his dependence on God? How can we use this example to put our hearts into our prayers when we talk to God?
- What was God’s response to Hezekiah’s prayer about the armies of Assyria?
- What bad news did Isaiah bring to King Hezekiah? What did Hezekiah do after hearing this news?
- What miracle did God perform to show Hezekiah that his prayer was heard?
- Did Isaiah have good news for the people of Judah? What things did God charge against Judah?
2 Kings 18:5-7
He trusted in the Lord God of Israel, so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor who were before him. For he held fast to the Lord; he did not depart from following Him, but kept His commandments, which the Lord had commanded Moses. The Lord was with him; he prospered wherever he went. And he rebelled against the king of Assyria and did not serve him.