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CHAPTER 15 (ESV)
15 And he brought into the house of the Lord the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels.
16 And there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days. 17 Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and built Ramah, that he might permit no one to go out or come in to Asa king of Judah. 18 Then Asa took all the silver and the gold that were left in the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king’s house and gave them into the hands of his servants. And King Asa sent them to Ben-hadad the son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, king of Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying, 19 “Let there be a covenant between me and you, as there was between my father and your father. Behold, I am sending to you a present of silver and gold. Go, break your covenant with Baasha king of Israel, that he may withdraw from me.” 20 And Ben-hadad listened to King Asa and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel and conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel-beth-maacah, and all Chinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali. 21 And when Baasha heard of it, he stopped building Ramah, and he lived in Tirzah. 22 Then King Asa made a proclamation to all Judah, none was exempt, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber, with which Baasha had been building, and with them King Asa built Geba of Benjamin and Mizpah. 23 Now the rest of all the acts of Asa, all his might, and all that he did, and the cities that he built, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? But in his old age he was diseased in his feet. 24 And Asa slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place.
- When Asa became king, he purposed to do the right thing and he did made a lot of reformations. He expelled cult prostitutes, got rid of idols, and deposed the queen mother, his grandmother, because she worshiped a pagan goddess. The Bible described Asa this way: “Asa’s heart was fully committed to the LORD all his life”. And God blessed him and brought longevity and prosperity to him and Judah.
- However, he didn’t learn the lesson of dependence on God, either. He sought the help of the Arameans, and this is the evidence of Judah’s spiritual downfall. He had depended solely on God’s protection and defeated enemies. But when new challenges came, he used Temple treasures to pay Damascus for an “alliance” and security (v19). His treaty evidenced some lack of trust in Yahweh (2 Chron. 16:7-9). When we rely on our own strength and wisdom more than God, we sin against God.
- Have I ever encountered any challenge? What was it? What did I do then? Why? What lessons did I learn to rely on God?
Lord, give me wisdom so that no matter what challenges I face, I will follow You and Your will. I will make pleasing You as my daily priority.