Hezekiah’s Prayer

Text: Isaiah 38:9-20

 

I.         Many people are familiar with Hezekiah’s prayer asking God for help against the Assyrian army, but I would like for us to take a few minutes to examine Hezekiah’s prayer of thanksgiving after he was healed of an illness

II.        Bitterness

            A.        Isaiah 38:9-10

                        1.         Hezekiah was told he would die - Isaiah 38:1

                        2.         He was only 39 - II Chronicles 29:1

            B.        Isaiah 38:11

                        1.         There were things Hezekiah wanted to do and see.

                        2.         People who die do not come back to this world - Job 14:7-14

                        3.         Their involvement comes to an end - Ecclesiastes 9:5-6

                        4.         To know that he would no longer be involved was a bitter disappointment. He wanted to continue to serve God.

            C.        Isaiah 38:12

                        1.         His life was at an end, easily and quickly removed like a tent or cut from a loom like a completed cloth

            D.        Isaiah 38:13

                        1.         He waited that night for his death – alone with his thoughts – while others slept

                        2.         He felt crushed by God

            E.        Isaiah 38:14

                        1.         His pleas to God felt like the empty chatter of birds or like the mourning groans of a dove

                        2.         He looked for help until he could look no longer - Lamentations 4:17

III.       Humbled Thanksgiving

            A.        God spoke. Hezekiah wanted to complain, like Job - Job 7:11; 10:1

                        1.         But what God says is what God does

            B.        Isaiah 38:15

                        1.         And when Hezekiah realized the finality of it, God again spoke, giving him fifteen years more life - Isaiah 38:5-6

                        2.         But just like before, Hezekiah knew the finality of it. God does as He says - Numbers 23:19; I Thessalonians 5:24

                        3.         Hezekiah is going to live his remaining years more carefully.

                                    a.         He still won’t have a long life. He will be dying at 54.

                                    b.         But he would not forget the bitter night when he thought his life would end

                                    c.         He was a changed man

            C.        Isaiah 38:16

                        1.         By God’s promises, men live

                        2.         God uses hard lessons to teach important lessons - Deuteronomy 8:3; Psalms 71:20

                        3.         God is the source of life - Psalms 104:27-30

                        4.         The hardships in this life are nothing compared to what God is offering us - II Corinthians 4:17

            D.        Isaiah 38:17

                        1.         Hezekiah’s suffering was a benefit to him - Hebrews 12:10-11; Job 33:19-28

                        2.         He was saved, not just from physical death but also spiritual

                                    a.         God forgives - Isaiah 43:25

                                    b.         God delights in mercy - Micah 7:18-19

                        3.         How does a person know? God says and it is done - Psalms 103:1-6

            E.        Isaiah 38:18

                        1.         In life Hezekiah can praise God - Psalms 6:5; 30:9; 115:17-18

                        2.         In life there is hope - Ecclesiastes 9:4; Psalms 71:14; Romans 8:24-25

            F.        Isaiah 38:19-20

                        1.         Hezekiah can offer praise - Psalms 146:2; 145:2

                        2.         While there is still life, others can be told - Deuteronomy 4:9; Psalms 78:3-4

IV.      What lessons can we learn from Hezekiah?

            A.        Because of sin, many live in bitterness, never getting what they want - Hebrews 12:14-17

            B.        They are dying a spiritual death, but they blame God for their pain

            C.        But it is God alone who offers life - I John 5:3; John 8:12

            D.        Are we thankful for that life?

            E.        Do we remember where we came from? - I Timothy 1:12-17