When Heroes Fall
by Tom Goodman
February 20, 2013
"I'm loving this series through Hezekiah," a young woman said. "I've never read about him before, and he's so inspiring."
"Oh, but just wait," I replied. "In the end he's going to break your heart."
"Don't tell me that!" she said, surprised. "Why do the best stories always have to end that way?"
She's right about the best Bible stories, you know. There's Moses at the rock that God said would supply water to his thirsty people. Or David, bored, on his rooftop. Then there's Simon Peter at a camp fire just before a rooster welcomed the dawn. Or
Barnabas, in a first-century version of "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner."
If you're a new Bible reader, you may not be familiar with all of these stories, so just trust me when I say that they all end badly. This Sunday, Hezekiah's story is going to end badly, too.
Why do you think God wanted such stories included in the Bible?
First, the stories serve as a warning. Faithfulness yesterday is no guarantee of faithfulness today. As those in recovery remind each other, "One day at a time." How sad if some of us run the Christian race well for decades only to stumble at
the last lap!
Second, the stories remind us to put our trust in God, not people. It may be your parents, your friend, your marriage partner, or your spiritual mentor -- somewhere along the way there's going to be someone who will let you down. Hezekiah was
admirable, and he inspired a nation who desperately needed an example of radical trust in God. But his attitudes and actions we'll see in this week's story demonstrate that he wasn't the ultimate Savior King the prophets said would come to set
everything right. Jesus was and remains the only one worthy of our highest trust.
And that leads me to the third reason we find these stories in our Bibles. They remind us to find grace in Jesus. In the end, Hezekiah was in need of God's forgiveness like everyone else. We are not saved by our works, no matter how many or how
impressive they may be. Our faults stain the beautiful garment of our good deeds. We all have to trust in the mercy of God so perfectly demonstrated on the cross.
Join us this Sunday @ 10 for our last look at the remarkable life and reign of King Hezekiah.
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