The King Leaves Trouble for Others
Today's reading tells of Hezekiah's dubious response to a depressing prophecy. The king, who is regarded as one of the good leaders of the southern kingdom of Judah, has given foreign representatives a tour of his holdings -- a sign of the country's wealth and power. The prophet Isaiah offers God's word that all of this wealth will be carried off to a foreign land, foretelling that Judah will be conquered. The king shrugs it off, happy that this defeat will not occur during his lifetime.
In fact, Hezekiah calls the prophecy of doom "good" because he will not have to face it. This is a puzzling reaction, to be sure, and a reminder that even so-called "good people" can make bone-headed mistakes.
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]