NASHVILLE (BP) – This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with Lifeway Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, Lifeway publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from the Explore the Bible curriculum.
Bible Passage: 2 Kings 19:10-19, 32-34
- When have you bitten off more than you could chew in life?
- How can a person’s past success feed their self-reliance and inflate their view of themselves?
Food for thought:
Most of us have been guilty of biting off more than we could chew, taking on a responsibility we were not ready to handle. It may have been on the playground when we decided to play a sport against the older children present. We may have been the star when playing our peers, but things changed with the older competition. For most of us, it did not take long for everyone to realize we were overmatched.
We are told in 2 Kings 19 about a king who tried to take on more than he could handle. King Sennacherib was on the move, conquering one king after another. He sent a message to King Hezekiah, warning him about trusting God for protection. The message pointed to Sennacherib’s victories as he characterized himself as superior to all gods in the region. King Hezekiah turned to God in prayer, asking God to save the people of Judah as a declaration that the Lord alone is God. Whereas the Assyrians had run other peoples from their cities, God promised to run Sennacherib from Jerusalem.
Hezekiah’s actions serve as a perfect example of what God’s people should do when faced with challenges and threats. We should come before the Lord in humble prayer and “lay it all out” before Him. Our doing so does not mean we doubt God already knows, as He does. But prayer is a picture of our absolute dependence on Him when facing difficulties.
These prayerful actions were vastly different from what Hezekiah had done after his first confrontation with Sennacherib. After Sennacherib invaded Judah, Hezekiah apologized to Sennacherib for withholding payments from Assyria, stripped the silver and gold from the palace and temple, and sent the precious metals to Sennacherib (18:13-16).
For Hezekiah, trying to manage the situation himself had been a disaster. Hezekiah had learned his lesson and witnessed God defend Jerusalem. God was Jerusalem’s shield, and He rescued the city from the Assyrians. God proved Himself to be reliable. God is not a liar. He heard Hezekiah’s prayers. The good news is that He hears ours as well when we approach Him with humility, looking for ways to bring honor to His name.
Explore the Bible
Explore the Bible is an ongoing Bible study curriculum that helps groups dig into the key truths of each Bible book, while keeping the group on pace to study through the Bible books in a systematic way. More information can be found at Lifeway.com/ExploreTheBible.