Ron Myers, Pastor of Worship & Arts
I need to start my devo with a confession. I have read through the Bible several times in previous years, and it’s always been a straight-through process; not the way we are doing it now with the chronological system to it. So, my confession is this: I tend to skip right over, or at the most, quickly skim through a lot of these passages that I read for today. I’ve never been a history buff. I like the here and now, the up-to-the-minute, the latest update. But then let’s move on.
So, as I read through the verses about Jotham, in both Kings and Chronicles, I have to look hard and listen carefully for what God might be trying to tell me. I see that Jotham became the ruler as a young 25-year-old and ruled for 16 years. And he “did what was right in the sight of the Lord.”
Then I read (now with a little more boredom settling in) about Ahaz, the son of Jotham, who became the next ruler of Judah, at the ripe old age of 20. His reign was for 16 years. BUT, the scripture says that he “did not do what was right in the sight of the Lord.”
So Micah, the prophet, enters the picture telling everyone about the judgment of the Lord that will be coming soon against the people of Israel for not doing what was right. As we then jump to Isaiah 7, we see that Isaiah is also warning the same group of people of impending judgment. But then in the midst of the warning, we see a promise. Verse 14: “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”
Just like that, in the midst of this huge warning to the people that their land will be overcome, here is this promise of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ: a jewel among the thorns, a King produced from the midst of destruction.
I’m thankful for these promises to the people back then who became rebellious and sinful. It continually gives me hope that our God is always looking out for us, always ready to provide salvation and redemption and grace.