Praying Through the Bible #27 | with Daniel Whyte III
TEXT: 2 Kings 20:1-11
We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible”. The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the new Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have done 26 messages in this series.
This is message #27 titled “How to Pray for Healing and Life.”
As you might recall, our previous two messages in this series came from the life of King Hezekiah as recorded in the book of Second Kings. And our message today also deals with the events in the life of King Hezekiah. If you are wondering why we are talking about Hezekiah so much, it is simply because Hezekiah evidently was a praying man. He understood the power of prayer to God, and he frequently communicated with God in prayer.
However, no matter how spiritual or in tune with God one may be, that does not cause one to be exempt from troubles and problems in this life. God never promised that this life would be smooth sailing, even if you are a follower of Christ. In fact, Jesus Christ promised his disciples that they would certainly have trouble on this side of heaven. And Philip Melanchthon, the German reformer who worked with Martin Luther said, “Trouble and perplexity drive me to prayer and prayer drives away perplexity and trouble.”
So, even though Hezekiah was a righteous king; even though he was a good man and a praying man, we see in this passage that trouble visited his house once again. The first two times trouble came, it was in the form of the Assyrian army threatening to destroy Jerusalem. But this third time, trouble hits Hezekiah much closer to home.
1. Notice Hezekiah’s severe sickness. The Bible says that “In those days Hezekiah was sick unto death…” What were “those days” that this passage is referring to. Well, historians say that Hezekiah’s sickness came during the time of the Assyrian invasion. This was an especially bad time for Hezekiah to fall ill. He had the responsibility of defending Jerusalem against her enemies, he was trying to encourage his people to trust in the Lord and not lose heart, and now, he had to deal with a severe sickness as well. The Bible does not tell us exactly what this sickness is besides the fact that it involved boils on the skin. This was not just a bad case of the flu; this was a sickness that Hezekiah nearly died from.
2. Notice Hezekiah’s private prayer. The Bible tells us that right after he received the message that he would die, Hezekiah “turned his face to the wall, and prayed unto the Lord”. We see here once again that Hezekiah’s reaction in difficult situations was to immediately go to the Lord in prayer. When the Assyrian leaders were threatening to destroy Jerusalem, he went up to the house of the Lord and he called the prophet Isaiah to pray with him. When he received a threatening letter from the King of Assyria, he immediately “spread the matter” before the Lord in prayer. And now, we see that when he is incapacitated and laying on his death bed, he once more goes to the Lord in prayer.
3. Notice the amazing answer that Hezekiah received. Evidently, Isaiah left the room as Hezekiah was praying. And the Bible says that before he could get off the palace grounds, God told him, “Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus saith the Lord, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: on the third day thou shalt go up unto the house of the Lord.” What an amazing answer to prayer! Just a few minutes after Hezekiah began praying and pouring his heart out to God, God sent his answer through the prophet Isaiah — Hezekiah would live for 15 more years.