Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window)
Ahaz must surely consider Isaiah a crazy dreamer. He probably does not even to begin to understand Isaiah’s message regarding the coming Messiah. He does not even have enough faith in God to believe that the Lord could actually defeat Israel, Syria or Assyria. Having rejected God’s support and having ignored Isaiah’s warnings, Ahaz joins in battle against Pekah and Rezin. The historical account in 2 Chronicles 28 records the predictable results.
1. What gifts do you love to receive anytime? Clothes? Perfume? Jewelry? Music? Sports equipment? Candy?
2. When you were age 7, what was your favorite game?
3. What is the chronicler’s assessment of Ahaz? What detestable practices did he institute?
4. What punishment was most severe (verses 5 – 8)?
5. The Israelites went too far in carrying out retribution. Who rebuked them and what was the message? Israel’s response? How does God show mercy to Judah here?
6. Ahaz doesn’t learn the lesson and God sends punishment number two. What nations carry out God’s vengeance?
7. Ahaz asks Tiglath-Pileser (king of Assyria) to be his ally. How Ahaz try to win Tiglath-Pileser’s cooperation? Did it work?
8. Who does Ahaz turn to in his “time of trouble”? Where does he use twisted logic in this episode?
9. After verse 24 it looks like worship of the true God is outlawed in Judah. What could faithful Judeans do to continue the true worship?
10. Ahaz continued to anger the Lord to the end of his life. What hint is there in verse 27 that someone with sense stilled lived in Judah?
11. When have times of trouble driven you toward the Lord? Which have driven you away from Him? What made the difference?
12. In your memory, how has twisted logic been used to rationalize cruelty and terror (close to home or far away)? How can you tell twisted logic from truth?
13. You’re a missionary sent to Jerusalem around the time of verses 24 and 25. What is your message?
14. What support for the “just war” theory do you find here? Do you believe there are “just” and “unjust” wars? Or are all wars unjust? Explain.