Special Note: The parallel passages describing the Assyrian threat to Jerusalem (2 Kings 18, 2 Chronicles 32 and Isaiah 36) appear individually in 3 posts this week: July 27, July 29 and July 31, 2015.
Scripture Text:(click to open in a new window)
1. If you won 2,000 horses on a quiz show, what would you do with them?
2. What advice has Isaiah given Hezekiah on the Assyrian invasion (see Isaiah 31:1 – 3)?
3. Isn’t paying tribute enough (see 2 Kings 18:14 – 16)? What two plans does Sennacherib figure Judah might pursue (verses 19 – 22)?
4. What do the Assyrians make of the Egyptian option? The Yahweh option? What Assyrian option do they propose (verses 23 – 25)? Which of the three would you put your money on and why?
5. Why do Hezekiah’s men want the Assyrians to speak in Aramaic (verses 26, 27)? What reason do the Assyrians give for continuing in Hebrew? What is he implying will happen?
6. If you were a Hebrew standing on the wall, what would you see going on below you? What would you overhear that was not meant for you? How would you feel, knowing Eliakim wants to hide the conversation from you?
7. If the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, what heart appeal do you smell in verses 31 and 32? Would tastier food sway them? Why or why not?
8. How do the Assyrians view the God of Judah (verses 22, 32 – 35)? The deities in general? Assyrian power compared to deity-power?
9. Despite this attack on Hezekiah and their God, are the people still loyal to him? How so?
10. Why do the three palace messengers tear their clothes? Why aren’t they dressed for success? Won’t their tattered appearance bias their message? How so?
11. If your minister’s, pastor’s or president’s character were being smeared by outside accusers, would you and your fellow parishioners jump on the band wagon, remain silent or voice your objection? Why?
12. Have any friendships been threatened because you took the side of the accuser and not your friend?
13. When events look bleak, will friends stand with you? Will God really deliver? How do you go about the process of faithful discovery?
14. What is the equivalent of torn clothing today? What do you use to get a similar message through?