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Because He Humbled Himself

In category:

A Man Bowing Down

There was once a wicked king who deliberately chose to do evil. He practiced sorcery, divination and witchcraft. He consulted mediums and spiritists. He worshiped the stars instead of God who made them. He built shrines and erected altars to pagan gods. He also desecrated God’s Temple in Jerusalem by installing a carved image of one of his own gods in it. He even went so far as to burn up some of his own sons as sacrifices to his gods.

Under this king’s reign justice also suffered. He killed so many innocent people that one account of his reign says he filled Jerusalem from end to end with blood.

Not content with his own perversion, this king also corrupted his people. He taught them to turn their backs on the One God and chase after the pagan gods of other nations. He and his people ignored the prophets God sent to warn them about their behavior. All of this was particularly tragic because the king’s father was a very godly man who tried his best, during his rule, to teach his people to honor God. His wicked son undid everything he tried to accomplish.

Because this king was so wicked, God sent a foreign army against him. The commanders captured and bound the king and sent him into exile to the city of Babylon. There in Babylon the king repented. He humbled himself before God and prayed to Him. God listened to his prayer, released him from captivity and restored his throne. The king spent the rest of his reign trying to undo all of the evil he had done. (You can read about this king for yourself in the Bible. The accounts are in 2 Kings 21:1-18 and 2 Chronicles 33:1-20.)

What does this story have to do with us? There are many people who think that what they have done is so bad that they can never be forgiven. They will not turn to God because they think there is no point in doing so – God will never pardon them. It is true that none of us is worthy. None of us deserves God’s favor. But it is a huge mistake that God cannot or will not forgive. No matter what you have done, it surely is not as great a sin as what the king in this story did. From a human point of view most of us would say that the king was beyond redemption. He was so evil that there was absolutely no hope for him. Yet God’s mercy is so great that He did pardon the king! If such an evil and wicked man could find pardon and forgiveness, then there is hope for you and me as well.

Why did God forgive that wicked and vile king? It was because the king humbled himself before God. Where once he was filled with pride and selfish ambition, he now surrendered himself to God. He called out to God instead of relying on his own strength and wisdom. He showed true repentance by turning away from his old way of life. He sought after God and submitted to God’s will.

God is still the same. He does not change. If we will humble ourselves before Him and call out to Him as the wicked king did we, too, will find forgiveness. There is no sin so great God will not forgive if we will only seek Him in humility.