“There is so much good in the worst of us and so much evil in the best of us that it ill behooves the rest of us to make judgments of any of us.” I’m not sure where that quote comes from but it expresses a lot of truth. One of the amazing things in the Bible is its very honest and open pictures of both the heroes and horrible people talked about. Only Jesus lived on this earth without sin. He went through great temptations but never gave in to it a single time.
One of the good people talked about in the Bible was King Hezekiah. He led the people through many great reforms during his reign as king. He was a man of prayer. When Sennacherib the king of Assyria came with his army of 185,000 and camped outside the walls of Jerusalem and made all kinds of threats against the people of Judah, Hezekiah took the whole thing to God in prayer. God sent his angel to the camp of Sennacherib and killed the entire army so that Sennacherib went home in defeat.
After this Hezekiah became sick and God sent Isaiah the prophet to him to tell him to set his house in order because he was going to die. Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and began to pray to God and before Isaiah could reach the steps of the palace to leave God spoke to him again to say that he should go back to Hezekiah’s room and tell him that God had decided to add fifteen years to his life. When word spread that Hezekiah had recovered from his sickness the king of Babylon sent letters and a present to Hezekiah to congratulate him on his recovery. Hezekiah was so thrilled at their coming he showed them all the treasures in his house and in the temple of God.
Isaiah came to him and asked “what did these men say, and where did they come from?” Hezekiah said they came from Babylon a country far away. Isaiah said, “What have they seen in your house?” Hezekiah said, “They have seen all that is in my house; there is nothing among my treasures that I have not shown them.” Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the Lord of hosts: Behold the days are coming when all that is in your house, and what your fathers have accumulated until this day shall be carried to Babylon: nothing shall be left, says the Lord. And they shall take away some of your sons who will descend from you, whom you will beget; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.”
Listen to how Hezekiah a man blessed by God and whose life God had sparred answered the prophet. “So Hezekiah said to Isaiah, ‘The word of the Lord which you have spoken is good! For he said, ‘At least there will be peace and truth in my days.” (Isaiah 39:1-8)
It is amazing after God delivered him and his people from the Assyrian army that he would so quickly trust the people of Babylon and show them the treasures of his kingdom. But what is so amazing is that when God had Isaiah to tell him what was going to happen to his sons his response was, well, that is good “At least there will be peace and truth in my days.”
How can people get so mixed up and so selfish in their thinking that they are willing for things to be awful for their children and grandchildren as long as things are going good for them? In many ways Hezekiah would fit in well today with the thinking of so many people. Listen to forecasters talk about what the results of many of the fiscal decisions of our time will do to the generations to come and you tend to get a shrug of the shoulders and some passing comment about well at least it won’t be in our life time.
When someone says that if the present trend continues for social security to continue it will become a much greater burden to those who are entering the work force today. We are quickly moving toward the situation where for every person to draw social security there will only be two people paying into the fund. Yet everything that could be done to save the whole thing and it not be a horrible burden to our children and grandchildren is doomed because every suggestion brings a crying out that if any one touches the whole program they will be voted out of office.
How can people claim to love the coming generations and be so utterly selfish in their thinking? The apostle Paul in explaining his attitude in 2 Corinthians 12:14-15 said, “Now for the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be burdensome to you; for I do not seek yours, but you. For the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children. And I will very gladly spend and be spent for your souls; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I am loved.”
When our thinking is just about us and not how we can bless and help the generations to come we become miserable people. Think about it for a while. What are you doing for the good of those generations that will follow ours? When we act unselfishly we will bless the generations to come. When we only think of us we provide for them a pitiful example.