“And at that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah, and said unto him, Because thou hast relied on the king of Syria, and not relied on the LORD thy God, therefore is the host of the king of Syria escaped out of thine hand” (2 Chronicles 16:7).TEXT — 2 Chronicles 16:7-14
In the 16th century, Bishop Hugh Latimer found that he was to preach before King Henry VIII of England. As he thought about his great responsibility to bring a message before the king, he realised that the message that God laid on his heart was not the message that the king would want to hear. As he began his sermon which sounded like a soliloquy, he said, “Latimer! Latimer! Do you remember that you are speaking before the high and mighty King Henry VIII; who has power to command you to be sent to prison, and who can have your head cut off, if it pleased him? Will you not take care to say nothing that will offend royal ears?” He then paused and continued, “Latimer! Latimer! Do you not remember that you are speaking before the King of kings and Lord of lords; before Him, at whose throne Henry VIII will stand; before Him, to whom one day you will have to give account yourself? Latimer! Latimer! Be faithful to your Master, and declare all of God’s Word.”
Hanani demonstrated similar courage centuries before Bishop Latimer started his ministry. He confronted Asa, the king of Judah, because he had relied on Benhadad, king of Syria, to help him in his wars against the northern kingdom of Israel, instead of relying on God. Asa was angry and had the seer put in prison; but his anger got him into trouble with God, as he later took ill and died. In his sickness, Asa relied on the physicians and not on God. What vanity!
Like Bishop Latimer, Hanani faced similar choice: to preach what man wanted to hear or what God would have him say. Though he ended up in prison, he faced his fate with a good conscience and preached boldly. He pleased God rather than men. Take a cue from Hanani and be bold and courageous in preaching the gospel.
Thought for the day
Only the truth can save.
- in one year
- PSALM 61 – 67