In chapter 18, the story of 2 Kings moves to the accounts of the Southern Kingdom of Judah. It survives another 150 years. The reason it was spared is because of the revival brought about by Hezekiah. He watched the destruction of Samaria to his north, and averted God’s fiery wrath by turning back to God.

There are certain characteristics of Hezekiah we might apply to our own lives. First, Vs 5 says that he wholeheartedly “trusted” the Lord.  The Hebrew phrase literally means, “he put all his weight” on God. Rather than leaning on Egypt or Assyria, he leaned on God. A happy, wholesome life begins with simple faith in God.  Verse 6 says he “held fast” to the Lord. It’s the word for “cleaving.” You’ve seen the picture of the kitten clinging to the rod with his two front paws with the phrase, “hang in there.” That’s what Hezekiah did. He “cleaved” to God, that is, he hung in there in spite of obstacles, temptations, distractions and trials.  He just wouldn’t let go. Verse six also says that he actively “followed” after the Lord. He would not let God get away. He stayed on his trail. This means he lived according to God’s instructions and pursued God’s ways in his life.  Like Hezekiah, we too should “follow” after God. Though we will never become perfect in this life, we should, like Paul, “keep pressing on” toward the mark for the prize of the upward call of God.  Verse 6 adds that “he obeyed” God. This completes the picture. Faith lays a foundation for a good life. Cleaving, tenacity, to our God and following closely in his footsteps, leads us to the upper story of the spiritual life; obedience.

For the believer today, the great commandment is love. Peter explains how the progressive steps of Hezekiah produce the kind of faith God is looking for in each of us. He wrote in 2 Peter 1, “Add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.”

“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loves us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say.” 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17