There have been and there will be times throughout your life when sickness, tragedy, a broken heart, loss of a loved one, pain and suffering will thrust themselves into your life. But when these occurrences present themselves to your life, in whom do you turn to? Before you immediately state, “I turn to the Lord,” I would ask you to carefully consider your answer in light of your former actions. Did you truly turn to the Lord? Did you turn to someone else? Did you blame God for your situation? Did you place your predicament in the hands of the Lord?
In the Old Testament we read of two men who were kings: Ahaziah and Asa. Both were faced with their own situations. First, let’s look at Ahaziah. In 1 Kings 22:51-53 we read,
“Ahaziah the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned two years over Israel. And he did evil in the sight of the LORD, and walked in the way of his father, and in the way of his mother, and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin: For he served Baal, and worshipped him, and provoked to anger the LORD God of Israel, according to all that his father had done.”
In 2 Kings 1:2-4 we read that Ahaziah became sick. Notice who he turned to and as well the rebuke he received from the LORD,
“And Ahaziah fell down through a lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said unto them, Go, enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron whether I shall recover of this disease. But the angel of the LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite, Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say unto them, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that ye go to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? Now therefore thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. And Elijah departed.”
Ahaziah made a series of bad choices: who he trusted in, who he worshipped, who he turned to for help.
Now, let’s look at Asa. In 2 Chronicles 15:1-4 we read,
“And the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded: And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin; The LORD is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you. Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law. But when they in their trouble did turn unto the LORD God of Israel, and sought him, he was found of them.”
As you continue to read about the reign of Asa, you find that the Lord greatly blessed the land of Judah – because they sought after the Lord and removed idols from their hearts, their land, and their worship. Then in 2 Chronicles 16:1-10 we read that in the thirty sixth year of Asa’s reign Basha the king of Israel came up against Judah. Asa turned to the king of Syria for help instead of turning to the Lord. Notice the rebuke he received from the LORD in 2 Chronicles 16:7,
“And at that time Hanani the seer [prophet] 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.”
Asa’s response to Hanani is recorded in 2 Chronicles 16:10,
“Then Asa was wroth with the seer, and put him in a prison house; for he was in a rage with him because of this thing. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time.”
(Hanani’s feet were probably placed in stocks.) Asa then contracted a painful disease in his feet (probably gout).
2 Chronicles 16:12,
“And Asa in the thirty and ninth year of his reign was diseased in his feet, until his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not to the LORD, but to the physicians.”
Asa’s disease was exceedingly great; this was his affliction; but his sin was that in his disease, instead of seeking to the Lord for relief, he sought to the physicians. His making use of physicians was his duty; but trusting to them, and expecting that from them which was to be had from God only, were his sin and folly. Both Ahaziah and Asa chose not to turn to the Lord; they trusted in someone / something else. In whom do you turn to – in your hour of need?