~ and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
In my reading in 2Chronicles 16:1-9 King Asa of Judah was warring with King Baasha of Israel. Now, King Asa asked for the help of King Ben-hadad in Damascus to intervene between him and King Baasha.
Now, King Ben-hadad was not of King Asa community and neither was He a loyal believer of King Asa God. Why was he inquiring of King Ben-hadad to help him when He can inquire from God himself?
In the start of King Asa’s reign Azariah a man of God told King Asa that “the Lord is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.” For a long time Israel has been without a God to counsel them so in their distress they sought God with all their heart and God protected them. “But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded” King Asa took courage and the people made a covenant to seek the Lord, with all their heart. King Asa rid the land of the idols except the high places to worship idols. (2Chronicles 15:1-4, 7-8, 12-17)
Peace reigned in King Asa’s kingdom as the Lord said “…be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded” that was until his 35th year of reign. In King Asa’s 36th year Israel invaded Judah and King Asa’s sends for help to King Ben-hadad. Why?
Let us look at our own heart to see where King Asa went wrong. When we gave our heart to the Lord and our sins to him and said we will seek you Father with all our heart. We also made a covenant with the Lord. We promise that we would follow his commands of reading his word, fellowshipping with other believers, abiding in the Lord, and praying. At first we were zealous for God we told everyone about him and we went on mission trips. Slowly, we got into a routine and we went back to doing what we did before but we have now added going to church, Bible study, and praying. Gradually, we have started our own life and not the dream the Father planned for us. Time for God has begun hard, we struggle to pray and read the Bible. We try different tactics for reading the Bible hoping that will help. Did we not get rid of the high places that have now come into our daily lives that cloud out seeking God with all our hearts, souls, and minds?
When we don’t get rid of the high places in our hearts they will seethe in and slowly you will forget who is in charge. First, you will trust someone other than God for your counsel.
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (Matthew 6:33)
Secondly, your pay check will be gone when it’s time to tithe to your church. Thirdly, you will not have time to spend sitting at your Father’s feet and learning from him because the idol of time has been used up with all your wants and none of your needs.
Jesus said “be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded”. (2Chronicles 15:7) We don’t consciously give up but slowly we let the world in, because we love stuff/things.
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness … (Matthew 6:33)
King Asa had peace and no wars because they sought God each day with all their heart. But, slowly those high places seethe into his heart and He forgot who was ruling King in his heart. Our flesh of wanting to sleep in or blaming our children for the reason we can’t make our time with him are excuses.
King Asa’s punishment was mercy from God in 2Chronicles 16:7-13:
7At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah and said to him, “Because you relied on the king of Syria, and did not rely on the Lord your God, the army of the king of Syria has escaped you… 9For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. You have done foolishly in this, for from now on you will have wars.” 10Then Asa was angry with the seer and put him in the stocks in prison, for he was in a rage with him because of this. And Asa inflicted cruelties upon some of the people at the same time.11The acts of Asa, from first to last, are written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel. 12In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was diseased in his feet, and his disease became severe. Yet even in his disease he did not seek the Lord, but sought help from physicians. 13And Asa slept with his fathers, dying in the forty-first year of his reign.
“all these things will be added to you”
The Lord says “seek first the kingdom of God” in all things we seek God’s counsel first. Again the Lord says “all these things will be added to you.” For King Asa the things that were added were peace in his borders. God took care of him and his kingdom with all their needs.
The Lord said ‘do not worry of what you wear or what you eat for the Lord would provide for us’. (Matthew 6:25-34) We think that going to work and coming home is all there is; but, that is not what God planned for you. Seek first the kingdom of God for everything and watch God work in your heart the things of God. Jesus Christ will get rid of the high places in your heart and He will establish his kingdom within your life and family. Fathers become the spiritual leaders in your family’s life that Jesus Christ has called you to be.
Why do you see people living extraordinary lives? Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you. God will add provision, peace, kindness, long suffering, mercy…God wants you to last more than 35 years in your reign on this earth with him.
Promises of mercy
“I will punish you as your deeds deserve, declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 21:14
Don’t you realize how patient he is being with you: Or don’t you care? Can’t you see that he has been waiting all this time without punishing you, to give you time to turn from your sin? His kindness is meant to lead you to repentance. Romans 2:4
He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy. Proverbs 28:13
“What has happened to us is a result of our evil deeds and our great guilt, and yet, our God, you have punished us less than our sins have deserved… Shall we again break your commands…?” Ezra 9:13
Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with fullest confidence, that we may receive mercy for our failures and grace to help in the hour of need. Hebrews 4:16
He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
Thank you, Jesus Christ for your mercy and grace that covers all our unrighteousness. Let us seek the kingdom of God in everything we do so that we may shine our eternity light before men. Thank you Father that you care enough to send us mercy and grace through your son Jesus Christ who died a death and rose to live in our hearts forever more.
I pray that we seek you, Jesus Christ first in everything we do or say so we can live a life in fulfillment of your promise. May we not lean on our own understanding but lean on Jesus Christ so you will make our path straight to you. Let us not look to the left or right but full on your face Jesus Christ so we will not lose sight of your plan. That we trust and believe on your son Jesus Christ for the work that needs to be done and the race that needs to be completed. In Jesus Christ name, I pray. Amen.