• William T. Howe Ph.D.

August 5, 2021

Daily Reading: Isaiah 36-41

Isaiah 36:4

And Rabshakeh said unto them, Say ye now to Hezekiah, Thus saith the great king, the king of Assyria, What confidence is this wherein thou trustest?

Rabshakeh is the great and powerful general under Sennacherib, who was the King of Assyria – the world’s elite power at the time. He comes to the walls of Jerusalem with a threat of overthrow. Within the words of Rabshakeh, he asks a question that is a good one to consider. The people of Jerusalem were being put into a situation which, humanly speaking, they have no hope of remedy. Assyria is ransacking any and all foes who dare to stand in their way. According to verse 2 this powerful Assyrian army already conquered the defensed cities of Judah. Now they intend to take the capitol. Jerusalem is no match for this army, and they know it.

Rabshakeh’s question is found in verse 4: What confidence is this wherein thou trustest? He asks the men of Jerusalem “In whom, or what, is your confidence placed?” Or “What measure of confidence do you have in that in which you trust?” Or, even, “How much confidence do you have in that in which you trust?” He was trying to psych them out. Attempting to cause them to doubt that which they trusted. What did they trust? Rabshakeh knew… for in verse 7 he said: But if thou say to me, We trust in the LORD our God: is it not he, whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah hath taken away, and said to Judah and to Jerusalem, Ye shall worship before this altar? In so saying the Assyrian general was blaspheming the Lord God of Judah.

When Hezekiah, the King of Judah at the time heard the Assyrian’s various threats he did two things of note. He took the issue to Isaiah, the prophet of God, and He took the issue to the Lord in prayer at the altar of the Temple. He knew his only hope was the Lord, the God of Jerusalem. Twice he was told in no uncertain terms that God would protect the precious city of David. Which He miraculously did.

So, the question spoken so many years ago is a good one for all people of God today. What confidence is this wherein thou trustest. Or “How much confidence do you have in the Lord God that He can and will save you?” This thing of being “saved” is intended to have a double meaning. Saved from earthly issues, threats, and difficulties, and saved eternally from the penalty of sin, which penalty is the eternal Lake of Fire as related in the book of Revelation. When the leaders of Jerusalem were shaken in their confidence, they (specifically the king) reached out to the man of God and to God Himself in prayer. Both brought confidence. The men of Jerusalem trusted in the Lord God, were reassured through the Word of God (the prophet) and prayer.

The lesson for us today is this, when your confidence is shaken go to the Word of God, and into a season of prayer. The man of God, your pastor that knows the Word of God, and the altar at the house of God, the local church, is where believers gain, maintain, and retain, their confidence in the Lord God of Heaven. Even in the midst of the threats of the powerful enemy that can sometimes “psych” us out.

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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