Response to a Call for Repentance (2 Chron. 30:1-10)
In 2 Chronicles 30:1-10, we find an account of King Hezekiah's efforts to restore the worship of God in the kingdom of Judah. Hezekiah sent messengers throughout all of Israel and Judah, inviting the people to come to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover, a significant religious feast. The core of his plea is found in verse six which commands, “People of Israel, return to the LORD, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, that he may return to you who are left, who have escaped from the hand of the kings of Assyria.”
The messengers went from city to city, and even to the northern kingdom of Israel, delivering the invitation. In Judah, the invitation was met with a positive response, and a great assembly gathered in Jerusalem to observe the Passover. They removed the idols from the city and sanctified themselves according to the instructions of the Lord. The people of Israel and Judah united in seeking God and purifying themselves.
However, when the couriers went to Ephraim and Manasseh to deliver this message to return to the Lord, the people scorned and ridiculed them. This is in spite of the fact that the message was clear, logical, and verifiable. The people and land had suffered greatly because of their spiritual adultery, and yet, even in the face of God’s continued offer of mercy, the people not only chose their sin over God, they mocked those who delivered the message of salvation.
There is truly nothing new under the sun. Today, as we watch the world descend into chaos, and we see God’s judging hand descending all around us, the faithful cry out to a dying people, “Repent, turn to God and live,” and despite the fact that this message is also clear, logical and verifiable, the people today are all too happy to choose their sin over God and they mock those who deliver this critical message of salvation.