II Kings 16 – 23 reports the succession of five kings of Judah.  

  • Ahaz was a terrible king. His 16-year reign is reported in II Kings 16. 
  • But Ahaz had a son, Hezekiah, whowas a godly man.  The Bible account of his tenure as king is in II Kings 18  & 19.   

The Assyrians were coming against Jerusalem.  Hezekiah was a man of faith. In this connection, II Chronicles 32:1 is most instructive:  “After all that Hezekiah has so faithfully done, Sennacherib, king of Assyrian, came and invaded Judah.”   

We might wish the verse to read, “After all the Hezekiah has so faithfully done, God gave him peace and no foreign enemy came against him.”  Instead, God set him up to experience an even bigger result of faith – deliverance from Sennacherib’s 185,000 soldiers.   In other words, his faith qualified him for an even bigger demonstration of God’s pleasure about his faith. Hezekiah was a good king. And he had a massive dose of the ultimate blessing – God.  He experienced God as few ever have on planet earth.  

  • Hezekiah had a son – Manasseh – who was a disaster.  Real train-wreck.  His 55-year reign is the longest of any king of Judah.  It is reported in II Kings  21:1-18 and II Chronicles 33.  He was a terrible king.  
  • And his son, Amon, (II Kings 21:19-26;   II Chronicles 33:21-25) following in his father’s footsteps, was also a wicked king.  
  • But Amon’s son was the godly King Josiah. Strange how one generation is evil, but have sons that are godly men, who in turn have sons who are evil.

You know godly couples who have sons and daughters who do not follow the Lord, and you know unredeemed people who have sons and daughters who are wonderfully diligent followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

What can be said about this?  This is the mystery of God’s sovereignty (Acts 13:48;  John 15:16) unfolding before us in everyday life.