Thursday, August 28, 2014

Righteous Hezekiah

Commemorated on August 28

Righteous Hezekiah (721-691 B.C.) was the son of the impious king Ahaz. The life of Righteous Hezekiah is described in the Bible (4/2 Kings 18-20).

He became King of Judah at the age of twenty-five, and reigned at Jerusalem for 29 years. A zealous worshipper of the True God, Hezekiah reopened the Temple of Solomon (2 Chron. 20:3). At the time of the celebration of the Passover, to which he summoned all the subjects of the kingdom of Israel, Hezekiah gave orders to destroy the idols throughout his kingdom, reminding the people of the punishments which befell their ancestors for forsaking the True God. After this, idolatry ceased not only in the kingdom of Judah, but also in many places in the kingdom of Israel.

Therefore, God delivered him from his enemies and fulfilled his petitions. Thus, in the fourteenth year of the reign of Hezekiah, the Assyrian king Sennacherib son of Salmanassar, having conquered Israel, gathered his forces to make war upon Hezekiah.

The Assyrian king took the fortress of Lachis and sent an army towards Jerusalem, demanding that the Jewish king surrender. Hezekiah turned to God in prayer, and an angel of the Lord struck down 185,000 soldiers in the Assyrian camp. Soon after the withdrawal of Sennacherib, Hezekiah fell ill. The Prophet Isaiah came to him through the will of God and told him to set his affairs in order, since he would soon die. But the power of Hezekiah’s prayer was so great that God prolonged his life for another fifteen years.

His prayer was fervent when he besought God to help him. But even more ardent was his prayer of thanks. Hezekiah died at age 54 and was buried with great reverence at Jerusalem. The memory of the Righteous Hezekiah is also celebrated on Cheesefare Saturday.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

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