August 12 I Monday
“But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the LORD his God.”
—2 Chronicles 26:16
Early in King Uzziah’s reign, the Prophet Zechariah instructed him with two key points to a successful reign. “[Uzziah] sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success” (2 Chronicles 26:5). Firstly, twice in that verse it says Uzziah sought the Lord. We do not find God just by accident. God creates in our heart a hunger, a longing and a searching. When a person genuinely seeks God they will find Him as Jesus said in the New Testament, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7). That is why we should not believe anybody who says, “I want to find God but I can’t.” Jesus’s words assure us that those who seek will find. The first key to success is in seeking after God.
Secondly, Zechariah taught Uzziah “in the fear of God.” The Book of Proverbs tells us, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding” (Proverbs 9:10). Wisdom is not intellectual capacity but a moral disposition because a person can be a very clever fool. Out of this moral disposition of humbly seeking after God and submitting to Him, Uzziah experienced prosperity in the nation. Not only materially but also militarily, as Uzziah gained victory over his enemies. Uzziah’s success was so great that “his fame spread as far as the border of Egypt, because he had become very powerful”
(2 Chronicles 26:8). The second key to success is a fear of God.
Uzziah followed these two keys well until “[he] became powerful, [and] his pride led to his downfall” (2 Chronicles 26:16). The great danger with gifts, abilities and blessing we receive from God is we may become entitled. Rather than living in dependence on God, we could become very pleased with our own self-sufficiency and our independence from God. We begin to allow this poison to seep into our soul that says, “We know we have certain rights and privileges that other people do not have.” It crept into Uzziah’s life and we can easily be victims of the “Uzziah Syndrome” when we say, “God has made us strong and we can do whatever we want.”
Yet, we cannot live the Christian life in any other manner than in humility because it is a life of dependence upon the Spirit of God. This is why we must keep the two keys that Uzziah learned from Zechariah close to heart: always seek the Lord and fear Him alone.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for giving me gifts, abilities and blessings in my life. Protect my heart from being prideful with what I have received from You and help me to seek You always.