August 30 2016 – however good it looks don’t be taken in by it.


In 2 Kings 16 king Ahaz found an altar in Damascus and sent its design to Urijah the priest (verse 10) who then built it ( verse 11).

It seems King Ahaz was particularly drawn to this altar because of its artistic design, beauty and workmanship (last part of verse 10). It looked good. Once made he began to worship at it (verse 12&13), which would have been to the gods of Damascus and Syria where the altar’s design had come from and he even re-arranged the furniture of the temple around his new altar (verse 14).

One sees a spiritual progression here. First King Ahaz chose a new focus for his worship other than the focus God had chosen (the altar in the temple), something that looked good to him, this foreign altar from Damascus.Then he started to worship at it and then to re-arrange and re-prioritize the temple furniture around his altar according to how he thought it should be rather than how God had said it should be.

We must be careful this progression doesn’t happen in our lives. That we don’t find a new focus for our worship other than God, that looks good to us, and start to worship at a “foreign” altar, giving it the best of our time and attention and then start re-arranging our life, our values and priorities around it, as Ahaz did the temple furniture.

The moral of the story: A foreign altar may look good, but however good it looks don’t be taken in by it.

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