Scripture: Isaiah 39:
5 Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, "Hear the word of the LORD Almighty: 6 The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your predecessors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD. 7 And some of your descendants, your own flesh and blood who will be born to you, will be taken away, and they will become eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon."
8 "The word of the LORD you have spoken is good," Hezekiah replied. For he thought, "There will be peace and security in my lifetime."
Observation: If we are only concerned with how things are going to be during our lifetime, we are selfish and unloving toward our future generations.
Application: This morning my daughter is watching the movie Zathura its about two young brothers who play a game that takes them and their house into outer space where they meet an astronaut who is actually the older version of the youngest brother.
This made her think about time, she asked me if I thought there were time travelers, and I said that if there were they hadn’t let anyone know about it. Then she said, “You know, the future never really gets here. By the time we get to the future, its the present.” That’s really pretty wise. All we have is the NOW. We can’t do anything about the past, and we can only affect the future in a positive way by our actions in the present.
As I read this story about Hezekiah I couldn’t help but to think of how selfish a statement it was that he made in v8 from our scripture. Isaiah had just told him that the whole of his kingdom would soon be carried away and that his own children would become slaves to the invaders. Hezekiah had been told by God earlier that his life would be extended for fifteen years, so he felt certain that he would be gone before any of this happened. So he says, “The word of the LORD you have spoken is good,” because I won’t be here when all this happens. How terrible it was for Hezekiah to be so unconcerned for the future of his children, and his country. He wasn’t even curious as to whether he could do anything to prevent these terrible events from happening.
But what about our situation? We are killing the planet, we are burning up our natural resources at an astonishing rate, our nation is in terrible financial trouble and what are we doing to improve any of these situations? There are far too few of us who are concerned with what we can do to make the future for our next generations better. We are like Hezekiah and as long as things are ok for us during our lifetimes, that’s all we’re concerned about. Who cares what the world will be like in a hundred years, or in five hundred years?
I can hear many people say, oh the world wont last that long. The Lord will come back very soon and we don’t have to worry about those things. But we are not sure when that will happen, and we shouldn’t bet our future generations well-being on the assumption that the world will end soon anyway. It’s a poor excuse to pass off our responsibilities of conservation for the planet, and attention to the economic situations that our nation is creating because – we’re not going to be here much longer anyway.
We can learn a lesson from Hezekiah on how not to be. We need to do all we can NOW to make the future a better place. And we can start by being compassionate to those people of the future, our children’s children’s children.
Help me to look to the things I can do now to help make the world a better place tomorrow. Help me to reach out to those of the future in love and understanding and to try to give them something of value and meaning. Let me live today with eternity in view, and forgive me when I am selfish and uncaring toward others.