“Faithful in keeping themselves holy”
“All Israel”, we read today, that had participated in this Passover “went out … and broke … down the high places … until they had destroyed them all” (verse 1).
Hezekiah is so dedicated we can see him, at this stage in his life, as a type of Christ. We are in awe of what Christ will do when he returns to set up his kingdom. We read of “the enrolment of the priests” (verse 17) and how “they were faithful in keeping themselves holy” (verse 18), and we can see this renewal as foreshadowing the dramatic events which must surely take place when Jesus returns to establish his kingdom!
How wonderful then to be among the resurrected – or “changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet … When … death is swallowed up in victory” (1 Corinthians 15:52,54).
“between the sea and the glorious holy mountain … shall come to his end, with none to help him” (verse 45).
The end of the chapter should be ignored, the chapter break is unfortunate, chapter 12 starts,
“At that time … there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been” (verse 1), and then the resurrection takes place.
After this Acts 11 and 12 seem almost an anti-climax; but dramatic events are described! We read of the conversion of the first Gentile – to the great surprise of Peter – and the first disciple killed, James. However,
“the word of God increased and multiplied” (12:24).
Sadly, we can see little of that today, but “the ‘faithful’ must keep themselves holy” facing the challenges of the “time of trouble such as never has been” that seem to be almost upon us! Our minds must embrace the words of the Psalmist,
“The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble” (37:39).