FRIDAY, JUNE 8: One of the most consistent and real challenges of the church is to operate with clean hands and a pure heart.
That is what we are called to do. It is when the church operates with integrity, that it can avoid being found guilty of hypocrisy.
From times past until even today, the world takes delight in accusing the church of being hypocritical. That is, the church is accused of being false, putting on a mask, or acting one way while actually being another way.
That is what King Hezekiah had to face up to and deal with. As king, he would not command the people to do what the church was not doing. King Hezekiah immediately set about bringing order back to the House of God. Indeed, judgment and discipline must begin at God’s House, before it filters into the houses of the nation.
2 Chronicles 29: 3 He in the first year of his reign, in the first month, opened the doors of the house of the Lord, and repaired them.
4 And he brought in the priests and the Levites, and gathered them together into the east street,
5 And said unto them, Hear me, ye Levites, sanctify now yourselves, and sanctify the house of the Lord God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place.
6 For our fathers have trespassed, and done that which was evil in the eyes of the Lord our God, and have forsaken him, and have turned away their faces from the habitation of the Lord, and turned their backs.
What did Hezekiah do?
1. He ordered that the church doors be opened up. Wow! Can you imagine the doors of all of the churches being shut up?
That is more than the shutting up of physical doors. It actually speaks to the mouth or voice of the church being shut up and shut down.
No wonder the nation was in total disarray during the reign of King Ahaz. When you do all you can to shut up God, you will feel the ungodly ripple effect throughout the land.
2. He ordered that the Levites get themselves together There was work to be done by that set apart people.
The priesthood had been silent and King Hezekiah ordered them to get it together. It must be noted that before the Levites could go in and clean God’s House, they had to first get cleaned themselves. At that time, the Levites were in no condition to clean God’s house, because they needed cleaning themselves.
It was important that King Hezekiah require the Levites to be clean first, as that would avoid hypocrisy.
For how could they stand in the midst of the congregation of God’s people and demand that they be clean, when they actually had dirty hands themselves. King Hezekiah required the Levites to assemble at the East gate of the entrance of the temple and wash or sanctify themselves.
Only then would they be in the right place to ask the same of the congregation. First things first.
3. He ordered that the priests be the ones to clean up the filth that had been allowed to accumulate in The Holy of Holies.
The Levites would not be able to do the cleaning. That work was so sacred, serious, and solemn that it required the reverential ability of the priest.
There are some works in the House of God that must be done by the leader. Indeed the weight of leadership carries with it far reaching consequences.
The leader of the nation had allowed the desecration of the holy place and the holy things, and now it would take the joint leadership of the leader of the nation and the leader of God’s House to bring about holy restoration.
The king and the priest had to work together to bring honour and dignity back to God’s House.
God Almighty is a God of order. He will allow nothing out of order to remain. God’s House must be first re-established as a holy place so that once again sinners will be welcome to find salvation in the house of God, and saints will be able to meet and enjoy pure worship in the house of God.