Where do you turn when you need help? Where does Israel turn for help? God is clear through his prophets. Israel’s problems are a direct result of their disobedience and idolatry.
Today’s read was hard because at every turn Israel refuses to choose the Lord. In 2 Kings 16 we read this:
“Then King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-Pileser king of Assyria. He saw an altar in Damascus and sent to Uriah the priest a sketch of the altar, with detailed plans for its construction.” 2 Kings 16:10
What?! King Ahaz is copying the worship of the pagan nations around him. In 2 Chronicles 28 it describes how King Ahaz closes the doors of the temple and destroys the temple furnishings. He then sets up altars at every street corner of Jerusalem.
There is worship going on here, but it certainly isn’t worship of the one true God. It’s such a powerful example of how when people turn away from God, they don’t cease to worship. They actually worship more. They turn frantically to anything that may help. Everywhere Israel turned in Jerusalem there was an altar.
But God sees and God knows every intricacy of our idol-making hearts. He created us to worship, and he’s looking for true worshipers. He will not let Israel continue in their idolatry. There must be judgment.