Dream word – PRAYER
2 Kings 15:1, 2
“In the twenty-seventh year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Azariah the son of Amaziah, king of Judah, became king. He was sixteen years old when he became king, and he reigned fifty-two years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Jecholiah of Jerusalem.” NKJV
Jecholia of Jerusalem
The ancient patronymic naming system of Welsh offspring eventually led to a good number of people all bearing the same name and all living in the same locale, though being totally unrelated by blood! In an aid to distinguish oneanother, they were later identified by both their name and their occupation. So, Dai the local train driver might have been called, “Dai the Steam,” where as his neighbour the undertaker might have been called “Dai the Box!” the baker, “Dai the Bread,” and so on and so forth. We can surmise from our text tonight that Jecholia was a common name, and persons were distinguished not so much by their occupation but by their local. Enter stage left then, “Jecholia of Jerusalem.”
The Bible says very little about this woman, indeed she is only mentioned because of her relation to her most famous husband and here even more famous son. However, I would suggest that her name bears the marks of Royalty and I wonder if it reflected both her demeanour, destiny and her progeny? After all, surely to be called “Jecholia of Jerusalem” was a great honour, for you are named not only after the city of the great King, but your name means the “power and perfection of the Lord!” Now how would you like a name like that to live up to?
Jecholia of Jerusalem, survived her husband and was a great mother to the young King Uzziah. Some have suggested that Uzziah may not have been the first born of Amaziah, yet the people took him and made him King. If this is the case, then Jecholia of Jerusalem had groomed him good, for this King ruled well for 52 years and no doubt the prayers and advice of Jecholia of Jerusalem were always available to him. So Uzziah, son of Jecholia of Jerusalem, pupil of Zechariah, had his prosperity walk hand in hand with his personal piety and were trulyblessed. A great general, a wow of a warrior, a fantastic farmer, a brilliant builder, a fellow of great fortifications and even greater fame! Yes, nothing could be greater, nothing could be higher, for the rippling muscled torso and square jawed. King Uzziah.
Now I wonder, and that’s all it is, I wonder if before the great smiting of this great king, that Jecholia of Jerusalem had died? I don’t know at all, but I wouldn’t be surprised, for behind every great man, not only is there a surprised woman, but usually a loving one, a long suffering one and a praying one, and oh my friends, when a prayer warrior of love departs the field of grace, it can be a most precarious time indeed, for those who have previously trod on serpents, were able to do so because those serpents had previously been substantially subdued by prayer. Oh! How I long for the persistent prayer of old ladies that can move mountains over a cup of tea.
In any event, Uzziah got a big head. It would appear there was no one left around, with the loving authority to give him the slap he needed. So, he sinned against the Lord by entering the sanctuary of the His Holy Temple and personally burning incense on the incense altar. Azariah, the high priest, went in after him with eighty other priests of the Lord, all brave men, confronting Uzziah saying, “It is not for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to the Lord. That is the work of the priests alone, the descendants of Aaron who are set apart for this work. Get out of the sanctuary, for you have sinned. The Lord God will not honour you for this!” But Uzziah, who was holding an incense burner, became furious! And as he was standing there raging at the priests, leprosy, like a raging flesh eating acne, suddenly broke out on his forehead. When Azariah the high priest and all the other priests saw the leprosy, they rushed Uzziah out of the temple. As you can imagine, Uzziah himself was eager to get out as well because the Lord had slapped him. Yup, the Lord had slapped him bad. So, King Uzziah ended up with leprosy until the day he died, living in isolation, excluded from the temple, dying alone and even being buried not with his ancestors, but adjacent to them in a field nearby.
I wonder if the prayers and advice of Jecholia of Jerusalem brought him to the throne, sustained him there and prospered him there as well? I wonder if she gave him a good slap now and again? I wonder if her absence, her lack or prayers and loving slapping, led to his fat bulbous brain, and the subsequent blindness of his eyes and poisoning of his heart? I wonder?
To all the Jecholias of Jerusalem I say “Live up to your name and keep praying for your sons.” Oh, and while you are praying for them, please remember me.
Listen: “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18 NKJV
Pray: Lord, fill our lives with Jecholia’s! In Jesus name we pray, amen.
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