Starting well, ending badly; Starting poorly, ending well
Today’s reading: 2 Chronicles 32:1-34:33
My selection: II Chronicles 32:25
But Hezekiah did not make return according to the benefit done to him, for his heart was proud. Therefore wrath came upon him and Judah and Jerusalem.
My reflections: Hezekiah started extremely well but ended poorly. His heart grew proud at the end of his life and the wrath of God was upon him and the kingdom. On the contrary, his son, Manasseh started as one of the most evil kings in the history of Judah but responded positively to the Lord’s discipline (see 33:1ff).
A good start doesn’t guarantee a good finish. A bad start doesn’t rule out a good finish.
Paul warned the Corinthians about becoming over confident in their spiritual achievements and victories. “Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall.” (I Corinthians 10:12)
My challenge: The battle is severe and long. Be faithful and watchful to the end knowing that our enemy, Satan, will never stop seeking to distract, discourage, and devour us. Start well and end well, but if you already know you have started poorly (and you have because you are a sinner), turn to Christ in faith and repentance. He cleanses repentant sinners and equips them to serve Him for a strong finish in this life (2 Timothy 3:16-17), but beware of pride. You stand, accepted, before God by Christ’s righteousness alone.
Tomorrow’s reading: 2 Chronicles 35:1-Ezra 1:11