Rabshakeh had a strategy to get Judah to surrender. Under reign of Hezekiah, Judah was under many threats but the people had confidence in their king and his trust was in God. Rabshakeh tried to use this. He questioned their confidence as manmade instead of God made. Man had made and been part of many things but had nothing to do with salvation. The Word was inspired by God written down by men. Victory is won by the hand of God as people trust him.
Rabshakeh went against Judah as a divided Israel. It’s a divided time today. Jesus will prevail.
Isaiah 36: Now it came to pass in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah, that Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the defenced cities of Judah, and took them.2 And the king of Assyria sent Rabshakeh from Lachish to Jerusalem unto king Hezekiah with a great army. And he stood by the conduit of the upper pool in the highway of the fuller’s field.3 Then came forth unto him Eliakim, Hilkiah’s son, which was over the house, and Shebna the scribe, and Joah, Asaph’s son, the recorder.4 And Rabshakeh said unto them, Say ye now to Hezekiah, Thus saith the great king, the king of Assyria, What confidence is this wherein thou trustest? 14 Thus saith the king, Let not Hezekiah deceive you: for he shall not be able to deliver you.15 Neither let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord, saying, The Lord will surely deliver us: this city shall not be delivered into the hand of the king of Assyria.16 Hearken not to Hezekiah: for thus saith the king of Assyria, Make an agreement with me by a present, and come out to me: and eat ye every one of his vine, and every one of his fig tree, and drink ye every one the waters of his own cistern;17 Until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards.18 Beware lest Hezekiah persuade you, saying, the Lord will deliver us. Hath any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria?
Some kings did evil; some did good in the sight of God. Even when the kings did evil God still worked. He moves according to his will not the will of man. Don’t succumb to the will of the enemy. The Assyrians were working on Judah. They were closing in and making Judah feel the squeeze. A man who feared God was on the throne of Judah. In a world that has lost confidence in everything, you can still trust God. That’s why the priests kept going on and the singers kept singing. Don’t mind the enemy. If we keep our trust in God, the Red Sea will be parted.
Rabshakeh wanted to shake everybody up. He gathered the people and began to question their confidence. Did they think they had a chance against Assyria? No one else had. Why did they think they had a chance? Even their sister nation of Israel had been brought down. That’s the pressure we feel. Why go on? Why think you can trust Christ and an invisible God? What make you think you can stand? I’ve felt it. If you haven’t, your confidence will be tested. Khrushchev made a statement that America would be taken without firing a shot. He just about got it right. We’re more socialist than democratic. We’re living in a scary time. Our freedoms and rights are on the line.
Rabshakeh trusted in Assyria and King Sennacherib. The power of evil is prevailing. If we’re not careful we’ll let our confidence be shaken. The Word of God is still settled. The Lord is still Savior. God is still on the throne. They can antique us if they want to, but Christ is just as young as always. Nothing grows old about the things of God. When the trumpet sounds society will be rid of us all right. God’s judgment will be left behind.
Rabshakeh questioned how they could trust in their belief. He challenged their faith. How did they think they could stand? In verse 7 he tried to find fault with their leaders and the temple in Jerusalem. He wanted them to question all about God. Church and Christianity are blamed for many things. Don’t pay heed. Listen to the Word of God. Don’t show fear or be ashamed of the Lord. Be ready to give an answer. Study up. Live it. Don’t be afraid and the Lord will give you the words to say.
Rabshakeh got the people to thinking that maybe it’s not what they had been told. Doubt was being planted. He went in for the kill saying Hezekiah was lying. They were being deceived. Their God would not deliver them. Standing on a God they can’t see and a temple they built—what was the use in that? What are we going to trust if we can’t trust God and his Word and the church? We sure can’t trust Capitol Hill.
In verse 15 Rabshakeh told the people not to let Hezekiah make them trust the Lord. Don’t let the Rabshakeh’s of this world cause you to lose your trust in God. Rabshakeh turned it all around just like today. Now days, everyone goes to heaven. Now days, you can believe anything and still get to heaven. No you can’t! This world is sadly lacking in common sense. My common sense tells me I need to trust God. Sin is sin. Right is right. Wrong is wrong. We all need a Savior to be saved and go to heaven.
In verse 16 Rabshakeh told them not to listen to Hezekiah. They needed to listen to him and the king of Assyria. Why is man so easily deceived? It’s time to slow down and get back to God. Plant your feet and tell the Rabshakeh’s to get out of the way. The next chapter we see they went to Isaiah. He told them not to listen to Rabshakeh. Not a one of Judah’s soldiers went against Assyria. God went in in the middle of the night. They all ran. Stand. Let God fight the battle. God fought for Gideon. He’ll do the same for us. He’s still the same God.
Verse 18-19 says beware lest Hezekiah persuade you, saying, the Lord will deliver us. Hath any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? Where are the gods of Hamath and Arphad? where are the gods of Sepharvaim? and have they delivered Samaria out of my hand? I don’t know where all the other gods are buried. The God of the Bible is still here with those who have their confidence in him. Beware! I’m thankful to be persuaded. He was trying to destroy their persuasion in the Holy God. He was trying to destroy their persuasion for the house of God.
Don’t let anybody persuade you otherwise. Paul said I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. With that type of persuasion who can stand against us? Isaiah went to Hezekiah and told him to keep his confidence in God because he would take care of them.
What confidence is this? Can you answer that question? Ask God for more confidence. Ask for more understanding of the Word so that when the Rabshakeh’s come against us we can stand. The threat then becomes an occasion to turn people from darkness to light.