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Summary: It’s easy to rely upon methods, means, and men, rather than actually relying upon God. This message shows the results of such a misplaced reliance.

The Unforeseen Results Of An Unreliable Reliance

Text: Jer.17: 5; 2 Chron.16: 7

Intro: If you should suddenly find yourself faced with a traumatic, and potentially devastating situation, beyond your control, where, or to whom would you instinctively turn for help? Obviously, there are some problems and dilemmas we can, and should, handle ourselves. I’m not talking about those. The type of situation I’m talking about here might be a terrible financial setback; a rebellious child, who is literally ruining their life because of wild and dangerous living; perhaps you’ve received the earth-shattering news that a beloved relative, or your spouse, is at the point of death; or, maybe the doctor has just told you that you have cancer. Where would you turn? The answer to that question might tell us something about your relationship with God, or the lack thereof.

In 2 Chronicles, we have the story of Asa, king of Judah. King Asa started his reign well enough, for we are told, “And Asa did that which was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God” (2 Chron.14: 3). He initiated religious reforms in Judah, and attempted to destroy all the images of false gods, and their altars of worship. He also led the people of Judah to make a covenant with God, to seek Him with all their heart.

It was during this time that Asa removed his own grandmother from her position as Queen Mother, because “…she had made an idol in a grove” (2 Chron.15: 16), or “literally, a horrible thing for Asherah,” which is a nice way of saying that she had erected a vulgar, obscene idol, dedicated to the worship of Asherah (Astarte). This took a lot of courage and commitment on the part of King Asa, to put his faith in God over his family.

Though Asa was not entirely successful in his endeavor to turn Judah back to God, his kingdom experienced a number of years of peace (2 Chron.14: 1; 15: 19), due to his efforts.

However, for reasons known only to God, when King Baasha of Israel threatened Asa and Judah, he sought help from Syria, a heathen nation. His decision to rely on man, rather than almighty God, greatly displeased the Lord.

But as you might have already guessed, my intent today is not merely to point out the obvious spiritual mistake of Judah’s ancient king; but this is often the first response of many of God’s children, when backed into a corner by some sudden, fear-inducing trial. The Lord would have us learn from Asa’s mistake. Notice with me today, “THE UNFORESEEN RESULTS OF AN UNRELIABLE RELIANCE.”

Theme: An unreliable reliance:

I. DEPENDS SOLELY ON HUMAN RESOURCES

A. Notice The Crisis Involved.

2 Chron.16: 1 “In the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa Baasha king of Israel came up against Judah, and built Ramah, to the intent that he might let none go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.”

NOTE: [1] Baasha had usurped the kingship of Israel, after overthrowing Jeroboam I (1 Kings 15: 27-29). He had been at odds with King Asa almost from the beginning. However, the friction between them intensified when many of Baasha’s people began to defect to the nation of Judah (2 Chron.15: 9).

[2] The words “in the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa…” are to be understood to refer, not to the 36th year of Asa’s reign, but to the 36th year of his kingdom, measured from the time it was divided from Israel. As you will recall, the nation of Israel split during the reign of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam (2 Chron.10: 6-19). Baasha only reigned a total of 24 years, beginning in the third year of King Asa. Baasha was long dead by the 36th year of Asa’s reign.

[3] The point of this situation was that Asa found himself about to be hemmed in by Baasha. As a result, he felt that he had to remedy the situation quickly. Mark this well, folks; a decision made under pressure, on the spur of the moment, is likely to be the wrong decision. Isaiah 28: 16b says, “…He that believeth shall not make haste.” We would do well to remember that faith never moves the child of God to panic, or make hurried and rash decisions. Satan is a master at creating situations in the lives of God’s people that result in “sudden fear” (Job 22: 10; Prov.3: 25).

B. Notice The Cost Incurred.

2 Chron.16: 2 “Then Asa brought out silver and gold out of the treasures of the house of the Lord and of the king’s house, and sent to Ben-hadad king of Syria, that dwelt at Damascus, saying,”

NOTE: [1] The companion passage, found in 1 Kings 15: 18, indicates that “…all the silver and the gold” from both the treasuries of the temple, and the king’s house were given to the king of Syria, to buy his loyalty and assistance. Listen folks; the world’s loyalty always comes at a price, and even then, you can’t count on it.

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