2 Chronicles 26

* Uzziah's good reign in Judah. (1-15) Uzziah's attempt to burn

incense. (16-23)

1-15 As long as Uzziah sought the Lord, and minded religion,

God made him to prosper. Those only prosper whom God makes to

prosper; for prosperity is his gift. Many have owned, that as

long as they sought the Lord, and kept close to their duty, they

prospered; but when they forsook God, every thing went cross.

God never continues either to bless the indolent or to withhold

his blessing from the diligent. He will never suffer any to seek

his face in vain. Uzziah's name was famed throughout all the

neighbouring countries. A name with God and good people makes

truly honourable. He did not delight in war, nor addict himself

to sports, but delighted in husbandry.
16-23 The transgression of the kings before Uzziah was,

forsaking the temple of the Lord, and burning incense upon

idolatrous altars. But his transgression was, going into the

holy place, and attempting to burn incense upon the altar of

God. See how hard it is to avoid one extreme, and not run into

another. Pride of heart was at the bottom of his sin; a lust

that ruins many. Instead of lifting up the name God in gratitude

to him who had done so much for him, his heart was lifted up to

his hurt. Men's pretending to forbidden knowledge, and seeking

things too high for them, are owing to pride of heart. The

incense of our prayers must be, by faith, put into the hands of

our Lord Jesus, the great High Priest of our profession, else we

cannot expect it to be accepted by God, #Re 8:3|. Though Uzziah

strove with the priests, he would not strive with his Maker. But

he was punished for his transgression; he continued a leper to

his death, shut out from society. The punishment answered the

sin as face to face in a glass. Pride was at the bottom of his

transgression, and thus God humbled him, and put dishonour upon

him. Those that covet forbidden honours, forfeit allowed ones.

Adam, by catching at the tree of knowledge which he might not

eat of, debarred himself of the tree of life which he might have

eaten of. Let all that read say, The Lord is righteous. And when

the Lord sees good to throw prosperous and useful men aside, as

broken vessels, if he raises up others to fill their places,

they may rejoice to renounce all worldly concerns, and employ

their remaining days in preparation for death.

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