“For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.”
2 Chronicles 16:9
This verse comes from a story in the New Testament about King Asa, one of the kings of Judah. The verse above is actually a part of a prophecy against King Asa after he attempted to bargain with the enemy for protection instead of relying on God for protection.
The important thing to note in this verse is not necessarily that the action itself was problematic, it was the heart. That’s important for us to understand even today. All along, people have misconstrued God’s will for our lives to just be a set of strict rules to be followed. It’s called legalism. It paints the world in black and white. This is ok, that is not. As long as you follow the rules, you’re a good person and you go to heaven.
This is a serious misunderstanding. The truth is that none of us are good on our own. We need God. That’s where King Asa’s mistake was. He knew his own insufficiencies and weaknesses, and he looked to another king for protection instead of to God. It’s not about the logic of the decision, it’s not that he broke any specific rules, it’s that his heart wasn’t committed the way it should’ve been.
This story, and this verse, reveals an important truth about our relationship with God, and our behavior as Christians. We aren’t made good by any good thing that we can do. Rather, our hearts are changed and made good by the grace of God, and our behavior follows. In this case, Asa’s faith and his heart were placed in armies and rulers of the earth rather than God, and the behavior that followed was sin.
When our faith and trust is placed in anything other than God, sin follows.
Where is your faith? Who or what is your heart allegiant to?
God knows your heart, and he wants to be the desire of your heart. He doesn’t want you to begrudgingly follow rules, he wants your faith, your trust, and your love.
Thank you for the grace that you give us that is able to change our hearts to be more like you. I pray that we will not seek goodness through behavior, but that our behavior will follow your goodness.
In Jesus’ Name,