SHUT UP WITH LEPROSY by Precious C Philip
What Mr. Pride Can Do To Anyone
This is the tragicomic story of Mr. Uzziah. Mr. Uzziah became king at the age of 16 years old, after his father Amaziah died. He reigned in Jerusalem for 52 years. He did what was right, good and pleasing in the sight of the Lord, just as his father had done.
Mr. Uzziah was accountable to the priest - Zechariah (as long as he lived) who taught Him to fear God. Mr. Uzziah did what the Lord wanted him to do. He obeyed God just as his father Amaziah had done. He followed God in the time of Zechariah’s life. Zechariah taught Mr. Uzziah how to respect and obey God. When Mr. Uzziah was obeying the Lord, God gave him success, as long as he sought guidance from the Lord, God made him prosper.
God helped Mr. Uzziah fight the Philistines, the Arabs living in the town of Gur Baal, and the Meunites. The Ammonites paid tribute to him. His name became famous all the way to the border of Egypt. He was famous because he was very powerful. Mr. Uzziah built towers in the desert. He also dug many wells. He had many cattle in the hill country and in the flat lands. He had farmers in the mountains and in the lands where growth was good. He also had men who took care of vineyards. He loved farming.
Mr. Uzziah had an army of trained soldiers. There were 2,600 leaders over the soldiers. These leaders were in charge of an army of 307,500 men who fought with great power. These soldiers helped Mr. Uzziah against the enemy. Mr. Uzziah gave the army shields, spears, helmets, armor, bows, and stones for the slings. In Jerusalem, Mr. Uzziah made machines that were invented by clever men. These machines were put on the towers and corner walls. They shot arrows and large rocks. Mr. Uzziah became famous. People knew his name in far away places. He had much help and became a powerful king.
After he became very powerful and famous, something unbelievable happened (which has become commonplace today): HE BECAME VERY PROUD. This pride led to his complete downfall from level 100 to level 0. How? The priest, Zechariah, died and Mr. Uzziah became accountable to no one and stopped receiving godly counsel, hence became unfaithful to God.
One day, he was feeling himself too much and felt he could do anything He wanted to do since he had become very powerful. He went into the Temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar for burning incense (which he had no right to do). Azariah, a priest, and 80 brave priests (they had to be brave to confront such a powerful man) ran after Mr. Uzziah into the Temple. They told Mr. Uzziah he was wrong. They said to him, “Uzziah, it is not your job to burn incense to the Lord. It is not right. That is for the priests, Aaron’s descendants, to do. They are the only ones who have been prepared for the holy work of burning incense. You have not been faithful, so you must go out of the Most Holy Place. The Lord God will not honor you for this.”
Guess what? Mr. Uzziah (who felt too big and powerful to be confronted and corrected) became extremely angry and started ranting and scolding the priests. The next thing that happened as his mouth was wide open ranting at the priests he believed he had power over and they had no authority to rebuke him, God Almighty who had authority over Him shut his mouth up with leprosy.😀 This part really got me laughing. What a wise, powerful, and great God we serve!
It was narrated in this manner "Uzziah, who was holding an incense burner, became furious. But as he was standing there raging at the priests before the incense altar in the Lord’s Temple, leprosy suddenly broke out on his forehead." God shut him up with leprosy😄😄
When Azariah the high priest and all the other priests saw the leprosy, they rushed him out. They quickly forced him out from the Temple. Mr. Uzziah himself hurried out, he was eager to get out of the temple because the Lord had punished him.😄 What a mighty God! Who can challenge Him? Who can bodly disrespect Him and His sanctuary and go scot-free? Who dares to flaunt their affluence, political power and fame before God? Mr. Uzziah was shocked and later realised that no matter the height you get to in life, you can never be equal to God to begin thinking you are on the same level and you can disrespect Him with no terrible consequence. Mr. Uzziah paid dearly for such attempt.
Mr. Uzziah had leprosy until the day he died. He lived in isolation in a separate house, for he was excluded from the Temple of the Lord. His son Jotham was put in charge of the royal palace, and he governed the people of the land.
That was how Mr. Uzziah lost his throne, lost his affluence, political power, access to the temple of God, access to the companionship of his political associates and his loved ones to Mr. Pride.
And, God is such a wise God, He had to humble Mr. Uzziah with leprosy. If God had given him malaria, cancer or any mild sickness, he could have still remained proud because he'll still have access to his throne, power, affluence, companionship, the temple of God and still be able to socialize with people, but God intentionally gave him leprosy so he'll lose access to all those things that made his head swell up in pride. Fear this God! Remain humble after God lifts you; don't let God humble you Himself. Avoid Mr. Pride at any cost after God raises you, because Mr. Pride has the power to steal from you all the good things you are blessed with by God.
Resist pride because God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. Many are praying to be rich and powerful, but because God knows they have not dealt with pride, He won't answer them; for once He raises them, the pride in them will destroy them, therefore God allows them to remain average and still be alive than to get wealthy and be destroyed in no time by pride and sent to hell.
[You can read the entire story of Mr. Uzziah in 2 Chronicles Chapter 26].