No Remedy

You’ve gotta think they just might be two of the most chilling words that could be spoken to someone or about someone . . . “No remedy.” No more healing . . . Incurable . . . Game, set, match!

I came across this simple two-word phrase as I wrapped up my readings in 2Chronicles. They are the final word as God closes the chapter on Judah and its kings. The nation is decimated by the Chaldeans. The murderous horde from Babylon descend upon Jerusalem without compassion for anyone. Young or old, male or female, they put the city to the sword and then desecrate and burn the temple. To add insult to injury they tear down the mighty walls of Jerusalem. The glory of God had departed . . . the enemy had advanced and conquered . . . the nation, as pictured by Zion, lay in ruin. And all because, writes the chronicler, there was no remedy.

[King Zedekiah] stiffened his neck and hardened his heart against turning to the LORD, the God of Israel. All the officers of the priests and the people likewise were exceedingly unfaithful, following all the abominations of the nations. And they polluted the house of the LORD that He had made holy in Jerusalem. The LORD, the God of their fathers, sent persistently to them by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place. But they kept mocking the messengers of God, despising His words and scoffing at His prophets, until the wrath of the LORD rose against His people, until there was no remedy.
(2Chronicles 36:13b-16 ESV)

The hand of the LORD is not too short that it cannot save (Isa. 59:1). In fact, our God is mighty to save (Isa. 63:1). So it’s not like God was not able to fashion the right cure for His people. He had sent prophets to warn the people and to call them to repentance. Beyond that, less than 20 years earlier, he had raised up one last kid king, Josiah, to show the priests and people what revival could look like (2Chron. 34 & 35). Josiah again cleaned house in Judah of idolatry. He rediscovered and read aloud for all to hear the Word of God given through Moses. He modeled humility, contrition, and repentance. And, he lead the nation in observing again the Passover — a remembrance of God’s ability to deliver and the power of substitutionary blood to save — such that “no Passover like it had been kept in Israel since the days of Samuel the prophet” (2Chron. 35:18).

Healing had been offered. Health had been modeled. But for those who scoffed . . . for those who refused the message . . . for those who stiffened their necks and hardened their hearts . . . no remedy.

There’s coming a day when again there will be no remedy. When everyone who will respond has responded to God’s grace-infused offer of salvation through the perfect person of His Son and the finished work of the cross. When all that is left are those who mock the gospel message and blaspheme the holy God. And in that day, there too will be no remedy.

But today is not that day. For our God is exceedingly patient, “not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2Peter 3:9). Now is not the time to give up, retreat to a mountaintop and await the Lord’s return. But today, for many, is the day of salvation. That remnant still being gathered who, like Josiah, through the Spirit’s mysterious working, are drawn to seek the Lord . . . whose hearts, by grace, are made tender through faith . . . who, because of God’s word, humble themselves before heaven . . . who, by His power, seek to walk in obedience.

Today is not the day of no remedy. It is the day to lift high the name of Jesus and His power to save.

All because of God’s exceeding grace . . . all for God’s eternal glory.

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