|November 2011 Daily Devotion Archive|
Elijah's Unwavering Faith, Part 2 of 3
Now Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, "Choose one bull for yourselves and prepare it first, for you are many; and call on the name of your god, but put no fire under it." So they took the bull which was given them, and they prepared it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even till noon, saying, "O Baal, hear us!" But there was no voice; no one answered. Then they leaped about the altar which they had made. And so it was, at noon, that Elijah mocked them and said, "Cry aloud, for he is a god; either he is meditating, or he is busy, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is sleeping and must be awakened." So they cried aloud, and cut themselves, as was their custom, with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them. And when midday was past, they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice. But there was no voice; no one answered, no one paid attention. - 1 Kings 18:25-29
How awful it would be to serve a god who might be too busy to answer us. But we don't--we serve an awesome God who is always there for us when we need Him!
Question to Ponder: Can you think of a time when you wondered if God was even there, then later realized that He was?
Take Comfort in the Lord
For You have been a strength to the poor,
A strength to the needy in his distress,
A refuge from the storm,
A shade from the heat;
For the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.
You will reduce the noise of aliens,
As heat in a dry place;
As heat in the shadow of a cloud,
The song of the terrible ones will be diminished.
And it will be said in that day:
"Behold, this is our God;
We have waited for Him, and He will save us.
This is the Lord;
We have waited for Him;
We will be glad and rejoice in His salvation."
- Isaiah 25:4-5, 9
Jesus' Blunt Truth
"And you will be hated by all for My name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved." - Matthew 10:22
Once again, Jesus speaks the truth without holding back. If, as some people believe, Jesus were merely a self-deluded man who was trying to recruit people into some new cult, why would He say something like this? If all He wanted to do was gain followers and convince people that He was telling the truth when He really wasn't, it would have been utterly foolish for Him to make this kind of a statement! This isn't the way to recruit followers into a false cult. To me, this is yet another way that we can know Jesus is the Truth. He never made any attempt to glamorize the Christian life. Instead, He clearly let us know how difficult it would be at times, but He is always there to guide us through this life. Other religions always try to convince you of something, but Jesus is simply honest, even when the truth doesn't paint a very pretty picture. In a culture in which so many people are craving something real and true, we only need to look to Jesus, who is the Truth!
Question to Ponder: What can you do to help other people better understand the Truth that is Jesus?
The Problem With Philosophy
Now this I say lest anyone should deceive you with persuasive words. ... As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. - Colossians 2:4, 6-8
To me, the most intriguing part of this passage is Paul's mention of philosophy. It is a commonly held belief, especially among institutions of higher learning, that we need to be exposed to more philosophical ideas in order to have a better understanding of the world around us. Unfortunately, those philosophical ideas can often lead us away from Jesus, because many of them are rooted in human knowledge rather than in the truth of God's Word. Be very careful not to be led astray by human ideas, even if they sound really good and intelligent. Rely instead on God's truth, found only in the Bible.
Question to Ponder: Have philosophical ideas ever pulled you away from Jesus?
Do not withhold correction from a child,
For if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.
You shall beat him with a rod,
And deliver his soul from hell.
My son, if your heart is wise,
My heart will rejoice--indeed, I myself;
Yes, my inmost being will rejoice
When your lips speak right things.
Do not let your heart envy sinners,
But be zealous for the fear of the Lord all the day;
For surely there is a hereafter,
And your hope will not be cut off.
For a harlot is a deep pit,
And a seductress is a narrow well.
She also lies in wait as for a victim,
And increases the unfaithful among men.
Through wisdom a house is built,
And by understanding it is established;
- Proverbs 23:13-18, 27-28; 24:3
O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
So I have looked for You in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.
Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Thus I will bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.
- Psalm 63:1-4
Moses is Still Reluctant
Then Moses said to the Lord, "O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue." So the Lord said to him, "Who has made man's mouth? Or who makes the mute, the deaf, the seeing, or the blind? Have not I, the Lord? Now therefore, go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say." But he said, "O my Lord, please send by the hand of whomever else You may send." - Exodus 4:10-13
On a personal level, I can really relate to Moses in these verses. I don't feel like I am a very good speaker, which is one reason why I have chosen to express myself in written form through these daily devotional thoughts. But if God calls us to do something, He will give us whatever gifts and talents we may need to complete that task. He won't let us down! Here, He gave Aaron to Moses to help him speak. However, if you continue reading through the book of Exodus, you will see that Aaron never says very much. Despite his insecurities about his speech, God works through Moses and uses him in many great ways!
Question to Ponder: Do you allow your own fears and insecurities about yourself hinder you from serving God?
Elijah's Unwavering Faith, Part 3 of 3
[Elijah] put the wood in order, cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood, and said, "Fill four waterpots with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood." Then he said, "Do it a second time," and they did it a second time; and he said, "Do it a third time," and they did it a third time. So the water ran all around the altar; and he also filled the trench with water. And it came to pass, at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near and said, "Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant, and that I have done all these things at Your word. Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that You are the Lord God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again." Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench. Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, "The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God!" - 1 Kings 18:33-39
Question to Ponder: What impact did Elijah's bold and unwavering faith in the Lord have on the people of Israel?
Seeking Contentment in the Wrong Places
But they also have erred through wine,
And through intoxicating drink are out of the way;
The priest and the prophet have erred through intoxicating drink,
They are swallowed up by wine,
They are out of the way through intoxicating drink;
They err in vision, they stumble in judgment.
For all tables are full of vomit and filth;
No place is clean.
"Whom will he teach knowledge?
And whom will he make to understand the message?"
Because you have said, "We have made a covenant with death,
And with Sheol we are in agreement.
When the overflowing scourge passes through,
It will not come to us,
For we have made lies our refuge,
And under falsehood we have hidden ourselves."
- Isaiah 28:7-9a, 15
Whom Should We Fear?
"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows." - Matthew 10:28-31
Jesus tells us that we should not fear other people, who can do harm to or even kill the fleshly body but cannot kill the soul. We have no reason to fear other people because they cannot do anything to change our eternal destination. Instead, we should fear God alone--who is in control of where we will spend eternity. That doesn't mean that we need to be scared of God; rather, it means we need to have a healthy respect for Him and His power. Sadly, many people do not have that respect anymore. If Jesus even cares about the life of a sparrow, and if He even knows how many hairs are on each of our heads, it seems obvious that He is going to take care of us so that we do not need to be afraid of anything that another person may try to do!
Question to Ponder: Do you live in fear of anyone or of something that another person could do to you?
Not Legalism, Just Christ
So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. ... Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations--"Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle," which all concern things which perish with the using- according to the commandments and doctrines of men? These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in self-imposed religion, false humility, and neglect of the body, but are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh. - Colossians 2:16-17, 20-23
Jesus came not to impose more rules and regulations on us but to free us from those burdens. Yes, if we have a relationship with Him, we should want to obey certain rules and have proper conduct. The Bible also tells us to obey our country's laws, unless they conflict with God's commands. However, God does not want us to have a legalistic attitude, trying to perfectly obey every human law or rule (no matter how silly) to the point that we neglect our relationship with Jesus.
Question to Ponder: Is your faith very legalistic, or do you simply rely on your relationship with Jesus?
Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler,
And whoever is led astray by it is not wise.
Who has woe?
Who has sorrow?
Who has contentions?
Who has complaints?
Who has wounds without cause?
Who has redness of eyes?
Those who linger long at the wine,
Those who go in search of mixed wine.
Do not look on the wine when it is red,
When it sparkles in the cup,
When it swirls around smoothly;
At the last it bites like a serpent,
And stings like a viper.
Your eyes will see strange things,
And your heart will utter perverse things.
Yes, you will be like one who lies down in the midst of the sea,
Or like one who lies at the top of the mast, saying:
"They have struck me, but I was not hurt;
They have beaten me, but I did not feel it.
When shall I awake, that I may seek another drink?"
- Proverbs 20:1; 23:29-35
Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth!
Sing out the honor of His name;
Make His praise glorious.
Say to God,
"How awesome are Your works!
Through the greatness of Your power
Your enemies shall submit themselves to You.
All the earth shall worship You
And sing praises to You;
They shall sing praises to Your name." Selah
For You, O God, have tested us;
You have refined us as silver is refined.
You brought us into the net;
You laid affliction on our backs.
You have caused men to ride over our heads;
We went through fire and through water;
But You brought us out to rich fulfillment.
- Psalm 66:1-4, 10-12
Afterward Moses and Aaron went in and told Pharaoh, "Thus says the Lord God of Israel: Let My people go, that they may hold a feast to Me in the wilderness. " And Pharaoh said, "Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, nor will I let Israel go." ... And Pharaoh said, "Look, the people of the land are many now, and you make them rest from their labor!" ... So Moses returned to the Lord and said, "Lord, why have You brought trouble on this people? Why is it You have sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has done evil to this people; neither have You delivered Your people at all." Then the Lord said to Moses, "Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh. For with a strong hand he will let them go, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land." - Exodus 5:1-2, 5, 22-6:1
In a very short time, Moses had lost patience with God. But God would indeed deliver the Israelites--on His own timetable. They just had to wait a little while longer. We are often impatient, but we need to keep in mind that God's timing is always best!
Question to Ponder: How is your patience when you are waiting for God's plan to unfold?
The Lord is Just and Righteous
Yet the Lord testified against Israel and against Judah, by all of His prophets, every seer, saying, "Turn from your evil ways, and keep My commandments and My statutes, according to all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by My servants the prophets." Nevertheless they would not hear, but stiffened their necks, like the necks of their fathers, who did not believe in the Lord their God. And they rejected His statutes and His covenant that He had made with their fathers, and His testimonies which He had testified against them; they followed idols, became idolaters, and went after the nations who were all around them, concerning whom the Lord had charged them that they should not do like them. So they left all the commandments of the Lord their God, made for themselves a molded image and two calves, made a wooden image and worshiped all the host of heaven, and served Baal. ... until the Lord removed Israel out of His sight, as He had said by all His servants the prophets. So Israel was carried away from their own land to Assyria, as it is to this day. - 2 Kings 17:13-16, 23
Question to Ponder: Do we in this nation fear the Lord, following Him and keeping His commandments as we should?
Where Is Your Heart?
Therefore the Lord said:
"Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths
And honor Me with their lips,
But have removed their hearts far from Me,
And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men,
Therefore, behold, I will again do a marvelous work
Among this people,
A marvelous work and a wonder;
For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish,
And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden."
Woe to those who seek deep to hide their counsel far from the Lord,
And their works are in the dark;
They say, "Who sees us?" and, "Who knows us?"
- Isaiah 29:13-15
No Peace on Earth
"Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man's enemies will be those of his own household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it." - Matthew 10:34-39
Jesus never promised that we'll have peace on earth--quite the opposite, in fact. He does promise to give us internal peace if we accept Him as Savior and allow Him to do so, but He knows we will face trials and troubles on this earth. Why? Because people are stubborn and don't want to listen to the truth, so they allow the truth to be divisive. Also in this passage, Jesus talks about the family. Obviously, we are to love our families. However, if someone in your family tries to come between you and Jesus, then your relationship with Jesus should take the top priority.
Question to Ponder: Does any unsaved member of your family try to come between you and Jesus? Who comes first in your life?
The Battle in Your Mind, Part 1 of 3
If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. - Colossians 3:1-4
The wisdom Paul shares with us in these verses is vital to each and every Christian. It is so important for us to focus our minds on things above (things associated with God and His Kingdom) rather than insignificant worldly things. It can be very easy to get caught up in the things of this world and to fall away from the Lord as a result. So, how can we accomplish this? A good, consistent prayer life is one thing that can go a long way toward keeping our mind focused on the right things. Consistently spending time in God's Word will help as well. We also need to do things for God and for others rather than wasting time and energy focusing on our own selfish wants and desires. Rely more on Jesus and look to Him for patience, strength, and wisdom.
Question to Ponder: How much do you focus on things above, and how much do you focus on worldly things?
Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,
And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;
Lest the Lord see it, and it displease Him,
And He turn away His wrath from him.
Do not fret because of evildoers,
Nor be envious of the wicked;
For there will be no prospect for the evil man;
The lamp of the wicked will be put out.
My son, fear the Lord and the king;
Do not associate with those given to change;
For their calamity will rise suddenly,
And who knows the ruin those two can bring?
He who gives a right answer kisses the lips.
If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
For so you will heap coals of fire on his head,
And the Lord will reward you.
The north wind brings forth rain,
And a backbiting tongue an angry countenance.
- Proverbs 24:17-22, 26; 25:21-23
In You, O Lord, I put my trust; Let me never be put to shame.
Deliver me in Your righteousness, and cause me to escape;
Incline Your ear to me, and save me.
Be my strong refuge,
To which I may resort continually;
You have given the commandment to save me,
For You are my rock and my fortress.
Deliver me, O my God, out of the hand of the wicked,
Out of the hand of the unrighteous and cruel man.
For You are my hope, O Lord God;
You are my trust from my youth.
By You I have been upheld from birth;
You are He who took me out of my mother's womb.
My praise shall be continually of You.
- Psalm 71:1-6
The First Passover
For I will pass through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord. ... For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to strike you. - Exodus 12:12, 23
God tells the Israelites to use the blood from a firstborn, unblemished lamb to mark their doorposts. That night, on every doorpost that was not marked, the firstborn would die. This was the last of the ten plagues on the Egyptians, but to the Christian, this story is about much more than that. It is also a foretelling of what Jesus would later do for us. Jesus, God's firstborn, unblemished Son, would die for all of us. If we accept His gift of Salvation, God sees His blood in place of our sin, and He doesn't allow the destroyer (in this case, Satan), to strike us but instead gives us eternal life with Him.
Question to Ponder: When God looks at you, does He see your sin, or does the blood of Jesus cover your sins?
So we built the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height, for the people had a mind to work. ... So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of Elul, in fifty-two days. And it happened, when all our enemies heard of it, and all the nations around us saw these things, that they were very disheartened in their own eyes; for they perceived that this work was done by our God. - Nehemiah 4:6, 6:15-16
The part of this passage that really stood out to me is the last few words of the first verse where it says, "the people had a mind to work." This took place as the Israelites, in the midst of a long period of captivity, had started to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem. With enemies all around, they knew the work needed to be done quickly, and that is exactly what they did! They didn't waste a lot of time standing around arguing about who would do what. They just got to work, and with God's help, the whole wall was rebuilt in only 52 days. Also, because of this impressive feat, their enemies were able to see how powerful God truly is.
Question to Ponder: Are you willing to work hard for God when He asks you to?
Searching For What You Want to Hear
"Woe to the rebellious children," says the Lord,
"Who take counsel, but not of Me,
And who devise plans, but not of My Spirit,
That they may add sin to sin;
Who walk to go down to Egypt,
And have not asked My advice,
To strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh,
And to trust in the shadow of Egypt!
That this is a rebellious people,
Children who will not hear the law of the Lord;
Who say to the seers, "Do not see,"
And to the prophets, "Do not prophesy to us right things;
Speak to us smooth things, prophesy deceits.
Get out of the way,
Turn aside from the path,
Cause the Holy One of Israel
To cease from before us."
- Isaiah 30:1-2, 9-11
The Power of Jesus
But Jesus said to [His disciples], "They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat." And they said to Him, "We have here only five loaves and two fish." He said, "Bring them here to Me." Then He commanded the multitudes to sit down on the grass. And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitudes. So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained. Now those who had eaten were about five thousand men, besides women and children. - Matthew 14:16-21
I'm sure that we are all familiar with this story, one of the most well-known miracles of Jesus. But I encourage you to pause for a moment and really think about what Jesus wants us to learn from this story. I can think of at least two things. First, Jesus can use whatever we give Him, no matter how small it may seem, to bring glory to His Kingdom and to help those who are in need. Secondly, we can trust Jesus to always provide for our needs.
Question to Ponder: What does this miracle tell you about Jesus and what He can do for you?
The Battle in Your Mind, Part 2 of 3
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. - Colossians 3:5-11
Last Friday, we looked at the passage just before this one where Paul advises us to keep our minds focused on things above and not on the things of this world. Here, he gives two very specific lists of some things which we as Christians should avoid. Take a close look at these lists and evaluate yourself to see if you need to improve in any of these areas.
Question to Ponder: Which of these things do you need to work to put out of your mind?
A righteous man who falters before the wicked
Is like a murky spring and a polluted well.
It is not good to eat much honey;
So to seek one's own glory is not glory.
As snow in summer and rain in harvest,
So honor is not fitting for a fool.
Do you see a man wise in his own eyes?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.
The lazy man says, "There is a lion in the road!
A fierce lion is in the streets!"
As a door turns on its hinges,
So does the lazy man on his bed.
The lazy man buries his hand in the bowl;
It wearies him to bring it back to his mouth.
The lazy man is wiser in his own eyes
Than seven men who can answer sensibly.
He who passes by and meddles in a quarrel not his own
Is like one who takes a dog by the ears.
- Proverbs 25:26-27; 26:1, 12-17
I cried out to God with my voice--To God with my voice;
And He gave ear to me.
In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord;
My hand was stretched out in the night without ceasing;
My soul refused to be comforted.
Will the Lord cast off forever?
And will He be favorable no more?
Has His mercy ceased forever?
Has His promise failed forevermore?
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Has He in anger shut up His tender mercies? Selah
And I said, "This is my anguish;
But I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High."
I will remember the works of the Lord;
Surely I will remember Your wonders of old.
I will also meditate on all Your work,
And talk of Your deeds.
Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary;
Who is so great a God as our God?
You are the God who does wonders;
You have declared Your strength among the peoples."
- Psalm 77:1-2, 7-14
How Quickly We Forget
[When Pharaoh drew near, the Israelites] said to Moses, "Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt?" ... And Moses said to the people, "Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace." - Exodus 14:11, 13-14
It had only been a short time since God brought the ten plagues on the Egyptians and delivered His people out of the land of Egypt. But, sadly, the Israelites quickly forgot all that God had done for them, and began complaining. Why would God have delivered them, only to let them die in the wilderness? That wouldn't make much sense! But at the first sign of trouble, that's what the people started to worry about. We have to trust God through the good times and the bad, and He will never let us down. God didn't let the Israelites down; through Moses, He parted the Red Sea and allowed them all to cross over to safety.
Question to Ponder: What is something that God has done for you that you have since forgotten about?
And it was found written that Mordecai had told of Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king's eunuchs, the doorkeepers who had sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus. Then the king said, "What honor or dignity has been bestowed on Mordecai for this?" And the king's servants who attended him said, "Nothing has been done for him." ... So Haman came in, and the king asked him, "What shall be done for the man whom the king delights to honor?" Now Haman thought in his heart, "Whom would the king delight to honor more than me?" - Esther 6:2-3, 6
In this story, the king was simply asking for Haman's advice on how to honor Mordecai for his great deed. However, Haman was so struck on himself that he assumed the king was talking about him, so he told the king how he would like to be honored. Only after he shared his ideas with the king did he learn who would actually be honored--Mordecai. Thinking about yourself too much and making hasty assumptions are two things which almost always end up causing problems.
Question to Ponder: How often do you make hasty assumptions that turn out to be false?
Boasting Against the Lord
Thus says the king: Do not let Hezekiah deceive you, for he will not be able to deliver you; nor let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord, saying, "The Lord will surely deliver us; this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria." ... Beware lest Hezekiah persuade you, saying, "The Lord will deliver us." Has any one of the gods of the nations delivered its land from the hand of the king of Assyria?" ... Then Hezekiah prayed to the Lord, saying: ... "Truly, Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands, and have cast their gods into the fire; for they were not gods, but the work of men's hands--wood and stone. Therefore they destroyed them. Now therefore, O Lord our God, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord, You alone." ... Then the angel of the Lord went out, and killed in the camp of the Assyrians one hundred and eighty-five thousand; and when people arose early in the morning, there were the corpses--all dead. So Sennacherib king of Assyria departed and went away, returned home, and remained at Nineveh [where he was killed]. - Isaiah 36:14-15, 18; 37:15, 18-20, 36-37