Because the Lord had smitten him - "Because the Word of the Lord had brought the plague upon him." - T.
Death was denounced by the Law against those who invaded the office of the priest; and death had been the actual punishment of Korah and his company. Uzziah feared lest from him also the extreme penalty should be exacted, and therefore hasted to quit the sacred building where his bare presence was a capital crime.
Now we are not warring against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places. The Lord would encourage us to look to Him as the source of all our strength, the One who is able to help us. We may look to men, and they will give us counsel, and yet this may be defeated; but when the God of Israel undertakes work for us, He will make it a success. We want to know that we are right before God; if we are not right before Him, then we want to make an earnest effort to come in right relation to Him. We must individually do something ourselves. We are not to risk our eternal interest upon guesswork. We must set everything right; we must follow out the requirements of God, and then expect God to work with our efforts. 2 Chronicles 20:15. God works in us by the light of His truth. We are to be obedient to all His commandments. 3BC 1132.1
Oh, that we could take this point into consideration, that the work in which we are engaged is not our work, but God's work, and we as humble instruments are laborers together with Him; and with an eye single to God's glory, not mistake the beginning of the Christian life for its consummation, but see the necessity of training upon the earth to prepare us for doing God's will! We are not to lift up ourselves, not to be self-confident, but to trust in God, knowing that He is willing and able to help us. God will work with His people, but we want to be in that position where our trust and confidence will become firm in Him (The Review and Herald, May 10, 1887). 3BC 1132.2Read in context »
The long reign of Uzziah [also known as Azariah] in the land of Judah and Benjamin was characterized by a prosperity greater than that of any other ruler since the death of Solomon, nearly two centuries before. For many years the king ruled with discretion. Under the blessing of Heaven his armies regained some of the territory that had been lost in former years. Cities were rebuilt and fortified, and the position of the nation among the surrounding peoples was greatly strengthened. Commerce revived, and the riches of the nations flowed into Jerusalem. Uzziah's name “spread far abroad; for he was marvellously helped, till he was strong.” 2 Chronicles 26:15. PK 303.1
This outward prosperity, however, was not accompanied by a corresponding revival of spiritual power. The temple services were continued as in former years, and multitudes assembled to worship the living God; but pride and formality gradually took the place of humility and sincerity. Of Uzziah himself it is written: “When he was strong, his heart was lifted up to his destruction: for he transgressed against the Lord his God.” Verse 16. PK 303.2Read in context »