Dr. Tony Evans is the founder and senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, founder and president of The Urban Alternative, chaplain of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, and author of over 100 books, booklets & Bible studies. His radio broadcast, The Alternative with Dr. Tony Evans, can be heard on more than 1,300 US outlets daily and in more than 130 countries.

you see many of us the problem of us

getting along with other people is our

inability to get along with ourselves

everything visible and physical is

preceded by something invisible and

spirit the consequences we are dealing

with in our lives in our homes in our

culture we are dealing with them because

there is a gap between where God is and

where we are he wants to know that you

want him and not just wanted stuff see a

lot of folk go to church to gets God

stuff but who don’t want the God who

gives it so if you’re in distress

don’t let that drive you away draw you

near when you get close and want to live

for him want to please him want to honor

him want to exalt him want to draw near

to him then heaven opens up and he lets

you find


God tells Hezekiah in second Kings 20

it’s time to say goodbye through the

prophet Isaiah he comes and he says God

told me to tell you set your house in

order or get your affairs settled make

sure your will is intact make sure your

family understands that it’s terminal

there will be no coming back from this

illness you’re going to die nothing is

more painful than to run into a terminal

situation a situation that offers no

solution now here it was a physical

illness but terminal situations can show

up in all kinds of shapes and sizes

maybe there’s a terminal relationship

maybe there’s a terminal hope all hope

is gone maybe it’s the economics are

terminal you don’t see any way out and

it throws you to tears to discouragement

and to hopelessness nobody you know no

place you can go and nothing that you

can do can fix it it is in this context

that we read that Hezekiah turned his

face to the wall and prayed to the Lord

he was looking at Isaiah but now when he

heard the news from the Prophet he

turned his face to the wall and the

Bible says he wept bitterly he wept and

cried like a baby

to hear the bad news that there is no

solution and that really is no solution

if God said you’re gonna die that this

came from God God said it’s over God

said it’s get your affairs in order what

am I going to do if God says it well the

only thing you can do is go to the God

who said it it says he turned his face

to the wall and he went to God you

decreed that it was over so today I’m

talking to folk who think it’s over

whatever over means for you and if

you’re not in an over situation keep

living you go hit an over situation a

situation where it appears to be

terminal hopeless no solution and God is

right in the mix we’re told Hezekiah

prayed and when Hezekiah prayed in

verses 3 and 4 mainly verse 3 he says I

walked before you I was truthful I gave

you my whole heart and I did what was

good you know when he gave God a credit


he says God don’t you remember that I

hung in there another phone quit on you

then I followed you and other folk ran

away from you that I stuck to the truth

and didn’t buy a lie don’t you remember

look at my credit report now when he

asked God to remember God does not have

a memory issue in chapter 32 verses of

second chronicles verses 4 24 to 26 we

told that he had some issues issue a

pride and that pride got him sick and

God says you this is it but even though

he had a flaw in his credit report when

you looked over the whole of his walk

there were spiritual consistency without

being perfect let me ask you a question

if you were in a terminal situation and

you show God your spiritual credit


how would it read you tell me you will

spend time with me you tell me you’re

gonna get to know me you tell me you’re

gonna feast on my word you tell me

you’re gonna be faithful and you’re

giving you tell me you’re gonna give

some of your time for service but I’m

ticked a click click click check in your

report and I don’t see consistency here

I know you’re not perfect but I don’t

even see consistency on that day when

you’re going to be in a terminal

situation what’s your credit report look

like he gives him a credit report and he

says I have followed you I have hung out

with you I have stuck with your truth he

turns to pray why because God will put

us in situations where he is our only

way out

well there’s no person you can talk to

no deal you can cut


I studied the Bible in college for four

years exclude the Bible’s before you is

better than the master’s degree another

four years we’re getting a doctoral

degree and then I’ve been preaching all

of these years and I’m still learning

new things from this awesome

inexhaustibility world of games that’s

why I’m so excited about the twenty

heaven Study Bible and its accompanying

works the Tony Evans Bible Commentary it

will take all of this training and this

teaching and make it available to you to

understand utilize and apply God’s most



it says he wept bitterly but he matched

his weeping with his credit report a lot

of times we go God to God with our tears

without a good report and we wonder why

he’s not responding no he he had a great

credit report but he was in a terminal

situation so he prays and he cries out

to God one day if it has not come yet

you’re going to be I’m going to be we’re

going to be in a terminal situation in

other words a situation we can’t fix and

nobody else can help us and the only out

is God you cannot decide on that day to

change your credit report you have to

have built that up along the way cuz

you’re gonna need to cash it in on that

day Hezekiah cries out to God and says

this is my report and he’s crying for

mercy God didn’t tell us

Isaiah was gone out into the middle of

the court the word of the Lord came him

saying verse 5 returned and said

Hezekiah the leader of my people thus

saith the Lord God your father I have

heard your prayer and I’ve seen your

tears no you didn’t I have heard your

prayers and I have seen your tears so

the first thing is he prayed he gave

something he gave God something to hear

and it included his credit report since

I’ve heard your prayer but I’ve also

seen your tears I’ve heard what you said

prayer but I’ve also seen how you feel

I’ve heard your words but I’ve also read

your heart

I’ve heard your speech but I’ve also

felt the depth of your pain let me say

something about God he’s emotional now

we don’t talk a lot about the emotions

of God but we see it all in Scripture we

see where God gets angry the Bible says

the joy of the Lord so he can get joyful

the Bible talks about God being pleased

or being pleasured loving the feeling

that there are all kinds of statements

about God’s feelings you don’t just want

to reach God’s ears you want to touch

God’s heart because he’s a feeling kind

of God and he says I’ve heard your words

but I’ve also felt your pain what the

Bible says about Jesus is he came to

sympathize with our hurts that’s a

that’s a feeling thing that’s why when

we want to just throw stuff up to God

without trying to connect with God we

want him to hear our words would not

feel our hearts you know how it is with

people when they talking to us about

they feeling us then that we we not we

not connecting on this point and they

can repeat back what you said but they

don’t feel why you said it we have that

in human reactions and dynamics all the

time God does not want to hear you he

wants to feel you and nothing enhances a

relationship like when what is said is

also what is felt because when the words

touch the heart you got a thing going on

in he said I’ve heard your words and

I’ve seen your tears I I feel you what

happened he says I will heal you

on the third day you’re going to go up

to the house of the Lord

meaning you will get your praise on you

crying the day but I’m gonna give you a

reason to shout three days from now I’m

gonna heal you wait a minute it’s just a

couple of verses ago and today you gonna

die but it wasn’t just a couple of

verses ago and by the time Isaiah got

halfway out in the courtyard

God watch this now changed his mind oh

did you hear that God changed his mind

now this puts us in a theological

conundrum we talked about this a little

bit last week but let me just go a

little further today the Bible declares

that God does not change God says I am

the Lord that change it not Jesus is the

same yesterday today and forever God

cannot change he says that over and over

and over again in Scripture but we just

saw God change he said you will die as I

said the Lord couple of minutes later

you will not die thus saith the Lord so

we went from a terminal situation to a

15-year reprieve and I was only in the

center of a couple of minutes cuz I then

just walked through the middle of the

courtyard and the only thing that

happened between what God said the first

time and what God said the second time

was a prayer full of emotion that’s only

been this happened how can I change this

God his immutability change god’s

characteristics mercy grace truth love

holiness righteousness of militants

omnipresence submissions ferocity God

has character qualities those character


are unchangeable he will always be what

he has always been you and I go through

changes we’re not the same today as we

used to be we don’t look the same we

don’t act the same

we don’t smell the same there are

changes that occur in our life over time

God cannot change his essential nature

but he changed while God cannot change

his nature he can and does change his

action he said it again God’s nature

cannot change but his actions may change

how then does God change this action

without changing its nature since his

nature cannot change but his action as

in this case does change so God changes

his mind and he says you are going to

live you are not going to die he

leveraged influence with God so then

please notice something else I’m going

to deliver you verse 6 I’m gonna give

you 15 years and when I give you 15

years and deliver you I will deliver

this city

from the hand of the king of Assyria and

defend the city for my own sake and for

the sake of my servant David okay watch


when you in a terminal situation and God

changes his mind and reverses something

and gives you a new lease on life

whatever that terminal scenario is it’s

not just for you

she is not just for you he says when I

give it as 15 years it’s not just so you

can go on party I’m giving you in this

15 years because I want to use you to

deliver my people from the attack of the

Assyrians in other words I’m the only

reason I’m turning this around round

it’s not only to give you life because I

know that’s what you’re praying for but

I also want to give you purpose and I

want to give you a new opportunity to do

something for me

see most of the time when we’re in a

terminal situation it’s only about me

myself and I and I want God to do

something for me that is in my best

interest and that’s okay but it can’t be

limited to you when God gives you a new

opportunity he wants you to be a

blessing not just be blessed and that’s

the problem with a lot of this blessing

stuff out here today I want to be

blessed I want to be rich I wanted to

have this I want to have that which in

itself is not a problem unless it’s by

itself unless it only involves you see

the prayer you need to pray is God I’m

in a terminal situation I need to affect

another part of your character I need

you to reverse the situation so that not

only can my situation be changed but so

that I can be a conduit to change

somebody else so if it’s only about you

then you missing God says I got a bigger

plan for you than just you live in 15

years I want to deliver and I want to

deliver the whole city from the

Assyrians so then he tells Isaiah take a

cake of figs and he took them and laid

it on the boil and he recovered okay so

he’s dying from an infection he’s got a

boil that’s going to kill him which

means he has an infection running

through his body God tells the Prophet

go get a fig cake put the fig cake on

the boil to suck out the infection so

that he can live so God gives Isaiah not

the doctor

a medical solution the Hezekiah is the

king so he can get any doctor he wants

but because this was a spiritual issue

and not merely a medical issue God comes

up with a whole nother plan to heal him

apart from the plan

that the professionals would use because

if the professionals could have used it

he wouldn’t be terminally ill in the

first place God is not against medicine

in fact all the medicine you use is

birthed from something God has already

made so so any doctors using any

medicine has got to depend on something

God has already made to produce the

medicine that we take for our illnesses

it’s nothing wrong with using medicine

it’s everything wrong with using

medicine without God see it started with

God he got right with God God said I’m

gonna hear you then the medicine worked

so he hears a word from God

Isaiah does to help a sick King he puts

the fig cake on him it sucks out the

infection and now he’s healed but all

Hezekiah has a question he says this he

says what shall be the sign verse 8 that

the Lord will heal me okay now he was

just told the Lord go healing okay but

every now and again you need to see


I heard what you said prophet Isaiah I

heard what you said preacher and I like

kind of believed it but part of me is

from Missouri you got to show me

something signs in the Bible were

designed to confirm the Word of God God

is not against confirming signs he is a

gang signs that are not synched with his

word so his word can be confirmed by a

visual so Isaiah says and landscape

versus he says God told me tell you this

will be the sign and you get to choose

do you want the Sun to move forward 10

steps or do you want the Sun to go back

10 steps

translation this is the first daylight

saving times in history do you one of

them spring forward or fall back God

offers him a daylight saving time he

says I’ll speed up the time or I’ll slow

down the time you choose Hezekiah says

well speeding up the time I’m not sure

I’m gonna buy that cuz that one looks

too easy that’s what he says he says let

me take the harder one let’s see you

back up the time now they didn’t have

watches and clocks what we do they had

more Sun dials and a half step was a


so as the afternoon went on the Sun

would roll up down the steps and it

would expand as the Sun got brighter so

when he asked for the Sun to go back

he’s asking for a regression of time

he’s asking for the Sun to do opposite

to what the Sun does he says cuz that’s

the harder thing now here’s the question

why did God give him that sign oh I mean

he could have said I’ll just show you a

sign or he could have give but he used

the Sun for the sign

well you remember now that the issue is

Assyria is going to attack the name of

the Assyrian God is a sewer a s su ara

that’s the Assyrian God and he’s the god

of the Sun so he gives him a sign tied

to the ministry that he wants him to

perform once he’s healed and I work it’s

not just any old sign it’s a relevant

side cuz I must show you and the sign I

give you about your healing that the job

I’m getting ready to give you to take

care of the Assyrians I can handle their

God and if I can handle their God

because their God is supposed to be the

God of the Sun and i’ma tell their God

what’s gonna happen with the Sun and

their God’s not gonna stop me from doing

with my son when I want done so so their

God is gonna know that when I come up

and I show up there God’s not gonna be

able to help them against you when you

were healed doing my will because i’ma

beat their God so all this was tied to

his side and the Bible says has the

concent let it roll back and it rolled

back ten steps time went backwards God

has you for greater Kingdom purpose and

he wants to use you even if he allows a

terminal situation a situation that

looks hopeless

so I want to challenge you as we wind

down here’s my challenge change your

credit report

change your credit report coz when that

time comes you want to be able to say to

God God look at my credit report I

haven’t been perfect I have failed but

lord I have picked up and I have decided

to surrender to you to pursue a

relationship with you

to love the Lord my God with all my

heart my mind my Microsoft to serve you

and to serve others god I am yours I am

yours and the good thing about a credit

report is that they will allow you to

let it change they’ll allow bad credit

to become medium credit to become

awesome credit so no matter how bad your

credit report used to be change your

credit so that when terminal day comes

you can offer God something he can

respond to


God has flexibility in his sovereign


he has such fluidity that will allow him

to change his mind without compromising

his sovereignty now that’s a trick that

we can’t pull off too well but he can

God has sovereign boundaries but within

those boundaries he allows things to

ship not in his character but in his

action or in his reaction and one of the

things he responds to in changing his

mind is prayer when we pray like when

Moses prayed and God repented about his

previously determined action don’t you

need God to change his mind about some

things in your life I know I want him to

change his mind about some things in

time so I’m gonna pray and I want you to

pray God change your mind about the

negative actions that we deserve and

have earned and turn them around for our

good in your glory