Solomon wisely wrote,
“If a man digs a pit, he will fall into it; if a man rolls a stone, it will roll back on him” (Proverbs 26:27).
This could not have been truer of King Rezin of Aram. Rezin ruled over Aram, a nation to the northeast of Israel and Judah that occasionally fought with them over territory. It seems that Rezin was trying to form an alliance of nations to resist the advance of the growing Assyrian Empire, but when King Ahaz of Judah refused to join, Rezin teamed up with King Pekah of Israel, and perhaps even with the Edomites and the Philistines, to attack Judah (2 Kings 16; 2 Chronicles 28:16–19).
In an act of desperation, Ahaz turned to Assyria to help him. He made Judah a subservient kingdom to Assyria and paid the king of Assyria a large amount of silver and gold to attack Rezin and Pekah. The plan worked. The Assyrians annexed the territory of Aram and much of Israel, and they killed Rezin.
Unfortunately, this also appears to have whetted the Assyrians’ appetite for the region, because they later returned and attacked Judah as well. Isaiah prophesied about Rezin’s downfall to Assyria in Isaiah 7–9.
He called Rezin and Pekah “two smoldering stubs of firewood” (Isaiah 7:4) and assured Ahaz that they would not succeed. Sadly, Ahaz did not trust the Lord and took matters into his own hands to gain the help of Assyria.