The couriers traveled from city to city in the land of Ephraim and Manasseh as far as Zebulun, but the inhabitants laughed at them and mocked them. But some from Asher, Manasseh, and Zebulun humbled themselves and came to Jerusalem. – 2 Chronicles 30:10-11
How do you measure the success of your ministry? When Hezekiah sent couriers from city-to-city inviting everyone back to Jerusalem for a renewal of the Passover feast, some laughed and mocked the message (and the messengers); however, others humbled themselves and came. Did the couriers fail or succeed in their task? How can we know? Perhaps, they did neither.
Some mocked and others humbled, but the text does not tell us who completely repented. Their responses do not indicate success. Of course, responses never do … at least for the courier. If the courier had wanted to increase his success rate all he had to do was make the message more palatable. You know, throw in an extra benefit or two … “if you show up you might also win a new donkey cart!”
Success for a messenger will always be simple obedience to the instructions he has been given. A – Stick to the message … and B – Deliver it on time. Anything less is failure. Anything more is reward.
Not only must the message be correctly delivered, but the messenger himself must be such as to recommend it to acceptance. – Joseph Barber Lightfoot