And Asa was diseased in his feet … until his disease was exceeding great… 2 Chronicles 16:12 KJV
Asa became diseased in his feet. His disease was severe… 2Chronicles 16:12 NASB
Uzziah was wroth, and had a censer in his hand to burn incense: and while he was wroth with the priests, the leprosy even rose up in his forehead before the priests in the house of the LORD…” 2Chronicles 26:19 KJV
But Uzziah, with a censer in his hand for burning incense, was enraged; and while he was enraged with the priests, the leprosy broke out on his forehead before the priests in the house of the LORD… 2Chronicles 26:19 NASB
Both Asa and Uzziah were “good” kings. Concerning Asa, it is recorded that “He did that which was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God” (2Chron 14:2). Of Uzziah, it is written likewise, “He did that which was right in the sight of the Lord” (2Chron 26:4).
But Asa had a problem. Early in his reign, he had been marked by a remarkable trust in God. Further on in his reign, when attacked by King Baasha of Israel, he resorted to seeking help from Syria. For this, Hanani, a prophet of God, rebuked him. Asa failed to submit to the Word of God, flew into a rage, and imprisoned him. He ended his reign with his feet diseased. Likely the “sweet odors and divers kinds of spices” with which he was buried were an attempt to neutralize the smell of the corruption of his feet.
Uzziah also had a problem, it was not a failure to bow to the Word of God; it was the lifting up of his heart in pride and rising above the Word of God; the result was he attempted to be a priest as well as king. For him, the punishment was leprosy in his forehead. The punishment fit the crime as the thinking was so wrong before God.
Thus, two good kings faltered near the end of their reigns. One failed to bow; one was lifted up. One was diseased in his feet; one was diseased in his forehead.
As always, the failure of the best of men reminds us of a Man Who never faltered in the way. His steps and His thoughts were always in accord with the Word of God. He never failed to obey it and never lifted Himself above it. In the image which Daniel saw (Dan 2), the head was of gold but the feet of clay. Everything linked with man deteriorates. There was no deterioration with Him. From head to foot, He is pure gold. The seamless robe of John 19 pictures this perfection as well. It was woven from the top to the bottom and was without seam.
His feet were pure and His head untarnished. At the close of His ministry, Matthew and Mark tell us of a woman, Mary, who could anoint His head with an alabaster box of precious ointment. John, in recording the same scene, tells us that she anointed His feet. His feet and His head could both be anointed and be marked by the fragrance of the ointment. Unlike Asa and Uzziah, His feet and His head, His mind and His movements, were always pleasing to God and deserving of our worship.
While Scripture honors Nicodemus for bringing the 100-pound weight of spices and mentions the women who prepared spices and ointments for Him, were they necessary? Would His holy body have seen any corruption while in the tomb?