Highlights In Today's Reading:
The judgment of God upon the wicked Jezebel and Ahab is foretold and comes to pass. We need to be careful who we associate with. See the serious and tragic results of a good king's alliance with Ahab. The book ends on a sad note as, once again, we see a wicked king reign over Israel who provoked to anger the Lord God of Israel (22:51-53).
Jehoshaphat, King of Judah, joined affinity (allied himself through marriage) with Ahab (II Chronicles 18:1; II Kings 8:18). In the third year of Israel's peace with Syria, Ahab entertained Jehoshaphat with royal hospitality and then took advantage of the occasion to persuade him to combine their military forces against the growing power of Syria. When war appeared imminent, Ahab called all 400 of his prophets, but none from the True God, for counsel. They unanimously declared in favor of going to war and assured the two kings that they would be victorious. But godly Jehoshaphat, having an uneasy feeling with the unanimous decision while facing such a grave crisis, asked for prophets of God to be called. Yes, Ahab said: There is yet one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may inquire of the Lord: but I hate him (I Kings 22:8).
Ahab sent the messengers to get Micaiah. The messengers attempted to persuade Micaiah to agree with the false prophets and assured him that by doing so he would win the king's favor and be released from prison. But neither fears nor favors tempted Micaiah to betray his calling. He refused to be intimidated even by the presence of two kings and his 400 "experts." Micaiah's one vote of opposition was rejected by Ahab who fulfilled the very prophecy proclaimed by Micaiah. There were 400 yes votes to one no vote — a miserable minority, but truth is seldom with the majority. Though he was slapped, dragged back to prison, and threatened with cruel treatment, the faithful Micaiah persisted in maintaining the truthfulness of his message and called upon the people to bear witness to it (22:27-28).
God's presence can transform a dungeon into a palace when one is aware of God's presence. I saw the Lord was the response of this lonely prophet (22:19). A revelation from the Lord revealed the shallowness of earthly greatness. Many have sacrificed truth and good conscience for popular opinion or earthly treasures. Micaiah chose to wait for future rewards.
We admire the Apostle Paul who said: None of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the Gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20:24).
Thought for Today:
We must be careful with whom or what we align our lives. Only by reading God's Word can we keep from making wrong decisions. The Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil (II Thessalonians 3:3).
By Micaiah, who would say only what God instructed him to say (I Kings 22:14). Jesus faithfully told others only what God told Him to say. Then said Jesus unto them . . . I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father hath taught Me, I speak these things John 8:28; 12:49-50).
21:27 went softly =went sadly, subdued; 22:3 be still =do nothing; 22:10 void =open, perhaps a threshing floor; 22:11 push =core; 22:13 one mouth =unanimously; 22:16 adjure =put you under oath, make you swear; 22:34 at a venture =randomly, without specific aim; harness =armor; 22:48 broken =wrecked.
Pray for The Arabic, English, and Spanish International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts sponsored by Dr John A Hash • Bible Pathway Accountant: Joe Sarsfield • Government Official: Rep. Robert Scott (VA) • Country: Moldova (4.3 million) southeastern Europe • Major languages: Rumanian and Russian • Limited religious freedom • 66% Russian/Romanian Orthodox; 2.5% Catholic (Greek and Roman); 1.7% Protestant (mainly Baptist); 1.5% Jewish; .2% Muslim; 28.1% Agnostic/Atheist/Other • Prayer Suggestion: Remember that faith is a vital tool in your prayer life to ensure your prayers are answered (Romans 12:3).
Optional Reading: Romans 3
Memory Verse for the Week: James 2:26