The One Year® Chronological Bible, NKJV (Tyndale, 2013), June 13
Ahab finds himself in a sticky situation with the Syrians and appeals to Jehoshaphat king of Judah to join him in battle against Ben Hadad, whom he had previously failed to kill, and the Syrian army. Jehoshaphat urges Ahab to seek the counsel of the LORD, the true God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Ahab instead seeks counsel from 400 false prophets who prophesy that the Arameans will fall before Ahab and Jehoshaphat’s armies; however, Micaiah, the prophet of the LORD, prophesies of Israel’s defeat, “If you ever return in peace, the LORD has not spoken by me” (2 Chron. 18:27). As a result of this prophecy Ahab casts him into prison.
Ahab thinks that he can outsmart God by disguising himself during the battle with the Arameans to prevent his own death. A random arrow pierces through a chink in his armor, and he dies.
People disguise themselves in many ways:
- Some people with parched souls camouflage their spiritual poverty with religious garb. They use religion to pretend that they are better than they really are.
- Some religious people create standards by which they honor themselves and judge others. They ignore their own blind spots and sinful hearts by focusing attention on the flaws of others. They wear garbs of legalism.
- Some wealthy people accumulate wealth to conceal their spiritual poverty or the emptiness of their souls.
- Some people use psychology to redefine sin as a disorder that doesn’t require repentance. They hide behind psychological disguises.
- Some people use the pursuit of physical fitness to disarm or deny mortality. They hide behind the cloak of fitness.
In the military, snipers have a saying, “You may run, but you’ll just die tired.” You can’t outrun the sniper; even more, you cannot hide from God. Ahab tries. Ahab loses.
Just as a random arrow finds a chink in Ahab’s armor, so death and judgment eventually find all people. No disguise hides a wicked man from God. Ahab actually thought that he could outsmart God. He could not.
Questions from today’s chronological Bible reading (1 Kings 22:10-53; 2 Chronicles 18:9-20:30):
What does Micaiah’s response to King Ahab’s question about the Syrians reveal about the spiritual state of the prophets who served during his reign? How does Ahab seek to avert his death? What does this reveal about Ahab and his view of God?
Why does the LORD send a seer to rebuke Jehoshaphat? What does this reveal about helping wicked people?
Review Solomon ’s prayer at the dedication of the temple—1 Kings 8:22-53. What is the basis of Jehoshaphat ’s prayer in response to the impending threat of the Syrians?