Applications from 1 Kings
If you read the last post, Ask Someone Else, please skip ahead to the application.
In the text here, Ahab has grown impatient with Syria. After 3 years of peace they still have not fulfilled their treaty and given up the lands promised. Ahab and Jehoshaphat (Kings of Israel and Judah) decide together to go and take Ramoth as it is rightly theirs. Before they do Jehoshaphat asks Ahab to seek God’s wisdom/blessing. Ahab gathers 400 prophets who all tell him it is God’s will to go to war. Jehoshaphat asks if there is not another prophet of the Lord. Ahab says there is Micaiah, but he hates him because he never brings good news!
Micaiah eventually tells the Kings that they should not go to war. This angers Ahab and he decides Micaiah should be put in prison. As we will find out next time, they go to war and Ahab is killed.
Obviously, Micaiah could be believed, but the leaders around him wouldn’t believe him. Even though he was trying to go with the flow! Once you become someone who sticks with the Truth, there is no turning back.
Ahab didn’t like what he heard. Even after hearing what he needed to hear from 400 others, 1 man’s words were messing things up. This could alter his plans with Jehoshaphat. This, if true, would mean the end of his life/reign. When you are wrong, the truth hurts. Take the “out” God gives and avoid the pain.
Micaiah suffered physically. He was hit in the face. He was publicly defaced. He was threatened with prison. We aren’t promised that things will always go well for us as we follow truth. At times, the Truth will hurt us.
Do you see the contrast here? There is Ahab and his 400 prophets with what seems like a good idea and plan. Then there is Jehoshaphat, seemingly just along for the ride… and Micaiah, the prophet nobody likes and who has bad news.
While much can be said about the contrasting personalities, the methodology, and the forthcoming end result…the key to this entire story seems to be the fact that God is offering Ahab an escape from himself, but he is too “right” to take it.
Pastor Chanc Strickland
Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN
This blog post was adapted from a sermon preached at Harpeth Baptist Church in the summer of 2012.