April 18, 2017
2 Chronicles 18-Part 2
LET IT GLOW
*Oops, folks, I had to make a correction on yesterday's post: Jehoshaphat did not marry Ahab's daughter, but it was his son that did. I hope you caught that before I did.
Also, this is lengthy, but important lessons are here for us to learn from, so please read it all the way through.
Well, I can't point my finger at this king. When I was a teenager, I made some wrong decisions and almost got myself in a very bad situation. If God had not opened my eyes and rescued me, what a mess my life could have been. King Jehoshaphat did get into a bad situation. Shall we see if he as rescued?
There are a lot of nuggets to find in this chapter:
- Jehoshaphat had great riches and was highly esteemed in Judah. This was a sign of God's blessing. (Although, it may have been a downfall, too.)
- He should have known better than to allow and encourage his son, Jehoram, to marry the daughter of wicked Jezebel and Ahab. (We read of Prophet Elijah's showdown against the 450 prophets of Baal, Jezebel had Naboth killed so the king could get his land, and Ahab caused 3 years of famine for Israel because of disobedience in worshiping idols.)
- Before Jehosaphat joined forces with Ahab against Ben-hadad, he wanted to find out what the Lord had to say about the matter, whether they would be victorious or not. (Ahab had previously joined with Ben-hadad of Syria to fight Assyria. Evidently, Ben-hadad had not kept an agreement to return all of Israel's cities.)
- Ahab's 400 false prophets told the kings to go ahead, for God would give them victory. They always pleased their king. Jehosaphat was not convinced of God's approval.
- He asked for a prophet of the Lord to come so they could ask the same of him. (Micaiah was summoned, but had always prophesized bad things for Ahab, so he was reluctant to ask Micaiah again.) What a wise decision.
- Micaiah said that he would say only what God said to him-Israel's master would be killed, meaning Ahab.
- This prophet had a vision of heavenly activity, where the heavenly armies were asked by the Lord who would go entice King Ahab to go into battle against Ramoth-gilead so he could be killed. (This reminds me of Job's sufferings to be allowed for his testing of faith.)
- The volunteer spirit's plan was to inspire all of Ahab's prophets to speak lies, as it happened.
- The LORD pronounced Ahab's doom, Micaiah told the kings.
Do we hear the truth, even if it slaps us in the face?
Speaking of slapped in the face, that truthful prophet got slapped by Zedekiah, who said, "Since when did the Spirit of the LORD leave me to speak to you?" Micaiah replied, "You will find out soon enough when you are trying to hide in some secret room."
Ahab ordered Micaiah to be put into prison until the king returned from the battle. What a mess. Israel's king was so deep in sin and rebellion that he ordered a godly man to be punished for delivering God's message.
Do we recognize the truth, even if it slaps us in the face? How do we react when truth about our sins is revealed to us?
LET IT GROW
So what happened? Did these two kings go to battle in spite of the warning? Were they successful or did the prophecy come true?
- Israel and Judah went into battle against Ramoth-gilead, led by their kings.
- King Ahab had a plan, one in which he tried to get Jehoshaphat killed-Ahab would disguise himself and Jehoshaphat would wear his royal robes. Jo went along with it. They did it. What a stupid plan for Jo, I don't mind saying so either. Why did this king not see that he would be a sitting duck for the arrows?
- The enemy's King Aram, ordered his chariot commanders to attack only the king of Israel. They thought it was the man in the royal robes, but not so. They went after Jehoshaphat instead of Ahab.
- Jehoshaphat called out and the LORD saved him. God turned the attackers away from chasing him.
- Get this, an Aramean soldier randomly shot an arrow at the Israelite troops and it hit Ahab between the joints of his armor. Do you suppose an angel was riding upon that arrow guiding it?
- Ahab ordered his chariot be turned around. "Get me out of here! I'm badly wounded!" Ahab instructed.
- The battle continued all that day, with Ahab propping himself up in his chariot facing the Aramean. That evening, just as the sun was setting, he died.
Ahab, the spiritual harlot, was associated with the physical harlots at his death, according to the Word of God. Ahab's death fulfilled the prophecies spoken by Elijah and Micaiah. (MacArthur)
Although Jehoshaphat was faithful to follow in his father Asa's ways of doing what pleased the Lord, he also followed in his faulty ways of not closing down all the high places of idolatry.
Oooeee! Jehoshaphat got himself surrounded by trouble, but the Lord rescued him anyway.
Isn't that like us? We cry out to the Lord to rescue us after we got our self into a mess? Or is it just me that does that?
He should have stayed away from Ahab and kept his son from that wicked family. They will regret it later.
LET IT GO
Seek the Lord's will and do it.
Make sure I go to the right places, associate with the right people, do the right things-with godly believers.