TheShiningLight

Preparing the Way of the Lord

1 Kings 19 – 20

1 Kings 19

Announcement 29 Nov 2018:   See this important new article at the COG News site.

Upon hearing that the priests of baal had been killed, Jezebel sought to kill Elijah. 

We see here that Jezebel seduced people into sexual immorality and idol worship, and we know that both of these things are types of spiritual adultery against the Creator our espoused Husband.  Further, the eating of things sacrificed to idols is typical of internalizing spiritual error into our minds; like the abomination of exalting a man between the people and God in the Nicolaitane church government system.

By being zealous for men and organizations of men we have become spiritual adulterers and idolaters against the Word of God and our espoused spiritual Husband.

Revelation 2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.

These are generally humanly good folks in the Ekklesia who love their neighbor and are very kind and charitable, but lacking a zeal to keep the whole Word and Will of God. 

Jezebel is a type of Baalism, or the Babylonian Roman Nicolaitane system of obeying men as our idols; instead of fully zealously living by every Word of God.  Today we follow Jezebel in permitting seducers and deceivers in the assemblies to teach the false traditions of men and entice the brethren away from any zeal to learn and keep the whole Word and Will of God. 

Those with the Thyatira attitude, tolerate false teachings and permit people to commit spiritual adultery against our espoused spiritual Husband and the Word of God by following idols of men in place of zealously living by every Word of God!

These people were given warnings and time to repent, just as today’s spiritual Ekklesia has been warned and given time to repent of this same sin of exalting a layer of men as our idols to come between the brethren and God. 

Elders and leaders can be excellent helps as long as they focus us on God; yet prove all things and follow ONLY what is consistent with the whole Word of God!

2:21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.

Those with this attitude of tolerating the sin of idolizing men above the whole Word of God to obey men without question and to follow them contrary to the Word of God: are proud of their misguided love of men and will not repent of being unfaithful to the whole Word of God, therefore they will be cast into great tribulation. 

This proves that there will be those with this problem at the end time.  In fact this is an overspreading sin in today’s church of God. Jesus Christ calls on us to repent of this sin!

2:22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.

Because of the correction of the great tribulation ALL of the  seven “churches,”  will learn to exalt the Eternal and the whole Word and Will of God above all others! 

Jesus Christ will judge us by ALL of our deeds, not just those deeds that are good, but by ALL  our works! 

Appearances can be deceiving.  Sometimes even  great charities can hide much evil doctrine!

2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins [kidneys, hidden sensitive places] and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

1 Kings 19:1 And Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and withal how he had slain all the prophets with the sword. 19:2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger unto Elijah, saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I make not thy life as the life of one of them by to morrow about this time.

Elijah openly reveals the true God and the idolatry of Jezebel; and Jezebel reacts by using the authority of the king to attack Elijah and he hides himself from Jezebel the great whore and high priestess of idolatry.  Elijah abandons all to flee for his life into refuge from Jezebel, as God’s faithful shall soon also do.

19:3 And when he saw that, he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beersheba, which belongeth to Judah, and left his servant there. 19:4 But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers.

Elijah weary and feeling alone, in a moment of weakness requests that he might die.  God refuses that request.

19:5 And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat.

An angel sent from God feeds him; this representing that God will feed his faithful with the spiritual food and drink of the Word of God, even in physical distress.  Then Elijah went to Sinai where Moses had met with the Eternal.

19:6 And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again. 19:7 And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. 19:8 And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.

There God asks him why he hides from Jezebel

19:9 And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah?

Elijah feels that he is the only one left that is zealous for the Word of God, and that all the brethren are turned away to their idols of men.

19:10 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.

God commands Elijah to stand on the Mountain; where God passes by in his strength in a sign to Elijah of God’s power.

19:11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: 19:12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire:

Then God speaks to Elijah in a gentle loving voice

and after the fire a still small voice.

The voice of God asks Elijah again, why has he come to the Mount, and Elijah answers with the same answer.

19:13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah? 19:14 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.

God then rejects Elijah’s discouragement and commands him to continue to be about God’s work.

Brethren, we are not to give up our mission because we feel tired or alone; we are not to become weary of well doing and let down on fulfilling our mission to do the Word and Will of Almighty God with a whole heart.

19:15 And the LORD said unto him, Go, return on thy way to the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria: 19:16 And Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abelmeholah shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room.

God pronounces bloodshed in the land for the peoples idolatry and sins against the whole Word of God, just as severe correction is coming on us today for the same reasons.

19:17 And it shall come to pass, that him that escapeth the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay: and him that escapeth from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay.

God then reveals to Elijah that he has reserved to himself 7,000 who have not become idolaters. Does this mean that 7,000 will repent and turn to God out of the thousands in the Ekklesia today?  Perhaps or then again maybe not, but I dare to say that very many will repent under the rod of correction in the approaching great tribulation.

19:18 Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him.

Elijah finds Elisha and does as God has commanded

19:19 So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him.

Elisha asks Elijah for a permission and Elijah says in so many words; you are God’s man don’t ask me for anything.  God’s men take their instructions directly from God, and need not ask for ordination or permissions from any man.

19:20 And he left the oxen, and ran after Elijah, and said, Let me, I pray thee, kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow thee. And he said unto him, Go back again: for what have I done to thee? 19:21 And he returned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen, and slew them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave unto the people, and they did eat. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, and ministered unto him.

 

1 Kings 20

Syria rises up to fulfill the word of God against Ahab

1 Kings 20:1 And Benhadad the king of Syria gathered all his host together: and there were thirty and two kings with him, and horses, and chariots; and he went up and besieged Samaria, and warred against it. 20:2 And he sent messengers to Ahab king of Israel into the city, and said unto him, Thus saith Benhadad, 20:3 Thy silver and thy gold is mine; thy wives also and thy children, even the goodliest, are mine.

20:4 And the king of Israel answered and said, My lord, O king, according to thy saying, I am thine, and all that I have.

Then the Syrians informed Ahab that they will search his possessions and take what they please.

20:5 And the messengers came again, and said, Thus speaketh Benhadad, saying, Although I have sent unto thee, saying, Thou shalt deliver me thy silver, and thy gold, and thy wives, and thy children; 20:6 Yet I will send my servants unto thee to morrow about this time, and they shall search thine house, and the houses of thy servants; and it shall be, that whatsoever is pleasant in thine eyes, they shall put it in their hand, and take it away.

Ahab asks advice from the elders of Israel.

20:7 Then the king of Israel called all the elders of the land, and said, Mark, I pray you, and see how this man seeketh mischief: for he sent unto me for my wives, and for my children, and for my silver, and for my gold; and I denied him not.

Ahab answered the Syrians according to the council of the elders of Israel.

20:8 And all the elders and all the people said unto him, Hearken not unto him, nor consent. 20:9 Wherefore he said unto the messengers of Benhadad, Tell my lord the king, All that thou didst send for to thy servant at the first I will do: but this thing I may not do. And the messengers departed, and brought him word again.

Benhadad responds with boasting threats.

20:10 And Benhadad sent unto him, and said, The gods do so unto me, and more also, if the dust of Samaria shall suffice for handfuls for all the people that follow me.

Ahab then tells Benhadad not to boast before the battle, because boasting should come only after the fight is won.

20:11 And the king of Israel answered and said, Tell him, Let not him that girdeth on his harness boast himself as he that putteth it off.

Then the Syrians set the battle in array.

20:12 And it came to pass, when Ben-hadad heard this message, as he was drinking, he and the kings in the pavilions, that he said unto his servants, Set yourselves in array. And they set themselves in array against the city.

At this point God through his prophet tells Ahab that God will deliver him from the Syrians despite the wickedness of Ahab; as a demonstration that the Eternal [YHVH Family] is God above all other gods.

20:13 And, behold, there came a prophet unto Ahab king of Israel, saying, Thus saith the LORD, Hast thou seen all this great multitude? behold, I will deliver it into thine hand this day; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.

Ahab asks how and by whom this shall be done.

20:14 And Ahab said, By whom? And he said, Thus saith the LORD, Even by the young men of the princes of the provinces. Then he said, Who shall order the battle? And he answered, Thou.

Then Ahab led 232 commanders and seven thousand men from the outlying provinces of the kingdom against Benhadad.

20:15 Then he numbered the young men of the princes of the provinces, and they were two hundred and thirty two: and after them he numbered all the people, even all the children of Israel, being seven thousand.

Israel went out against Syria at noon and the drunk Benhadad ordered this small force to be taken alive.

20:16 And they went out at noon. But Benhadad was drinking himself drunk in the pavilions, he and the kings, the thirty and two kings that helped him. 20:17 And the young men of the princes of the provinces went out first; and Benhadad sent out, and they told him, saying, There are men come out of Samaria. 20:18 And he said, Whether they be come out for peace, take them alive; or whether they be come out for war, take them alive.

20:19 So these young men of the princes of the provinces came out of the city [Samaria] , and the army which followed them. 20:20 And they slew every one his man: and the Syrians fled; and Israel pursued them: and Benhadad the king of Syria escaped on an horse with the horsemen. 20:21 And the king of Israel went out, and smote the horses and chariots, and slew the Syrians with a great slaughter.

Then the prophet told Ahab to prepare for another attack from Syria.

20:22 And the prophet came to the king of Israel, and said unto him, Go, strengthen thyself, and mark, and see what thou doest: for at the return of the year [the biblical new year March – April] the king of Syria will come up against thee.

The Syrians attribute their loss to the idols of Israel having local control and decide to conduct the battle elsewhere.

20:23 And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, Their gods are gods of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we; but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

The Syrians also removed the kings from commanding the army and put men of military experience in charge.

20:24 And do this thing, Take the kings away, every man out of his place, and put captains in their rooms: 20:25 And number thee an army, like the army that thou hast lost, horse for horse, and chariot for chariot: and we will fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they. And he hearkened unto their voice, and did so.

20:26 And it came to pass at the return of the year [a year later], that Benhadad numbered the Syrians, and went up to Aphek, to fight against Israel.

Israel was hopelessly outnumbered.

20:27 And the children of Israel were numbered, and were all present, and went against them: and the children of Israel pitched before them like two little flocks of kids; but the Syrians filled the country.

Then a prophet was sent by God to encourage the king of Israel even though he was wicked, this was to show the might of the Eternal above all gods.

20:28 And there came a man of God, and spake unto the king of Israel, and said, Thus saith the LORD, Because the Syrians have said, The LORD is God of the hills, but he is not God of the valleys, therefore will I deliver all this great multitude into thine hand, and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

On the seventh day after the armies had gathered, the battle was engaged; and the seven thousand of Israel destroyed a hundred thousand of the attackers.

20:29 And they pitched one over against the other seven days. And so it was, that in the seventh day the battle was joined: and the children of Israel slew of the Syrians an hundred thousand footmen in one day.

Then a wall fell on the Syrians killing 27,000 more, so it was a very bad day for the king of Syria.

20:30 But the rest fled to Aphek, into the city; and there a wall [a great wall probably one of the city walls] fell upon twenty and seven thousand of the men that were left. And Benhadad fled, and came into the city, into an inner chamber.

Benhadad’s servants advised him to give himself up to the mercy of Ahab.

20:31 And his servants said unto him, Behold now, we have heard that the kings of the house of Israel are merciful kings: let us, I pray thee, put sackcloth on our loins, and ropes upon our heads, and go out to the king of Israel: peradventure he will save thy life.

Benhadad then sent an emissary of men to Ahab.

20:32 So they girded sackcloth on their loins, and put ropes on their heads, and came to the king of Israel, and said, Thy servant Benhadad saith, I pray thee, let me live. And he said, Is he yet alive? he is my brother. 20:33 Now the men did diligently observe whether any thing would come from him, and did hastily catch it: and they said, Thy brother Benhadad. Then he said, Go ye, bring him.

Then Ahab accepted the offer of Benhadad and made a covenant with him.

Then Benhadad came forth to him; and he caused him to come up into the chariot. 20:34 And Ben-hadad said unto him, The cities, which my father took from thy father, I will restore; and thou shalt make streets for thee in Damascus, as my father made in Samaria. Then said Ahab, I will send thee away with this covenant. So he made a covenant with him, and sent him away.

Then a prophet of God insisted from God that another person  smite him. 

Then the man who out of a misguided respect for the prophet disobeyed the Word of God; was killed for exalting respect for a man above the Word of God. 

This should be a profound lesson for us, that we must keep the whole Word of God.

20:35 And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour in the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him. 20:36 Then said he unto him, Because thou hast not obeyed the voice of the LORD, behold, as soon as thou art departed from me, a lion shall slay thee. And as soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and slew him.

Then the prophet went to another who did obey God and struck the prophet, so that the prophet could go to Ahab wounded.

20:37 Then he found another man, and said, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man smote him, so that in smiting he wounded him. 20:38 So the prophet departed, and waited for the king by the way, and disguised himself with ashes upon his face.

20:39 And as the king passed by, he cried unto the king: and he said,

The prophet uses his wound and places dirt on his face, to teach king Ahab of Israel by way of a parable.

Thy servant went out into the midst of the battle; and, behold, a man turned aside, and brought a man unto me, and said, Keep this man: if by any means he be missing, then shall thy life be for his life, or else thou shalt pay a talent of silver. 20:40 And as thy servant was busy here and there, he was gone.  And the king of Israel said unto him, So shall thy judgment be; thyself hast decided it.

Then Ahab rendered judgment; whereupon the prophet revealed himself and returned the same judgment that Ahab had given, back upon Ahab.

20:41 And he hasted, and took the ashes away from his face; and the king of Israel discerned him that he was of the prophets.

The judgment against wicked Ahab who followed his idols and Jezebel’s baal, and refused the Word of the LORD to destroy Benhadad. 

The same judgment will be pronounced against the leaders and elders of today’s Ekklesia for their idolatry and refusal to live by every Word of God; and for their refusal to cast habitual willful sinners out of the congregations. 

Titus 3:10 A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject;

1 Corinthians 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

1 Kings 20:42 And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Because thou hast let go out of thy hand a man whom I appointed to utter destruction, therefore thy life shall go for his life, and thy people for his people. 20:43 And the king of Israel went to his house heavy and displeased, and came to Samaria.

 

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