Saturday, May 4, 2024

May 4, 2024

Jehoram, the son of Ahab, became king after his death. He was not as evil as Ahab. However, he started a war with Moab and enlisted the help of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah and the king of Edom. Together, they sought after Elisha so he could enquire of God about going to war with Moab. I found it interesting that when Elisha called on the Lord, he used a musical instrument, just as some of today’s prophets use. I’m sure this scripture is where that came from.

But now bring me a minstrel. And it came to pass, when the minstrel played, that the hand of the LORD came upon him. 2 Kings 3:15

There was no water for their people or cattle in Moab, so Elisha told them that no rain would come, but water would come up from the ground. They followed all Elisha’s instructions from God and overcame Moab. The death toll was so bad that the king of Moab offered his son, the next in line for the throne, as a burnt offering to their god, Chemosh, to obtain his favor. Chemosh is nothing more than the devil himself, who delights in blood sacrifices. Look at the United States' trouble because of the prenatal sacrifices. The devil is fighting hard against us because true Christians want to do what’s right in the eyes of the Lord. 

Friday, May 3, 2024

May 3, 2024

When you eat of the scriptures of God, the belly gets full. The story in 2 Kings 2 is a tasty morsel that is delightful and delicious, like honey to the lips. In this chapter, Elijah is taken to heaven by God in a whirlwind and transported in a chariot of fire. However, before that mighty miracle happened, Elijah tried to shake Elisha by encouraging him to stay rather than follow him. Knowing that God intended to take Elijah that day, Elisha was determined to stick with him like glue to see him taken up. After visiting the prophets in the different cities, Elijah asked Elisha what he could do for him, and in Godly fashion, he asked for a double portion of his spirit. Elijah told him that if he saw him translated, his request would be granted. God took Elijah up, and his mantle dropped. Elisha, being heartbroken, tore his clothes in mourning. And just as promised, he was given a double portion. As confirmation, he was able to part the waters of the Jordan with the touch of the mantle, just as Elijah had done earlier that day. 

As one of his first miracles, Elisha healed the waters of Jericho by pouring salt into the spring. In those days, the people of the towns hated the prophets, probably because they pointed out their sins, and when they would come into town, they would mock them. That happened to Elisha when he was on the way to Bethel, and it didn’t end very well for those people. The children playing in the streets began jeering and making fun of Elisha’s baldness, which wasn’t a great idea when the man was full of God’s powerful spirit. Elisha cursed them, and two bears came out of the forest and killed forty children. It seems sad, but I’ll bet those parents learned a lesson about making fun of a man's appearance! 

As children of God, he is on our side. Let no man of evil try to touch us; God will not stand for it and will punish them. Do not take part in such things.

And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. 2 Kings 2:11

Thursday, May 2, 2024

May 2, 2024

Ahaziah, the king of Israel, fell through the lattice on the second story of his house and was critically hurt. He sent a messenger to the god of Ekron, Baalzebub, to find out if he would live. Elijah intercepted him and told him Ahaziah was going to die. Ahaziah, thinking he could control Elijah, sent a captain and fifty men to bring him to see him, but Elijah wasn’t having it and called fire down from heaven and killed them all! Ahaziah sent another captain and fifty men, and Elijah did the same to them. Ahaziah sent a third captain and fifty men, but this captain asked Elijah to spare his life and the lives of the fifty, and an angel of the Lord told Elijah not to be afraid to go with him. Elijah told Ahaziah the same thing he had told the messenger, and Ahaziah died shortly after.

And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast sent messengers to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to enquire of his word? therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. 2 Kings 1:16

Can you imagine if God gave us the kind of power he gave Elijah? There would be dead people all over the place, especially when driving in heavy traffic. While reading this, I wondered about having this kind of power because we have the same Holy Spirit as Elijah. God answered my question quickly and reminded me that we live under the new covenant of grace. Do you remember when James and John, Jesus’s disciples, wanted to call down fire from heaven like Elijah? They were mad that the Samaritans rejected Jesus. Here is how he answered them:

But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village. Luke 9:55-56

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

May 1, 2024

Ahab, king of Israel, got together with Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, to go and fight against Syria to regain control over Ramoth-Gilead. Before they ventured off to war, Jehoshaphat wanted to ask the Lord to ensure it was the right thing to do. So Ahab called all his “prophets” together, who always told him what his itchy ears wanted to hear, and they said to him to go up to Ramoth-Gilead and prosper. Knowing they were not prophets of the Lord, Jehoshaphat asked him if there were any of the Lord’s prophets to enquire of. Jehoshaphat told him there was one, but he always prophesied against him. So they called for Micaiah, and he came. Michaiah told them to go to Ramoth-Gilead and prosper, but the king knew he was lying. So, Michaiah told him the truth and shared his vision. In his vision, he saw all the people of Israel scattered about with no leader. He continued saying that he saw the Lord sitting on his throne with all the hosts of heaven on his right and left, and the Lord said, “Who shall persuade Ahab that he may go up and fall at Ramothgilead?” And a lying spirit came forward and said he could do it. Michaiah told the king that the Lord had put a lying spirit in these prophets. Zedekiah, one of the “prophets,” smacked him on the cheek, and the king had Michaiah sent to prison.  There is so much more to this story, but Ahab ended up getting injured, bleeding all over his chariot, and dying in battle. When they brought him back to Samaria in his chariot, the dogs licked up his blood while they were cleaning it. All the prophecies of the Lord came true. 

What struck me the most about this scripture is the lying spirit that came before the throne of God, volunteering to enter into the “prophets” to cause Ahab to believe them. Then God tells him the truth through Michaiah, and he assaults him and throws him in jail. They didn’t want to hear the truth back then, much like today. The people telling the truth get called conspiracy theorists and get abused by everyone. You must learn how God works and listen to the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit so you don’t die on the battlefield like Ahab. The only absolute truth you will hear is the Word of God. Pay close attention. 

And the LORD said, Who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramothgilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner. And there came forth a spirit, and stood before the LORD, and said, I will persuade him. 1 Kings 22:20-21

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

April 30, 2024

Naboth had a vineyard and garden next to King Ahab’s house in Samaria, and Ahab wanted Naboth to either sell it to him or exchange it for another one somewhere else. However, he didn’t want to break the law by selling his inheritance. Ahab left his meeting with Naboth depressed, and Jezebel asked him about his sadness, so he told her about Nabath turning him down about the vineyard. Jezebel, being wicked, used the law and some unscrupulous people to wrongfully accuse him and had him killed so she could take his vineyard and give it to Ahab. When Ahab went to claim his vineyard, Elijah met him there to admonish him for having Naboth killed and told him the dogs would lick his blood there and that Jezebel would die and the dogs would eat her by the wall in Jezreel. Ahab repented, tore his clothes, and begged forgiveness. God, being the loving God he is, put off his death sentence and had mercy upon him for the time being.

We wonder why wicked people get away with murder and other crimes and then seem to prosper more than others; it’s likely because they sometimes have remorse for their sins, and God gives them another chance like he did Ahab. Ahab has been reprieved from justice for now because of his repentance. I read ahead to the next chapter, and it seems God served Ahab the justice he deserved, and every word of Elijah’s prophecy about Ahab was fulfilled. God doesn’t let evil go unpunished. If you have been wronged, wait for it; justice will be served, and God will make it happen. 

And the word of the LORD came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, Seest thou how Ahab humbleth himself before me? because he humbleth himself before me, I will not bring the evil in his days: but in his son's days will I bring the evil upon his house. 1 Kings 21:28-29

Monday, April 29, 2024

April 29, 2024

Benhadad, the king of Syria, went up against Samaria and then sent word to Ahab that he was going to take all his gold and silver and his wives and children. Ahab agreed, but when it came time to hand them over, he changed his mind. While drunk, Benhadad told his men to set themselves against the city. A brave prophet of the Lord came to Ahab and said to him that he would successfully defeat Benhadad with only a few young men, 232. Ahab, being a Baal worshipper, wanted to know who sent him. 

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. 1 Kings 20:13

At the hand of the Lord, Syria was defeated, but they promised they would be back, but this time on flat ground instead of the mountains because they didn’t think God would be there. God, wanting to show them who he was, used Israel to defeat them there, too. Even in Israel’s sin, God was able to show his power. Ahab, being an idiot, made nice with Benhadad, calling him his brother, meaning the brotherhood of kings, and let him go. God was none too happy about that.

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. 1 Kings 20:42

This passage of scripture shows that obedience to God is an essential part of our life as believers and the key to victory against our enemies and necessary for peace with God. 

Sunday, April 28, 2024

April 28, 2024

Jezebel sent word to Elijah that she was going to kill him, so he fled in fear. He gave up and wanted to die, but God wasn’t having it and sent an angel to watch over him and feed him. He ended up hiding in a cave at Horeb, the mountain of God, the same place that God hid Moses in the cleft of the rock as he passed by. This story of Elijah is one of my favorites because it taught me to listen for the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit. 

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; butthe LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. 1 Kings 19:11-12

Then God spoke to him, admonishing him for running away by asking him what he was doing there. God told him to go and anoint Hazael, king of Syria, Jehu, king of Israel, and anoint Elisha as prophet. He left the mountain and found Elisha, who was plowing his field, with him being the twelfth plow. Elijah threw his mantle/robe upon him. He left his oxen and ran after Elijah, explaining that he wanted to tell his parents goodbye before he left them. Elisha slaughtered his oxen and fed the people. He then went after Elijah and ministered to him. 

Even though Elijah may not have wanted to do everything God called him to, God knew he was capable and created a pathway to keep him alive to finish the job. The last meal the angel fed him kept him satiated for forty days! When God calls you to serve, He will provide a way. Don’t neglect God’s calling on your life. Oh, and make sure you listen to that still, small voice within you; that’s the Holy Spirit!