1 Kings 22

* Jehoshaphat makes a league with Ahab. (1-14) Micaiah predicts

the death of Ahab. (15-28) Death of Ahab. (29-40) Jehoshaphat's

good reign over Judah. (41-50) Ahaziah's evil reign over Israel.

(51-53)

1-14 The same easiness of temper, which betrays some godly

persons into friendship with the declared enemies of religion,

renders it very dangerous to them. They will be drawn to wink at

and countenance such conduct and conversation as they ought to

protest against with abhorrence. Whithersoever a good man goes,

he ought to take his religion with him, and not be ashamed to

own it when he is with those who have no regard for it.

Jehoshaphat had not left behind him, at Jerusalem, his affection

and reverence for the word of the Lord, but avowed it, and

endeavoured to bring it into Ahab's court. And Ahab's prophets,

to please Jehoshaphat, made use of the name of Jehovah: to

please Ahab, they said, Go up. But the false prophets cannot so

mimic the true, but that he who has spiritual senses exercised,

can discern the fallacy. One faithful prophet of the Lord was

worth them all. Wordly men have in all ages been alike absurd in

their views of religion. They would have the preacher fit his

doctrine to the fashion of the times, and the taste of the

hearers, and yet to add. Thus saith the Lord, to words that men

would put into their mouths. They are ready to cry out against a

man as rude and foolish, who scruples thus to try to secure his

own interests, and to deceive others.
15-28 The greatest kindness we can do to one that is going in a

dangerous way, is, to tell him of his danger. To leave the

hardened criminal without excuse, and to give a useful lesson to

others, Micaiah related his vision. This matter is represented

after the manner of men: we are not to imagine that God is ever

put upon new counsels; or that he needs to consult with angels,

or any creature, about the methods he should take; or that he is

the author of sin, or the cause of any man's telling or

believing a lie. Micaiah returned not the blow of Zedekiah, yet,

since he boasted of the Spirit, as those commonly do that know

least of the Holy Spirit's operations, the true prophet left him

to be convinced of his error by the event. Those that will not

have their mistakes set right in time, by the word of God, will

be undeceived, when it is too late, by the judgments of God. We

should be ashamed of what we call trials, were we to consider

what the servants of God have endured. Yet it will be well, if

freedom from trouble prove not more hurtful to us; we are more

easily allured and bribed into unfaithfulness and conformity to

the world, than driven to them.
29-40 Ahab basely intended to betray Johoshaphat to danger,

that he might secure himself. See what they get that join with

wicked men. How can it be expected that he should be true to his

friend, who has been false to his God! He had said in compliment

to Ahab, I am as thou art, and now he was indeed taken for him.

Those that associate with evil-doers, are in danger of sharing

in their plagues. By Jehoshaphat's deliverance, God let him

know, that though he was displeased with him, yet he had not

deserted him. God is a friend that will not fail us when other

friends do. Let no man think to hide himself from God's

judgment. God directed the arrow to hit Ahab; those cannot

escape with life, whom God has doomed to death. Ahab lived long

enough to see part of Micaiah's prophecy accomplished. He had

time to feel himself die; with what horror must he have thought

upon the wickedness he had committed!
41-50 Jehoshaphat's reign appears to have been one of the best,

both as to piety and prosperity. He pleased God, and God blessed

him.
51-53 Ahaziah's reign was very short, not two years; some

sinners God makes quick work with. A very bad character is given

of him; he listened not to instruction, took no warning, but

followed the example of his wicked father, and the counsel of

his more wicked mother, Jezebel, who was still living. Miserable

are the children who not only derive a sinful nature from their

parents, but are taught by them to increase it; and most unhappy

parents are they, that help to damn their children's souls.

Hardened sinners rush forward, unawed and unmoved, in the ways

from which others before them have been driven into everlasting

misery.

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