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Ahab’s End 

First Kings 22

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • December 18, In the year of our Lord, 2016


  1. First Kings 22.1 | Three Years Without War

    1 Now three years passed without war between Syria and Israel.

    1. Evidently that was significant.
    2. Sadly, Syria is again experiencing war, although not with Israel.
  2. First Kings 22.2 | Jehoshaphat and Ahab

    2 Then it came to pass, in the third year, that Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went down to visit the king of Israel.

    1. Why did Jehoshaphat go to see the king of Israel?
      1. The Bible labels Jehoshaphat a good king.
      2. Yet, he also understood that he and Judah were related to the northern kingdom.
    2. Perhaps he sought to strengthen Judah by strengthening their ties to their brothers up north.
  3. First Kings 22.3–4 | Israel and Judah United…Temporarily

    3 And the king of Israel said to his servants, “Do you know that Ramoth in Gilead is ours, but we hesitate to take it out of the hand of the king of Syria?” 4 So he said to Jehoshaphat, “Will you go with me to fight at Ramoth Gilead?” Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.”

    1. Two kings wanted two different things.
      1. Ahab wanted land.
      2. Jehoshaphat wanted unity.
    2. However, Ahab needed Jehoshaphat.
      1. Jehoshaphat did not need Ahab.
      2. However, Jehoshaphat offered Ahab everything.
    3. Would Ahab share Ramoth Gilead with Jehoshaphat?
  4. First Kings 22.5–8 | Inquire of the Lord

    5 Also Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “Please inquire for the word of the LORD today.” 6 Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said to them, “Shall I go against Ramoth Gilead to fight, or shall I refrain?” So they said, “Go up, for the Lord will deliver it into the hand of the king.” 7 And Jehoshaphat said, “Is there not still a prophet of the LORD here, that we may inquire of Him?” 8 So the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is still one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may inquire of the LORD; but I hate him, because he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil.” And Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say such things!”

    1. What do you think of Jehoshaphat requesting a word from the Lord?
      1. Should we not seek the Lord’s will in everything?
      2. Joshua 9.14
      3. James 4.13–17
    2. Ahab’s prophets seem to honor the Lord, but what did Jehoshaphat detect?
    3. Why did Ahab not like Micaiah?
      1. Is there someone you do not like?
      2. If so, why?
    4. Jehoshaphat did well to seek the Lord’s word, but why did he tell Ahab not to “say such things”?
      1. Jehoshaphat had faith, but he also wanted to be optimistic.
      2. Does having faith mean that the word from God will always be good?
  5. First Kings 22.9–12 | Ahab’s Yes-Men

    9 Then the king of Israel called an officer and said, “Bring Micaiah the son of Imlah quickly!” 10 The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, having put on their robes, sat each on his throne, at a threshing floor at the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them. 11 Now Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah had made horns of iron for himself; and he said, “Thus says the LORD: With these you shall gore the Syrians until they are destroyed.” 12 And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, “Go up to Ramoth Gilead and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the king’s hand.”

    1. Why did Zedekiah make horns of iron?
    2. Did it illustrate what he hope that Ahab would do to the Syrians?
  6. First Kings 22.13–14 | A True Prophet

    13 Then the messenger who had gone to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, “Now listen, the words of the prophets with one accord encourage the king. Please, let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak encouragement.” 14 And Micaiah said, “As the LORD lives, whatever the LORD says to me, that I will speak.”

    1. If a man was a true prophet, would he speak just to be agreeable?
    2. What is a prophet?
    3. What was the job of a prophet?
    4. What do you think of Micaiah’s determination?
      1. If he was a true prophet, would he not do just as he had stated?
      2. Was the job of a prophet to interpret God’s word or to deliver it?
  7. First Kings 22.15–23 | Micaiah Speaks the Truth

    15 Then he came to the king; and the king said to him, “Micaiah, shall we go to war against Ramoth Gilead, or shall we refrain?” And he answered him, “Go and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the hand of the king!” 16 So the king said to him, “How many times shall I make you swear that you tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the LORD?” 17 Then he said, “I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd. And the LORD said, These have no master. Let each return to his house in peace.” 18 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “Did I not tell you he would not prophesy good concerning me, but evil?” 19 Then Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by, on His right hand and on His left. 20 And the LORD said, Who will persuade Ahab to go up, that he may fall at Ramoth Gilead? So one spoke in this manner, and another spoke in that manner. 21 Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, and said, I will persuade him. 22 The LORD said to him, In what way? So he said, I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And the LORD said, You shall persuade him, and also prevail. Go out and do so. 23 Therefore look! The LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these prophets of yours, and the LORD has declared disaster against you.”

    1. Did Micaiah know that Ahab would not receive the word?
      1. Is there a place for sarcasm?
      2. Is there a place for satire?
    2. Why did Ahab think that Micaiah did not speak what the Lord said?
      1. Was it his manner of speaking?
      2. Did Ahab truly want to hear the truth?
      3. Why did he make it appear that he did?
      4. Do you think that Micaiah’s sarcasm got to him?
    3. What did the vision of the sheep without a shepherd mean?
    4. The Lord allowed Ahab to be deceived.
      1. Why did the Lord allow it?
      2. 2Th 2.9–12
      3. Isa 66.4
  8. First Kings 22.24–28 | Micaiah Persecuted

    24 Now Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah went near and struck Micaiah on the cheek, and said, “Which way did the spirit from the LORD go from me to speak to you?” 25 And Micaiah said, “Indeed, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide!” 26 So the king of Israel said, “Take Micaiah, and return him to Amon the governor of the city and to Joash the king’s son; 27 and say, Thus says the king: Put this fellow in prison, and feed him with bread of affliction and water of affliction, until I come in peace.” 28 But Micaiah said, “If you ever return in peace, the LORD has not spoken by me.” And he said, “Take heed, all you people!”

    1. Did Zedekiah think that he had the spirit of the Lord?
      1. Is it possible to think that you have the Spirit, but in fact you do not?
      2. What made Zedekiah think that he had the Spirit?
    2. Micaiah prophesied of the death of Ahab.
      1. Therefore, if Ahab returned, the Lord had not spoken through Micaiah.
      2. Deu 18.20–22
      3. Deu 13.1–5
  9. First Kings 22.29–36 | Ahab and Israel Defeated

    29 So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth Gilead. 30 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “I will disguise myself and go into battle; but you put on your robes.” So the king of Israel disguised himself and went into battle. 31 Now the king of Syria had commanded the thirty-two captains of his chariots, saying, “Fight with no one small or great, but only with the king of Israel.” 32 So it was, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, “Surely it is the king of Israel!” Therefore they turned aside to fight against him, and Jehoshaphat cried out. 33 And it happened, when the captains of the chariots saw that it was not the king of Israel, that they turned back from pursuing him. 34 Now a certain man drew a bow at random, and struck the king of Israel between the joints of his armor. So he said to the driver of his chariot, “Turn around and take me out of the battle, for I am wounded.” 35 The battle increased that day; and the king was propped up in his chariot, facing the Syrians, and died at evening. The blood ran out from the wound onto the floor of the chariot. 36 Then, as the sun was going down, a shout went throughout the army, saying, “Every man to his city, and every man to his own country!”

    1. We understand why Ahab went to the battle, but why Jehoshaphat?
      1. He was the one who asked for a word from the Lord.
      2. The king of Judah received it and then seemed to ignore it.
    2. Why did Ahab disguise himself?
      1. Knowing that the Syrians would target him, and knowing what Micaiah had said, do you think he sought to avoid being killed?
      2. However, can any man disguise himself from the Lord?
      3. How did Ahab eventually die?
    3. How does verse 36 fulfill Micaiah’s prophecy?
  10. First Kings 22.37–40 | The End of Ahab

    37 So the king died, and was brought to Samaria. And they buried the king in Samaria. 38 Then someone washed the chariot at a pool in Samaria, and the dogs licked up his blood while the harlots bathed, according to the word of the LORD which He had spoken. 39 Now the rest of the acts of Ahab, and all that he did, the ivory house which he built and all the cities that he built, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? 40 So Ahab rested with his fathers. Then Ahaziah his son reigned in his place.

    1. The word of the Lord always comes to pass.
  11. First Kings 22.41–44 | Jehoshaphat Becomes King

    41 Jehoshaphat the son of Asa had become king over Judah in the fourth year of Ahab king of Israel. 42 Jehoshaphat was thirty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned twenty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Azubah the daughter of Shilhi. 43 And he walked in all the ways of his father Asa. He did not turn aside from them, doing what was right in the eyes of the LORD. Nevertheless the high places were not taken away, for the people offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places. 44 Also Jehoshaphat made peace with the king of Israel.

    1. What assessment does the Bible give of Jehoshaphat?
      1. Walked in the ways of his father Asa.
      2. Did not turn aside from the ways of Asa.
      3. Did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.
      4. Did not take away the high places.
      5. Made peace with the king of Israel.
    2. Does verse 44 imply that was a good or bad thing?
  12. First Kings 22.45–49 | Acts of Jehoshaphat

    45 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, the might that he showed, and how he made war, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? 46 And the rest of the perverted persons, who remained in the days of his father Asa, he banished from the land. 47 There was then no king in Edom, only a deputy of the king. 48 Jehoshaphat made merchant ships to go to Ophir for gold; but they never sailed, for the ships were wrecked at Ezion Geber. 49 Then Ahaziah the son of Ahab said to Jehoshaphat, “Let my servants go with your servants in the ships.” But Jehoshaphat would not.

    1. What did he do to the perverted persons?
    2. Why did Jehoshaphat avoid union with Ahaziah?
  13. First Kings 22.50 | Jehoshaphat Dies and Jehoram Reigns

    50 And Jehoshaphat rested with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the City of David his father. Then Jehoram his son reigned in his place.

    1. What does Jehoshaphat’s burial say about what Judah thought of him?
    2. Would Jehoram follow in the footsteps of his father?
  14. First Kings 22.51–53 | Ahaziah Follows Ahab

    51 Ahaziah the son of Ahab became king over Israel in Samaria in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned two years over Israel. 52 He did evil in the sight of the LORD, and walked in the way of his father and in the way of his mother and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who had made Israel sin; 53 for he served Baal and worshiped him, and provoked the LORD God of Israel to anger, according to all that his father had done.

    1. Why did the kings of Israel not learn from their fathers?
    2. How does the Bible evaluate Ahaziah?
      1. Did evil in the sight of the Lord.
      2. Walked in the way of his parents.
      3. Walked in the way of Jeroboam.
      4. Served and worshiped Baal.
      5. Provoked God to anger.