Archive for May 30th, 2007

1 Kings 13

The end of 1 Kings 13 is a strange story.  The “holy man” who brought the message of Jeroboam’s end is deceived by an “old prophet” to return and have some dinner with him.  He lies to the holy man and gets him to come back directly in contradiction to God’s command.  The holy man had left town as directed by God, but this old prophet chases him down and tricks him into coming back.  God is not pleased and when the holy man leaves again, he is killed by a lion just down the road.  The lion does not devour him but only stands guard until the old prophet can retrieve the body and bury it.  The holy man is confronted with these words:  You disobeyed GOD’s command; you didn’t keep the strict orders your GOD gave you; 22 you came back and sat down to a good meal in the very place GOD told you”.  This really takes obedience to a new level.  Here we have a guy who is delivering a message from God to the king.  It wasn’t a very nice message so he put his life on the line just to bring it.  He leaves town as directed by God but is tricked into coming back by another prophet and falls into that temptation or trickery.  Based on that deceit and the holy man’s inability to discern, he is killed.  Why?  DISOBEDIENCE!  There was no place to point fingers and say that someone else had made him do it.  God was not interested in why disobedience occurred – only that it had occurred.  Wow – this brings obedience to a new level doesn’t it.

Jeroboam still is on the road to destruction.  We learn that the real issue for him is that he was “recruiting priests for the forbidden shrines” and that “is what ruined him”.  So the original message that the holy man delivered was true.  The holy man did everything right to the point of actually having left town and was on his way down the road when he was convinced to come back.  Even with all those facts, disobedience cost him his life.  I am not saying that when we disobey we die – obviously that is not always true or I would not be writing this email.  But I am convinced that God takes obedience very seriously and we need to pay attention to how we live.  It is a very recurring theme in scripture.  Is it recurring in your life??

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