|1 Kings 22 |
1 Now three years passed without war between Syria and Israel.
2 But in the third year Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, went down to visit the king of Israel.
3 And Ahab, king of Israel, said to his servants, "Do you know that Ramoth in Gilead is ours, and we keep still and do not take it out of the hand of the king of Syria?"
4 So he said to Jehoshaphat, "Will you go with me to Ramothgilead to fight?" And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, "I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses."
5 But Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, "Inquire, I pray you, for the word of the LORD today."
6 Then Ahab the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said to them, "Shall I go to fight against Ramothgilead, or shall I refrain?" And they said, "Go up, for the LORD will deliver it into the hand of the king."
7 And Jehoshaphat said, "Is there not another prophet of the LORD here whom we might ask?"
8 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "There is yet one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may inquire of the LORD, but I hate him, for he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil." And Jehoshaphat said, "Let the king not say that!"
9 Then the king of Israel called an officer and said, "Quickly bring Micaiah the son of Imlah."
10 Now Ahab, the king of Israel, and Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, were sitting in their robes, each on his throne in an open place at the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them.
11 And Zedekiah, the son of Chenaanah, made himself horns of iron and said, "Thus says the Lord, With these you shall push the Syrians until you have destroyed them."
12 And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, "Go up to Ramothgilead, and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the king's hand."
13 Then the messenger who had gone to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, "Behold now, the words of the prophets unanimously declare success to the king. Let your word agree with their words, and speak favorably."
14 But Micaiah said, "As the LORD lives, I will speak what the LORD says to me."
15 So he came to the king. And Ahab, the king, said to him, "Micaiah, shall we go against Ramothgilead to battle, or shall we refrain?" And he answered him, "Go and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the hand of the king." [Apparently Micaiah had received a false vision from the opposition, or he felt so much pressure to agree with the 400 false prophets that Micaiah lied; which untruth he modifies in the next verses, (but does not recant), after being reminded to only tell the truth as he had been reminded many times before. There is nothing here to show that Micaiah was speaking lies under instruction from the Lord. From the word of the Lord within: "I have never asked anyone to lie." To ask someone to lie is worse than lying oneself. Common sense along with many scriptures support that God does not lie, but curiously the translators and commentators of this verse, (and its duplicate in 2 Chron 18:14), typically accuse God of lying and assume Micaiah always told the truth. God is holy, pure, perfect, and truth; the devil did not remain in the truth and is the father of all lies. John 8:44]
16 And the king said to him, "How many times must I charge you to tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the LORD?"
17 So Micaiah said, "I saw all Israel scattered upon the hills as sheep that have no shepherd, and the LORD said, 'These have no master. Let each of them return to his house in peace.'"
18 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "Did I not tell you that he would prophesy no good concerning me, but evil?"
19 And Micaiah said, "Hear therefore the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on his throne, and all the host of heaven standing by him on his right hand and on his left.
20 And the LORD said, 'Who will persuade Ahab to go up and fall at Ramothgilead?' And one said this way, and another said that way. [This whole scene is suspect. The Lord could deal with Ahab permanently with the blink of an eye; numerous times he quickly eliminated thousands of Israelites as well as Israel's enemies. He gives orders and it is done, finished. He doesn't sit around and discuss with others what or how it might be done.]
21 Then there came forth a spirit and stood before the LORD and said, 'I will persuade him.' [Prophet Micaiah is again relating a lying vision from the opposition, or Micaiah is again suspect of lying because of what the word of the Lord within has said: "I am not the conductor of evil, let alone the promiser of it; I neither counsel or collaborate with evil." As to why the commentators and translators so easily assume that God tells His prophets to lie, and that He collaborates with evil spirits: perhaps it is because they are all representatives of Babylon and want to believe that God is just like them; they don't know His character or know God, who is only known by revelation.]
22 And the LORD said to him, 'With what?' And he said, 'I will go forth and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets, to promise, persuade even to be able to go out to do just so.'1 [This verse is typically translated as the Lord telling the Sprit to go out and deceive him, but the translators added the words "and the Lord said" for clarity. It is just as accurate to be translated as the spirit, (not the Holy spirit), continuing to say what he was going to do. One can assume that prophet Micaiah is again relating a false vision, lying, or that the verse has been incorrectly translated.]
23 Behold therefore, the LORD permitted a lying spirit in the mouth of all these prophets; and the LORD has declared disaster concerning you." [This verse is typically translated the Lord "placed" a lying Spirit in the mouth of all these prophets; however "permitted" is just as correct. God permitted Satan to try the disciples, but He did not tell Satan what to do; there is a big difference. God permitted Satan to try Job, but He did not tell Satan to do anything; He only restricted Him to not harming Job.]
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 when he went from me to speak to you?"
25 And Micaiah said, "Behold, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide yourself."
26 So Ahab the king of Israel said, "Take Micaiah, carry him back 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 the prison and feed him with bread and with water of affliction until I return in peace.'"
28 And Micaiah said, "If you ever return in peace, the LORD has not spoken through me." Then he added, "Hear, O people, every one of you!"
29 So Ahab the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramothgilead.
30 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "I will disguise myself and enter the battle, but you put on your robes." So the king of Israel disguised himself and went into the battle.
31 Now the king of Syria had commanded his thirty two chariot commanders, "Do not fight with either small or great, but only with Ahab the king of Israel."
32 And when the chariot commanders saw Jehoshaphat, they thought, "Surely this is the king of Israel." And they turned aside to fight against him, but Jehoshaphat cried out,
33 And then the chariot commanders saw that it was not the king of Israel, so they turned back from pursuing him.
34 But a certain man drew a bow at random and hit Ahab the king of Israel between the sections of his armor. So he said to the driver of his chariot, "Turn around and carry me out of the battle, for I am wounded."
35 The battle increased that day, and Ahab the king was propped up in his chariot facing the Syrians, and he died as the sun was setting. And the blood ran out of his wound onto the floor of the chariot.
36 Then a cry went throughout the army about sundown, saying, "Every man to his city, and every man to his own country,"
37 For the king is dead!" So Ahab was brought to Samaria, and they buried the king there.
38 And they washed his chariot in the pool of Samaria, where the harlots bathed, and the dogs licked up his blood, according to the word of the LORD that was spoken.
39 Now the rest of the acts of Ahab, all that he did, the ivory palace and all the cities that he built, are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel.
40 So Ahab slept with his fathers, and Ahaziah, his son, reigned in his place.
41 Jehoshaphat, the son of Asa, began to reign over Judah in the fourth year of Ahab, king of Israel.
42 Jehoshaphat was thirty five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned for twenty five years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Azubah, the daughter of Shilhi.
43 He walked in all the ways of Asa his father. 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 still offered sacrifices and burned incense in the high places.
44 Also Jehoshaphat made peace with the king of Israel.
45 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, his might that he showed and how he warred, are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah.
46 The rest of the sodomites [shrine prostitutes], who remained in the days of his father Asa, Jehoshaphat banished from the land.
47 There was no king in Edom; a deputy was acting as king.
48 Now Jehoshaphat ordered ships of Tarshish to go to Ophir for gold, but they did not sail, for the ships were wrecked at Eziongeber.
49 Then Ahaziah, the son of Ahab, said to Jehoshaphat, "Let my servants go with your servants in the ships." But Jehoshaphat would not.
50 Then Jehoshaphat slept with his forefathers and was buried in the city of David his forefather, and Jehoram his son reigned in his place.
51 Ahaziah, the son of Ahab, began to reign over Israel in Samaria the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and reigned two years over Israel.
52 And he did evil in the sight of the LORD and walked in the ways of his father and of his mother and of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel sin.
53 For he served Baal and worshipped him and provoked the LORD God of Israel to anger just as his father had done.
1 the LORD said to him, 'With what?' And he said, 'I will go forth and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets, to promise, persuade, even be able to go out to do just so.'
This verse is typically translated as And the LORD said, 'You shall entice him and also succeed. Go and do so.' However, "the Lord said" in that phrase is not in the original Greek or Hebrew, but was "added by the translators for clarity." However, if you assume the Lord never instructed anyone to lie, then the verse can be just as accurately translated as a continuation of the spirit speaking instead of the Lord. One can assume that prophet Micaiah is again relating a false vision from the opposition, lying, or that the verse has been incorrectly translated.
To prove the validity of the alternate translation presented, the below is from the original Hebrew text in the Net Bible; which shows each Hebrew word and its green numbered reference to Strong's dictionary of meanings. The green number for each wording translated can be clicked upon to verify the translation's accuracy.
|English||I will go forth||to be||a lying||spirit||in the mouths||of all|
|the prophets||to promise||to persuade||even||be able||to go out||to do||just so|
The Lord permits the demons to tempt us, but he never gives us a temptation that is too strong for us to withstand. If we resist the temptation, we grow stronger. If we fall to the temptation, we suffer, hopefully realize our error, and resolve to be stronger the next time. The atheists point to this scripture in an attempt to show that God orders people to lie; but take notice of two facts: 1) false prophets always speak lies; the Lord only gave permission for them to have a lying spirit, which false prophets always have; at best this was only a different lying spirit, and 2) the Lord through the one true prophet, Micaiah, in verse 23, warned Ahab that he was being lied to by the false prophets. But, because Ahab was weak and willful, he ignored the Lord's warning. From the word of the Lord within: "I have never asked anyone to lie."