Trying to Trick a Prophet
May 14 - Nº 134 1 Kings 14:1-20; 15:25-31
One day one of King Jeroboam’s sons became very sick. Jeroboam desperately tried to find a cure. He remembered that a prophet named Ahijah had approached him many years before with a message from God. The prophet had declared that, although Jeroboam was just a servant at the time, one day he would become the king of the ten northern tribes of Israel (see #131 - The Kingdom is Divided). That prophecy had come true! Although Jeroboam hadn’t spoken to the prophet since, he hoped that maybe this same prophet could tell him what to do for his dying son. So the king sent his wife to visit the prophet in Shiloh. She packed up food to take as an offering. Not realizing that Ahijah was now blind, Jeroboam instructed her to wear a disguise so she would not be recognized as his wife. However, God spoke to Ahijah telling him that Jeroboam’s wife was on her way and that she was pretending to be someone else. Then the Lord told him what to say. As soon as he heard her footsteps, the blind prophet spoke up, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam. Why are you wearing a disguise? I’m afraid I have a terrible message for you to deliver to your husband.” The elderly prophet then gave Jeroboam’s wife this message from God to give to her husband: “I selected you when you were no more than an average man. I tore part of the kingdom away from the family of David and gave it to you. But you have not followed me or obeyed my commandments. Instead you have led the nation into idolatry. You are more wicked than anyone else who ruled before you.” Ahijah prophesied that the son who was now sick would die peacefully as soon as the king’s wife walked back into the palace. His death would be mourned in Israel, and he would receive a proper burial. But because of Jeroboam’s terrible acts of idolatry, all the rest of the males in his family would die horrible deaths that no one would mourn. He prophesied that dogs would eat Jeroboam’s relatives who died in the city, and birds would eat those who died in the country. And Jeroboam’s legacy would be cut off as soon as he died. The prophet continued, “Even now, God is raising up a king who will one day destroy Israel and scatter them as a nation because of Jeroboam’s sin.” As soon as Jeroboam’s wife arrived at home, their son died just as Ahijah had prophesied. He was buried and all of Israel mourned his death. Then, after 22 years on the throne of Israel, Jeroboam died. Nadab, one of his sons became king, but he led the northern kingdom even more deeply into idol worship. He ruled only two years before a man named Baasha plotted against him and killed him. Baasha then wiped out the entire family of Jeroboam leaving him no descendants. Everything happened just as the prophet predicted. God punished Jeroboam harshly for leading His nation into idolatry!
Do you ever try to convince God that you are someone you really aren’t—like Jeroboam and his wife did? We can’t trick God into helping us by piously showing up at church on Sundays or by sporadically serving meals to the homeless. He knows what is really in our hearts. And we can’t expect Him to rescue us when we are in trouble if we never include Him in the rest of our lives!