Today’s passage: 1 Kings 20:1-43
- Elijah was given instruction to anoint the new king over Israel in the last chapter. Today, we start to see the initial occasion for Ahab’s decline.
- In verses 10 and 11, Ben-Hadad threatens to level Samaria and Ahab responds by reminding the Syrian king not to call himself the victor before he wins the war.
- The Syrians’ view of gods is evidenced in their desire to take the next battle to the plains. They believed the gods of Israel would be less effective there.
- Syria picked a fight not just with Israel but with God. Israel needed to learn this just as much as the Syrians.
- These bazaars that Ben-Hadad promised to Ahab were marketplaces that would be placed in the capital of Syria which would be a financial benefit to Israel.
Questions to consider:
- Why was God going to give this victory to Israel and King Ahab? (Verse 13) What was the Syrians’ understanding of the worship practices of Israel if they were thinking of their gods? (Verse 23) What was Israel’s testimony to the world around them concerning Yahweh?
- How did Ahab’s rebuke, judgment and response compare and contrast with that of Saul and David? (1 Samuel 15, 2 Samuel 12, Psalm 51 – Look for the methods of rebuke, the results of the sin, the reactions of the men.) How does godly sorrow differ from worldly sorrow (2 Corinthians 7:10-13)?
- Is God only powerful in certain areas of the world or in our lives? What areas of your life do you find it easiest to trust God? What areas do you tend to try to handle on your own? How could our busyness distract us from what God would have us to do, when what God wants is for us to acknowledge and serve Him in those tasks? What does God want you to know about Himself and every area, concern, and joy in your life (Verse 13)?