August 6, 2023
“Then his (Ahab’s) wife Jezebel said to him, 'Now exercise your royal power over Israel. Get up, eat some food, and be happy. For I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.'”
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“The messenger who went to call Micaiah instructed him, ‘Look, the words of the prophets are unanimously favorable for the king. So let your words be like theirs, and speak favorably.’ But Micaiah said, ‘As the Lord lives, I will say whatever the Lord says to me.’” 1 Kings 22:13-14 (HCSB)
Micaiah has just nailed something that neither Ahab nor his messenger understands. Look back at Ahab’s words in verse 8 and the messengers in verse 13. What do both assume about God’s Word? They assume the prophet controls (or can control) the Word of the Lord. Ahab implies that Micaiah could speak a kinder, gentler Word. The messenger assumes Micaiah could agree with the company of (false) prophets if he only would. They do not understand Micaiah’s conviction or his position. (And they are obviously ignorant of the story of Balaam.) He is bound by the Word of God. Hence, God’s Word is a constant; it cannot be manipulated by kings, messengers, or slick false prophets. Sure, people can speak lies and claim the Lord’s inspiration, but they’ll ultimately be weighed by the TRUTH of His Word, and their preaching discovered to be flawed by His true standard.
The true prophet of God is incorruptible. Whatever Word the Lord gives a prophet is what the prophet must speak. The prophet is not at liberty to massage, shape, or bend (let alone pervert) that Word. The Word of the Lord must be passed-on as given. The true prophet of God is in bondage to the un-coercible Word of God. The Word of the Lord is free; the servant of the Lord is bound to it - not the other way around. The “Ahabs” of this World simply cannot comprehend the sovereign nature of God’s Word.
You may say, “So what? What do the requirements and limitations of a prophet have to do with me?” Consider the words of Paul:
“Pursue love and desire spiritual gifts, and above all that you may prophesy.” 1 Corinthians 14:1 (HCSB)
There is a somewhat famous and controversial “celebrity” pastor whose ministry slogan is “Love wins!” I believe God’s Love wins. But man’s love must be subservient to prophecy. Love can only be truly defined through the lens of God’s Word, as revealed by God’s Spirit. That’s what prophecy is! And we are ALL to seek prophecy, which means it can be obtained by all of us. No, I am not talking about predicting the future or writing new books of the Bible. I am talking about petitioning the Lord to reveal His Scripture to us so that we may know what He requires of us, so we can live in a way that honors Him. It also carries the intent that He is revealing His truth to us so that we can share it with others, no matter how unpopular His revelation may be.
The pressure to compromise God’s Word in our culture is immense. That is why we are seeking God’s Word as a community, so we will not be alone in the knowledge of His revelation. Rather, we should be a people determined to be separate and holy unto Him!