1 Kings 20-22; I am always amazed at the grace and mercy of God towards people. In these three chapters, we find the climax of King Ahab of Israel [Northern Tribes]. As notorious and idolatrous that he and his abominable wife Jezebel were, God still extended mercy to King Ahab for the mere display of humility [1 Kings 21:27-29] In God’s extending mercy to Ahab, I hear the so often repeated “I can’t believe God would forgive someone like him/her! Our God is so merciful and longsuffering towards ANYONE who is willing to show authentic repentance and humility. Good thing for if not we all would be doomed!
But let’s think about this – King Ahab, the same guy who battled with Elijah, who brought Jezebel and the Baal worship, was worse than any that had gone before him; this wimp of a man who whimpers to his wife because Naboth wouldn’t sell him his vineyard, the one who is arrogant, conceited, vile, abominable, a reprobate, despicable person and because he shows some remorse over his sentence from God and humbles himself; God, Jehovah, Elohim, the creator of the universe and all that exist, the God who delivered Moses and the people from Egypt, parted the Red sea, condemned and destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, destroyed the entire world with a Flood, save 8 people. This God who names the stars and tells the waves to refrain – this omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent God recognized a worthless man display some humility – and pardons all the fury and wrath He intended to do to him? Yes, sure, uh huh, absolutely. You know what He did the very same thing for you and me! Praise be the name of our Father in Heaven for His unsearchable riches in mercy!
The wrath of God is only exceeded by His Mercy and Grace. You and I wouldn’t do anything like that; what goes around comes around – old Ahab gonna get just what he dished out – I’m not forgiving or forgetting the sorry so and so! Or so we would act in our own smug righteousness. Praise God we have a Savior and God in heaven that isn’t like us!
Looking at this passage we also see some of the dastardly actions of Ahab – he hates God’s prophets – Elijah and Micaiah because all they do is tell the Word of the Lord – which understandably is against King Ahab. I wonder how many people we surround ourselves with just so they can tell us what we want to hear?
The sad part about these chapters is when God recognized Ahab’s humility [because of a crisis of his own making] and spares the wrath intended; Ahab goes right back to doing the same junk all over again activating the Anger of the Lord back upon himself. I think we all are a bit like Ahab; if there is a crisis coming upon us because of our own foolishness; we turn and cry out the name of God; but as soon as the crisis or pain subsides, we are right back at what we were doing before against God. I like Micaiah, he wasn’t afraid to say the truth while everyone else gave the lie. Yet when it came down to it – Ahab wanted Micaiah to speak the truth.
Ahab ended his life sadly, when it could have been so different – please since you are reading this far, I wonder would you give God in Heaven a display of repentance and humility that is authentic so He may bestow His benevolent love and mercy on you? Jesus is prepared to forgive all your sins; and restore you to a right standing before God; the added gift of eternal life [His life in you] is yours for the asking. Don’t turn the mercy and longsuffering of God away!