1 Kings 22:1-28: ...a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, saying, 'I will entice him.' How?' the LORD asked him. He replied, 'I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.' Then the LORD said, 'You are to entice him, and you shall succeed; go out and do it.'
I once received an unexpected phone call from an influential person, telling me I should consider coming to work for her. I was so flattered by the call that I did take that job, the worst professional mistake I’ve ever made.
I have made many mistakes because I listened to or wanted to please someone who was, in my view, ‘important.’ I have even convinced myself that God had come to me through that person, so the message was not human but divine.
In First Kings, “a spirit came forward” and said, “I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.” Prophets in the employ of kings usually ‘prophesied’ exactly what they knew the king wanted, so the leaders often had to sort out what they wanted to do from what they were ordained to do. “A lying spirit,” come to us through someone important or influential, can reinforce selfish or even evil intent.
It is frightfully easy to hear messages which line up with our own beliefs or plans, and to attribute those messages to God. We all look for messages which come from God.
But we’d better be wary when those messages match up conveniently with what we already wanted to do.
Psalm 72; 1 Corinthians 2:1-13; Matthew 4:18-25
Copyright 2019 by Carol Mead. For noncommercial use and sharing only. For more information on this ministry, and on a free subscription to these meditations, please go to the website (www.holyordinary.com).