May 21. Ahaziah Becomes King of Israel

I Kin. 22:51-II Kin. 1:18

During the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat’s reign in Judah, Ahaziah, the son of Ahab, became king of Israel. It is the duty of parents to properly train their children in the ways of the Lord. That did not happen in the case of Ahaziah. He followed in the wicked ways of his parents, Ahab and Jezebel. Neither did he remove the idol worship of Jeroboam, the first king of God’s divided people, Israel.

Accidents happen to kings as well as common people. Ahaziah fell through the lattice of his upper room and was severely injured. As his father had done, he also relied upon a false god by sending messengers to inquire of the outcome of his injuries.

An angel of the Lord sent Elijah to intercept the king’s messengers and to give them messages from the true God. The first was in the form of a rebuke asking if there was no God in Israel that they must inquire of the god, Baal-Zebub. God’s second message informed Ahaziah that he would not come down from his bed, but would die.

The king sent three different captains of fifty men to bring Elijah to him. “Man of God, thus has the king said, ‘Come down quickly.’” The first two captains issued the command that the prophet of God be submissive to the wicked king. In each incident, Elijah called down fire from heaven and the captain and his men were destroyed. God expects humility from His people. The third captain humbled himself and begged for the lives of himself and his men. That act of humility did not change the king’s message, but it did bring their safety and God did send Elijah to Ahaziah. The king died in his second year. Since he had no son, he was succeeded by his brother, Jehoram.