5.71 2 Kings -- Ahaziah

The first sentence in 2 Kings is that Moab rebelled.  And well they might -- David had treated them cruelly, massacring their defeated soldiers (2 Sam 8:2).

       

Ahaziah was the son of Ahab, and of like character.  When he injured himself, he sent to inquire of Baal-Zebub if he would recover.  This was one of the gods of the Philistines!   But Elijah intercepted the messengers and told them that Ahaziah would die, because he had inquired of a pagan god. This led to another demonstration of the miraculous power of God.  Ahaziah, from his sickbed, sent soldiers to arrest Elijah.  The first two companies of soldiers were consumed by fire from heaven, just as completely as was the sacrifice on Mt Carmel (2 Kings 1:9-12).  This is not the same Elijah who fled at the threats of Jezebel!  He had no doubts now, nor any fear of Ahab's son.  The soldiers died for the insolence of their king, who defied the Lord by trying to capture Elijah:

        "Ahaziah attempted to place the prophet under the authority of the king.  This constituted a violation of the covenant nature of Israelite kingship" (NIV p 524).

This incident shows us how entrenched was the worship of the Phoenician/Canaanite gods in the royal household of Israel.  Even in a matter of life or death, Ahaziah spurned the counsel of the God of Israel, and in so doing brought on his head the death he had hoped to avoid.