Wednesday, October 7, 2015

against the darkness, a match is soon to be struck

The Word for today:
1 Kings 16:8-34
mark this: 1 Kings 16:31-33 --
And it came to pass, as though it had been a trivial thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took as wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians; and he went and served Baal and worshiped him.
Then he set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal, which he had built in Samaria.
Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him.
These are dark days in the history of Israel. King after king after king outdoes his predecessor in evil--in drunkenness, debauchery, conspiracy, treason, murder, and idolatry.
The ringleaders in this circus of perversity were Ahab and Jezebel. Their very names have become synonymous with wickedness.
Under Jezebel's influence, Ahab began worshipping Baal. Baal was the predominant god in Canaanite religion. He was said to be the storm god, who provided the rain for the fertility of the land.
The worship of Baal had already infiltrated Israel long before Ahab and Jezebel (1), but Ahab gave it official sanction when he built a temple for Baal in Samaria.
As David had captured Jerusalem and his son Solomon had built a temple for the LORD there, so Omri established Samaria and his son Ahab built a temple for Baal there.
Against this dark backdrop, God is about to light a fire. His match head stands ready--Elijah the Tishbite.
(1) see Judges 2:11, 13; Judges 3:7; Judges 10:6, 10; 1 Samuel 12:10

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