1 Kings 22:21-22, A Lying Spirit, part I of II

And there came forth a spirit, and stood before the LORD, and said, I will persuade him. And the LORD said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so.

//Just in case your Old English isn’t too good, here’s what’s happening in today’s verse: God needs a plan to kill King Ahab, and comes up with the idea of luring Ahab into a battle he can’t win. But how to convince Ahab? The “host of heaven” around God’s throne suggest one idea after another, until finally a “lying spirit” shows up and offers to be of service. So God sends the lying spirit forth to fool all of Ahab’s advisers—four hundred of them. It works, Ahab is convinced to fight, and he dies.

Great story! But I’d venture a guess that there’s more to the tale. Call me a skeptic, but I’m a little unconvinced about any “host of heaven” debating strategy, or any lying spirits, or why God wouldn’t be able to figure out his own battle plan in the first place. So, tomorrow, I’ll let you in on how I think the whole thing really went down.

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