podcast

Discerning Good and Evil (1 Kings 22:8)

Pray The Word
1 Kings
22
8
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“And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, there is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the Lord. Micaiah the son of Imlah, but I hate him for he never prophesized good concerning me, but evil.”
-1 Kings 22:8

I want you to think about that statement that the king of Israel makes about Micaiah. He never prophesized good concerning me, but evil. In other words, the king of Israel wants prophets who will tell him what he wants to hear. And isn’t that true in a sense of all of us? We want people to tell us what we want to hear, oftentimes more than we want people to tell us what God has said. We are so foolish to think that our ways are better than God’s ways that we will look for justification for our ways in all kinds of places in an attempt to not hear what God is saying to us. After all, this is why false prophets are so prevalent in the church, right?

God, we pray for grace and wisdom to discern that which is good and evil, according to your Word.

Because they say what people want to hear, even though what they are saying goes against God’s word. And we don’t have time to go into all the details here in First Kings chapter 22, including a variety of questions that come from this chapter. But the clear reality of First Kings 22 is that we must be careful to test what is told us according to God’s word and God’s spirit. And it’s not just here in First Kings 22, it’s all over the New Testament. Its teachings and expectations and warnings all over the New Testament to make sure that we are not carried away by deceitfulness, by deceitful doctrine, by deceptive teaching, by false prophets who tell us what we want to hear instead of what God’s word has said. We must always test our thoughts, test our desires, our words, what we teach and we must test what we hear with God’s word.

Otherwise we will follow deception to our detriment. Oh God, we pray in each of our lives that you would guard us from deception. We know that the adversary, the devil, is a deceiver who deceives with lies. I think about conversations with my kids, with members in our church, where we are prone to believe lies, thoughts, that the adversary puts in our heads about ourselves, about others, to believe things that are not true about you or about others, about the world around us. God, we pray that you would help us to meditate on that which is true and right, according to your word and your spirit. That you would fill our minds with truth and help us to live according to truth, help us to speak truth in all that we do, according to your word. God, we pray for grace and wisdom to discern that which is good and evil, according to your Word.

God, as we hear all kinds of messages around us in the world, God we pray that you would help us not to be conformed to the pattern of this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds according to your truth. God, we pray that you would guard us from our tendency to listen to what we want to hear instead of listening to what you have said in your word, by your spirit. Help us, we pray and God, we pray this for those around us who are without Jesus right now. Who Second Corinthians 4:4 says, “The God of this world is blinding their minds to keep them from seeing the truth of the gospel.” God, we pray that you would shine light into their hearts, Second Corinthians 4:6, that they might come to know the truth of the gospel. They might receive salvation in you, even as we proclaim the truth of the gospel to them. We pray all of this according to First Kings chapter 22. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.
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