Does God Use Evil for Good?

1 Kings 22:8 – 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 prophesies good concerning me, but evil.” And Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.”

Yesterday, we looked at a few instances of evil and suffering in 1 Kings 22. This type of suffering can often make even the most committed believers start to question God, trying to reconcile God’s character with the reality of sin. People ask, “If God is good, why does He allow evil?” 

We’ll continue to answer that question this week as we take a deeper dive into more examples of evil and suffering in this chapter.

Five, in the northern kingdom, the godless demonic King Ahab’s family had ruled over Israel for generations, and now there was going to be a new king in Israel. Sadly, it was Ahab’s son Ahaziah, who was just as demonic and evil as his father. 

Six, in the southern kingdom Jehoshaphat was a godlier king, but did not lead with full courage and integrity, “He did not turn aside from it, doing what was right in the sight of the Lord. Yet the high places were not taken away, and the people still sacrificed and made offerings on the high places. Jehoshaphat also made peace with the king of Israel.” (1 Kings 22:43-44)

Seven, to secure peace between the Northern Kingdom of Israel ruled by the godless King Ahab, and the Southern Kingdom of Judah ruled by the godlier King Jehoshaphat, an evil thing was done. Jehoshaphat had his son marry the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel (2 Kings 8:16-18, 26-27). This unholy marriage alliance brought the demonic Ahab and Jezebel spirits into the southern kingdom of Judah, leading to the worship of Baal and Asherah in both kingdoms. The tragic demonic report is, “[Jehoram King of Judah in the South] walked in the way of the kings of Israel, as the house of Ahab had done, for the daughter of Ahab was his wife. And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord…Ahaziah [King of Israel in the North]…he reigned one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Athaliah; she was a granddaughter of Omri king of Israel. He also walked in the way of the house of Ahab and did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, as the house of Ahab had done, for he was son-in-law to the house of Ahab.”

Eight, we now have God’s people united politically, which is good. However, they are also divided spiritually, which is bad. Jehoshaphat is tolerating the Ahab and Jezebel spirits, though he personally walks with the Lord. It seems like political matters are a higher priority than spiritual ones with some exceptions including, “…from the land he exterminated the remnant of the male cult prostitutes…” (1 Kings 22:46)

Nine, in Israel, nothing changed, and the demonic evil pattern continued, “Ahaziah the son of Ahab…reigned two years over Israel. He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and walked in the way of his father and in the way of his mother and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin. He served Baal and worshiped him and provoked the Lord, the God of Israel, to anger in every way that his father had done.” (1 Kings 22:51-53)

People may have started to question where God was in all of this, but His ways are perfect and He was still working, even if it didn’t seem evident and obvious at the time.

In the story of 1 Kings 22, who do you identify with most? Why?

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