The Second Book of the Chronicles

Chapter 18

Jehoshaphat, becoming son-in-law to Ahab, is persuaded to go with him against Ramoth-gilead, 1-3. Ahab, seduced by false prophets, according to the word of Micaiah, is slain there, 4-34.

1 Now Jehoshaphat had riches and honor in abundance and made himself son-in-law to Ahab. 2 And after some years he went down to Ahab to Samaria. And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people who were with him, and persuaded him to go up with him to Ramoth-gilead. 3 And Ahab king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat king of Judah, "Will you go with me to Ramoth-gilead?" And he answered him, "I am as you are and my people as your people. And we will be with you in the war."

4 And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, "Inquire, I pray you, at the word of the LORD today." 5 Therefore, the king of Israel collected of prophets four hundred men and said to them, "Shall we go to Ramoth-gilead to battle, or shall I forbear?" And they said, "Go up, for God will deliver it into the king's hand." 6 But Jehoshaphat said, "Is there not here another prophet of the LORD so that we may inquire of him?" 7 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the LORD, but I hate him, for he never prophesies good to me, but always evil. The same is Micaiah the son of Imla." And Jehoshaphat said, "Do not let the king say so."

8 And the king of Israel called for one of his officers and said, "Quickly bring Micaiah the son of Imla." 9 And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah each sat on his throne clothed in their robes, and they sat in a void place at the entrance of the gate of Samaria. And all the prophets prophesied before them. 10 And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah had made him horns of iron and said, "Thus says the LORD: 'With these you shall push Syria until they are consumed.'" 11 And all the prophets similarly prophesied, saying, "Go up to Ramoth-gilead and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the hand of the king."

12 And the messenger who went to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, "Behold, the words of the prophets declare good to the king with one consent. Let your word therefore, I pray you, be like one of theirs and speak good." 13 And Micaiah said, "As the LORD lives, even what my God says, that I will speak."

14 And when he had come to the king, the king said to him, "Micaiah, shall we go to Ramoth-gilead to battle, or shall I forbear?" And he said, "Go up and prosper, and they shall be delivered into your hand." 15 And the king said to him, "How many times shall I adjure you that you say nothing but the truth to me in the name of the LORD?"

16 Then he said, "I saw all Israel scattered upon the mountains as sheep that have no shepherd. And the LORD said, 'These have no master. Let them each return therefore to his house in peace.'"

17 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "Did I not tell you that he would not prophesy good to me, but evil?"

18 Again he said, "Therefore, hear the word of the LORD. I saw the LORD sitting upon his throne and all the host of heaven standing on his right hand and on his left. 19 And the LORD said, 'Who shall entice Ahab king of Israel that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?' And one spoke saying after this manner and another saying after that manner. 20 Then a spirit came out and stood before the LORD and said, 'I will entice him.' And the LORD said to him, 'With what?' 21 And he said, 'I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.' And the LORD said, 'You shall entice him and you shall also prevail. Go out and do even so.' 22 Now therefore, behold, the LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of these prophets of yours and the LORD has spoken evil against you."

23 Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near and smote Micaiah upon the cheek and said, "Which way did the Spirit of the LORD go from me to speak to you?" 24 And Micaiah said, "Behold, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide yourself." 25 Then the king of Israel said, "Take Micaiah and carry him back to Amon the governor of the city and to Joash the king's son, 26 And say, 'Thus says the king: "Put this man in the prison and feed him with bread of affliction and with water of affliction until I return in peace."'" 27 And Micaiah said, "If you certainly return in peace, then the LORD has not spoken by me." And he said, "Listen, all you people."

28 So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead. 29 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, "I will disguise myself and go to the battle, but put on your robes." So the king of Israel disguised himself, and they went to the battle. 30 Now the king of Syria had commanded the captains of the chariots who were with him, saying, "Do not fight with small or great, but only with the king of Israel." 31 And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, "It is the king of Israel." Therefore, they turned around to fight him. But Jehoshaphat cried out, and the LORD helped him. And God moved them to depart from him. 32 For it came to pass, that when the captains of the chariots perceived that it was not the king of Israel, they turned back again from pursuing him. 33 And a certain man drew a bow at random and smote the king of Israel between the joints of the harness. Therefore, he said to his chariot-man, "Turn your hand so that you may carry me out of the host, for I am wounded." 34 And the battle increased that day. Nevertheless, the king of Israel supported himself in his chariot against the Syrians until the evening. And about the time of the sunset he died.


Matthew Henry Commentary - 2nd Chronicles, Chapter 18[➚]