Summary: In the midst of evil, God is watching. He is not oblivious. God's decree directs history. He will judge evil and sin. His light still shines through His faithful prophets.
1 Kings 15-16 Evil Men in the Hands of a Good God ES 1 Oct 17 1828
We are going to touch on 1 Kings 15 today. Now that we have two kingdoms – ISRAEL and JUDAH, the author swings from one to another, telling us about the reigns of the Kings in both Kingdoms.
• Following the account of King ASA of JUDAH (last Sun), we are going to look at a few Kings of ISRAEL.
• Let us get a bird-eye view of what’s going on (chart of the Kings).
Let’s glance through the next few Kings of ISRAEL starting with NADAB son of Jeroboam – 1 Kings 15:25-29.
• We see two recurring lines over and over again in these accounts: (1) he did evil in the eyes of the Lord and caused Israel to commit sin, and (2) he provoked the Lord, the God of Israel, to anger.
Under Nadab – 15:26 and 15:30.
• 15:26 “He did evil in the eyes of the LORD, walking in the ways of his father and in his sin, which he had caused Israel to commit.”
• 15:30 “because of the sins Jeroboam had committed and had caused Israel to commit, and because he provoked the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger.”
Under Baasha – 15:34 and 16:2, 7.
• 15:34 “He did evil in the eyes of the LORD, walking in the ways of Jeroboam and in his sin, which he had caused Israel to commit.”
• 16:2 “I lifted you up from the dust and made you leader of my people Israel, but you walked in the ways of Jeroboam and caused my people Israel to sin and to provoke me to anger by their sins.”
• 16:7 “Moreover, the word of the LORD came through the prophet Jehu son of Hanani to Baasha and his house, because of all the evil he had done in the eyes of the LORD, provoking him to anger by the things he did, and becoming like the house of Jeroboam - and also because he destroyed it.”
Under Elah – 16:13.
• 16:13 “because of all the sins Baasha and his son Elah had committed and had caused Israel to commit, so that they provoked the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger by their worthless idols.”
Under Zimri – 16:19.
• 16:19 “because of the sins he had committed, doing evil in the eyes of the LORD and walking in the ways of Jeroboam and in the sin he had committed and had caused Israel to commit.”
Under Omni – 16:25-26.
• 16:25-26 “But Omri did evil in the eyes of the LORD and sinned more than all those before him. 26He walked in all the ways of Jeroboam son of Nebat and in his sin, which he had caused Israel to commit, so that they provoked the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger by their worthless idols.”
Under Ahab – 16:30, 33.
• 16:30 “Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the LORD than any of those before him.”
• 16:33 “Ahab also made an Asherah pole and did more to provoke the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger than did all the kings of Israel before him.”
What does this tell us? They all did evil IN THE EYES OF THE LORD.
(1) The Lord is WATCHING
• Evil does not take God by surprise. Prov 15:3 “The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.”
• This is our comfort and assurance today. We do not like evil but we can be assured that God is aware and He is watching all that is going on.
The Kings did evil under the EYES OF THE LORD and He was provoked to anger by what He saw.
• In the face of evil, people tend to ask, “Where is God? Where is God in the midst of all this evil?”
• Our answer is, He is right there, He is right there watching! He is not oblivious to it. In fact, He is provoked to anger by it. He will judge.
When Baasha killed Nadab (son of Jeroboam) and subsequently Jeroboam’s entire family, God was expecting it. He foretold this outcome.
• The author says this happened, 15:29 “according to the Word of the Lord given through His servant Ahijah”.
• Back in 14:10-11 “Because of this, I am going to bring disaster on the house of Jeroboam. I will cut off from Jeroboam every last male in Israel-slave or free. I will burn up the house of Jeroboam as one burns dung, until it is all gone. 11Dogs will eat those belonging to Jeroboam who die in the city, and the birds of the air will feed on those who die in the country. The LORD has spoken!'”