As you know, we have limited time. A lot happened in this chapter, but I want to just focus on the opening verses that set the scene. And see if you can draw any similarities to what is happening in our world today, November 2015.
The nation of Israel here in 1 Kings chapter 20 has turned its back on God. But in an earlier time, when David was king, he was a devoted albeit imperfect follower of God and His law. And during David’s reign, he brought the Syrians into submission to him, and they even paid a tribute to him.
Now, under Ahab, Israel no longer follows God. And in the midst of their sin, Syria grows in strength.
You might remember that back in chapter 15, Asa king of Judah made an treaty with Ben-hadad king of Syria, which emboldened Ben-hadad to attack Israel.
And now, because Israel is so steeped in sin, Ben-hadad king of Syria decides on his own to invade Israel yet again.
The commentator Matthew Henry said in regards to this: “It is dangerous bringing a foreign force into the country: posterity may pay dearly for it.”
As hundreds of thousands of Syrians pour into Europe and tens of thousands make their way into the United States, I am struck by the parallels between an Israel that had turned its back on God and most of the Western world, including the U.S., that has done the same.
I am not smart enough to know how to deal with the so called Syrian refugees, but as we move forward, I do know that we need to pray for our leaders and our nations. We need to pray that we would turn to God and seek His face.
When Israel was led by godly men, it was a blessed and prosperous nation. When godless men ruled, God allowed Israel to fall into slavery and ruin.
Look around. Are there similarities today?
What do you think?