When the children of Israel desired to have a king in order to be like the nations around them God told Samuel; “You shall solemnly warn them and show them the behavior of the king who will reign over them” (1 Samuel 8:9). Samuel then began to explain to them how they would suffer because of the ungodly kings that would come to power. Many years later Ahaziah became king over Israel and the Scripture says; “He did evil in the sight of the Lord…” (1 Kings 22:52).

As the book of Second Kings begins Ahaziah begins his reign of evil and his first year the Word of God says; “Now Ahaziah fell through the lattice of his upper room…and was injured…” (2 Kings 1:2). As a result of his injury, which evidently was serious, he wanted to know if he would recover from the fall and so he sent messengers to “inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron…” (2 Kings 1:2). The king of Israel sought counsel from a false god and not from the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Elijah the prophet was then given the responsibility of going to meet the king and ask him this question. “Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron” (2 Kings 1:3). The Lord was angered that the king of Israel should seek counsel from a false god instead of from the One True God.

This problem has continued throughout the centuries among the people of God. The apostle Paul was amazed that the Galatian brethren would seek counsel and teaching from false teachers instead of the true apostles. “I marvel that you are turning away so soon from him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel…” (Galatians 1:6). The truth had come to Galatia through the preaching of Paul and other faithful brethren, but now the Galatians had sought counsel from false teachers. It is quite probable that the false teachers were more eloquent in their rhetoric, could provide entertaining illustrations and stories, and could give speak in such a way as to deceive. The brethren were being persuaded by smooth speech, but in reality were perverting the gospel of Christ (Galatians 1:7). They like king Ahaziah sought counsel from a false source and it is no different in the 21st Century.

Some brethren seek false counsel because a “preacher” speaks more like host of “The Tonight Show” than a preacher of the gospel. Instead of rapid fire Bible it becomes rapid fire humor and stories and instead of an depth study of the Word of God it becomes a superficial message like “Sesame Street” for children. Paul wrote; “Preach the word” (2 Timothy 4:2). Just like Ahaziah was fooled into seeking false counsel so are some brethren in the 21st Century.

The result for Ahaziah was that because in his first year of being king he had rejected the counsel from Jehovah God he was rejected and would not recover from his injuries. “Now therefore, thus says the Lord, ‘You shall not come down from the bed to which you have gone up, but you shall surely die” (2 Kings 1:4). In the 21st Century when congregations and brethren are more enamored with imitation preaching and messages that appeal to secular humor rather than to the spiritual part of man then the spiritual results will be the same today as they were physically for Ahaziah so many centuries ago.

May all congregations of the Lord’s church and brethren everywhere seek only the counsel that comes from the Lord, the Word that is a light to our pathway (Psalms 119:105).

 by Wayne Brewer