Study from God’s Word… 1st Kings 12: 1-19 [2nd Chron. 10: 1-19]; 1st Kings 12: 20; 1st Kings 21-24 [2nd Chron. 11: 1-4]; 1st Kings 12: 25-33 [2nd Chron. 11: 15]; 2nd Chron. 11: 13-14, 16-17; 1st Kings 13: 1 – 32 … Passage for Reflection: 1st Kings 13: 31 … NIV After burying him, he said to his sons, “When I die, bury me in the grave where the man of God is buried; lay my bones beside his bones.”
My Journal for Today: When one reads and studies 1st Kings 13: 11 – 32, the story of the interaction between two prophets of God, one younger and one older, the scenario can be perplexing. There is a younger prophet who has confronted the King of Israel and even refused to stay with him because of God’s decree. And he communicates that story of faith to an older prophet, who then lies to the younger man of God, luring him to eat at the table of the older prophet, which is against what God had told the younger prophet to do.
It’s all pretty confusing; but when it all sorts itself out, and the younger prophet is killed by a lion, apparently dispatched by God for the younger prophet’s disobedience; and we see the older prophet burying the younger man of God and instructing the son’s of the older prophet to bury him next to the bones of the younger man of God. Go figure! And to be honest I’m not sure I can figure this whole deal out, … except to agree what Dr. Smith says in his devotional today, which makes some degree of sense out of a very perplexing story.
Dr. Smith uses this passage and highlighted verse to teach that we need to identify with the lives of those who really have a heart for God and desire to be obedient to our Lord in what they say and do. I think of the man who mentored me for many years as I was being discipled from a new Christian into a more mature version of a sinner becoming the saint God desired for me to become. My mentor was not a perfect man, being a man, like all of us, with a sin nature. But Dr. G., my mentor, was like a David … a man after God’s heart; and he had the same attitude – and posture – of an Apostle Paul, … like when Paul said to the Church at Corinth (in 1st Cor. 11: 1), “You can imitate me because I imitate Christ.”
And I came to identify and follow the heart of my mentor, as well as many of his actions, decisions, and teachings. Like the younger prophet in today’s passage, my mentor was not perfect. The Apostle Paul was not perfect when he was in the middle of his years of ministry and mission work. King David certainly was not perfect, was he? But these were/are men we, as Christians, can identify and follow; because, like King David and the prophets in our story from God’s word today, these were men who had a heart seeking after God’s own heart. And when a believer becomes sold out and surrendered to God, he (or she) may, being human, make mistakes; but following God’s path as obediently as we can, especially by following His word, we will be led toward the righteous path in life; and that is the path to which we must aspire and walk with every fiber of our being.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, shine Your light on the path You desire for me to walk, … that I may follow the Light and be privileged to lead others to You. Amen