18:1 Now Jehoshaphat had riches and honour in abundance, and joined a affinity with Ahab.
(a) For Joram Jehoshaphats son married Ahabs daughter. 18:2 And after [certain] b years he went down to Ahab to Samaria. And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people that [he had] with him, and persuaded him to go up [with him] to c Ramothgilead.
(b) That is, the third year, ( 1 Kings 22:2 ). 18:4 And Jehoshaphat said unto the king of Israel, Enquire, I pray thee, at the d word of the LORD to day.
(c) To recover it out of the hands of the Syrians.
(d) Hear the advise of some prophet to know whether it is Gods will. 18:5 Therefore the king of Israel gathered together of e prophets four hundred men, and said unto them, Shall we go to Ramothgilead to battle, or shall I forbear? And they said, Go up; for God will deliver [it] into the kings hand.
(e) Who were the prophets of Baal, signifying that the wicked esteem none but liars and such as will bear with their inordinate affections. 18:7 And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, [There is] yet one man, by whom we may enquire of the LORD: but I f hate him; for he never prophesied good unto me, but always evil: the same [is] Micaiah the son of Imla. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say g so.
(f) Yet the true ministers of God should not cease to do their duty, even though the wicked magistrates cannot abide them speaking the truth. 18:9 And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah sat either of them on his throne, clothed in [their] h robes, and they sat in a void place at the entering in of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them.
(g) Meaning, that he should not refuse to hear any that was from God.
(h) That is, in their majesty and royal apparel. 18:10 And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah had made him i horns of iron, and said, Thus saith the LORD, With these thou shalt push Syria until they be consumed.
(i) Read ( 1 Kings 22:11 ). 18:12 And the messenger that went to call Micaiah spake to him, saying, Behold, the words of the prophets [declare] good to the king with one k assent; let thy word therefore, I pray thee, be like one of theirs, and speak thou good.
(k) Thinking, that since four hundred prophets had agreed in one thing, that he being but one man and in least estimation, did not dare to go against it. 18:14 And when he was come to the king, the king said unto him, Micaiah, shall we go to Ramothgilead to battle, or shall I forbear? And he said, l Go ye up, and prosper, and they shall be delivered into your hand.
(l) He spoke this in derision of the false prophets as the king well knew. 18:16 Then he said, I did see all Israel scattered upon the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd: and the LORD said, m These have no master; let them return [therefore] every man to his house in peace.
(m) He prophesied of how the people would be scattered and Ahab slain. 18:18 Again he said, Therefore hear the word of the LORD; I saw the LORD sitting upon his throne, and all the n host of heaven standing on his right hand and [on] his left.
(n) Meaning his angels. 18:21 And he said, I will go out, and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And o [the LORD] said, Thou shalt entice [him], and thou shalt also prevail: go out, and do [even] so.
(o) That is, the Lord. 18:22 Now therefore, behold, the LORD hath put a p lying spirit in the mouth of these thy prophets, and the LORD hath spoken evil against thee.
(p) To those who would not believe the truth, God sent a strong delusion, that they would believe lies, ( 2 Thessalonians 2:10 ). 18:23 Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near, and smote Micaiah upon the q cheek, and said, Which way went the Spirit of the LORD from me to speak unto thee?
(q) By this cruelty his ambition and hypocrisy was discovered; thus the hypocrites boast of the Spirit which they do not have, and declare their malice against them on whom the true Spirit is. 18:26 And say, Thus saith the king, Put this [fellow] in the prison, and feed him with bread of r affliction and with water of affliction, until I return in peace.
(r) Keep him in prison, and let him feel hunger and thirst. 18:29 And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, I will s disguise myself, and will go to the battle; but put thou on thy robes. So the king of Israel disguised himself; and they went to the battle.
(s) Thus the wicked think by their own subtilty to escape Gods judgments which he threatens by his word. 18:31 And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It [is] the king of Israel. Therefore they compassed about him to fight: but Jehoshaphat t cried out, and the LORD helped him; and God moved them [to depart] from him.
(t) He cried to the Lord by acknowledging his fault in going with this wicked king to war against the word of the Lord by his prophet and also by desiring mercy for the same. 18:34 And the battle increased that day: howbeit the king of Israel u stayed [himself] up in [his] chariot against the Syrians until the even: and about the time of the sun going down he died.
(u) He disguised his wound that his soldiers might fight more courageously.