2 Kings is a continuation of a brief overview of the history of Israel and Judah, commencing with the rebellion of Moab against Israel (and likely Judah as well) from when David had defeated them. Their territory was in the area of Judah and Israel. Ahaziah, son of Ahab, had fallen through “the lattice of his upper room in Samaria”. The injury was severe enough he questioned his life’s duration, so sent messengers to ask “Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron” if he would live or die. Baal-Zebub is the Old Testament counterpart to Beelzebub of the New Testament; which means lord of the flies.
Most likely it wasn’t just this incident that brought about the judgment of the Lord against Ahaziah, but others as well, having led Israel into further transgression of his father Ahab. Elijah continued to prophesy and mentor Elisha after he had anointed the young man to replace him. Mentoring includes “on the job training”, i.e. real life encounters from which to learn. Elisha was an excellent student as we’ll soon read.
Elijah prophesied the impending death of Ahaziah, to which the king of Israel inquired as to the prophet’s appearance and knew immediately who it was. The king sent for Elijah to be brought to him, sending a group of fifty men under the leadership of a captain. All of these men and their captain were consumed with fire, as were the second group sent; which came as a result of the will of God, not that of Elijah.
A third group was sent that had a wise and humble leader, who appealed for his life and that of his men to Elijah. Being directed by the Lord to go with this captain, the prophet delivered the same message that had originally been given to deliver to Ahaziah.
There’s little doubt that Elijah’s life was at stake, being in the presence of Ahazaiah and delivering the prophetic word from the Lord; yet he was consistent to bring the word the Lord had given him earlier.
The Lord desires that His men and women be consistent, regardless of the peril they may find themselves in because of the task assigned them.
Being consistent isn’t always easy or comfortable; but it captures the attention of the Lord as we stand for Him and are faithful with what He has given us.
Be consistent and be found faithful!