Israel vs. Moab

  1. The king of Moab paid a hefty tribute to King Ahab every year. When Ahab died and his son took his place, the king of Moab decided enough was enough and stopped meeting the demand.
  2. Jehoram, Ahab’s son, decides that’s not okay. He’s offended and wants to demand the tribute by going to war against Moab.
  3. There’s no inquiry of the Lord at this point.
  4. Back when they were headed into the Promised Land, God told the Israelites not to provoke war with Moab because they weren’t going to be given their land. That land had been given to Lot and his descendants.
  5. Later, the Moabites deride the Israelites and their God and will be become a derision themselves.
  6. Here, again, Jehoshaphat is asked to join Israel. He, again, readily aligns himself with Israel. We haven’t read this yet since it’s in the Chronicles version of these stories, but a prophet confronts Jehoshaphat after he helped Ahab in battle, saying that the wrath of God will be on him because he helped the wicked and loved those who hated the Lord.
  7. Why would Jehoshaphat continue to do the same thing with the next king?
  8. God still finds good in Jehoshaphat and continues to bless and protect him for all the other good things he does do, like have God’s word taught throughout Judah.
  9. This time Jehoshaphat agrees to go out without consulting a prophet, but then thinks to ask a prophet of the Lord once they are facing a dire difficulty.
  10. Elisha seems to be in the right place at the right time.
  11. Elisha doesn’t hide his disdain for the king of Israel. He, however, respects Jehoshaphat, and Elisha allows God to prophecy through him how God would meet their need for water and deliver Moab into their hands.
  12. They are to destroy the land with rocks and stopping up springs. Remember, this land wasn’t to go to them.
  13. There is one turn of phrase I wanted to mention at the end of the chapter.
  14. The king of Moab sees they are being badly defeated and in a desperate move, sacrifices his oldest son.
  15. The oldest son is the heir. Moab just lost their to-be king. They are wrathful against Israel for “causing” that to happen, and in their anger they turn and go home.
  16. We know that Israel, and allies, won the battle because Elisha told them God would give Moab into their hands. It was a “light thing” for God to do.
  17. When it says Moab’s wrath came against Israel, that doesn’t mean that Moab somehow suddenly won the battle.