Historical Context: The last time we saw Elijah, he was once again confronting Ahab, the King of Israel, with a message from God, the King of Kings, concerning the sin of Naboth’s murder. Ahab is now dead, but his son, the new King, also needs to be confronted. This portion of our history takes place in approximately the year 853 B.C.
Authorship: The Book of the Kings was written mostly by Jeremiah the prophet during Israel’s exile in Babylon. It was compiled from the writings of various other prophets and books of history. It was later edited and completed by subsequent prophets and Levitical (Israel’s) priests.
Read 2 Kings 1
Ahaziah – King of Israel, son of Ahab
Baal-Zebub – a title of Baal, the idol
Ekron – a Philistine city
“Elijah” – Hebrew for “The Lord is my God”
Small Group Questions:
1.Read Matthew 12:24-28. What connection can you make between the names “Baal-Zebub” and “Beelzebub”? Why is the name of one of the chief demons sound so much like the name of this idol?
2.Read 1 Corinthians 10:19-20. What does Paul say about idol worship?
3.Ahaziah has sent messengers to an idol in Ekron, a city in another country. Read Acts 17:27-29. What do you think Paul would have said to Ahaziah about his wanting to ask for advice from a god that was so far away?
4.Why do you think Ahaziah sent the army to Elijah after hearing that Elijah had prophesied Ahaziah’s death?
5.Why did Elijah call down fire from heaven to kill the first two army units but then agreed to go with the third?
6.God has killed 101 people in this passage. What do you think about that?
7.What evidence do we see in this passage of God communicating with man?
1. God _______________________________________________. All I have to do is
2.I will _______________________________________ because He is ______________.
3.God has the ___________________________________________________________.
Answers to Questions:
1.Serving or worshipping anything other than the One True God is the same as serving Satan or a demon. We must put God first – above ourselves and everything and everyone else.
2.Serving idols is the same as serving a demon. If we’re not giving our worship to God, that worship has nowhere else to go but to Satan or a demon because there is no other god to receive that worship.
3.Paul says that “God is not far from each one of us” and would criticize Ahaziah for sending to a foreign country to consult an idol when the One True God was already next to him, waiting to be asked.
4.Ahaziah wanted to make Elijah reverse the “curse” that he had pronounced. He did not faith in God and so did not accept that his death sentence had come from God.
5.In sending the army, Ahaziah was trying to bring Elijah into subjection to him. By not showing respect to Elijah, the first two captains were not showing respect for God because God was behind Elijah’s actions. The third captain showed the proper respect and humility and so was not punished.
6.God created life and He has the right to take it away. We are His possession to do with what He wills. God has the right to punish sin. He does so to protect His servants and to scare others away from sinning.
7.God sent his angel to speak to Elijah and has sent Elijah to speak to the king and his messengers.