I Kings 22:19-23
And he said, Hear thou therefore the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by Him on His right hand and on His left.
And the Lord said, Who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner.
And there came forth a spirit, and stood before the Lord, and said, I will persuade him.
And the Lord said unto him, Wherewith? And he said I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And He said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth and do so.
Now therefore, behold the Lord hath put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these thy prophets, and the Lord hath spoken evil concerning thee.
Micaiah continued his message to Ahab by repeating what he had seen – the Lord sitting upon a throne, and all the host of heaven standing by Him on both sides. The Lord inquired as to whom He would sent to persuade Ahab to go to Ramoth-gilead to battle. Various spirits gave their suggestions, and finally there cam a demon who volunteered to be a lying spirit in the mouths of Ahab’s prophets to urge him to go to battle. The Lord gave him permission to carry out his plan [v 19-22].
This is just one of the many times when men have seen God. Here again He is pictured as an ordinary sized being in the midst of all His subjects on the right hand and on the left.
This reveals that God and His heavenly hosts, including demons on certain occasions, have conferences concerning the affairs of men on earth. This one had to do with only one part of the earth, one people on the earth, and one king in particular.
He was in rebellion against God, in league with idol gods, and listening to their prophets instead of the true prophets of Jehovah, so God permitted him to be deceived instead of saving him from such deception.
There was very little that could be done with such a stubborn man – one consecrated to demon worship and demon prophets. Micaiah had been sent to Ahab but he would not receive Jehovah’s instructions, in this case 2Th.2:8-12 is clearly illustrated. Because he and his associates had no love for the truth that they might be saved, God sent them a strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
The idea is that God permitted such deception to take the place of the truth rejected. If men will not have the truth they will automatically have a substitute that will be more in harmony with their wicked ways for the time being. Ahab would not have truth and would not listen to Jehovah, but he would have lies and listen to the prophets of Baal.
This passage simply gives an insight into the spirit realm showing that behind all human acts there are good and bad spirits seeking to carry out the respective wills of their masters. The Lord protects as long as He can, and when there is nothing else He can do to turn men from their wicked ways, error, and harm, He then permits demon spirits to deceive and cause them to go further astray.
This indicates that many spirits in heaven have the right of hearing on matters important enough to be discussed. Even demon spirits have access to some conferences [v21-23; Job 1:6; 2:1; Rev.12:9-12].
This was a demon spirit, for no good one could be a lying spirit in the mouth of anyone [v21-23]. It is clear that this demon spirit volunteered to do this work – he was not forced in any way [v21].
All things here were on a volunteer basis. The Lord first inquired for someone willing to persuade Ahab. The talks were on a voluntary basis also [v20]. When a spirit volunteered [v21], the Lord inquired as to how he would persuade Ahab, and was told that he would be a lying spirit in the mouths of Ahab’s prophets. The Lord gave permission [v22].
[hath put], that is, has permitted a demon spirit to be a lying spirit to deceive men who would not accept the Holy Spirit message through Micaiah [v23].
It seems that Zedekiah was the chief prophet of these 400 false ones of Baal, for this is the second time he took the lead [v11, 24]. He smote Micaiah on the cheek and tauntingly asked where the Holy Spirit went “from me to speak unto you?” [v24]. Micaiah answered that he would know when he went into the chamber to hide himself [v25].
[v28] This one prediction was that Zedekiah would hide himself for shame because of his false prophecies of Ahab’s victory [v 25 Cp. v11]. Ahab put Micaiah in prison until he should return in peace. This act was answered with another prophecy [v26-28]. It predicted one thing – that Ahab would lose the war and not return in peace: If he did then it would be proof that Jehovah had not spoken to Micaiah.
Hearken – I want all of you to witness what I have predicted and know that the Lord has spoken by me [v38].
[The king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, I will disguise myself and enter into the battle, but put thou on thy robes. v30]. This in itself was treachery and deception – feigning which almost cost Jehoshaphat his life. The captains of Syria had been instructed to fight with the king of Israel only, to destroy him; so when they saw Jehoshaphat in royal robes they thought he was Ahab and pursued him until it was discovered he was not the man they sought [v29-33]. – Dake A.R. Bible: page 388