A man of God, a prophet, sent by God from Judah to Bethel to cry against the idolatrous altar that Jeroboam erected, was on his donkey heading back home. This was the second time he was plying this route.
As he sat down on his donkey, he reminisced on his disobedience, how he had been so foolish and gullible. God had explicitly instructed him not to eat or drink anything in Bethel, and to not return home by the same route. “How could I have disobeyed this! Why didn’t I check with God when this old big fat lier of a prophet came telling me otherwise?” He thought.
He continued in his thoughts. “How wicked could this old prophet be, that he made me disobey God. What exactly did he want to achieve? He had been in Bethel all this while and couldn’t even caution Jeroboam. He had grown worldly and profane, and must have been enjoying the gifts and money given him by the king. He even allowed his children attend the sacrifices Jeroboam offered at his altar.
“I should have smelt a rat when he met me under that oak tree, and told me that an angel of God said I should go with him. Why didn’t I try his spirit of prophecy? Why did I believe him sheepishly? Imagine, I refused the invitation of King Jeroboam and withstood his enticing reward, but fell head over heels into this old prophet’s deceit.”
As this young prophet approached a T-junction on the dusty road, still sorrowing, regretting his mistake, a lion came from no where and attacked him, knocking him off his donkey, and pouncing on him with its claws till he died. The lion then stood beside the body of the disobedient prophet without devouring it, nor the donkey. For its assignment was to kill the prophet, and nothing more. Thus God wonderfully preserved his corpse.
The old prophet who had beguiled him got wind that the man of God had been killed as he prophesied, so he quickly saddled his ass and got to the scene. He saw the lion and donkey standing still beside the corpse. He took the dead body of the prophet home, mourned for him, and buried him.
Food for thought: (1) Words of prophecy from a prophet should only confirm what God has said to you. (2) We, as believers, are more prone to deceit from plausible pretence of divinity than from external inducement. (3) Beware of false prophets, and believe not every spirit.
Scriptural reference: 1 Kings 13:1-34;