Watch Out!!

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A very disturbing story is found in 1 Kings 13. This Scripture tells the story of God using an unnamed prophet to deliver a message to the King of Israel. What is unusual in this story is not the message to the King, but what God told the prophet to do. God told his servant, the prophet, that when he was done giving the message he was to return home a different way. The route he took going home had to be different from the one he took in finding the King. Secondly, the prophet was told that he could not eat or drink until he returned home.
It was not uncommon for God to tell his prophets to do unusual things—these strange instructions often reinforced the message God gave. The dark part of this story is that when word got out that God had sent a prophet to the King, an old man living nearby hopped on a donkey and tracked down God’s prophet. The old man then invited the prophet to eat at his home. When the prophet explained that God had told him he must not eat while on the journey—the old man lied and said that God changed his message. The old man said that God now wanted the prophet to stop and eat at his home! The result of all of this was that the prophet of God was mislead, he disobeyed God and would be killed before he reached home!
I call this story disturbing because of what the old man did. Why did the old man lie? We will never know the old man’s reasons for bringing about the fall of God’s prophet. I also wonder—”Why does God give us this story?” Could it be that God knows that there are many deceivers and liars in our world. Satan is described as the “Father of Lies” and he has sent out his false prophets with messages that are designed to bring disaster to all who will listen.
I was watching the National Geographic Channel the other day. My attention was caught by a program they aired on Christianity and the Roman Empire. The program spoke very disparagingly about the Bible. It said that the New Testament was not inspired by God. As I heard the false teaching that came from the program I became agitated. I knew that unsuspecting people would listen to the lies of that program and have their view of the Bible warped and tainted.
We live in a world that has an “Anti-God” agenda. We would be wise to use discernment when some media outlet or some person speaks about God, his word (the Bible) and his Kingdom (the Church). Satan will not wave his flag and say—”Here I am. Watchout!!” Those who are misled by the lies and agenda of Satan will not announce their deadly doctrines either. A good warning to heed is found in 1 Timothy 4:16. It says—”Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (NIV)