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1 And behold, a man of God came out of Judah by the word of the Lord to Bethel. Jeroboam was standing by the altar to make offerings. 2 And the man cried against the altar by the word of the Lord and said, “O altar, altar, thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, a son shall be born to the house of David, Josiah by name, and he shall sacrifice on you the priests of the high places who make offerings on you, and human bones shall be burned on you.’” 3 And he gave a sign the same day, saying, “This is the sign that the Lord has spoken: ‘Behold, the altar shall be torn down, and the ashes that are on it shall be poured out.’” …


23 And after he had eaten bread and drunk, he saddled the donkey for the prophet whom he had brought back. 24 And as he went away a lion met him on the road and killed him. And his body was thrown in the road, and the donkey stood beside it; the lion also stood beside the body. 25 And behold, men passed by and saw the body thrown in the road and the lion standing by the body. And they came and told it in the city where the old prophet lived.


26 And when the prophet who had brought him back from the way heard of it, he said, “It is the man of God who disobeyed the word of the Lord; therefore the Lord has given him to the lion, which has torn him and killed him, according to the word that the Lord spoke to him.”



  1. (It’ll be better to read the whole chapter once to get a clearer understanding of the incident.) A young prophet was sent to Bethel to speak against Jeroboam’s false religion. After he completed his mission and was on the way home, an old prophet who lived nearby stopped him. God had told the young man not to eat or drink in Israel. But the old prophet had a ready answer. God had told him to tell his younger colleague that it was all right to stop over at his house and have a meal.
  2. Apparently the old prophet lied. As a result the young prophet was killed by a lion on his way back home.
  3. The incident carries an important message. If God’s word was so important that even slight deviation brought death, how terrible Jeroboam’s sin must be.
  4. We must be open and sensitive to God’s word and His will for us. We need also to discern of those who tell us what we ought to do.



If you observe anything evil within yourself, correct it; if something good, preserve it; if something beautiful, foster it; if something sound, maintain it; if sickly, heal it. Read unwearingly the precepts of the Lord and, sufficiently instructed by them, you will know what to avoid and what to pursue. – Bernard of Clairvaux

So help me, God!