Beware of Corrupting Influences

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Image of Elijah confronting Ahab of his sin of having Naboth killed and stealing his vineyard.
Image source: Sweet Publishing

It’s bad enough that Ahab and Jezebel were exceedingly evil. But today’s Bible reading* tells that God was angered because they caused other people to sin. They were corrupting influences on other people’s lives. (1 Kings 22:21, 25)

When Naboth refused to sell Ahab his vineyard, Jezebel forged her husband’s signature and seal and convinced two wicked men to falsely accuse Naboth of blasphemy. When they heard the accusations, the people seized Naboth, drug him outside the city, and stoned him to death. Now, Ahab could take Naboth’s vineyard without having to pay anything for it.

Elijah confronted Ahab about his sin of having Naboth killed and stealing his vineyard, Ahab repented, (1 Kings 22:27) while Jezebel remained unrepentant. Because of his repentance, God chose to bring His prophesied punishment on Ahab’s son instead of Ahab. (1 Kings 22:29)

Application

Several days ago, I suggested that we need to be careful who we associate with. This applies not only to our friends, but to our leaders. Oftentimes leaders can lead those under them astray. Such was the case with Ahab and Jezebel.

Teachers and leaders can have tremendous influence over their followers. They can lead their followers into a deeper walk with God. Or they can be corrupting influences on their followers. James cautioned his readers to be careful about wanting to become teachers/leaders. He said that God holds leaders to a higher standard. (James 3:1)

* Chapters covered in today’s reading:
1 Kings 20
1 Kings 21


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