February 25, 2024 – 1 Kings 18 – Elijah Confronts the 450 Prophets of Baal

God tells Elijah to meet with King Ahab and challenge the 450 prophets of Baal to a contest of power to determine which is the true God – Yahweh or Baal. The experience doesn’t go well for the false prophets. Then Elijah prays and the rains return to Israel.

Notes on 1 Kings 18:1-45

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February 11, 2024 – 1 Kings 17 – The Prophet Elijah

The Prophet Elijah denounces the idolatry of King Ahab and his wife Jezebel. He prophecies that a drought will come as chastisement. Then God tells Elijah to flee. Ravens bring him food in the wilderness. Later he takes refuge with a widow and her son, where God sends miracles of provision, and – when her son dies – raises him to life through the prayer of the prophet.

Notes on 1 Kings 17:1-24

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February 4, 2024 – 1 Kings 16 – A Scramble for Israel’s Throne

The death of Baasha in the northern kingdom leads to a bloody struggle for the throne. Baasha’s dynasty receives the same fate he had inflicted on Jeroboam – the extermination of his whole male line. Omri comes out on top, and his son Ahab would usher in one of the darkest reigns in Jewish history, setting the stage for Elijah’s ministry.

Notes on 1 Kings 16:1-34

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January 28, 2024 – 1 Kings 15 – Judah’s kings Abijam and Asa

2 Chronicles 15-16 adds details to the record found in 1 Kings 15 of the two kings who succeeded Rehoboam in Judah – Abijam and Asa. Their reigns display a mix of God-honoring words and deeds along with a failure to persevere in trust in God. Meanwhile, Jeroboam’s heir in the north, Nadab, is overthrown and murdered by Baasha, who usurps the throne, killing all Jeroboam’s male lineage, as previously prophesied.

Notes on 1 Kings 15

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January 21, 2024 – 1 Kings 14:21-31 – The Sins of Judah

While Jeroboam had set up the two golden calf idols in his kingdom, King Rehoboam in Judah carried on with loyal worship of Yahweh for a few years, aided by Levites and other believers who fled from the Northern Kingdom. But soon idolatry spread there, too. God then sent chastisement on Rehoboam in the form of an invasion by the Egyptian pharaoh Shishak, who plundered the Temple treasuries.

Notes on 1 Kings 14:21-31

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January 14, 2024 – 1 Kings 14:1-20 – The Death of Jeroboam’s Son

King Jeroboam’s son falls ill, and he sends his wife to inquire of the prophet Ahijah. The prophet predicts Jeroboam’s downfall and the extermination of his entire line because he had encouraged Israel to raise up groves or asherah to worship, and had forsaken Yahweh.

Notes on 1 Kings 14:1-20

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January 7, 2024 – 1 Kings 13 – The Disobedient Man of God

This strange story illustrates the saying of Samuel to King Saul, that “to obey is better than sacrifice” (1 Samuel 15:22-31). It can serve as a warning to us all.  1 Corinthians 10:12 – “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.”

Notes on 1 Kings 13:1-34

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