“Jehoshaphat enjoyed great riches and high esteem, and he made an alliance with Ahab of Israel by having his son marry Ahab’s daughter. A few years later he went to Samaria to visit Ahab, who prepared a great banquet for him and his officials…Then Ahab enticed Jehoshaphat to join forces with him to recover Ramoth-gilead.”
2 Chronicles 18:1-2 NLT
Jehoshaphat enjoyed the blessings of relationship with God, and yet he joined himself to Ahab, the king whose evil actions mocked God. They didn’t just become relatives—Jehoshaphat visited in his home, and they celebrated together with great feasting. THEN Ahab asked Jehoshaphat, “Will you go with me…?” and Jehoshaphat replied, “Why, of course! You and I are as one!”
How was Jehoshaphat enticed by such an evil man? After all, Jehoshaphat was deeply committed to the Lord, obeying Him instead of following Israel’s evil practices. (17:4,6) So why was Jehoshaphat so quick to go with Ahab? Why did he align himself with evil?
The same danger lurks for anyone enjoying the riches of relationship with God. Alliances with evil often begin with casual friendships, then personal visits, and then the celebrations begin. The more familiar we become with those friends’ behavior, the easier it is to be enticed, and soon we’re answering, “Of course!” to every invitation!
Thankfully, our stories need not end there. Even though God was angry about Jehoshaphat‘s alliance with Ahab, God knew the king's heart was still committed to Him. (19:3) Jehoshaphat's one mistake did not end the relationship. However, God’s one question should cause all of us to think about our own alliances:
“Why should you take the side of the ungodly and join in friendship with those who hate Me?”
2 Chronicles 19:2