And behold, a man of God went from Judah to Bethel by the word of the Lord (1 Kings 13:1).
“And behold, a man of God went from Judah to Bethel by the word of the Lord” (1 Kings 13:1). In this statement we see a man of God who has heard from God and one who obeyed the Lord. When we hear and receive the Word of the Lord, we must always walk in it, not deviating from it for any reason.
I always give this chapter to those who desire to give themselves to the ministry. The man of God followed His instructions by going to Bethel and prophesying against Jeroboam and the altar that he had erected. After the prophesy, King Jeroboam “stretched out his hand from the altar, saying, ‘arrest him!’ Then his hand, which he stretched out toward him, withered, so that he could not pull it back to himself. The altar also was split apart, and the ashes poured out from the altar, according to the sign which the man of God had given by the word of the Lord. Then the king answered and said to the man of God, ‘Please entreat the favor of the Lord your God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored to me.’ So the man of God entreated the Lord, and the king’s hand was restored to him, and became as before. Then the king said to the man of God, ‘Come home with me and refresh yourself, and I will give you a reward. But the man of God said to the king, ‘if you were to give me half your house, I would not go in with you; nor would I eat bread nor drink water in this place. For so it was commanded me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the same way you came.’ So he went another way and did not return by the way he came to Bethel” (1 Kings 13:4-10).
We see in the above scriptures that the man of God was obedient to God in all of his dealings with the worldly people in this story. He prophesied just as the Lord had instructed him and even refused the king’s hospitality just as the Lord had told him.
We must always beware of those who counsel us contrary to the Word of the Lord. Regardless of their titles or past accomplishments, we must hear and do the Word of the Lord! When the Lord speaks to us concerning any matter, should He change those instructions, He will tell us. Follow Him in His great and perfect plan.