In this paper, the author conducts a study on the Battles of Samaria and Aphek between Ben Hadad and Ahab. These battles, which were won by the underdog, Ahad, using less Soldiers and equipment, which was a miracle from God even though King Ahad was wicked and ignored God’s word, which showed showing God’s good grace and patience. The author shows how this battle was relevant to Merida’s writings in which Merida considers four key points from the battles, its relevance today as we continue to see miracles, and how leadership styles of the two kings should be avoided because we need to respect and honor God.
It is always nice to have someone that has your back in a tight squeeze and that is what Ahab had in the Almighty God in his two battles with Ben-Hadad. Ahad had, what some would consider, obvious defeat coming and the Lord turned this obvious defeat into upset victories using under qualified soldiers bringing meaning to the term “less is more.” The author would like to get an understanding of God’s handling of the battles as they pertain to the importance they had on Merida in his text, the relevance of today, and the importance in leadership for the author in current and future stages.
Brief Summary of the Battles
The Battle of Samaria and Aphek were to battles that took place in Israel between Kings Ben Hadad and Ahab. In both battles King Ahab was under manned and equipped and considered giving into King Ben Hadad’s demands, but a prophet from God advised King Ahad of what God’s plan was and that he would be victorious following God’s plan, which King Ahab did and witnessed God’s miracles. Even though Ahab was an evil King, he still received favors from God.
Importance on Merida
The author found that Merida’s writings in the text provided some information that would show us how not to be if we were kings. According to Merida (2015, pg. 159), “Ahad and Ben Hadad are living illustrations of how not to live. They show us what “the fear of the Lord” doesn't look like.” The author found that the importance of these writings from Merida in the Battles of Samaria and Aphek showed four points; 1) live your life God’s way, 2) God shows grace to everyone even sinners to show he is real, 3) God has the power to overcome any and all obstacles, and 4) believe in God’s word. These four points were shown in the two battles where God took charge and showed his power over the Armenian Army for the weaker Army of Israel.
How God’s power was shown in the two battles still show relevance today. As Christians we must trust the word and believe in God’s abilities to help and heal his people. I am sure that most of us had a miracle or two in our life that we could not explain or we can explain it because it was the work of God and we believed. According to Pawlikowski, Wiechetek, Sak, & Jarosz (2015), “Beliefs in miracles, among them in miraculous healings, have been present in human culture since its origins. They have attracted the attention of ordinary people, artists and thinkers. For centuries, many philosophers, theologians and scientists offered their interpretations of miraculous healings. In contemporary times we can also observe the debate about miraculous healings in the medical society.” Today this healing from God is needed more than ever with the current viruses and diseases going around and medicine does not seem to be finding a way for a cure, but God’s miracles are. Such is a miracle for a woman who wanted to conceive. According to Robson (2015), “A hospital in the UK, for instance, recently reported the case of a woman who had experienced long-lasting fertility problems. She then discovered that she had a tumour between her rectum and her uterus, but before doctors could operate, she finally conceived. All went well and a healthy baby was delivered - only for the doctors to find that the cancer had mysteriously vanished during the pregnancy. Nine years later, she shows no sign of relapse.” Importance in Christian Leadership
The Battles of Ben Hadad and Ahab are important to the author because it shows how we as christian leaders must be and lead our people. The two kings show us how not to be as Christian leaders. As leaders we need to trust in God’s word and live, work, and grow by his values in our current and future occupations while understanding what a Christian leader is. According to Castillo (2018), “I began the search to understand what a Christian leader is and found four key elements in sequence – Calling, or doing the will of God, Competence, or doing what you do well, Confidence, or knowing what you can do by yourself and what you can do with God’s help, and Character, or living a life according to Old Testament and New Testament character values.” Working in God’s favor will show patience in leading at work and training employees to become better employees. This attitude of Christian leadership may be passed down from employee to employee to show a relaxed and caring work environment. This trickle down effect was evaluated by Wang, Xu, & Lui. According to Wang, Xu, and Liu (2018), “Drawing on social learning theory, we hypothesize that the ethical leadership of high-level managers could cascade to middle-level supervisors via its impact on middle-level supervisors.”
As the author looked at the Battles between Ben Hadad and Ahab, the author recognizes the power of God and that all things can be accomplished through him. Even though Ahab was an evil king God still used him and blessed him showing God’s good grace to all, no matter what they have done. This was also recognized by Merida showing God’s power and God’s keeping of his promises. God’s miracles are relevant today as we can see that miracles are still being accomplished in individuals wanting to conceive. The Lord is working wonders all the time as Christians we must work in his favor. Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe. (King James Bible, 1769/2020, John 4:48).
- Castillo, M. (2018), The Four C’s of Christian Leadership, School of Business and Leadership, https://www.regent.edu/school-of-business-and-leadership/news-events/the-four-cs-of-christian-leadership/
- King James Bible (2020) King James Bible Online https://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Daniel-2-21/ (Original work published in 7169)
- Merida, T., Platt, D., & Akin, D. (2015). Exalting Jesus in 1 and 2 Kings. B & H Publishing Group.
- Pawlikowski, J., Et Al. (2015), Beliefs in Miraculous Healings, Religiosity, and Meaning in Life, Religions, 6, 13 – 1124, doi:10.3390/rel6031113
- Robson, D. (2015), Health: Cancer: The Mysterious Miracle Cases Inspiring Doctors, Athena In formation Solutions, https://go-gale-com.ezproxy.liberty.edu/ps/i.do?p=STND&u=vic_liberty&id=GALE%7CA405549519&v=2.1&it=r&sid=summon
- Wang, Z., Xu, H., & Liu, Y. (2018), “How Does Ethical Leadership Trickle Down? Test of an Integrative Dual-Process Model, Journal of Business Ethics, Vol 153, Iss 3, DOI:10.1007/s10551-016-3361-x