Be Careful Whom You Ignore!

As a very young Christian I was still in law school.  I spent a LOT of time at the university library, and usually walked home from the library at about 4:30 each afternoon.  It seemed like the Lord would lie in wait for me as I walked past a certain dormitory.

One day as I walked past that dormitory the Lord spoke to my heart and said, "No one is always right except Me, and no one is always wrong, including Caiaphas.  So listen to everyone, but don't believe what you hear from anyone until you check with Me first."

I pondered that statement, and realized that it is obvious that Jesus is always right.  But I also pondered the second half of that statement and realized that even the Jewish High Priest Caiaphas, who delivered Jesus to the Romans to be crucified, have a true word of prophesy recorded in  the Gospel according to John, Chapter 11:

John 11:49  But a certain one of them, Caiaphas being high priest of that year, said to them, You know nothing,
John 11:50  nor consider that it is profitable for us that one man die for the people, and not all the nation to perish.
John 11:51  But he did not say this from himself, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was about to die on behalf of the nation,
John 11:52  and not only on behalf of the nation, but that He also might gather into one the children of God who had been scattered.
Later that year, as I read through the Bible for the first time, I came across a passage which tells of a King of Israel who violated the direction which Jesus gave to me, and suffered dire consequences:

1Ki 22:2  And it happened in the third year, Jehoshaphat the king of Judah came down to the king of Israel. And the king of Israel said to his servants, Have you known that Ramoth-gilead is ours? And we remain still from taking it from the king of Syria's hand. And he said to Jehoshaphat, Will you go to battle with me, to Ramoth-gilead? And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, I am as you, my people as your people; my horses as your horses.
And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, Please inquire at the Word of Jehovah today. And the king of Israel gathered the prophets, about four hundred men, and said to them, Shall I go to battle against Ramoth-gilead, or shall I forbear? And they said, Go up, that the Lord may give it into the hand of the king.
And Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here a prophet of Jehovah besides, that we might inquire of him?  And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, Yet one man, to seek Jehovah by him. But I hate him, for he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil, Micaiah the son of Imlah. And Jehoshaphat said, let not the king say so.
And the king of Israel called to a certain eunuch and said, Cause Micaiah the son of Imlah to hurry.  And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah each was sitting on his throne having put on their robes, in a grain-floor in the entrance of the gate of Samaria. And all the prophets prophesied before them. And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made horns of iron for himself. And he said, So says Jehovah, With these you shall push the Syrians until you have consumed them.  And all the prophets were prophesying so, saying, Go up to Ramoth-gilead, and prosper. For Jehovah shall give it into the king's hand.
And the messenger that had gone to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, Behold now, the words of the prophets with one mouth are good to the king. Please let your word be as the word of one of them, and speak good.   And Micaiah said, As Jehovah lives, Surely that which Jehovah says to me, that I will speak.
And he came in to the king. And the king said to him, Micaiah, shall we go to battle to Ramoth-gilead, or shall we forbear? And he said to him, Go up, and prosper, and Jehovah shall give it into the king's hand.   And the king said to him, How many times have I adjured you that you shall speak nothing to me but truth in the name of Jehovah?  And he said, I have seen all Israel scattered on the hills like sheep that have no shepherd. And Jehovah said, These have no ruler; they shall each return to his house in peace.
And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, Did I not say to you, He will not prophesy good of me, but evil?
And he said, Therefore, hear the Word of Jehovah: I saw Jehovah sitting on His throne, and all the host of Heaven were standing by Him, on His right and on His left.  And Jehovah said, Who shall entice Ahab, and he shall go up and fall in Ramoth-gilead? And this one said this, and this one said that.  And a spirit came forth and stood before Jehovah, and said, I surely will entice him.  And Jehovah said to him, By what means? And he said, I will go out and shall be a spirit of falsehood in the mouth of all his prophets. And He said, You shall entice him, and also you are able. Go out and do so.
And now, behold, Jehovah has put a spirit of falsehood in the mouth of all these prophets of yours; and Jehovah has spoken evil as to you!
And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near and struck Micaiah on the cheek, and said, Where did the Spirit of Jehovah pass over from me to speak with you?   And Micaiah said, Behold, You shall see on that day when you go into the innermost room to be hidden.   And the king of Israel said, Take Micaiah and return him to Amon the ruler of the city, and to Joash the king's son,  and say, So says the king, Put this one in the house of restraint, and cause him to eat the bread of oppression, and the water of oppression, until I come in peace.  And Micaiah said, If you at all return in peace, Jehovah has not spoken by me. And he said, Hear, O people, all of them.
And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead.  And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, I will disguise myself and enter into the battle. But you put on your robes. And the king of Israel disguised himself and went into the battle.  And the king of Syria commanded the thirty two commanders of the chariots, saying, You shall not fight with small or great, but with the king of Israel.
And it happened when the commanders of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, they said, Surely he is the king of Israel. And they turned aside to fight with him. And Jehoshaphat cried out. And it happened when the commanders of the chariots saw that he was not the king of Israel, they turned back from following him.   And a man drew a bow in his simplicity, and he struck the king of Israel between the joints and the breastplate. And he said to his charioteer, Turn your hand and take me out from the host, for I have been wounded.
And on that day the battle went on, and the king was caused to stand up in the chariot against Syria. And he died in the evening, and the blood of the wound poured out into the middle of the chariot.  And the cry passed through the camp when the sun went, saying, Each to his city, and each to his land.  And the king died, and came to Samaria. And they buried the king in Samaria.  And they rinsed the chariot by the pool of Samaria; and the dogs licked up his blood when they had washed the armor, according to the Word of Jehovah that He spoke.

As a result I have learned to listen even to my harshest critics because sometimes the Lord speaks to me through them.  And I would not be able to do this if Jesus had not instructed me to crucify my flesh so that I might hear Him and obey by His grace and mercy working in me and through me.

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!!