Bible Commentary: 1 Kings 20:1-22

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1 Kings 20:1-22

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Ahab and the First Syrian Campaign 

Ben-Hadad of Syria here is not the same as the Syrian ruler with the same title in 1 Kings 15. Commentators and historians refer to the one here in 1 Kings 20 as Ben-Hadad II. He besieges Samaria, capital of the kingdom of Israel, and offers Ahab conditions of surrender. Ahab agrees to meet those conditions to prevent further war. But whether the Syrian king is simply greedy, or perhaps more interested in war than spoils, he decides to increase the demands, which Ahab then says is too much.

As a demonstration to Ahab of His sovereignty and power, God sends a prophet to tell Ahab that He will grant him the victory. And, as always, God is true to His word. But the fighting is not yet over. After his success, Ahab is warned that Ben-Hadad will return in the spring.

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