Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 13

The old prophet brings back the body of the holy man

1 Kings 13:27-30

It is the duty of a prophet to declare the messages that God has given to him. The message that God gave to the prophet from Bethel, included instructions about the grave of the holy man from Judah. That holy man had not obeyed God, therefore his grave would not be near his father’s grave. Nor would it be near the graves of previous members of his family (13:22).

People considered it to be the duty of the closest family member to bury a person who had died. However, the holy man had died too far from his home for any of his relatives to bury him. Therefore, the prophet from Bethel declared that he was like a relative to the dead man. In fact, he was like his brother: they both received messages from God (13:18). In fact, the holy man had even eaten his last meal with that prophet, in his home, like a brother.

The lion was still there when the prophet arrived to take the body. A lion would normally attack anyone who tried to take a dead body from it – however, this lion was not acting normally. Instead, it respected the funeral as a sacred matter, even as it had respected the body of the holy man. That lion seemed to understand the situation. It had killed the man as an act of God’s judgment against him – therefore, the lion had also to accept God’s judgment about the man’s body.

So, the prophet took the body back to Bethel. He was truly sad at the funeral, and he buried the body with great care. He chose for it the same grave where he wanted his sons to bury him.

Next part: The honour that is due to a holy man (1 Kings 13:31)


Please use the links at the top of the page to find our other articles in this series. You can download all our articles if you go to the download page for our free 1000+ page course book.


© 2024, Keith Simons.