I Kings 22:29-35 “So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead. And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, I will disguise myself, and enter into the battle; but put thou on thy robes. And the king of Israel disguised himself, and went into the battle. But the king of Syria commanded his thirty and two captains that had rule over his chariots, saying, Fight neither with small nor great, save only with the king of Israel. And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, Surely it is the king of Israel. And they turned aside to fight against him: and Jehoshaphat cried out. And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots perceived that it was not the king of Israel, that they turned back from pursuing him. And a certain man drew a bow at a venture, and smote the king of Israel between the joints of the harness: wherefore he said unto the driver of his chariot, Turn thine hand, and carry me out of the host; for I am wounded. And the battle increased that day: and the king was stayed up in his chariot against the Syrians, and died at even: and the blood ran out of the wound into the midst of the chariot.”
When you read this particular event in the life of Jehoshaphat, you discover an alarming fact; he almost ended up paying for the sins of another. The King of Syria told his thirty-two captains that your number one target is the King of Israel; “Fight neither with small nor great, save only with the king of Israel”( vs.31). The problem was that in the heat of the battle, Jehoshaphat was mistaken for Ahab and he almost paid for it with his life. The reason for the mistake was because Jehoshaphat was with the wrong people; “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers” (II Corinthians 6:14). Ahab was an idolater, murder, and was under the divine judgment of God (see I Kings 21:19). Against the principles of scripture, Jehoshaphat joined forces with Ahab. Most are of the opinion that it will never happen to them, but Jehoshaphat’s associations yielded the wrong practices; “So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead” (vs.29). He was now involved in a war that God didn’t sanction and total defeat was declared through the mouth of Micaiah, God’s man of the hour (vs.17). Associations and actions ultimately brought Jehoshaphat to the wrong place; “And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, Surely it is the king of Israel. And they turned aside to fight against him: and Jehoshaphat cried out” (vs.32). Had it not been for the mercies of God, Jehoshaphat’s true identity wouldn’t have been discovered until after he had paid for the sins of Ahab with his life. Untimely deaths, broken marriages, financial ruin, and incarceration are only a few of the ways that some have paid for the sins of others. You are not only known for the company you keep, but it could be you end up paying for their sins!