The TL:DR Bible: 1 Kings 20


Chapter 20:

Ben-hadad, the king of Aram comes down to Samaria to loot, pillage, and conquer, and they surround the city of Samaria. Ben sends some messengers to Ahab.

Ben: Hey, dude, all your wives and children and money are mine.

Ahab: Yes, sir.

Ben: Really? You’re going to give in on that? Let me take your wives and kids.

Ahab: You can have me too, Sir.

Ben: Cool. Open up the gates and I’ll also send in my mine to take any of your stuff that they think you might like.

Ahab: But that’s not faaaaaair. It’s my stuff.

Ben: Okay, then I’m going to kill you and raise your city to the ground.

Ahab: Yeah? Well…. Well… don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched, you brute! Eeeeehaaaa….

Prophet of Yahweh: Okay, God’s going to help you out here for some reasons… I guess… maybe He thinks He can prove He’s the Lord to you even though He’s omniscient and it won’t work and it would probably be easier to just let you die and replace you with someone He knows isn’t going to be an asshole and a wuss.

Ahab: What should I do?

Prophet: Send out the young princes to do battle and form an army behind them.

So Ahab does that. The young princes march out of the city and start killing Arameans. Israel wins the battle and the Arameans flee.

Ahab: What do I do nooooow?

Prophet: I don’t know… I’m not a military strategist… I mean, I guess I’d expect them to come back and you should probably get ready for that.

Elsewhere…

Ben: Dude, I can’t believe I lost to that guy…

Advisors: Okay, put together another army, but with professional officers and lure the Israelites down from the mountains because surely their god must be a mountain god or we wouldn’t have lost.

Ben: Of course! It’s the ONLY possible solution!

God: Seriously? When are you people going to invent logic, because this is just annoying.

So we get a battle between a tiny Israelite army and a giant swarm of Arameans, and I’m sure the author (as most authors did) takes some liberty with the numbers to tell a better story, but the point is they were outnumbered and God decides to help them this time because of the ‘logic’ that claimed He was only a mountain god.

So Israel beats the big army and Ben flees and his advisors urge surrender and humility, so Ben sends messengers to Ahab again.

Ben: I’d really like to live.

Ahab: Mmmm… okay.

Ben: Okay, I’ll give back the cities we took from you and we’ll name some streets after you in Damascus?

Ahab: Sounds good. Go in peace.

Meanwhile…

Random prophet: Hey, dude, punch me.

Random dude: Uh… no… I’m not going to punch you that would be crazy.

Prophet: Because you didn’t punch me and help me put on an ultimately pointless object lesson for Ahab, God’s going to send a lion to eat you.

So the man who wouldn’t punch a random guy gets eaten by a lion, because apparently God is a dick.

So the next person the prophet asks to hit him, hits him. Then the prophet goes to Ahab:

Prophet: I was in the battle and given a man to guard and told that if anything happened to him, my life would be forfeit, and I lost the prisoner.

Ahab: Well, that sounds clear enough. You have to die.

Prophet: No, you have to die because God wanted Ben dead and you didn’t kill him.

Ahab: I don’t recall God telling me to kill Ben… which verse was that?

Prophet: Uh… the verse of… your mom!

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