I couldn't find a painting depicting this event, thus the Ahab selection (Wiki Commons)
There really needs to be a sarcasm font. One that the moment we look at it, we know for certain the person’s insincerity. It should be one dripping around the edges. That’s the way I think Micaiah spoke to Ahab.
After three years of peace, Ahab and Jehoshaphat sat in Israel and debated war. Jehoshaphat asked Ahab to check with the prophets before heading off to war, and Ahab complied.
Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said unto them, Shall I go against Ramothgilead to battle, or shall I forbear? And they said, Go up; for the Lord shall deliver it into the hand of the king. (1 Kings 22:6 KJV)
The only problem with this, from Jehoshaphat’s point of view, was that not one of them was a prophet of the Lord. So, he asked for one.
And Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here a prophet of the LORD besides, that we might enquire of him? (1 Kings 22:7 KJV)
There was only one name that came to Ahab’s mind. Only one.
And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, There is yet one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may enquire of the LORD: but I hate him; for he doth not prophesy good concerning me, but evil. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say so. (1 Kings 22:8 KJV)
Hindsight tells us that Micaiah would have to prophesy against Ahab, a man who ignored his Lord and worshipped the idols of the land.
So, Micaiah was called before the two kings. While waiting, others prophesied.
And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah sat each on his throne, having put on their robes, in a void place in the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them. And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made him horns of iron: and he said, Thus saith the LORD, With these shalt thou push the Syrians, until thou have consumed them. And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, Go up to Ramothgilead, and prosper: for the LORD shall deliver it into the king's hand. (1 Kings 22:10-12 KJV)
Think of celebrities today, with nothing but sycophants about them to tell them what they want to hear, what will keep those sycophants close and in power. They are not new.
And the messenger that was gone to call Micaiah spake unto him, saying, Behold now, the words of the prophets declare good unto the king with one mouth: let thy word, I pray thee, be like the word of one of them, and speak that which is good. (1 Kings 22:13 KJV)
And, Micaiah did so. Not that Ahab believed him. Surely Micaiah’s words dripped with sarcasm. Ahab told him to try again – this time, the truth. The truth was painful and resulted in Micaiah’s imprisonment.
And he said, I saw all Israel scattered upon the hills, as sheep that have not a shepherd: and the LORD said, These have no master: let them return every man to his house in peace. (1 Kings 22:17 KJV)
The rest of the story would make a great movie, wouldn’t it? Including Elijah’s 1 Kings 21:19 prophesy that dogs would lick Ahab’s blood. It is not a good thing to ignore the word of the Lord.