The prophet of God came to Bethel and prophesied. When the old prophet of Bethel learned of this, he lied to him saying an angel told him to come and eat and drink in his house. God had told the prophet not to eat nor drink nor return the way he came. When he believed the old prophet, he went home with him, ate bread and drank water - then God spoke through the old prophet that he would not be burried with his fathers for going against what he had been told. He was killed by a lion when he left that place. - why did the old prophet lie this way and cause the man's death? And why was the old prophet not also killed by the lion?
1 Kings 13:18
NLT - 18 But the old prophet answered, “I am a prophet, too, just as you are. And an angel gave me this command from the Lord : ‘Bring him home with you so he can have something to eat and drink.’” But the old man was lying to him.
For follow-up discussion and general commentary on the topic. Comments are sorted chronologically.
I would say that the young prophet's first mistake was that after he left King Jeroboam, he did not continue to leave Bethel, but instead he went and sat under a tree in verse 14, I'm assuming to relax and get some shade. If God did not want him eating and drinking in that place, and he didn't want him to go through the same path twice, then he definitely didn't want him hanging out in Bethel either.
I wish to say that if the Man of God had left soon after delivering God's message to King Jeroboam, the old prophet would have missed his chance of meeting and deceiving him. Unfortunately the Man of God chose to sit somewhere close by which made him easy to be accessed.
We have to be very careful and smart about the things of God. Obedience cuts across. He refused to eat, drink or go by the way he came which was fine but yet he decided to wait awhile. Wait for what ?
It is also very likely the old prophet listening to all what the Man of God did, and even probably learnt from his sons that the Man of God declined to eat or drink anything after he was invited by the King, felt envious of him and decided to try him by deceiving him.
He probably also thought he should be the right person to be used and not the Man of God.