From my Life Application Bible.....
Notice how the third captain went to Elijah. Although the first two captains called Elijah "man of God," they were not being genuine - God was not in their hearts. The third captain also called him "man of God," but he humbly begged for mercy. His attitude showed respect for God, and God spared the lives of his men. Effective living begins with a right attitude toward God. Before religious words come out of your mouth, make sure they are from your heart. Let respect, humility, and servanthood characterize your attitude toward God and others.
Often, it's obvious from our words and deeds what's within our hearts. But sometimes it's not as clearly visible. Sometimes people can say all the right things, but not believe them. God, however, can see past our actions, past our words, and straight through to our motives and our hearts. We can't fool Him.
It's also a good reminder that, though we can and should judge people's actions according to the Word, we cannot judge their motives or hearts - that's something that only God can do.
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage: 1 Kings 22:50, 2 Chronicles 21:1-4, 2 Kings 8:16-22, 2 Chronicles 21:5-17, 2 Kings 2