Saturday, March 25, 2017


Women In An Era of Political Decline

Jezebel Means: "Chaste" or "Where is the Prince?" (Ba'al)

Key Scripture:1 Kings 16:29:-33; 18:1; 19:2; 21:1-25; 2 Kings 9

Her Character: She was powerful, beautiful, cunning, ambitious, proud, arrogant and possessed an extraordinary force of character. She was incapable of remorse. She actively opposed God.

Her Accomplishments: Jezebel's accomplishments were sinful, establishing Baal worship throughout Israel and turning people away from the God.

Her Tragedy: Because she was a worshiper of Ba'al and Enemy of God, her arrogance led to a shameless death.

Pre-Story: She was a Phoenician princess, later the wife of King Ahab of Israel. As a Jew, Ahab sinned against his Hebrew faith. He was captivated by Jezebel, “took her to wife, and went and served Baal and worshipped him.” As King Ahab's wife, Jezebel mandated that her religion should be the national religion of Israel and organized guilds of prophets of Ba'al (450) and Asherah (400).

Her Story: Because Jezebel demands the organization of the prophets of Ba'al and Ashweah, she is described as an enemy of God who was "killing off the Lord's prophets" (1 Kings 18:4). In response, the prophet Elijah accused King Ahab of abandoning the Lord and challenged Jezebel's prophets to a contest. They were to meet him on the top of Mt. Carmel.

Jezebel's prophets would slaughter a bull, but not set fire to it, as required for an animal sacrifice. Elijah would do that same on another altar. Whichever god caused the bull to catch fire would then be proclaimed the true god. Jezebel's prophets beseeched their gods to ignite their bull, but nothing happened. When it was Elijah's turn, he soaked his bull in water, prayed, and "then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice" (1 Kings 18:38).

Upon seeing this miracle, the people who were watching prostrated themselves and believed that Elijah's god was the true God. Elijah then commanded the people to kill Jezebel's prophets, which they did. When Jezebel learns of this, she declares Elijah an enemy and promises to kill him just as he killed her prophets.

Jezebel wielded a considerable amount of power over her husband. The earliest example was when  her husband wanted a vineyard owned by a man named Naboth, he refused to give his land to the king because it had been in his family for generations. In response, Ahab became sullen and upset. When Jezebel noticed her husband's mood, she decided to get the vineyard for Ahab.

She did so by writing letters in the king's name commanding the elders of Naboth's city to accuse Naboth of cursing both God and his King. The elders obliged and Naboth was convicted of treason, then stoned. Upon his death his property reverted to the king, so in the end Ahab got the vineyard he wanted.

At God's command, the prophet Elijah then appeared before King Ahab and Jezebel, proclaiming that because of their actions, "This is what the Lord says: In the place where dogs licked up Naboth's blood, dogs will lick up your blood - yes, yours!" (1 Kings 21:17). He further prophesied that Ahab's male descendants will die, his dynasty will end, and that dogs will "devour Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel" (1 Kings 21:23).

Elijah's prophesy at the end of the narrative of Naboth's vineyard comes true when Ahab dies in Samaria and his son, Ahaziah, dies within two years of ascending the throne. He is killed by Jehu, who emerges as another contender for the throne when the prophet Elisha declares him King.

Jehu has to kill Jezebel in order to assume power. As Jehu entered the city gate. Reaching the palace, he looked up to the window from which came the taunting voice of Jezebel: “Is it peace, thou Zimri, thou murderer of thy master?” 2 Kings 9:31.

Such a taunt maddened her victorious enemy, and seeing the two eunuchs standing at the window with the defiant queen he shouted up to them, “Who is on my side? Who? Throw her down!” They obeyed and threw her out of the window, and as she fell the walls were sprinkled with her blood. Below her were the soldiers with their spears, the horses to tread her underfoot and the hungry dogs waiting for her flesh. The triumphant Jehu entered the palace over Jezebel’s dead body.

Her Place in God's Divine Plan: She is the first great instigator of persecution against the saints of God. So infamous was her sexual immorality and idol worship that the Lord Jesus Himself refers to her in a warning to the church at Thyatira (Revelation 2:18-29). Most likely referring to a woman in the church who influenced it the same way Jezebel influenced Israel into idolatry and sexual immorality.

Her Strengths:
Jezebel was smart but used her intelligence for wrong purposes. Although she had great influence over her husband, she corrupted him, leading both him and herself to downfall.

Her Weaknesses: No woman in the Bible is more identified with wickedness and treachery than Jezebel. She was selfish, deceitful, manipulative, and immoral. She refused to worship the True God of Israel, leading the entire country astray.

Lesson We Can Learn from Her Legacy: God used a striking figure to illustrate the continuing influence of evil. The main lesson from Jezebel's life is that the deeds of a few can adversely affect a whole nation. Evil people sometimes live long. Could God be giving them the chance to repent? Destruction waits for them if they do not.  The wicked reap what they sow. The wages of sin is death.

Birth: 9th century BCE
City: Sidon, a Phoenician seacoast city.
Occupation: Queen of Israel.
Spouse: Ahab
Children: Ahaziah )Son) - Jehoram of Israel (Son)  - Athaliah (Daughter)
Parents: Ethbaal, king of the Zidonians (Father) -  Ithoball 1 (Mother)