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One day, wicked king Ahab was pouting. Queen Jezebel came into his room and saw his pouty face and asked, “O Ahab, what’s the matter? Why the bitter, pouty face?”
“Well, I wanted a new garden for our palace, so I asked Naboth our neighbor if he would sell me his vineyard so that I could make a new garden for us. But he won’t let me have it,” Ahab whined. “He says it’s the land God gave him as his inheritance so he will never sell it to me.” (Sounds like Ahab is being a whiny-baby, huh?)
When Jezebel heard this, she got a yucky idea. Inside her heart she wanted very badly to be the boss of the kingdom. She loved to control and boss and manipulate and connive. One way she did that was to bat her eyelashes and pretend like she cared about someone other than herself. That’s called manipulation, and that’s VERY yucky.
Jezebel batted her eyelashes at Ahab and said, “Don’t be sad, Ahab. Get up and be happy. I am going to fix the problem for you. I’ll get that vineyard for you.”
Then she wrote letters to all the important men in the city: “Make up a fake story about the man Naboth who lives near the palace. Say in front of all the people that he spoke badly about God. Then, kill him because of it.”
Then Jezebel signed Ahab’s name at the end of the letters using Ahab’s special ring stamp to make it look like he approved it, even though Jezebel didn’t even tell Ahab about it.
Remember how God told Eve that part of her punishment was that she would always want to be the boss over her husband. When a woman tries to be the one controlling and manipulating everything so that she can get her way, stuff starts to get ugly. That’s what happened with Jezebel.
Even though the letters had Ahab’s signature, the men must have known the order was from Jezebel, because as soon as they killed Naboth, they told Jezebel (not Ahab). Apparently everyone around town knew that Jezebel was the actual boss because NONE of those so-called “important men” in the city dared to stop her. They just did the evil things this woman asked!
Jezebel returned to Ahab. “Be happy, Ahab. Naboth is dead, so now you can do whatever you want. Go on down to that vineyard and take it for yourself and make us a new garden out of it.”
What do you think Ahab said? He should have said, “What!? You murdered that man?! What you did was wrong, Jezebel.” But he didn’t say that. I suppose he liked that he got something for himself out of it. So Ahab let Jezebel control things and do what she wanted.
Just as Ahab went down and was checking out the spot for his future garden, guess who walked up? Elijah.
Ahab said to him, “So, you have found me, my enemy!”
Elijah replied, “Well, yeah. I’ve found you because you are committed to doing evil. God says to tell you He’s bringing disaster on you, all your sons and their sons. And when Jezebel finally dies, she won’t even be buried. Dogs will run off with her bones.”
(Ahab actually humbled himself before God when he heard this, so God postponed the punishment for a little while.)
So keep listening to find out what happens…