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Jezebel Part 6: Influencing for Good Not Evil

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Speaking of influence, Jezebel became addicted to the power and influence she wielded over her husband and also the nation. And like the evil influences she allowed in her life, her influence became a weapon of wickedness.

“There was never a man like Ahab, who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the Lord, urged on by Jezebel his wife.  He behaved in the vilest manner by going after idols” (1King 21:25)  Urged on by Jezebel his wife.

Once they were married, Ahab adopted the ways of his wife in worshiping Baal. Ahab was most definitely a wicked man and Jezebel used his weaknesses to her advantage.

Jezebel lacked the supportive, sympathetic, and loving qualities one might look for in a spouse. When Ahab didn’t get his way, instead of supporting him by cheering him up or suggesting finding a different vineyard, she mocked him for being so weak and laughed at him for behaving in such a childish way.  And then, she just took over, pushed him to the side and used all that influence and power she had acquired to orchestrate the murder of the vineyard’s owner and acquisition of the vineyard for him. She literally ruled over her husband and made him feel insufficient and incompetent.  What Jezebel did encourage in Ahab was a penchant to do evil and wickedness. Oh Jezebel! If only you had used your intelligence, passion, and determination for the Lord instead of for evil!

Wives should influence husbands by building them up when they are feeling weak and encouraging their endeavors (assuming they are legal and in line with God’s word as opposed to Ahab’s ideas.) A wife’s influence shouldn’t be underestimated or taken for granted. As you can see by Jezebel, influence is powerful and can be used for wicked purposes if we’re not careful. Let’s instead take the attitude that God has placed us to be help mates to our husbands, lifting them up to the Lord in prayer, speaking life into their lives so they can be strong, confident leaders not just of their families, but also within their communities and workplace. Let’s influence for Christ!

Ladies, no matter how we may feel, we do influence everyone around us. We can build up, speak life, and encourage or we can mock, tear down, and destroy. It’s entirely up to you. The influences you allow in your life affect how you influence others.   Our influence can have far reaching arms through those around us. We can build our husbands and children up so they can go off to  work and school and stand strong, succeed, and be an encouragement to others.

Don’t for one moment think that your choice of how you speak and act doesn’t matter.  Your influence is far reaching into the lives of your husband, your children, and all of those with whom you come into contact. Allow Jesus’ influence in your life so that your influence on others will point them towards God’s love and grace.

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)

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Jezebel Part 5: What Do We Choose?


What do you think of Jezebel? Nasty piece of work, huh?

What can we take away from Jezebel? I’m assuming that you aren’t murderous, power craving, evil queens, but whether or not you are, think about the power of influence. What is influencing your life? And how, in turn, are you influencing others?

Jezebel grew up in a family that was devoid of God’s values, served various other Gods including Baal. And once she married Ahab, the king of Israel, the influences of her upbringing continued to rule her life. Yes, it’s hard to break free of such things that have been ingrained into your life in such a way, but it’s not impossible. When Rahab met the Israelites, she chose to trust in God, risking her life to hide the spies, and then leave the ways of her past and culture for a new start and a new life. At any time, Jezebel could have chosen the same. We may not have a choice in how we are raised, but we do have a choice in how we move forward and which the influences we allow in our lives.

Right now, you get to choose to put your faith in God, to get to know Him by reading the Bible and praying.  You get to choose what comes out of your mouth, how you speak to your husband and children, whether or not you speak life or death.  It’s up to you what you allow to influence your own life; what you listen to, watch, read, and with whom you spend time.  We wouldn’t allow bad influence in our kid’s life so why would we allow it in our own?  And as the most constant example in our children’s lives, it’s up to us to teach our children how to distinguish between good and bad influences, most often by example.  Jezebel chose poorly, how will we choose?

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)

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Jezebel Part 4: A Gruesome Ending

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We’re getting quite a look at a queen more wicked than Snow White’s stepmom and more evil than Maleficent. So, grab your cup because just as the Disney queens inevitably met their ends, Jezebel’s demise is rather…gruesome.

After Jezebel had acquired the vineyard for Ahab using devious and murderous methods, the Lord sent Elijah to talk to Ahab, once again condemning his actions.

“Say to him, ‘This is what the Lord says: Have you not murdered a man and seized his property?’… In the place where dogs licked up Naboth’s blood, dogs will lick up your blood—yes, yours! … I am going to bring disaster on you. I will consume your descendants and cut off from Ahab every last male in Israel—slave or free.” (1 Ki 21:19-21)

But wait, there’s more. Elijah also tells Ahab,

“And also concerning Jezebel the Lord says: ‘Dogs will devour Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel.” (1 Ki 21:23)

Gross. God was seriously not happy with her! I mean, dogs are going to lick Ahab’s blood and He’s going to bring destruction on Ahab’s entire line and family, but dogs are going to chow down on Jezebel.

And just as the Lord promised, Ahab was killed in battle (ironically he was disguised so he wouldn’t be recognized and targeted…ha! Didn’t work out so well!) After his body was brought to Samaria, they washed his chariot in a pool and yes, dogs licked up his blood. Blech.

But let’s get back to our wicked queen and fast forward a bit. Her husband is dead, but her son is now on the throne and she’s still trying to wield her power. But, her time has come. Oh my, how it has come.

Jehu, the son of Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, goes to Jezreel, where Jezebel’s living. I love this next part. Her enemy has arrived, so what does she do? She puts make up on.  For real: “she painted her eyes, arranged her hair, and looked out the window.” (2 Ki 9:30)  Gotta look one’s best!  Maybe if she can cover those dark circles under her eyes it’ll mask all of the evil she’s committed.  Perhaps if her hair’s flyaways are smoothed, the sneer on her lips might be masked. Perhaps if she’s just a little prettier, it’ll hide the ugliness in her heart. Oh, Jezebel, even if that were true, don’t you know you can’t hide what’s in your heart from the Lord?

Once she’s ready to make her royal appearance, she looks out the window and starts tossing out insults. Yep, the makeup hasn’t hidden her sharp tongue. But the best part of it is that Jehu pretty much ignores her and shouts up to the servants standing with her, “Who is on my side? Who?” (2 Ki 9:32)

This got the attention of two or three eunuchs, they glanced down at him in affirmation, no hesitating. Clearly she hadn’t won the love and respect of her servants.

“ ‘Throw her down!’ Jehu said. So they threw her down, and some of her blood spattered the wall and the horses as they trampled her underfoot.” (2 Ki 9: 33)

Ick.  Who’s ready for lunch?  Nothing for me, please, but there was nothing wrong with Jehu’s appetite. In fact, he went in and ate and drank. Then it occurred to him that they should probably bury Jezebel, she was quite a mess out front. But by the time they went outside, all that was left of her were her skull, her hands and her feet.

The dogs were well fed that day.  Well, we knew that was coming, didn’t we?

“This is the word of the Lord that he spoke through his servant Elijah the Tishbite: On the plot of ground at Jezreel dogs will devour Jezebel’s flesh. Jezebel’s body will be like refuse on the ground in the plot at Jezreel, so that no one will be able to say, ‘This is Jezebel.’” (2 Ki 9:37)

And that was the end of Jezebel, a most wicked and evil queen.

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)

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Jezebel Part 3: Giving the Gift of Murder

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We’re back with Jezebel – a wicked woman and a very sore loser.  Oh, I need some coffee.

Let’s take a look at another instance of her sweet nature.

There was a vineyard near Ahab’s palace. Ahab liked it and wanted it for a vegetable garden. (Sounds like a joke, right? He wants it for a vegetable garden? Check out the Bible – it’s for real!)  But he got turned down by Naboth, the man who owned the vineyard. So, like anyone who doesn’t get what they want, he ran home and sulked on his bed and refused to eat. (I think I have a couple of boys who that might do something like that.)

Sweet wife, Jezebel, comes in and ever so obnoxiously and rudely (my adjectives) asks him why he’s so sullen and why he won’t eat. So he whines about how he’s not getting what he wants. (Again, so similar to my 5 year old. And 3 year old. )

I picture a grown man, in royal robes and crown, kicking his legs and flailing his arms on his bed throwing a royal tantrum because he’s not getting what he wants, while Jezebel stands over him, arms on her hips and rolling her eyes. Are ya with me?

Being the supportive wife that she is, she asks sarcastically, “Is this how you act as king over Israel? Get up and eat! Cheer up. I’ll get you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.” (1 Ki 21:6) What a nice combo of mocking and emasculating him all at once. Sick and tired of his whining, she’s going to do what he failed to do and she’s not going to let him forget it. So Jez hatches a plan involving lies, deceit, manipulation, murder, you name it, it’s there!

Jez writes a letter plotting the murder of Naboth using thugs and false accusations.  Sure enough, Naboth was accused (falsely) of cursing both God and the king, so he was taken outside the city and stoned to death. And now, the vineyard was free for the taking.

All because of the evil queen’s plotting and scheming, and her wicked hardened heart. She loved exerting her power over her husband and also showing her power to all of Israel. Power, influence and control were Jezebel’s values and priorities.  She was a strong woman no doubt, strong…and so very evil.

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)

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Jezebel Part 2: Sore Loser

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We’ve got a baddie here, so you’re probably going to need a refill of whatever coffee or tea you’re drinking to brace yourself for the evil.

Remember how I told you that Jezebel worshipped Baal instead of God?  So committed to Baal that she massacred the Lord’s prophets. And wouldn’t you know, there was a sever drought and famine in the land. Go figure.

So, God told Elijah, God’s prophet, to talk with Ahab. And go have a talk with Ahab, he did. Not one to mince words, “I have not made trouble for Israel,” Elijah replied, “But you and your father’s family have. You have abandoned the Lord’s commands and have followed the Baals.” (1 Ki 18:18)

And there it is. The problem. Ahab and his family ditched God for other gods and priorities, including Ahab’s political marriage to Jezebel.

It gets good now. Elijah challenged Jezebel’s prophets of Baal, all 450 of them, to a duel of sorts. Both Elijah and Baal’s prophets would set up altars, “Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the Lord. The god who answers by fire—he is God.” (1 Ki 18:24) Straightforward, I like it.

So the prophets of Baal start calling on the name of Baal all morning. Nothing happens. They danced around the altar. Nothing. Elijah suggested they shout louder, so they did. Nothing. They even slashed themselves with their swords (ouch!) and still…nothing.

Elijah’s turn. He sets up his altar, then he had them fill four large jugs full of water and dump them on the altar…three times! His altar was sopping wet! Then, Elijah prayed,

“O Lord…let it be known today that you are God in Israel…answer me, so these people will know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.” (1 Ki 18:36)

Guess what happened?  Fire came down and burned up the sacrifice. Of course!  Because God is the only God!  When the people saw it, they started crying out to God.  Elijah commanded them to seize the prophets of Baal and put an end to them!   And it gets better, off in the distance, a tiny cloud was heading towards them. Soon, it started raining. That should have been good news in a land of severe drought and famine, and yet…Jezebel wasn’t thrilled.

When Ahab told Jezebel everything that Elijah had done, she went berserk. Psycho. She sent a messenger to threaten Elijah, “May the gods deal with me, be it ever so severely, if by this time tomorrow I do not make your life like that of one of them (her dead prophets).” (1 Ki 18:34) Yikes. This lady is not happy. In fact, she’s so scary, that Elijah ran for his life.  Yikes again.

Jezebel should have been happy because there was rain. But all she could think about is how in a spiritual battle between her incompetent and absent god, Baal, and the one true God, she lost. And she’s a very sore loser.

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)

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Jezebel Part 1: A Wicked Woman

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Grab your cup of caffeinated liquid heaven and get ready to get bad…bad to the bone….bababa-bad.

Well, we’re not actually going bad, but we’re going to look at one of the baddest girls in the Bible.  Jezebel.

Oh, she was wicked. And not as in “wicked” awesome but just plain wicked.

Jezebel was the daughter of Ethbaal, the king of Phoenicia. She was a worshiper of Baal of Tyre just like her father. Her marriage to King Ahab was a political alliance between Tyre and Israel. Ahab was evil, so evil listen to how he was described, “Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him.” (1 Ki 16: 30)

Nice, huh?  How about this…

“Ahab…did more to arouse the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel, than did all the kings of Israel before him.” (1 Ki 16:33)

Ahab was an bad dude and his marriage…Jezebel…did not help.  Her influence over him…was significant.  The king of God’s people allowed his wife to bring with her a false god, and the he even set up a temple for Baal.

In fact, his very marriage to Jezebel was evil in the eyes of the Lord. “He not only considered it trivial to commit the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, but he also married Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of Sidonians, and began to serve Baal and worship him.” (1 Ki 16:31)

Are we getting this? Ahab was evil, but his evil was made greater with his marriage to this wicked woman, Jezebel. Think wives don’t have a powerful influence on their husbands? Think again. And we’re just getting started.  It gets worse.

(1 Kings 16, 18, 21 & 2 Kings 9)