1 Kings 21

1 Kings 21 has Ahab the king wanting a vineyard owned by Naboth which was next to the palace.  The king wants to use it for a garden, but Naboth refuses.  Ahab laments to Jezebel who gets in his face asking  “Do you now govern Israel? Arise and eat bread and let your heart be cheerful; I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite”.  She’s an evil woman but has a plan to get the king what he wants.  “She wrote letters in Ahab’s name….to the elders and the leaders who lived with Naboth in his city….set two worthless men opposite him, and let them bring a charge against him….then take him out and stone him to death”.

It was a pretty elaborate plan and Jezebel used all the community resources to get her way.  She manipulated the elders and leaders who went along with her deceit since she had sent the instruction under the seal of the king.  And her plan worked.  Naboth was convicted and stoned.  “Jezebel said to Ahab, Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give you for money, for Naboth is not alive, but dead”.  Quite a change from a situation where the king was stymied and unable to get what he wanted.

But God didn’t miss what happened at all.  “The word of the Lord came to Elijah….go down to meet Ahab….he is in the vineyard of Naboth, where he has gone to take possession”.  God must have had his GPS turned on (God’s Positioning System) as He knew right where Elijah could find Ahab.  And Ahab isn’t very excited to see him as he knows it will be bad news.  Elijah tells him “I have found you, because you have sold yourself to do what is evil in the sight of the Lord”.  God is going to deal with this evil.

Ahab was in a class by himself.  “There was none who sold himself to do what was evil in the sight of the Lord like Ahab, whom Jezebel his wife incited”.  Elijah gave him the bad news but “when Ahab heard those words, he tore his clothes and put sackcloth on his flesh and fasted and lay in sackcloth and went about dejectedly”.  Repentance always makes an impact in God’s view.  God tells Elijah “I will not bring the disaster in his days; but in his son’s days”.  Even though Ahab was one of the worst sinners of all time, when he stopped and repented God was moved.  Repentance always brings about God’s attention.

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