Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Jezebel, the loving wife

The name Jezebel is associated with evil, wickedness and idolatery. Who can forget that this queen ordered the deaths of many God-fearing people in the days of King Ahab her husband. She was even after Prophet Elijah’s life.

But have you ever noticed that she was a loving wife as well? Unfortunately, her desire to please her husband and make him happy made her kill an innocent man. How did this happen?

In the book of 1Kings 21:1-16, we find King Ahab, Jezebel’s husband interested in a vineyard which belonged to a religious man called Naboth.
The trouble was, Naboth wouldn’t sell the land because it was an inherited property which was meant to remain in the family. King Ahab knew this tradition, yet his desire to own that vineyard was so great that he became depressed when Naboth refused to sell it.

When his wife Jezebel heard about the reason for his sadness, she decided to make him happy again. She connived with some people to falsely accuse Naboth of blasphemy, a crime punishable by death. After the death of Naboth, she encouraged the king to take over the vineyard.

God was angry at this evil act and punished Ahab, Jezebel and indeed their household for the death of Naboth and all other wicked acts their family committed.

I know very few of us would commit murder to please a loved one, but perhaps we won’t mind engaging in other sinful acts just to make someone happy.

Sometimes the person makes us feel that it’s not a sin because they are not complaining and the act hurts no one. But the truth is, sin hurts us, even when we don’t know.

The reason God tells us not to engage in sinful behaviour is not to prevent us from enjoying ourselves, but to protect us from pain. 

Sin is rebellion against God, and like Eve in the Garden of Eden, it is easy to be deceived. When she ate that harmless looking Forbidden Fruit, she unleashed pain upon herself and all her descendants. Sin always has consequences.

So when your friend is asking you to ‘prove’ your love by sinning with them or for them, run! You are not helping that person or yourself by disobeying God. Instead you are ruining your lives. Jezebel thought she was helping King Ahab by committing murder, but her actions brought punishment upon him and their household.

  • Are you bending God’s law to suit a friend, perhaps thinking it’s the 21st century, so it’s okay?
  • Are you petting your kids and refusing to train them in the way they should go, for fear of making them upset?
  • Are you refusing to lovingly confront the sinful behaviour of your spouse, friend or loved one, for fear of offending them or losing their friendship?
  • What are you compromising on, for the sake of another person?

Let us refuse to be like Jezebel, who encouraged sin just to make someone happy. I am sure if King Ahab knew the punishment that would befall him and his household for the death of Naboth, he would have refused Jezebel’s show of love.

I encourage you: act as a watchman, look after your spiritual wellbeing and that of your loved ones. They might not be happy with you initially for saying no, but later on, they will be grateful.
May God help us to be our brother- and sister- keepers. Amen.

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