I Kings

Chapter 21

"Personal Evil Committed [1-16]."
"Evil to be Judged [17-29]."

This Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and it's transcription is provided with written permission by http://www.theseason.org

I Kings 21:1 And it came to pass after these things, that Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard, which was in Jezreel, hard by the palace of Ahab king of Samaria."

Naboth's vineyard was adjacent to the land of king Ahab's palace.

I Kings 21:2 "And Ahab spake unto Naboth, saying, "Give me thy vineyard, that I may have it for a garden of herbs, because it is near unto my house: and I will give thee for it a better vineyard than it; or, if it seem good to thee, I will give thee the worth of it in money." "

This would be considered a very good offer, providing the seller wished to sell, and the buyer wanted to buy. However, these conditions were not there because Naboth did not want to sell. The point to this verse is that Naboth was not allowed to give or sell this property, because of the law. At this time all Israel was under the law and land of an inheritance was to stay in the family forever.

Leviticus 25:23 "The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is Mine; for ye are strangers and so journers with Me."

First of all, the land is not to be sold, for the promised land is God's and is given to the tribes in their territories for an inheritance. That means that this law exists so that it can be passed on from father to son forever.

Leviticus 25:24 "And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land."

This states that even if you sold that land, you still retained the right to redeem it for your children, at any time providing you have the money to buy it back.

Leviticus 25:25 "If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold."

However if you are poor, very poor and need the money to survive, and sold that possession away, then any of your brothers or sisters or children have the right to buy that land back that their poor relative had sold. The law stated that you could not prevent them from acquiring that land. Notice however, that there is a condition to the selling of the land, and that condition was the willingness of the owner to sell. The land could not be taken if the owner wanted to keep the land.

Leviticus 25:26 "And if the man have none to redeem it, and himself be able to redeem it;"

However if that poor owner did sell, and then came into wealth and wanted his land back, the new owners [the buyer] had to sell it to him. Why? It was God's and part of the inheritance that God gave to that family. Without this law on the books, foreigners could come in and buy up the land, and take over God's inheritance, for that is exactly what happened in modern day times, when the Jews went into Palestine, and bought up huge tracts of land and virtually took the country by buying it up.

Leviticus 25:27 "Then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession."

The key to this verse is understanding both "restore" and "overplus", as given in the text. "Restore" in the Strong's Hebrew Dictionary is # 7725; "Shuwb, shoob; a prime root; to turn back (hence, transfer), the idea of return to again: (to return to the starting point."

This is the only place in the bible that "overplus" is used; and the number in the Strong's Hebrew dictionary is # 5736; "Adaph, aw-daf'; a prime root; to be (causat. have) redundant; be more, odd number, to have (more) over, and above, that remain." So when the time comes for the return of the land to the owner at the time of jubilee, if a farmer had a crop in the field or vineyard, and the field had to be returned, "the over and above" the land, is the property of the man that worked the field and put the seed into the field. Even if you sell the land, the crops stay with the one that planted the seed.

Leviticus 25:28 "But if he be not able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the hand of him that hath bought it until the year of Jubilee: and in the jubilee it shall go out, and he shall return unto his possession."

The underlining factor to this entire law deals with inheritance, the one that has the possession of the land because it was granted by God as their inheritance. If that person does not wish to sell then there is no provision for taking the land. This is not as it is under our laws in the United States of America, and most other countries today, for the laws of our land are established by precedent. When a judge rules in a court action, that ruling is the standard that other judges use for similar cases in the future.

So the point to what is happening here in I Kings 21, is that king Ahab wanted the land next to his palace, and the owner of that land does not want to sell. As we saw above, once you received an inheritance from your father, that land had to remain in your family, and was the inheritance of your children for ever. If by chance it was sold, then on the fiftieth year of each century, to would automatically be returned to the family, to be passed on as a inheritance.

This is a type that we have from God even today. Would you sell your inheritance that you received as a gift from your heavenly Father? Would you give it away, like Esau did, that miserable man that sold his birthright? God was so disgusted with Esau that he called him a male prostitute in Hebrews 12, when he sold his heritage. The seriousness of this event is going to take place in this chapter. Ahab is going to steal the land or inheritance that God has given one man, for his own greed. Even though Ahab is king, he still must respect the laws of God; Ahab wanted this man's inheritance.

I Kings 21:3 "And Naboth said to Ahab, "The Lord forbid it me, that I should give the inheritance of my fathers unto thee." "

So what is your inheritance? You are an heir to the kingdom of God, if you are under the blood of Christ. Have you put a price on that inheritance, and set an earthly value to your soul? This is the same way that Naboth is looking at his inheritance given by God to be in his family for the all time. Your eternal rights and life depends on your right of inheritance that you received from Jesus Christ, when he died on the cross. The instant that Jesus died on the cross, the rights of inheritance promised in His Word came into being. However before that inheritance can become yours, you have to accept that inheritance [salvation]. It simply cannot be forced upon you. If it is yours, then don't let some person take it from you.

There is only one way to be sure that you have all that your inheritance entitles you to, and that is by going to the actual will, and God's Will is written in His Word. So why would you listen to con artists, and those that would withhold that truth from you? This is why it is important to study God's Word and know for yourself the promises that are part of your inheritance. Again this is talking about a very serious thing in that day, and as a type for today, it would be like selling your very soul.

Naboth knew the value of his inheritance, and he wanted to pass that inheritance on to his sons and their sons. That is the answer that he told the king. Absolutely no. It is as serious as interfering with your rights of entering into the gates of heaven.

I Kings 21:4 "And Ahab came into his house heavy and displeased because of the word which Naboth the Jezreelite had spoken to him: for he had said, "I will not give thee the inheritance of my fathers." And he laid him down upon his bed, and turned away his face, and would eat no bread."

Old Ahab had his heart broken, for he was refused the right to own this other man's inheritance. Ahab went to his bed, shut himself up in his bed chamber and refuse to eat. We see a little bit of a good trait by king Ahab, for he walked away and allowed the man to keep his inheritance. Of course it is not a good practice to live in a land and tell the king of that land no, when he wants your land, but Naboth did. He held firm and would not sell under any condition, and the king respected that wish. There was no pressure brought to bear on Naboth by Ahab.

I Kings 21:5 "But Jezebel his wife came to him, and said unto him, "Why is thy spirit so sad, that thou eatest no bread?" "

Now this Zidonian, Kenites wife Jezebel is entering the picture to see what she can do to take the sadness out of Ahab's life.

I Kings 21:6 "And he said unto her, "Because I spake unto Naboth the Jezreelite, and said unto him, `Give me thy vineyard for money; or else, if it please thee, I will give thee another vineyard for it:' and he answered, `I will not give thee my vineyard.' "

This would be like waving a red flag in Jezebel's face, seeing her little darling Ahab lying on the bed weeping over a plot of land for his garden. There is nothing that she would not do to make him happy, and we can see her little Kenite mind starting to twist.

I Kings 21:7 "And Jezebel his wife said unto him, "Dost thou now govern the kingdom of Israel: arise, and eat bread, and let thine heart be merry: I will give thee the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite." "

She is asking Ahab, are you king or are you not king? She is telling Ahab that a king should rule like a king, and not like a child. Jezebel doesn't care one bit about God, or God's laws, the only thing that governs her mind is what she can devise in her own mind. She is governed and led by her gods and images of Satan, and that is where she gets her direction from. If she wanted something she took it by what ever means that was available to her. Remember she is the very one that tried to kill all the prophets of God, and force the people to worship the Kenite's or Zidonian gods and traditions.

I Kings 21:8 "So she wrote letters in Ahab's name, and sealed them with his seal, and sent the letters unto the elders and to the nobles that were in his city, dwelling with Naboth."

It is important to see what she is doing here to fulfill her plan to get rid of Naboth. Every thing that she was doing was a lie, for she was trying to hide her Satanic acts, and make them appear to be from Ahab. She knew that the elders and nobles would not take her ideas for one moment, but they would follow their kings orders. She used Ahab's name, Ahab's seal of authority, and sent these letters under a false pretense. She went down town, right to city hall, and filed this letter with the city father.

Just like today, every town like to stay in good accord with the king, for he is the one that gives out the government's money and favors. We should respect those in authority, but here we see that the authority was being abused. There is a great difference between not respecting authority, and your standing up for your legal rights. Christians are not door mats, to be walked over by every evil man in town. Citizens have rights and we are to discipline ourselves within our rights both under God's law and under man's law. The point is that we always be fair.

I Kings 21:9 "And she wrote in the letters, saying, "Proclaim a fast, and set Naboth on high among the People:"

Jezebel is going to use this fast to bring down Naboth. A fast is what you do when something really bad has happened, while the feast is for celebrating the good times. So the point that Jezebel is going to point out to the city fathers, is that Naboth has really done something bad; if it were not so the king would not be writing this letter to us. It is important to see the mind of Jezebel, and at the same time, see how an evil person in authority can use lies and pressure. However, if you have not sinned and cheated in any way, then you have your rights. You should stand up for those rights when ever they are being abused. So Jezebel's trap is set, and the city father's are very nervous.

I Kings 21:10 "And set two men, sons of Belial, before him, to bear witness against him, saying, `Thou didst blaspheme God and the king.' And then carry him out, and stone him, that he may die." "

This Kenite queen Jezebel set two men, sons of Satan himself, to bear false witness at the fast. Remember that the sons of Satan are from the Garden of Eden, they are the offspring of Cain called the Kenites. It was two of these Kenites that are going to bear witness against Naboth. To convict any person under the law, requires two witnesses, and these two witnesses are two witness on the negative side. Think of the type that is stated here.

The elders and nobles all the time are thinking that it is at Ahab's orders that this accusation and instruction are being given, but Ahab knows nothing of what is going on here. Jezebel had no conscience, and the only thing that mattered to her was that she have her way. Queen momma was taking care of her little boy the king.

I Kings 21:11 "And the men of his city, even the elders and the nobles who were the inhabitants in his city, did as Jezebel had sent unto them, and as it was written in the letters which she had sent unto them."

As far as the letter of the law of the king was concerned, these elders were following the letter of the king's law, yet all the time it was a plot by the wicked queen. They had to pay tribute and get along with the king, or their position was taken from them.

I Kings 21:12 "They proclaimed a fast, and set Naboth on high among the People."

Keep in mind that Jezebel has already sent the two liars to do their role in the plot. These two are men are men of the community respected so that their word would not be challenged in a court of law, like the judges that have been impeached in our land recently. They will do anything for a price, even abuse their authority.

I Kings 21:13 "And there came in two men, children of Belial, and sat before him: and the men of Belial witnessed against him, even against Naboth, in the presence of the People, saying, Naboth did blaspheme God and the king." Then they carried him forth out of the city, and stoned him with stones, that he died."

Most people today have no idea in the world who the children of Belial are. They spoke the words that Jezebel told them to say, and they charged Naboth with the blaspheme of God and Ahab. These were serious charges against Naboth. The city father would not allow anyone to do such a thing in their community, for that was to start of trouble. All it took was two Kenites to bear witness, and a letter forged from the king and the Naboth was lying dead outside the city walls.

People are so quick to believe a report if it come from an high office. Mankind is all the same, and from the outside, by their cloths one may appear to be greater than another, but it is what is in the heart and mind that matters. If a man in low office can lie, so can a man in high office. We are to be independent thinkers, to be able to think for yourself. We are to use God's Word, as well as the law that applies to our generation to guide us in our thinking. Learn to separate the actions of men to know whether they can be trusted or not.

I Kings 21:14 "Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, "Naboth is stoned, and is dead." "

Once the act was carried out, and Naboth was dead, these to sons of Belial sent word to Jezebel that the job was finished. You know that it was the Kenite liars that set the word back to Jezebel, for the city father had no idea that they had just been used as the tools in a murder. These liars knew exactly where the orders came from and they were trying to please a woman of their own, Jezebel, and not Ahab. They were hired to do a job and that job was to bear false witness, and it simply did not matter to them who was murdered, or for what cause.

We see from II Kings 9:26 that not only was Naboth killed at this time, but Jezebel saw to it that all his sons that had rights to the inheritance were killed also. " 'Surely I have seen yesterday the blood of Naboth, and the blood of his sons,' `and I will requite thee in this plat,' saith the Lord. Now therefore take and cast him into the plat of ground, according to the word of the Lord."

Jezebel just forgot to tell us about this here in first Kings, for that truth had to come from the much later. After the murders of Naboth and his sons, the property just sat there with no rights of inheritance left.

I Kings 21:15 "And it came to pass, when Jezebel heard that Naboth was stoned, and was dead, that Jezebel said to Ahab, "Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give thee for money: for Naboth is not alive, but dead."

Naboth and his whole family with him were murdered.

I Kings 21:16 "And it came to pass, when Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, that Ahab rose up to go down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, to take possession of it."

Ahab had just got the news and as far as Ahab was concerned, Naboth died and did not leave an inheritance. Ahab felt that he just stumbled on a good deal. However that land became free because Jezebel and her two lying witnesses murdered the family of Naboth. So was Ahab innocent? Think again, not in God's eyes, for he knew the wickedness of his wife, he saw her murder two thousand preachers [priests] in the land, so what problem was it of his in turning the murdering of Maboth and his sons over to his wicked wife Jezebel. God will take care of making things right.

I Kings 21:17 "And the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying,"

I Kings 21:18 "Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, which is in Samaria: behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, whither he is gone down to possess it."

God doesn't miss anything, for He knows every evil plot from the start. He knew who had a part in the sin, and who was innocent of the sin. That is what is judged by God. Your love for God is shown to God by your reaction to evil as it is taking place before your eyes. When you see evil being done and you accept it in your mind, then you are a participant in that evil. If you see the evil and show righteous indignation or disgust over the matter, than God knows that your mind is righteous. Friend, when you love our Heavenly Father and His Son, then you act like a child of God.

There is no way that God is going to allow this evil act to pass by unnoticed. God sent his prophet Elijah to meet with Ahab on his newly acquired land. Ahab knew Elijah very well, for it was Elijah that Ahab looked for after Elijah called on God to stop the rain for those two years. It was also Elijah that stood against the four hundred prophets of Baal and brought their death at the altar of Baal. For Ahab to meet Elijah was not good news for Ahab.

I Kings 21:19 "And thou shalt speak unto him, saying, `Thus saith the Lord, `Hast thou killed, and also taken possession?' ' And thou shalt speak unto him, saying, `Thus saith the Lord, `In the place where dogs licked the blood of Naboth shall dogs lick thy blood, even thine.' "

"Killed" as used here in the Hebrew text, is "murdered". Elijah is letting Ahab know that God witnessed all that took place in the murder of Naboth and his sons, to take the land. God is letting it be know in no uncertain terms that just as Naboth died over this matter, so are you. Ahab had allow his wicked wife to place a death sentence on his own head. By his allowing Jezebel to do wickedly, he took part in the same sin, and would have the same punishment. The point to this entire chapter is that you must stand for something, and when you see wickedness being done, you have to make a stand. Ahab was king, and he knew what those sins of murder that Jezebel was doing. Ahab was just to gutless to stand up against his wife, and allowed it to go on anyway. God know the mind of Ahab, and Ahab was held accountable for his weakness.

This is a type of use to follow even in our day, for Christ told us to "fish out of the right side of the boat". Know where you are fishing and what you are doing when you get there. Why? It determines whether what you do righteous or evil. When you make a stand, carry a picked sign, stand up for a friend, or what every you do, know why you are there and for what reason the stand is being made. Then God's blessings come upon you. No one gets away with anything, for in time all things are accountable. These are types that we are to learn from.

I Corinthians 10:11 "Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come."

All these events written down in the Old Testament are examples as to how it shall be at the end of this world age. We are living in that end time, and we had better pay attention to these types that are written in God's Word.

I Kings 21:20 "And Ahab said to Elijah, "Hast thou found me, O mine enemy?" And he answered, "I have found thee: because thou hast sold thyself to work evil in the sight of the Lord."

In other words, you have made a slave of yourself to evil, in the sight of the Lord. Ahab was just not strong enough to resist the evil works that Jezebel his wife was doing in is name, and under his authority. He was the king, yet he would not take the responsibility for the duties that he had. Ahab did have some good qualities, but all the time he was spineless. He couldn't stand up for anything.

I Kings 21:21 "Behold, I will bring evil upon thee, and will take away thy posterity, and will cut off from Ahab him that pisseth against the wall, and him that is shut up and left in Israel,"

Remember that this is the Lord speaking through Elijah to Ahab. A person's posterity is his children. God is telling Ahab that his kingdom is not going to be passed on through his children. This warning is not talking about all Israel, including Judah, for the house of Judah at this time had their own king. Ahab would not have his sons to continue that inheritance of the throne, just as Jezebel and he ended the inheritance of Naboth, when they killed his sons.

I Kings 21:22 "And will make thine house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah, for the provocation wherewith thou hast provoked Me to anger, and made Israel to sin." "

Remember Jeroboam, the first king of the house of Israel, for when his son king Nadab was murdered, Bassha started his own dynasty within a year of so. God does not like it when people that He has put in a position of authority will mislead his people in the name of religion. The thing that caused Naboth's death, and that of his family was the lie told that Naboth "had blasphemed God". The cause of Jeroboam's death and that of his dynasty was the replacing God's laws and worship with the heathen practices of worshipping those two calves as well as the rest of grove worship. It seemed that Ahab had a gift for keeping many fake preachers, false priests that would try to please the king, and not God. Notice from verse 20, that Ahab is calling the true prophet if God, Elijah, his enemy. Of course they would be Ahab's enemy for those prophets of God spoke for God, and Ahab represented every heathen form of worship but the True God.

I Kings 21:23 "And of Jezebel also spake the Lord, saying, "The dogs shall eat Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel."

The wall of Jezreel was outside the capital city of Samaria, and this is were they took Naboth and his sons to murder them. The Hebrew world used for "wall" here, means ditch. They left them there for the dogs to feed on, and God is saying that this punishment that Jezebel put on Naboth is the same thing that is going to happen to her. It is saying that she would not have a decent burial.

I Kings 21:24 "Him that dieth of Ahab in the city, the dogs shall eat; and him that dieth in the fields shall the fowls of the air eat." "

This is referring to Ahab's children. It is saying that none of Ahab's children will have a proper burial also.

I Kings 21:25 "But there was none like unto Ahab, which did sell himself to work wickedness in the sight of the Lord, whom Jezebel his wife stirred up."

This is saying that every thing that Ahab did to do wickedness in before God, was instigated by Jezebel. Ahab would do anything she asked, just to get along with her. This is the exact point of the lesson; just getting along to please men, is not acceptable in the sight of the Lord. God expects His people to make a difference and follow His instructions.

I Kings 21:26 "And he did very abominably in following idols, according to all things as did the Amorites, whom the Lord cast out before the children of Israel."

This is saying that Ahab was just as bad as the heathen, when it came to worshipping their idols and following their heathen ways.

I Kings 21:27 "And it came to pass, when Ahab heard those words, that he rent his clothes, and put sackcloth upon his flesh, and fasted, and lay in sackcloth, and went softly."

Ahab heard the words of Elijah, and he knew they were true. He was now running scared, for when God places a death sentence on you and your entire family, it has a way of humbling you. Ahab knew that he had done wrong, and now he was repentive for those evil things. It showed that Ahab had some good qualities within him. This humbleness will actually impress God.

I Kings 21:28 "And the Word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying,"

I Kings 21:29 "Seest thou how Ahab humbleth himself before Me? because he humbleth himself before Me, I will not bring the evil in his days: but in his sons days will I bring the evil upon his house." "

Because Ahab repented, God told Elijah to tell him that he would wait until after he died before he killed his wife and his children. So how long will Ahab remain true to his confession, before he is right back where he was before? Not long. God will deal with those matters as they arise.

The lesson to this chapter was that we are to humble ourselves before God and only those men or women that will allow you to. Most people you cannot humble yourself to, or they will violate your confidence in them. Most people take a sign of humbleness as a sign of weakness; and at that time you must remain sharp and ready to take a stand.

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