1 Kings 16-30:33 (TM)
“Ahab son of Omri did even more open evil before God than anyone yet—a new champion in evil! It wasn't enough for him to copy the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat; no, he went all out, first by marrying Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and then by serving and worshiping the god Baal. He built a temple for Baal in Samaria, and then furnished it with an altar for Baal. Worse, he went on and built a shrine to the sacred whore Asherah. He made the God of Israel angrier than all the previous kings of Israel put together.”
“Ahab son of Omri did even more open evil before God than anyone yet—a new champion in evil! It wasn't enough for him to copy the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat; no, he went all out, first by marrying Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians...”
You know things aren’t good when you are listed as the first over- the- top sin that sets your husband apart from the rest. Let me rephrase that – you know you aren’t good when you are listed first.
My brother, when he was in elementary school, after first hearing the story of Jezebel was rather intrigued. I don’t think he was impressed with her knack for taking all things good and making them instantly bad. I am confident he could not name her husband or even locate her story in the Bible. No, her impact was a bit different on him. He knew she was evil. He knew of her demise. So for this portion of his little life he would declare in any given fight that I was ‘Jezebel.’
At the time I was horrified! How could he compare me to this psychopath? I knew all about her and was rather jilted that my brother saw a bit of her in me. He was right. As I’ve done my research on Jezebel this last week – our similarities are rather striking. I wonder if you also may find yourself within the bullet list of her life.
 Jezebel was the type of woman you’d hire instantly
 She was take charge
 She had her thoughts readily organized and verbally in tune
 A leader through and through
 Something in her was clearly devoted to worship – however misguided
 She was seductive
 Simply a master manipulator
 A practiced retaliator
 She thrived on intimidation
 Jezebel could probably remember anything and everything Ahab had ever done wrong and list it in alphabetical order – spinning it to her advantage
 The girl seems to be a man’s daydream and worst nightmare all at the same time
 She was the Queen of Confrontation
 Jezzy had an air of influence about her
 Straight to the heart of it: Jezebel took advantage of her womanhood in a skilled and willingly evil way
I wonder if you see yourself in any of those character traits. Mentally check off any you have in common with this Phoenician Princess. The first four I was ‘Amen’ing! It was after the rest developed that our similarities began to tug at my heart. How could my little, however devious he is, brother actually be on to something?
I’ve read numerous versions of Jezebel’s story and the King James Version of 1 Kings 16:31 caught my attention in the most gripping of ways. “And it came to pass, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took to wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Zidonians, and went and served Baal, and worshipped him.”
Interesting. He took to wife Jezebel. In other words something about Jezebel and her ideals drew Ahab to her. Perhaps it was the way she moved, her razor sharp tongue (although I would think one would be more scared than enthralled by that) or maybe it was the air of veiled knowledge that she seemed to possess. Whatever it was - Ahab wanted in.
He chose her. We know this because of the wording of Scripture on his embracing of a bride. “And it came to pass, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in sins…that he took to…Jezebel…” In simple terms: He picked her. He was in on the deal. Regardless of his pile of sin, Ahab was willing to add one more transgression to the collection. He wanted a union with Jezebel for whatever crazy reasons he had.
2 Kings 9:22 gives us a bit of a glimpse into the contamination of Jezebel’s philosophies. Jehu, a righteous man, is quoted as asking, “How can there be anything good …as long as the promiscuous whoring and sorceries of … Jezebel pollute the country?"
The woman was polluting the country with witchcraft and wickedness. And take note: All of her access to her throne of pollution started with one man’s sinful choice. He took to Jezebel.
Who took to you this week? What positions of influence have we been chosen for? Think about it for a moment. What relationships are we cultivating on a daily basis? Are we without even realizing it, aiding in the pollution of others’ lives? How are we handling our leadership roles as women? Are we flaunting immoral ideals because we feel they are our rights? Are we cloaking truth in order to get our way? Are we soiling our chance to take a stand for righteousness? Are we taking our positions and using them to promote our own agenda?
Romans 14:13-14 tackles the subject of contamination. “Forget about deciding what's right for each other. Here's what you need to be concerned about: that you don't get in the way of someone else, making life more difficult than it already is. I'm convinced—Jesus convinced me!—that everything as it is in itself is holy. We, of course, by the way we treat it or talk about it, can contaminate it.”
As women we are given the ability to nurture our boyfriends, husbands, children, friends, co-workers, whomever -- we are nurturers by design. I’d like to be a woman who lives up to that calling. 1 Peter 5:2 instructs us to “Tend (nurture, guard, guide, and fold) the flock of God that is [your responsibility], not by coercion or constraint, but willingly; not dishonorably motivated by the advantages and profits [belonging to the office], but eagerly and cheerfully…”
In other words not choosing to contaminate because of our given position. And not taking advantage of men and women who ‘take to’ us. 1 Peter 5:2 urges for us to be nurturers of righteousness.
Jezebel had the power to change the course of Ahab’s reign. She could have sat the guy down, tried to talk some sense into him -- later on in his story we see humility come out in him therefore we know she may have had a shot at shaping his reign for a healthier course.
I wonder will we take advantage of our ‘Take To’s’, whomever they may be, to feed our selfish wants or will we seek counsel from Christ -- exemplifying His name and His design for our lives and relationships. I don’t know about you but from now on I am choosing to rid of contamination and embrace my call to righteousness. Join me as I journey on with prayerful leadership in the relationship roles Christ has intended for me.