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From the readings in "Women of the Bible" a certain woman sticks out and draws my attention. Her name is Jezebel. She was the wife of King Ahab of Israel and the daughter of Ethball- King of Sidon. Her marriage was arranged by two royal houses. Jezebel was known for being a strong - minded individual. She often dominated her husband and the decisions made. She was one to always get her way. There was a story of her which told of her plan in getting a vineyard that did not belong to her. Her reasoning in pursuing ownership of this land was to be able to give it to her husband, since he had previously been denied ownership of the vineyard. The vineyard was owned by a man named Naboth, who was set up to be killed by Jezebel. She was able to get her way; she had her troops kill him stating new ownership of the vineyard, by yours truly, Jezebel.
Jezebel behaved like a Phoenician princess, unlike the majority of the Israelite women. In the readings of Women in the Bible, Jezebel exhibits ways in which that are the exact opposite of the other stories told of other women. In examples of opposite women, Ruth was one who was also a foreigner to Israel. Unlike Jezebel, she surrendered her identity and submerged herself into the Israelite ways by adopting the religious and social norms of the Israelites. She had converted to God as well, in which she was praised for as opposed to Jezebel who stayed true with her own beliefs. Jezebel saw that monarch had absolute power, therefore she believed the ruler, herself, of a kingdom made the law. Jezebel's childhood consisted of high priests parents who worshipped Baal, in Sidon. Jezebel was a priestess of Baal. Her training consisted of leading and commanding. This aided in her duty to guard the worship of Baal and Asherah. She was taught that these Gods regulated fertility of the country she now lived and ruled. Jezebel behaves according to her upbringing and expectations regarding royal prerogative.
The marriage of Jezebel and Ahab was a political alliance which provided both with military protection from powerful enemies along with valuable trade routes. It has been said that this particular marriage was the first of its kind that a king of Israel had allied himself with such a woman, Jezebel. Jezebel had a reputation of being all that of designing, malicious, crafty revengeful and cruel. She was one of the first to persecute the saints of God. While pursuing the distinction of God and all of his followers, Jezebel was guided by no principle and held no fear of either God or man, while keeping close passion to her worshipped Baal.
Jezebel despised and wanted to wipe out God for the exchange of a new superior, Baal. Jezebel had filled her shrines full of priestess- prostitutes who serviced her worshippers. The men of Israel could not resist the lure of these legal, readily available erotic encounters. By Jezebels influence most Israelites, left the worship of God for Baal. It was said about 7000 men in the entire nation was not swayed by her control. An event had taken place that had been engaged by Elijah, a disciple of God. Elijah had summoned a tournament on Mt. Carmel to determine which deity was supreme, Baal or God. A grand total of about 850 prophets of Baal had been present. The goal was to see which deity would unleash a great fire. The prophets of Baal tried to perform a hopping dance while chanting and raving in an attempt to rouse the Baal. Some even went beyond the point of gashing themselves with knives. Finally by the end of the day Elijah had prayed to his High and Almighty God. "'O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel! Let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your bidding. Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that You, O Lord, are God; for you have turned their hearts backward' (1 Kings 18:36-37)." It was said that all at once fire had been descended from the Lord. This event had proven to all even Baals prophets who the true deity was. Jezebel herself was not present at this "all male" event. Although, she had found out about the ending result of the event and was furious. She had then sent message to Elijah, threatening his life. Elijah was frightened and then went into hiding. Lord had told Elijah to not worry, and that the death of Jezebel was soon to come and that she would be consumed by many animals. A character by the name of Jehu had killed Jezebels sons. He then entered the city in which Jezebel resided. Jehu was an opponent of Baal and wanted to rid of Jezebel. As he entered Jezebels residence she had presented herself out of a window. She was said to have been wearing makeup. This was intended to serve as her trying to cover up her evilness by being masked by her makeup. As Jezebel tried to talk to Jehu, he demanded her eunuch's to cast her down into the street, and they did. Her blood had splattered on the walls and on the horses. Jehu then ran over her body repeatedly proudly and with victory for he had not only rid of Jezebel and her entire family but also Baal. Afterwards, he went inside, what was previously the castle of Jezebel, and ate and drank merrily while celebrating with others.After he did that, he told others to bury her body since she was the daughter of a king, but when they went out to discover her body, all that was left was a skull and her hands and feet, her bloody corpse had been consumed by the dogs. Hence, God previously telling Elijah that Jezebel would be put to death by the devouring of her body by animals. Although the death of Jezebels entire family was all that remained, her name still left a legacy.
Jezebels name has actually been used for lingerie, WW11 missiles; she has a reputation of being the bad girl of the bible and even the wicked. Coincidentally, I have a friend who named their car Jezebel. Funny enough, the owner of the car has matching similarities to that of Jezebel. She would do anything to make sure she was happy and got her way, especially with money. She is a dancer, which includes that sensual/sexual part of Jezebel along with wearing the makeup to try and cover her conniving ways. Not to mention my friends belief in God. She says that we all die, and that's it, nothing s eternal, therefore not believing in God, just as Jezebel did not believe in God either. When put into research words such as murderer, prostitute, an enemy of God had all been used to describe the infamous Jezebel.
It has also been said that the couple of Jezebel and Ahab represent our present society:
"It is Jezebel that was the more spiritual, it was her that took the leading role, Jezebel used Ahab's emotional stresses to endear herself to him, it was this woman that drove her husband to do what she wanted, and she was ruling the roost in every aspect. Is not that a picture of our Democratic culture?"
"But what happens when the woman takes the leading role that God had prescribed for men?
Ã¯¿½ If a woman plays her husband's role in directing the family, he will lose his natural drive to bear responsibility.
Ã¯¿½ When a woman takes the lead, she is playing the masculine role. Unless her husband fights her for supremacy, he must assume second place. And men who are forced into subjection to their wives tend to be angry, dejected and retreat like Ahab.
Ã¯¿½ When a husband steps into a spiritual role at his wife's command, he becomes vulnerable to her guidance in that role. This is against God's directives and the nature He gave, and often brings conflict in the family and in the church.
Ã¯¿½ Many men turn their heads when they see their wives stepping out of their God given role. These men would rather not have to deal with the stone-cold anger they would receive from their wives if they offered any resistance. Have you seen that behavior here and there?"
"The spirit of Ahab is a weak and emasculated figure, indeed the majority of modern men are under that spirit, enslaved to their women." There is an adage that says: "There are two kinds of people in this world: those who rule and those that are ruled, if you do not rule you are ruled