From The Elijah Blessing, chapter 4
Today, Ahab and Jezebel often outsmart us, for the very reason that we do not know how they work:
Ahab and Jezebel did not relate to one another the way we often think. Typically, we talk far more of Jezebel than of Ahab. We consider her by far the more evil of the two: a usurper of power, a deceiver and manipulator, a wily wife who led her wimpy husband around by the nose. The Bible paints a different picture. When we realize the truth, we recognize why the real picture is so hard to see – and why it’s so crucial to see it.
Ahab and Jezebel did not rule a pagan kingdom. They ruled a people God called his own. The Israelites cowered before the royal couple, as if helpless subjects of evil tyrants. Yet, from Jeroboam’s day, the 10 tribes had rebelled against the kingly line God had ordained. They’d followed alternate kings offering alternate gods. What’s more, the people had repeatedly helped overthrow their kings, without once insisting on returning to David’s line and worshiping Adonai alone. They themselves had set Ahab’s father Omri on the throne. Ahab and Jezebel ruled where people’s divided hearts had made the way.
Ahab and Jezebel did not stop wreaking havoc when they died. Both did die, violently. Both faced God and judgment. For a short time, their descendants continued and multiplied their evil. All through time, the same spirits that dominated the man Ahab and the woman Jezebel have worked. Still today, wherever the people of God decide they can live indefinitely with divided hearts, Ahab and Jezebel wield great power and work great evil. Usually, we have no clue what’s happening, because Ahab and Jezebel do not look as we have thought.
Be blessed to see past strong deception and skewed preconceptions, to recognize Ahab and Jezebel at work.
Adapted from The Elijah Blessing: An Undivided Heart, © 2012 Deborah P. Brunt. All rights reserved.