There was a good man of Samaria named Naboth who had a vineyard next to king Ahab’s palace. The king coveted this land and tried to negotiate for it, Naboth would not budge. This was family land with great sentimental value.
Upon concluding that there was no hope in getting this land, Ahab went home pouting and whining like a child. His morally depraved wife Jezebel listened to the story and then decided to handle it herself. She concocted a plan with A…hab’s support to have people lie about Naboth. They claimed that he blasphemed God and the king, which would result in him being stoned to death.
After Naboth’s death, Jezebel delivers the news and Ahab joyously goes to his new vineyard. At the same time the Lord sends Elijah with a message for Ahab. He explains that God knows how he got this land and judgement was coming for him and Jezebel. Not only would he die, but his name would die with none of his children taking the throne. Facing this awful news Ahab finally repents before God and humbles himself. Note that this is not true repentance out of remorse, but out of fear, but God still recognizes it.
The Lord gives Ahab a reprieve and shifts his immediate judgement to his children. There is no such shift for Jezebel who as far as we know never humbled herself to God in any way. Her arrogance/blasphemy will eventually bring about her dishonor and death.
Through this account we see that no matter how cleverly we may think we hide our sin, God knows the truth. So many times we fool ourselves into thinking that we have hidden our sin, yet all that we do is on display for the Lord. Not only does He see it, but He will also bring appropriate punishment as well.
We also see the fact that God is desperate to forgive, even the most wicked of us. His desire is not to bring judgement, but blessings. Even the hollow repentance of Ahab was rewarded. Just imagine how the Lord regards true repentance. It is key to receiving the gift of salvation from God.
Let’s live honestly before the Lord since He already knows our failings. It is through a transparent, humble and repentant spirit that we can have a close fellowship with Him. The Lord wants to bless us, so why don’t we create an environment in our lives that can allow that to happen. Let’s strive to be honest, caring and accountable with God, as well as our fellow man.
1 Kings 21