Naboth Murdered for His Vineyard
1Now it came about after these things that Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard in Jezreel, next to the palace of King Ahab of Samaria.
2Ahab spoke to Naboth saying, “Give me your vineyard, so I may have it for a garden of herbs, since it’s right next to my house. I’ll give you a better vineyard than it in exchange, or if it seems better to you, I’ll give you its price in money.”
3But Naboth said to Ahab, “Adonai forbid that I should give you the inheritance of my fathers.”
4So Ahab went into his house sullen and resentful because of the word which Naboth the Jezreelite had spoken to him, when he said, “I will not give you the inheritance of my fathers.” He lay down on his bed, turned away his face and would eat no food.
5Then his wife Jezebel came to him and asked him, “Why is your spirit so sullen that you are eating no food?”
6Then he told her, “Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite and asked him: ‘Give me your vineyard for money, or if it pleases you, I’ll give you another vineyard for it,’ but he answered, ‘I will not give you my vineyard.’”
7Then his wife Jezebel said to him, “Now, do you really govern the kingdom of Israel? Arise, eat some food, and let your heart be merry! I will get you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.”
8So she wrote letters in Ahab’s name, sealed them with his seal and sent the letters to the elders and the nobles who were living with Naboth in his city.
9She wrote in the letters saying, “Proclaim a fast and set Naboth at the head of the people.
10Then seat two sons of Belial before him, and let them testify against him saying, ‘You cursed God and the king.’ Then take him out and stone him to death.”
11So the men of his city—the elders and the nobles who lived in his city—did just as Jezebel had bid them, just as was written in the letters that she had sent to them.
12They proclaimed a fast then seated Naboth at the head of the people.
13Then the two worthless men came in and sat before him, and the worthless men testified against him, against Naboth, before the people saying, “Naboth cursed God and the king!” Then they carried him out of the city and stoned him to death.
14Then they sent word to Jezebel saying, “Naboth has been stoned and is dead.”
15Now when Jezebel heard that Naboth had been stoned and was dead, Jezebel said to Ahab, “Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite which he refused to sell you for money—for Naboth is not alive, but dead.”
16As soon as Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, Ahab rose up to go down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite to take possession of it.
17Then the word of the Adonai came to Elijah the Tishbite saying:
18“Arise, go down to meet King Ahab of Israel, who is in Samaria. Behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth where he has gone down to take possession of it.
19You shall speak to him saying, ‘Thus says Adonai: Have you murdered and then taken possession?’ You shall also speak to him saying, ‘Thus says Adonai: In the same place where dogs licked the blood of Naboth shall dogs lick your blood too.’”
20Ahab said to Elijah, “Have you found me, my enemy?” “I have found you,” he answered, “because you have sold yourself over to do what is evil in Adonai’s eyes.
21‘Behold, I will bring evil upon you, utterly sweep you away, and will cut off from Ahab every male, both bond and free in Israel.
22I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasa son of Ahijah because you provoked My anger by leading Israel to sin.’
23“Adonai has also spoken about Jezebel saying: ‘The dogs will devour Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel.
24Any of Ahab who die in the city, the dogs will eat; or any who die in the country, the birds of the sky will eat.’”
25Surely there was none like Ahab, who sold himself over to do evil in Adonai’s eyes, at the instigation of Jezebel his wife.
26He did grossly loathsome acts in following idols just like all that the Amorites had done, whom Adonai had dispossessed before the children of Israel.
27Now when Ahab heard those words, he tore his clothes, put sackcloth on his body, fasted, lay in sackcloth and walked about subdued.
28Then the word of Adonai came to Elijah the Tishbite saying:
29“Have you seen how Ahab has humbled himself before Me? Because he has humbled himself before Me, I will not bring the evil in his days, but in his son’s days I will bring the evil upon his house.”