Melachim II Nine: Jehu and Jezebel

“And Elisha the prophet summoned one of the disciples of the prophets and said to him, ‘Gird your loins and take this cruse of oil in your hand, and go to Ramoth-Gilead (Kings II 9:1).'” While this disciple is there, he is supposed to go to Jehu, one of Jehoshaphat’s sons, and anoint him as king over Israel. Then, he’s immediately supposed to run away. It’s not clear at this point why Elisha himself doesn’t anoint the new king, as was done by the chief prophets of the land in the past. But the boy does as he is told. He goes to Jehu, and anoints him, and gives him a task.

“And you shall strike the house of Ahab your master, and I will avenge the blood of My servants the prophets and the blood of all the Lord’s servants from Jezebel (Kings II 9:7).” The prophetic moment ends, and he runs. Jehu is left with his people, who ask why a seemingly crazy man came to him. He dissembles for a moment, and then tells them that he has been anointed as king. I’m not sure why the messenger needed to run, because the assembled group seems thrilled. Jehu revolts against Joram, and slaughters his men in Jezreel. There’s an all out war between the two factions, with traitors and deceit on both sides.

Finally, we return to Jezebel. She appears at the window as Jehu enters the city. “And he said, ‘Push her out!’ And they pushed her out, and some of her blood splattered on the wall and on the horses, and they trampled her (Kings II 9:33).” This is a quick, terrible end for a terrible woman. Though he showed her no mercy in life, he does show it in death, and allows her to be buried with honor. But her death was so horrific that they only found pieces of her,, fulfilling the prophecy that dogs would devour her flesh. This book is often out of order, so does this mean that the Jezebel saga is finally over?


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