Posted by mlajoie2 on 12 August, 2009 at 5:00 am. 7 comments already!



In the current brouhaha about the Obama health care proposal and the town hall meeting anger expressed in opposition, it seems like proponents of HR3200 want to use the language of “choice”, “freedom” and the like to support it, while, at the same time, they are labeling opponents as “un-American”. In my previous post, I described the phenomenon of accusing your victims of what you’re doing. Now, I want to talk about how those ideologically and radically opposed to traditional American beliefs and practices are actually using the language of that same authentic Americanism in order to destroy it. They, secretly, or not so secretly, hate it! Do you think this is the first time such a thing has happened? Of course not!

In the First Book of Kings in the Bible, there is some of the best historical narrative and story-telling anywhere. In Chapter 16, we first meet Ahab, King of the newly split northern Kingdom of Israel, someone who is a central figure in the story we will tell. We are told “he did evil in the sight of the Lord more than any of his predecessors.” He introduces the worship of fertility gods and goddesses with their obscene rites; he builds temples to Ba’al. As a result, a drought of three and a half years befalls the land as predicted by Elijah. [This is very symbolic: three and a half is exactly half of SEVEN, the number of Covenant with God. The measuring stick of the people’s promise to God has been, as it were, snapped in two.] Ahab even marries the daughter of the King of Sidon, JEZEBEL!

{We should stop to understand the significance of marrying someone from Tyre or Sidon. The Sidonians were Phoenician pagans. Even other pagans, like the Greeks and Romans, tended to look down upon them [such as those famous Phoenicians at Carthage with whom the Romans fought in the Punic Wars]. They looked down on them because they not only engaged in human sacrifice (how awful compared to gladiatorial games!) but they also specialized in killing children; and their fertility rites involved cult prostitution publicly carried out in their temples. The degradation of their culture was unsettling to others, above all what they did in their homeland around Tyre and Sidon.}

This brings us to the other main character in the story we will tell: Jezebel. The name, Jezebel, by the way, has become, for many, synonymous with the quintessential evil woman. Bette Davis starred in the movie “Jezebel”, set in the Antebellum South; she plays a truly BAD woman in this movie!

bettedavis_jez_150*Bette Davis in “Jezebel”*

But I think this stereotype misses something very crucial about the real Jezebel. Jezebel was not only a princess of Sidon, she was a high priestess of her religion. In fact, reading in between the lines of the Bible’s depiction or her, it becomes clear that her motives are not typical evil motives per se. One insight explains everything: Jezebel was a religious FANATIC! She hated the RELIGION of the Israelites with an irrational passion. She was willing to do ANYTHING to further her own religion and destroy her own kingdom’s religion. Now, this would seem to put her in a somewhat delicate position. She was the Queen of ISRAEL, after all, and had duties, at least in appearance, towards the ancestral religion and traditions of her adopted people. How, did she deal with the conundrum of such a divergence in heart and persona?

She talked one way and acted another! She gave lip service to her duties as Queen; but most all her actions of power, actions that really meant something, were leading to the opposite place. Like the Marxists today, her concern was not truth but power. She had all the prophets of the God of Israel put to death for false reasons (save for Elijah). If the people had no one to speak out for them or challenge their consciences, then “without a vision” ‘the people’, as traditionally envisioned, would perish. She diverted funding and favor to the temples of Ba’al.

As First Kings goes on, Elijah defeats Jezebel’s prophets of Ba’al by means of an amazing miracle (which is quite a story in itself). She sends her army to kill him. He flees to Sinai, aided by the angels, to prepare for his next prophetic step.

At this point in Chapter 21, we come to a very revealing incident indeed, the event to which we have been leading: the story of Naboth’s Vineyard.

I Kings 21:1-12. 15-16

1. Some time after this, as Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard in Jezreel next to the palace of Ahab, king of Samaria,

2. Ahab said to Naboth, “Give me your vineyard to be my vegetable garden, since it is close by, next to my house. I will give you a better vineyard in exchange, or, if you prefer, I will give you its value in money.”

3. “The LORD forbid,” Naboth answered him, “that I should give you my ancestral heritage.”

There was a deep religious significance to the original gift of the land from God to his Tribe, sub-tribe and family. To a devout Israelite, things like genealogies and land titles were objects prompting devotion, to be treasured, kept and remembered. To give it up would be, in effect, a betrayal of God and country. Ahab had apparently lost all sense of his ‘roots’ as an Israelite.

4. Ahab went home disturbed and angry at the answer Naboth the Jezreelite had made to him: “I will not give you my ancestral heritage.” Lying down on his bed, he turned away from food and would not eat.

How telling this is as to the character of Ahab! He his is weak, wishy-washy and self-centered. I picture him curling up in a fetal ball and sucking his thumb! He’s sulking. The next line shows us how little respect he has elicited from his wife.

5. His wife Jezebel came to him and said to him, “Why are you so angry that you will not eat?”

6. He answered her, “Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite and said to him, ‘Sell me your vineyard, or, if you prefer, I will give you a vineyard in exchange.’ But he refused to let me have his vineyard.”

7. “A fine ruler over Israel you are indeed!” his wife Jezebel said to him. “Get up. Eat and be cheerful. I will obtain the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite for you.”

I guess we know who wears the pants in this family! Her fanatical certainty impels her to go where less brave, and perhaps wiser, ones would not go. She is used to getting her way and is supremely self-confident. It’s clear just how much she despises and undervalues Ahab.

8. So she wrote letters in Ahab’s name and, having sealed them with his seal, sent them to the elders and to the nobles who lived in the same city with Naboth.

Now, wait a minute. She’s using the King’s own SEAL!?! She has become the secret power driving things behind the scenes.

9. This is what she wrote in the letters: “Proclaim a fast and set Naboth at the head of the people.

10. Next, get two scoundrels to face him and accuse him of having cursed God and king. Then take him out and stone him to death.”

11. His fellow citizens–the elders and the nobles who dwelt in his city–did as Jezebel had ordered them in writing, through the letters she had sent them.

Wow, what a dastardly deed! She will stop at nothing. Notice that she has Naboth accused of cursing God and king, breaking the Law of Moses! Isn’t SHE cursing the God of Israel day after day under her breath? Hasn’t she cursed and disrespected her husband the King to point of mocking him and usurping his power? From the appearance of the one statement recorded from the mouth of Naboth, I highly doubt that Naboth ever tried to offend God a day in his life. And yet, it is HE who must suffer. Jezebel is once again achieving her end of trying to appear to support God and country, all the while, furiously working to destroy it and transform it into the Phoenician homeland she knew and loved: CHANGE!

15. When Jezebel learned that Naboth had been stoned to death, she said to Ahab, “Go on, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite which he refused to sell you, because Naboth is not alive, but dead.”

16. On hearing that Naboth was dead, Ahab started off on his way down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, to take possession of it.

How nonchalantly Jezebel snuffs out a life and tosses the carcass to the man she treats like her underling. How blithely Naboth acts! He immediately runs to “take possession” of what he coveted. We can picture him like a spoiled little kid, clapping his hands and yelling, “Yippee! Goody! Goody! I got it!” blissfully unaware of the horrible injustice and loss of innocent life that was the price for this illusory, passing pleasure. He is deadened and asleep spiritually; he can’t see what’s happening right around him.

Elijah, strengthened by his sojourn to Sinai, and no longer afraid, returns at this absolutely crucial moment to uncover everything that has been going on. Elijah confronts Ahab in the Vineyard with the full truth of everything that has happened with the Vineyard and, surprisingly, Ahab wakes up spiritually, changes his ways and asks for mercy. He begins to realize the wider implications of this small incident and begins to make the changes he needs to make. Elijah reassures him that the doom that had already been threatened for Ahab will not occur. On the other hand, Elijah predicts that the dogs will lick the blood of the corpse of Jezebel right where she had oppressed Naboth. And so it happens later in the story. [Cue the Twilight Zone Intro. music!] Some admire the defiance of Jezebel at her death as she dresses in all her best finery before she is killed by those around her. She is thrown from the window. It is a tragic end.

It seems to me that there are some similarities to the present situation. Obama and his friends speak the language of traditional American values but they are trying to hide where their heart is on purpose. They say you have a “choice” and all those reassuring platitudes, but they plan to eventually get to a very UN-traditional, and a very UN-American single-payer system as some have let slip. They are ideologues like Jezebel.

Like Jezebel, they despise the traditional values of God and country and are zealots for socialism at least and Marxism at the worst. No matter what they’ve been SAYING for public consumption, it’s crystal clear what they really want from their private words and by their actions, by what it is they are DOING and plan to do.

Like Jezebel, they try to silence any prophetic voices that are pointing out any inconvenient truths. They try to cow and threaten, to flood the air with their powerful rhetoric, just like Jezebel silenced the prophets of the Lord.

Like Naboth, let our devotion to our land and to our traditions stand and not bend under the pressure of the whims of a short-sighted and selfish government which does not respect our God-given freedom and property. Though they hire “scoundrels” (paid liars) to besmirch and mock us, calling us what those liars really are, like Naboth, let us not give up the heritage that is more precious than life itself.

Like Elijah, at this crucial moment, now that HR3200 has been providentially delayed and we can reveal ALL the truth about it, let us not be afraid to confront our friends with the truth and with the tough love that is needed. Look up the page numbers; make the contrast with our traditions obvious; use the tools you’re good at using to expose it. Like the Vineyard Incident, let us use this Bill to wake up the country to the wider implications.

Yes, like Ahab, let us help ourselves and our country wake up to the true situation. We have ‘married’ ourselves to an attractive ‘wife’ (Obama and all he represents) with great attractiveness and promises and yet have not noticed that she despises us and is working behind our backs to neuter our identity as Americans and usurp our power (the power that for us rests not in a king but in “We the People”). We have been confronted by our modern-day Elijah’s; let us, like Ahab, do something about that realization and avoid the consequences we have been warned about. The time is NOW! Elijah is pointing his finger at our Ahab. Let us change the “change” we are threatened with. Once, we have committed to the slow path to Government Health Care, there is probably no going back. Let’s NOT go through with it! You know the saying: MARRY IN HASTE, REPENT AT LEISURE. Let’s get the word out. Let’s roll!


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