2 Kings 9:21-22
“Joram said, “Make ready.” And they made ready his chariot. Then Joram king of Israel and Ahaziah king of Judah set out, each in his chariot, and went to meet Jehu, and met him at the property of Naboth the Jezreelite.”
The evil of Ahab and Jezebel continued with their children. Idolatry and rebellion against God was their legacy. Jumping ahead to the book of 2 Kings, here are the characters in this story:
- Joram, king of Israel and the son of Ahab and Jezebel.
- Ahaziah, king of Judah.
- Jehu, also king of Israel, recently anointed by the servant of the prophet Elisha.
- Jezebel, the wicked queen, wife of the deceased king Ahab and mother to Joram.
After being anointed king of Israel, Jehu set out in his chariot for Jezreel, accompanied by a small body of horsemen. Jehu was a violent man, and his purpose for going to Jezreel was to kill Joram, the other king of Israel. As Jehu and his group came within sight of the city, a watchman reported their advance, and three different messengers were sent to inquire as to their purpose. All three messengers joined Jehu’s group. This awakened suspicion, so King Joram and King Ahaziah got in their chariots and rode out to meet Jehu.
“And when Joram saw Jehu, he said, “Is it peace, Jehu?” He answered, “What peace can there be, so long as the whorings and the sorceries of your mother Jezebel are so many?” (2 Kings 9.22)
The two kings met Jehu at the field of Naboth, the very place which Joram’s parents, Ahab and Jezebel, had acquired by means of murder. There the stroke of vengeance fell. Joram knew Jehu’s reputation for violence, so he inquired about Jehu’s intentions. The anxious question, “Is it peace?” was answered by Jehu denouncing Joram and his evil mother Jezebel.
“Then Joram reined about and fled, saying to Ahaziah, “Treachery, O Ahaziah!” And Jehu drew his bow with his full strength, and shot Joram between the shoulders, so that the arrow pierced his heart, and he sank in his chariot.” (2 Kings 9.22-23)
When God’s judgment comes, sometimes it arrives slowly after great patience by the Lord, and other times is arrives swiftly and violently. Such was the case in this situation. Jehu spoke against Joram, and then acted without hesitation. Having denounced Joram’s mother Jezebel for her “whorings and sorceries,” Jehu slays Joram, piercing his heart with an arrow. Joram attempted to flee, but he could not escape the judgment of God through Jehu.
“Jehu said to Bidkar his aide, “Take him up and throw him on the plot of ground belonging to Naboth the Jezreelite. For remember, when you and I rode side by side behind Ahab his father, how the Lord made this pronouncement against him: ‘As surely as I saw yesterday the blood of Naboth and the blood of his sons—declares the Lord—I will repay you on this plot of ground.’ Now therefore take him up and throw him on the plot of ground, in accordance with the word of the Lord.” (2 Kings 9.25-26)
Jehu and his aide Bidkar had witnessed Ahab and Jezebel (Joram’s parents) having Naboth falsely accused and killed so that Ahab could take possession of Naboth’s vineyard. They had heard the prophet Elijah pronounce judgment on Ahab and his house. Therefore, knowing that Naboth’s vineyard represented the evil of Joram’s parents, Jehu tells Bidkar to have Joram’s body thrown onto that plot of ground. No funeral. No ceremony. No paying of respects. Just throw the body onto the plot of ground and let the dogs have it.
Ahab met an ignominious death; Joram his son met a similar fate. The judgment of God now focuses on Jezebel, the wife of Ahab…