Naboth’s Vineyard

(1 Kings 21)

 

Once more, we have a picture of Adam’s garden.  Ahab wanted that which was not his and Naboth was too stubborn to give the king what he wanted.  While Naboth is certainly “in the right” by all legal and moral estimations, he still coveted the land of his fathers.  Now we can certainly talk about Leverite law and how a family is to keep the land within the family, but we also must remember Samuel’s warning about the ways of kings (1 Samuel 8:14).

Perhaps Naboth was not aware that Ahab would seek his death.  Perhaps Naboth was not aware of the wiles of Jezebel.  No, that hardly seems possible.  Ahab had deliberately sought the death of the prophets of God.  Perhaps Ahab was just misunderstood by those pesky prophets.  “Ahab did more to provoke the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger than all of the kings of Israel who were before him” (1 Kings 16: 33).  I hardly think that there was any misunderstanding about the nature of Ahab.

Naboth coveted his land and would not give it up to the king.   Naboth had to know to what end this path would bring.  And once again, blood flowed.  Sticking to your guns is a good thing, even in the face of death, but I am not convinced that Naboth is doing just that.  So often we too hold stubbornly to the wrong things.  And usually those things are sins that God is calling us to mortify.  We must always remember that it is not our fathers who have given us their land, but it comes from God, and it is given for His glory, not our satisfaction.   He who giveth can also take.

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