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Jezebel

Queen Jezebel was the daughter of Ethbaal, a Phoenician king. She marries Ahab, king of Israel and becomes his main wife (he has many). King Ahab truly loves Queen Jezebel and allows her pagan rituals. God is not pleased with this and causes a three year drought on the land. Jezebel imports 450 priests of baal from her native Phoenicia and has many of God's prophets killed.

Elijah, is upset by this and challenges Queen Jezebel's priests to a competition. The competition is to show who is supreme God or baal. The competition takes place on Mt Carmel. The rules are which ever deity can set fire and destroy a sacrificial bull by divine intervention will be acknowledged as the true God.

On the day of the competition, Queen Jezebel's 450 prophets get into a frenzy and hop and dance around their alter; when they realize nothing is happening they begin to cut themselves, hoping that baal will see this and come to their aide. They do this the whole day, still nothing happens. Then it is Elijah's turn to pray to his God. He has them throw a lot of water on his sacrifice. His response is immediate; fire descends from above and consumes his offering (the wood, the stones and the earth).

When the people see this they bow down and start praising the true God. Elijah then has them kill all of Queen Jezebel's priests. God also ends Israel's drought. So upset and humiliated is the Queen that she sends Elijah a threatening message that prompts him to go into hiding.

Meanwhile, King Ahab is depressed because he is unable to obtain a vineyard that he has his heart set on. That vineyard is owned by a man called Naboth. Naboth has no interest in selling the King his land. Jezebel is not daunted by Naboth's refusal to sell his land and after forging the King's signature; she sends letters to the people of the kingdom, falsely accusing Naboth of blaspheming against God. Naboth is murdered and his land reverts to the King.

Elijah is sent by God to let King Ahab know that he will be punished for Naboth's death. Elijah relates this to the King; he also predicts that the Queen will be torn apart and eaten by dogs in the very spot where Naboth was killed. Soon after Ahab and one of his sons was killed.

Jehu, a military commander is anointed by another prophet, Elisha, to become the new King of Israel. Jehu, is then commanded by Elisha to destroy the rest of Ahab's household. Jehu, then kills Joram, the son of King Ahab and Queen Jezebel. Once Jezebel is made aware of this, she realizes that her fate is sealed. She then calmly and courageously prepares herself for the inevitable. She applies her make up and combs her hair and awaits by her window for Jehu's arrival.

When he arrives, Jehu orders her men to toss her out, and in graphic detail, the Old Testament authors describe the end: They threw her down, and her blood spattered on the wall and on the horses, and they trampled her. Then Jehu went inside and ate and drank. Once he had finished his meal he tells them to go bury Jezebel for she was the daughter of a king. It's too late, however, dogs have already devoured her body leaving only her skull, feet ant the palms of her hands.

Elijah's prophecy is fulfilled. "The dogs shall devour the flesh of Jezebel...and the carcass of Jezebel shall be like dung on the ground...so that none will be able to say: 'This was Jezebel.'"