A while back I had said that I would speak of Jezebel becasue she does intrest me, there are a few biblical women whom do, and so I thought now would be a good time, as good as any to finally get around to doing so.
In the Tanakh (the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Old Testament), Jezebel is a queen of ancient Israel, whose story is told in I Kings. She is introduced by the author as a Phoenician princess, the daughter of King Ithobaal I of Tyre, who marries King Ahab. She turns Ahab away from the God of the Israelites and of the Jews (being the inhabitants of Judah in this context) and towards the worship of her god, Baal. The two then allow temples of Baal to open in Israel. Jezebel uses her control over Ahab to subject Israel to tyranny. After she slaughters the prophets of the Lord, the prophet Elijah confronts her to charge her with abominations. She responds by threatening to kill him as well. After Ahab’s death, Jezebel continues to rule through her son Ahaziah. When Ahaziah is killed in battle, she exercises control through her other son, Jehoram. Jehoram is killed by Jehu, who confronts Jezebel in Jezreel and urges her servants to kill her by throwing her out a window (defenestration). They comply, tossing her out the window and leaving her corpse in the street to be eaten by dogs; only her skull, feet, and hands remained, in fulfillment of Elijah’s prophecy. Her daughter, Athaliah, is wed to King of Judah, Jehoram, similarly corrupting Judah.
Using the vowels traditionally used for this name by Hebrew readers, the Hebrew form of this name means “not exalted”. But it is highly unlikely her parents would have given her such a name. Read with different vowels it can be understand as meaning “Where is the Prince?” (‘ay zebul in Hebrew). In fact, early Syrian inscriptions from Ugarit demonstrate that “the Prince” (equivalent of Hebrew “Zebul”) was a popular title for the storm god of the Phoenicians. The sentence “Where is the Prince?” is even found in Ugaritic literature. It is a form of invocation, calling on the god named to appear and act. In other words, this Tyrian princess was given a name in praise of the chief god of her people (whom the Hebrew Bible refers to mainly by the title “Baal”, meaning “lord, master”). “Jezebel” is, then, a reinterpretation, intended to mock this Queen and her god, whom she encouraged Israel to worship.
The Hebrew Bible contains two other examples of this name formula. First, in the larger context of the Jezebel story, after Elijah is taken up, Elisha strikes the Jordan with Elijah’s cloak and cries, “Where is YHWH, the God of Elijah?” as an invocation for God to part the waters, as he had done from Elijah (2 Kings 2). Second, the name “Ichabod“, traditionally read as “no glory” (son of the priest Phinehas, in 1 Samuel) may be read as, “Where is the Glory?” In context, the question becomes sadly ironic, because “the Glory” is associated with the ark of the covenant, which has just been captured by the Philistines. A related type of Hebrew name is “Who is like God/YHWH?” (Michael/Micaiah).
In the New Testament, Jezebel calls herself prophetess in the city of Thyatira. She is accused in Revelation 2:20 of inducing members of the church there to commit acts of sexual immorality and to eat things sacrificed to idols. Some authorities suggest that the author here uses the name Jezebel as a nickname, knowing that readers in Thyatira would know to whom it was being referred, and they would also know of the deeds of the previous Jezebel recorded in 1 Kings.
Jezebel is often refered to as being a whore, and a witch, and today the name is commonly used to refer to women that are judged as being wicked are trampish and of having loose morals. The term painted Jezebel is often used, refering to the fact that one of the great sins of Jezebel was the fact that she dared to put make up on her face which was frowned upon becasue it was seen as a way of making herself appear more tempting and sexually attractive. As we can commonly see that women are often blamed for a mans inhability to control his loins.
Jezebel was a worshiper of Baal an ancient Sumerian god, and the goddess Astarte. Her husband King Ahab has a Pagan temple built for her which employed 450 priests of Baal and 400 priestess of Astarte. Ironicly she is accsued of trying to force her relgion upon other people and for doing violence against the followers of God and trying to overthrow the worship of God, and forcing the prophets of God into the wilderness to hide in caves.
In Jezebel’s case, it involved some of the most vile and perverted behavior imaginable. Even little babies were sacrificed in fire as burnt offerings to her god of stone. It was the height of wickedness.
The sacrifce of childern to a Pagan god is considered to be pervered, and weicked and the most vile of crimes, and yet when God had comanded Abraham to sacrifice his only child, and Abraham agreed and was going to slit the throat of his son befrore an angel intervened it was considered on the part of Abraham as being an act of such high reverence and holiness that he would have been willing to kill his own child at the comand of God.
Jezebel would come to meet a rather gruesum end when she was thrown from a window, trampled by horses and then gnawed upon by dogs in the street.
She was an independent, powerful, and willfull woman who refused to submit, and was not ashamed of being a woman and exhalted in her sexuality, and would not forsake her own beleif system, but faught back against those that were trying to dash out her own religion. She would not be made timid and tamed to do whatever mans will was. Nor would she bend before a God that was not her own and would demain her as a woman.
As far as I am concenred Jezebel is a heroine not a villian.