1 Kings 21–22; Matthew 11

Naboth's Vineyard

21 Now Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard in qJezreel, beside the palace of Ahab king of Samaria. And after this Ahab said to Naboth, rGive me your vineyard, that I may have it for a vegetable garden, because it is near my house, and I will give you a better vineyard for it; or, if it seems good to you, I will give you its value in money. But Naboth said to Ahab, The Lord forbid sthat I should give you the inheritance of my fathers. And Ahab twent into his house vexed and sullen because of what Naboth the Jezreelite had said to him, for he had said, I will not give you the inheritance of my fathers. And he lay down on his bed and turned away his face and would eat no food.

But Jezebel his wife came to him and said to him, Why is your spirit so vexed that you eat no food? And he said to her, Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite and said to him, Give me your vineyard for money, or else, if it please you, I will give you another vineyard for it. And he answered, I will not give you my vineyard. And Jezebel his wife said to him, Do you now govern Israel? Arise and eat bread and let your heart be cheerful; I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.

uSo she wrote letters in Ahab's name and sealed them with his seal, and she sent the letters to vthe elders and the leaders who lived with Naboth in his city. And she wrote in the letters, Proclaim a fast, and set Naboth at the head of the people. 10 And set two wworthless men opposite him, and let them bring a charge against him, saying, xYou have cursed1 God and the king. Then take him out and stone him to death. 11 And the men of his city, vthe elders and the leaders who lived in his city, did as Jezebel had sent word to them. As it was written in the letters that she had sent to them, 12 ythey proclaimed a fast and set Naboth at the head of the people. 13 And the two worthless men came in and sat opposite him. And the worthless men brought a charge against Naboth in the presence of the people, saying, Naboth cursed God and the king. So they took him outside the city and stoned him to death with stones. 14 Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, Naboth has been stoned; he is dead.

15 As soon as Jezebel heard that Naboth had been stoned and was dead, Jezebel said to Ahab, Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give you for money, for Naboth is not alive, but dead. 16 And as soon as Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, Ahab arose to go down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, to take possession of it.

The Lord Condemns Ahab

17 zThen the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 18 Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, who is in aSamaria; behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, where he has gone to take possession. 19 And you shall say to him, Thus says the Lord, Have you killed and also taken possession? And you shall say to him, Thus says the Lord: bIn the place where dogs licked up the blood of Naboth shall dogs lick your own blood.

20 Ahab said to Elijah, cHave you found me, O my enemy? He answered, I have found you, because dyou have sold yourself to do what is evil in the sight of the Lord. 21 Behold, I will bring disaster upon you. I will utterly burn you up, and ewill cut off from Ahab every male, bond or free, in Israel. 22 And I will make your house like fthe house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like gthe house of Baasha the son of Ahijah, for the anger to which you have provoked me, and because you hhave made Israel to sin. 23 And of Jezebel the Lord also said, iThe dogs shall eat Jezebel within jthe walls of Jezreel. 24 kAnyone belonging to Ahab who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone of his who dies in the open country the birds of the heavens shall eat.

Ahab's Repentance

25 (lThere was none who sold himself to do what was evil in the sight of the Lord like Ahab, whom Jezebel his wife incited. 26 He acted very abominably in going after midols, as nthe Amorites had done, whom the Lord cast out before the people of Israel.)

27 And when Ahab heard those words, he otore his clothes and pput sackcloth on his flesh and qfasted and lay in sackcloth and went about dejectedly. 28 And the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 29 Have you seen how Ahab has humbled himself before me? Because he has humbled himself before me, I will not bring the disaster in his days; rbut in his son's days I will bring the disaster upon his house.

Ahab and the False Prophets

22 For three years Syria and Israel continued without war. sBut in the third year tJehoshaphat the king of Judah came down to the king of Israel. And the king of Israel said to his servants, Do you know that uRamoth-gilead belongs to us, and we keep quiet and do not take it out of the hand of the king of Syria? And he said to Jehoshaphat, Will you go with me to battle at Ramoth-gilead? And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, vI am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.

And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, Inquire first for the word of the Lord. Then the king of Israel wgathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said to them, Shall I go to battle against Ramoth-gilead, or shall I refrain? And they said, Go up, for the Lord will give it into the hand of the king. But xJehoshaphat said, Is there not here another prophet of the Lord of whom we may inquire? And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the Lord, Micaiah the son of Imlah, but I hate him, for he never prophesies good concerning me, but evil. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say so. Then the king of Israel summoned an officer and said, Bring quickly Micaiah the son of Imlah. 10 Now the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah were sitting on their thrones, arrayed in their robes, at the threshing floor yat the entrance of the gate of Samaria, and all the prophets were prophesying before them. 11 And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made for himself zhorns of iron and said, Thus says the Lord, With these ayou shall push the Syrians until they are destroyed. 12 And all the prophets prophesied so and said, Go up to Ramoth-gilead and triumph; the Lord will give it into the hand of the king.

Micaiah Prophesies Against Ahab

13 And the messenger who went to summon Micaiah said to him, Behold, the words of the prophets with one accord are favorable to the king. Let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak favorably. 14 But Micaiah said, bAs the Lord lives, cwhat the Lord says to me, that I will speak. 15 And when he had come to the king, the king said to him, Micaiah, shall we go to Ramoth-gilead to battle, or shall we refrain? And he answered him, Go up and triumph; the Lord will give it into the hand of the king. 16 But the king said to him, How many times shall I make you swear that you speak to me nothing but the truth in the name of the Lord? 17 And he said, I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, das sheep that have no shepherd. And the Lord said, These have no master; let each return to his home in peace. 18 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, eDid I not tell you that he would not prophesy good concerning me, but evil? 19 And Micaiah said, Therefore hear the word of the Lord: fI saw the Lord sitting on his throne, gand all the host of heaven standing beside him on his right hand and on his left; 20 and the Lord said, Who will entice Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead? And one said one thing, and another said another. 21 Then a spirit came forward and stood before the Lord, saying, I will entice him. 22 And the Lord said to him, By what means? And he said, I will go out, and will be ha lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, You are to entice him, and you shall succeed; go out and do so. 23 Now therefore behold, the Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these your prophets; the Lord has declared disaster for you.

24 Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near iand struck Micaiah on the cheek and said, How did the Spirit of the Lord go from me to speak to you? 25 And Micaiah said, Behold, you shall see on that day when you go jinto an inner chamber to hide yourself. 26 And the king of Israel said, Seize Micaiah, and take him back to Amon the governor of the city and to Joash the king's son, 27 and say, Thus says the king, kPut this fellow in prison and feed him meager rations of bread and water, luntil I come in peace. 28 And Micaiah said, If you return in peace, mthe Lord has not spoken by me. And he said, nHear, all you peoples!

Ahab Killed in Battle

29 So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead. 30 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, oI will disguise myself and go into battle, but you wear your robes. And the king of Israel disguised himself and went into battle. 31 Now the king of Syria had commanded pthe thirty-two captains of his chariots, Fight with neither small nor great, but only with the king of Israel. 32 And when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, they said, It is surely the king of Israel. So they turned to fight against him. And Jehoshaphat cried out. 33 And when the captains of the chariots saw that it was not the king of Israel, they turned back from pursuing him. 34 But a certain man drew his bow at random2 and struck the king of Israel between the scale armor and the breastplate. Therefore he said to the driver of his chariot, Turn around and carry me out of the battle, qfor I am wounded. 35 And the battle continued that day, and the king was propped up in his chariot facing the Syrians, until at evening he died. And the blood of the wound flowed into the bottom of the chariot. 36 And about sunset a cry went through the army, Every man to his city, and every man to his country!

37 So the king died, and was brought to Samaria. And they buried the king in Samaria. 38 And they washed the chariot by the pool of Samaria, and the dogs licked up his blood, and the prostitutes washed themselves in it, raccording to the word of the Lord that he had spoken. 39 Now the rest of the acts of Ahab and all that he did, and sthe ivory house that he built and all the cities that he built, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? 40 So Ahab slept with his fathers, and Ahaziah his son reigned in his place.

Jehoshaphat Reigns in Judah

41 tJehoshaphat the son of uAsa began to reign over Judah in the fourth year of Ahab king of Israel. 42 Jehoshaphat was thirty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Azubah the daughter of Shilhi. 43 vHe walked in all the way of Asa his father. He did not turn aside from it, doing what was right in the sight of the Lord. Yet wthe high places were not taken away, and the people still sacrificed and made offerings on the high places. 44 xJehoshaphat also made peace with the king of Israel.

45 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, and his might that he showed, and how he warred, are they not written yin the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? 46 And from the land he exterminated the remnant zof the male cult prostitutes who remained in the days of his father Asa.

47 aThere was no king in Edom; a deputy was king. 48 Jehoshaphat made bships of Tarshish to go to cOphir for gold, but they did not go, for the ships were wrecked at dEzion-geber. 49 Then Ahaziah the son of Ahab said to Jehoshaphat, Let my servants go with your servants in the ships, but Jehoshaphat was not willing. 50 eAnd Jehoshaphat slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Jehoram his son reigned in his place.

Ahaziah Reigns in Israel

51 Ahaziah the son of Ahab fbegan to reign over Israel in Samaria in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and he reigned two years over Israel. 52 He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord gand walked in the way of his father and in the way of his mother and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin. 53 hHe served Baal and worshiped him and provoked the Lord, the God of Israel, to anger iin every way that his father had done.


Messengers from John the Baptist

11 When Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities.

eNow when John heard fin prison about the deeds of gthe Christ, he sent word by hhis disciples and said to him, Are you ithe one who is to come, or shall we jlook for another? And Jesus answered them, Go and tell John what you hear and see: kthe blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers1 are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and lthe poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who mis not offended by me.

As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: What did you go out ninto the wilderness to see? oA reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? A man2 dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. What then did you go out to see? pA prophet?3 Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 10 This is he of whom it is written,

qBehold, I send my messenger before your face,

who will prepare your way before you.

11 Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 rFrom the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence,4 and the violent take it by force. 13 rFor all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, 14 and if you are willing to accept it, he is sElijah who is to come. 15 tHe who has ears to hear,5 let him hear.

16 But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their playmates,

17  We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;

we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.

18 For John came uneither eating vnor drinking, and they say, He has a demon. 19 The Son of Man came weating and drinking, and they say, Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, xa friend of ytax collectors and sinners! Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.6

Woe to Unrepentant Cities

20 zThen he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent. 21 aWoe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in bTyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 cBut I tell you, it will be more bearable on dthe day of judgment for bTyre and Sidon than for you. 23 And you, eCapernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? You will be brought down to fHades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 cBut I tell you that git will be more tolerable on dthe day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you.

Come to Me, and I Will Give You Rest

25 hAt that time Jesus declared, I thank you, Father, iLord of heaven and earth, that jyou have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and krevealed them to little children; 26 yes, Father, for such was your lgracious will.7 27 mAll things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son nexcept the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone oto whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 28 pCome to qme, all who labor and are rheavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and slearn from me, for I am tgentle and lowly in heart, and uyou will find rest for your souls. 30 For vmy yoke is easy, and my burden is light.