In the place where dogs licked, etc. - It is in vain to look for a literal fulfillment of this prediction. Thus it would have been fulfilled, but the humiliation of Ahab induced the merciful God to say, I will not bring the evil in his days, but in the days of his son, 1 Kings 21:29. Now dogs did lick the blood of Ahab; but it was at the pool of Samaria, where his chariot and his armor were washed, after he had received his death wound at Ramoth-gilead; but some think this was the place where Naboth was stoned: see 1 Kings 22:38. And how literally the prediction concerning his son was fulfilled, see 2 Kings 9:25, where we find that the body of Jehoram his son, just then slain by an arrow that had passed through his heart, was thrown into the portion of the field of Naboth the Jezreelite; and there, doubtless, the dogs licked his blood, if they did not even devour his body. There is a similar idea of the propriety of punishment overtaking the culprit in the place where he had committed the crime, expressed by Orestes to Aegisthus, Soph. Elect. 1495.
- Χωρει δ ' ενθαπερ κατεκτανες<-144 Πατερα τον αμον, ὡς εν ταυτῳ θανῃς.
- Go where thou slew'st my father,
That in the self-same place thou too may'st die.
Hast thou killed, and also taken possession? - These words rebuke especially Ahab‘s indecent haste. He went to Jezreel the very day after Naboth‘s execution 2 Kings 9:26.
The prophecy following had a double fulfillment. The main fulfillment was by the casting of the dead body of Jehoram into Naboth‘s plot of ground at Jezreel, where, like Naboth‘s, it was left for the dogs to eat 2 Kings 9:25. This spot, which was just outside the city wall, and close to a gate 2 Kings 9:31, was probably the actual scene of Naboth‘s execution. Here did dogs lick Ahab‘s blood, that is, his son‘s blood, the execution of the full retaliatory sentence having been deferred to the days of his son, formally and explicitly, on Ahab‘s repentance 1 Kings 21:29. But, besides this, there was a secondary fulfillment of the prophecy, when, not at Jezreel but at Samaria (marginal reference), the actual blood of Ahab himself, was licked by dogs, only in a way that implied no disgrace. These two fulfillments are complementary to each other.
For several years after the call of Elisha, Elijah and Elisha labored together, the younger man daily gaining greater preparedness for his work. Elijah had been God's instrument for the overthrow of gigantic evils. The idolatry which, supported by Ahab and the heathen Jezebel, had seduced the nation, had been given a decided check. Baal's prophets had been slain. The whole people of Israel had been deeply stirred, and many were returning to the worship of God. As Elijah's successor, Elisha, by careful, patient instruction, must endeavor to guide Israel in safe paths. His association with Elijah, the greatest prophet since the days of Moses, prepared him for the work that he was soon to take up alone. PK 224.1
During these years of united ministry, Elijah from time to time was called upon to meet flagrant evils with stern rebuke. When wicked Ahab seized Naboth's vineyard, it was the voice of Elijah that prophesied his doom and the doom of all his house. And when Ahaziah, after the death of his father Ahab, turned from the living God to Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron, it was Elijah's voice that was heard once more in earnest protest. PK 224.2
The schools of the prophets, established by Samuel, had fallen into decay during the years of Israel's apostasy. Elijah re-established these schools, making provision for young men to gain an education that would lead them to magnify the law and make it honorable. Three of these schools, one at Gilgal, one at Bethel, and one at Jericho, are mentioned in the record. Just before Elijah was taken to heaven, he and Elisha visited these centers of training. The lessons that the prophet of God had given them on former visits, he now repeated. Especially did he instruct them concerning their high privilege of loyally maintaining their allegiance to the God of heaven. He also impressed upon their minds the importance of letting simplicity mark every feature of their education. Only in this way could they receive the mold of heaven and go forth to work in the ways of the Lord. PK 224.3Read in context »
God never designed that one man's mind or judgment should be a controlling power. Whenever He has had a special work to be done, He has always had men ready to meet the demand. In every age, when the divine voice has asked, Who will go for us? the response has come, “Here am I, send me.” In ancient times the Lord had connected with His work men of varied talents. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses with his meekness and wisdom, and Joshua with his varied capabilities were all enlisted in God's service. The music of Miriam, the courage and piety of Deborah, the filial affection of Ruth, the obedience and faithfulness of Samuel—all were needed. Elijah with his stern traits of character, God used at His appointed time to execute judgment upon Jezebel. RC 319.2Read in context »
The evil influence that Jezebel had exercised from the first over Ahab continued during the later years of his life and bore fruit in deeds of shame and violence such as have seldom been equaled in sacred history. “There was none like unto Ahab, which did sell himself to work wickedness in the sight of the Lord, whom Jezebel his wife stirred up.” PK 204.1Read in context »