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Thoughts and Reflection

In today’s reading, we should remember God’s promise to Abraham. He promised a kingdom, worldwide blessing, and land. In the Old Testament, one cannot sell their land because it doesn’t belong to them. The land has now been divided among the tribes. Naboth understands that he cannot. sell his land and he is faithful. Ahab and Jezebel show their hearts. Jezebel sends letters in Ahab’s name to incite the elders and nobles against Naboth saying there was wrongdoing. As a result, he is stoned to death.

In the South, Jehoram kills all of his brothers. He then sets up altars for false worship, placing his people in a position of infidelity to God who has been protecting them when they were faithful. After Jehoram dies, his son Ahaziah becomes king. He is wicked and follows the example of Athaliah. After Ahaziah dies, Athaliah seizes the throne and destroys the royal family of Judah.

About This Project

For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!

Daily Readings

1 Kings 21

1 This is what happened next: Naboth of Jezreel had a vineyard close by the palace of Ahab king of Samaria,

2 and Ahab said to Naboth, ‘Give me your vineyard to be my vegetable garden, since it adjoins my palace; I will give you a better vineyard for it or, if you prefer, I will give you its value in money.’

3 Naboth, however, said to Ahab, ‘Yahweh forbid that I should give you my ancestral heritage!’

4 Ahab went home gloomy and out of temper at the words of Naboth of Jezreel, ‘I will not give you my heritage from my ancestors.’ He lay down on his bed and turned his face away and refused to eat.

5 His wife Jezebel came to him. ‘Why are you so dispirited,’ she said, ‘that you refuse to eat?’

6 He said, ‘I have been talking to Naboth of Jezreel. I said, “Give me your vineyard either for money or, if you prefer, for another vineyard in exchange.” But he said, “I will not give you my vineyard.” ‘

7 Then his wife Jezebel said, ‘Some king of Israel you make! Get up, eat and take heart; I myself shall get you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.’

8 So she wrote a letter in Ahab’s name and sealed it with his seal, sending the letter to the elders and notables of the city where Naboth lived.

9 In the letter, she wrote, ‘Proclaim a fast, and put Naboth in a prominent place among the people.

10 There confront him with a couple of scoundrels who will accuse him as follows, “You have cursed God and the king.” Then take him outside and stone him to death.’

11 The men of Naboth’s city, the elders and notables living in his city, did what Jezebel ordered, as was written in the letter which she had sent him.

12 They proclaimed a fast and put Naboth in a prominent place among the people.

13 The two scoundrels then came and confronted him, and the scoundrels then publicly accused Naboth as follows, ‘Naboth has cursed God and the king.’ He was then taken outside the city and stoned to death.

14 They then sent word to Jezebel, ‘Naboth has been stoned to death.’

15 When Jezebel heard that Naboth had been stoned to death, she said to Ahab, ‘Get up! Take possession of the vineyard which Naboth of Jezreel refused to sell you, for Naboth is no longer alive, he is dead.’

16 When Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, he got up to go down to the vineyard of Naboth of Jezreel and take possession of it.

17 Then the word of Yahweh came to Elijah the Tishbite,

18 ‘Up! Go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, in Samaria. You will find him in Naboth’s vineyard; he has gone down to take possession of it.

19 You are to say this to him, “Yahweh says this: You have committed murder and now you usurp as well. For this — and Yahweh says this — in the place where the dogs licked the blood of Naboth, the dogs will lick your blood too.” ‘

20 Ahab said to Elijah, ‘So you have caught me, O my enemy!’ Elijah answered, ‘I have caught you! For your double dealing, and since you have done what is displeasing to Yahweh,

21 I shall now bring disaster down on you; I shall sweep away your descendants and wipe out every manjack of the House of Ahab, fettered or free in Israel.

22 I shall treat your House as I treated the house of Jeroboam son of Nebat and of Baasha son of Ahijah, for provoking my anger and leading Israel into sin.

23 (Against Jezebel too Yahweh spoke these words, “The dogs will eat Jezebel in the Field of Jezreel.”)

24 Those of Ahab’s family who die in the city, the dogs will eat; and those who die in the open country, the birds of the air will eat.’

25 And indeed there never was anyone like Ahab for double dealing and for doing what is displeasing to Yahweh, urged on by Jezebel his wife.

26 He behaved in the most abominable way, adhering to idols, just as the Amorites had, whom Yahweh had dispossessed for the Israelites.

27 When Ahab heard these words, he tore his garments and put sackcloth next to his skin and fasted; he slept in the sackcloth; he walked with slow steps.

28 Then the word of Yahweh came to Elijah the Tishbite,

29 ‘Have you seen how Ahab has humbled himself before me? Since he has humbled himself before me, I shall not bring the disaster in his days; I shall bring the disaster down on his House in his son’s days.’

2 Chronicles 21

1 Then Jehoshaphat fell asleep with his ancestors and was buried with them in the city of David; his son Jehoram succeeded him.

2 Jehoram’s brothers, sons of Jehoshaphat, were Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azariahu, Michael and Shephatiah — all of them sons of Jehoshaphat king of Israel.

3 Their father had lavishly given them presents of silver, gold and other valuables as well as fortified towns in Judah; but the throne he bequeathed to Jehoram since he was the first-born.

4 Jehoram, having taken control of his father’s kingdom and secured his own position, put all his brothers to the sword and some officials of Israel too.

5 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he came to the throne, and he reigned for eight years in Jerusalem.

6 He followed the example of the kings of Israel as the House of Ahab were doing, he having married one of Ahab’s daughters; and he did what is displeasing to Yahweh.

7 But Yahweh would not destroy the House of David, because of the covenant which he had made with David, promising to provide him and his sons with a lamp for ever.

8 In his time Edom threw off the domination of Judah and set up a king for itself.

9 Jehoram crossed the frontier, and with him his commanders and all his chariots. Under cover of dark, he and his chariot commanders broke through the Edomites surrounding him.

10 Thus Edom threw off the domination of Judah and has remained free to the present day. Libnah revolted against him at the same time, because he had abandoned Yahweh, God of his ancestors.

11 What is more, he set up high places in the highlands of Judah, leading the citizens of Jerusalem and the people of Judah into apostasy.

12 Something written by the prophet Elijah then came into his hands. It said, ‘Yahweh, God of your ancestor David, says this, “Since you have not followed the example of your father Jehoshaphat or of Asa king of Judah,

13 but have followed the example of the kings of Israel and have led Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem into apostasy, just as the House of Ahab has led Israel into apostasy, and have even murdered your brothers, your own family, who were better men than you,

14 Yahweh is going to afflict your people, your sons, your wives and all your property with a great calamity,

15 and you yourself with a severe disease affecting your bowels, as a result of which disease, continuing day after day, you will suffer protrusion of your bowels.” ‘

16 Yahweh then roused the hostility of the Philistines and of the Arabs living near the Cushites against Jehoram.

17 They invaded Judah, forcing their way into it and carrying off all the property to be found in the king’s palace, as well as his sons and his wives, so that he was left no sons at all except his youngest son Jehoahaz.

18 And after all this, Yahweh afflicted him with an incurable disease of the bowels;

19 in due time, after about two years, his bowels protruded as a result of his disease and he died in acute pain. His people did not make a funeral pyre for him, as they had for his ancestors.

20 He was thirty-two years old when he came to the throne and he reigned for eight years in Jerusalem. He passed away unlamented and was buried in the City of David, though not in the tombs of the kings.

2 Chronicles 22

1 The inhabitants of Jerusalem then made his youngest son Ahaziah king in succession to him, since the marauders who had attacked the camp with the Arabs had killed all the older ones. That was why Ahaziah son of Jehoram, king of Judah became king.

2 Ahaziah was forty-two years old when he came to the throne and he reigned for one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Athaliah, descendant of Omri.

3 He too followed the example of the House of Ahab, for his mother being his adviser brought about his condemnation.

4 He did what is displeasing to Yahweh as the House of Ahab did, for they were his advisers after his father’s death, to his undoing.

5 He followed their advice and went with Jehoram son of Ahab, king of Israel, to make war on Hazael king of Aram at Ramoth-Gilead. But the Aramaeans wounded Jehoram,

6 who returned to Jezreel to recover from the wounds which he had received at Ramoth, fighting against Hazael king of Aram. Ahaziah son of Jehoram, king of Judah, went down to Jezreel to visit Jehoram son of Ahab because he was ailing.

7 Through this visit to Jehoram God brought ruin on Ahaziah. On his arrival he went out with Jehoram to meet Jehu son of Nimshi whom Yahweh had anointed to make an end of the House of Ahab.

8 While Jehu was executing sentence on the House of Ahab and came across the officers of Judah and Ahaziah’s nephews who were in attendance on Ahaziah, he killed them,

9 and then went in search of Ahaziah. The latter was captured while hiding in Samaria, and taken to Jehu who put him to death. But they gave him burial because, they said, ‘He was the grandson of Jehoshaphat who sought Yahweh with all his heart.’ As a result, there was no member of Ahaziah’s family left who was strong enough to rule the kingdom.

10 When Athaliah mother of Ahaziah learned that her son was dead, she promptly did away with all the royal stock of the House of Judah.

11 But Jehosheba the king’s daughter, surreptitiously rescued Joash son of Ahaziah from among the chiefs who were to be murdered, and put him with his nurse in the sleeping quarters; in this way Jehosheba daughter of King Joram and wife of Jehoiada the priest-she was the sister of Ahaziah-hid him from Athaliah, and he was not put to death.

12 He stayed hidden with them in the Temple of God for six years while Athaliah governed the country.

Song of Solomon 7

1 CHORUS: Come back, come back, girl from Shulam, come back, come back, where we can look at you! Why are you looking at the girl from Shulam, dancing between two lines of dancers?

2 LOVER: How beautiful are your feet in their sandals, O prince’s daughter! The curve of your thighs is like the curve of a necklace, work of a master hand.

3 Your navel is a bowl well rounded with no lack of wine, your belly a heap of wheat surrounded with lilies.

4 Your two breasts are two fawns, twins of a gazelle.

5 Your neck is an ivory tower. Your eyes, the pools of Heshbon, by the gate of Bath-Rabbim. Your nose, the Tower of Lebanon, sentinel facing Damascus.

6 Your head is held high like Carmel, and its hair is as dark as purple; a king is held captive in your tresses.

7 How beautiful you are, how charming, my love, my delight!

8 In stature like the palm tree, its fruit-clusters your breasts.

9 I have decided, ‘I shall climb the palm tree, I shall seize its clusters of dates!’ May your breasts be clusters of grapes, your breath sweet-scented as apples,

10 and your palate like sweet wine. BELOVED: Flowing down the throat of my love, as it runs on the lips of those who sleep.

11 I belong to my love, and his desire is for me.

12 Come, my love, let us go to the fields. We will spend the night in the villages,

13 and in the early morning we will go to the vineyards. We will see if the vines are budding, if their blossoms are opening, if the pomegranate trees are in flower. Then I shall give you the gift of my love.

14 The mandrakes yield their fragrance, the most exquisite fruits are at our doors; the new as well as the old, I have stored them for you, my love.

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