The past two posts had to do with the comparisons between big league Bullies of the Bible and addiction. This week, I am going to continue moving in that direction.
Bullies are known notoriously for taking things from others and leaving a path of devastation behind them. You know, in my mind I am not and nor have I ever been a small person and I would not consider myself a nerd. But, I have been Bullied not only by addiction but also by people.
I remember in 4th or 5th grade riding the bus home from school and being accosted by a bigger guy. I remember having this smooth glossy grey rock that was said to help relieve anxiety and I carried it everywhere. Well, this guy used his size and took it from me and threw it out the window of the bus. And for weeks afterwards, he teased me and egged me on until one day I took a swing at him.
Let me say that was a big mistake, however, the only way I can describe this event would be to point you at the movie Back to the Future (1985, Zemeckis). To the scene at the dance where George Mcfly finally decides to stand up to Biff over his treatment of George’s future wife (sorry, I don’t remember her name). George was half the size of Biff, Biff was a jock and had loads of muscles where George was well skinny and small and unlikely to be able to lick Biff in anything outside of academics. Anyway, George stood up to Biff and laid him out.
That, however, wasn’t the case here. I swung at this bully, got my arm twisted, and my face pushed into the seat of the bus. You know, there is one trait about Bullies that is similar across the board, they operate by the use of force to take things that aren’t theirs. An example of this could be that rock, lunch money, or now a days credit at work for something you worked so hard on, and so on. This is definitely how Jezebel operated!
In 1 Kings 21, there was a man named Naboth. Naboth had a vineyard next to the palace. Now, Ahab the king of Samaria wanted this vineyard for himself for a vegetable garden and offered Naboth a better vineyard or money for it. Naboth told Ahab that it was against the law of God to give up inheritance of his father’s. In the Book of Numbers, Moses tells Israel the law which God wants them to follow regarding the land they are going to possess (their inheritance). This law is: “No inheritance shall be transferred from one tribe to another, for each of the tribes of the people of Israel shall hold on to its own inheritance.'” (Numbers 36:9)
See, Ahab haled from the tribe of Ephraim and Naboth came from the tribe of Issachar. So, if Naboth had given Ahab his land he would have broken God’s law. Not just that, Naboth’s family for hundreds of years has been tending that land; that vineyard. Naboth has taken pride in all He has done on his land. His heart, his blood, his sweat, and his tears has gone into it. So, it is no wonder why he said no to Ahab.
Now, upon Ahab hearing that Naboth would not give him his land, Ahab went to his wife Jezebel. And, she had Naboth killed, took his land and gave it to her husband.
Jezebel, in her time, also tried to wipe out all of God’s prophets. She was a nasty woman.
There is a tragic similarity between Jezebel’s bullying and addiction. Really, Jezebel’s life and addiction! Both of them take things that don’t belong to them; like life, time, and possessions. Both lead people astray to worship at the altars of idols. Both can lead or do lead to death. Deaths of friendships, families, marriages, jobs, and even life.
Prayer: Oh Abba, Father thank you so much for bring this to my attention and showing me how bad things can get if I continue to sow into the flesh. Father please deliver me from sin’s chains, and continue to whisper to me that they no longer have any power over me because of my dear saviors death and resurrection. I pray all of this in the name above all names; in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen
Back to the Future. Robert Zemeckis, Universal Studios, California, 1985