Naboth’s Vineyard Then and Now: Trying to Turn Vineyards into Vegetable Gardens

The story of Naboth’s Vineyard is recorded in 1 Kings 21. The vineyard in the Bible normally represents God’s kingdom and people. As it was in the days of King Ahab, also it was in the days of Jesus, and also nowadays. There are worldly powers that arise and try to turn vineyards into vegetable gardens.

In the story, Naboth owned a vineyard in proximity to King Ahab’s palace in the city of Jezreel. Because of this, Ahab desired to acquire the vineyard so that he could use it for a vegetable garden. Since he inherited the land from his ancestors, Naboth refused to sell it to Ahab. Frustrated at not being able to buy the vineyard, Ahab returned to his palace and went to bed without eating anything. His wife, Jezebel, after learning the reason for his being upset, asked mockingly, “Are you not the king?” She then said that she would obtain the vineyard for him. To do so, she sent a letter, under Ahab’s name, to the elders and nobles of Naboth’s city, instructing them to set Naboth up by proclaiming a fast and ordering Naboth to sit in a “prominent place”. Two witnesses, referred to as “scoundrels” by Jezebel, were then called forth to falsely accuse Naboth of cursing God and the king. After that, they would take him outside the city and stone him to death. The elders and nobles agreed to carry out the letter’s instructions. The plan was carried out exactly as planned and right after Naboth’s death, king Ahab went and took possession of the coveted land. As punishment for this incident, God decided to bring judgment on king Ahab and all his family.

As it was in the days of King Ahab, also it was in the days of Jesus, and also nowadays.

Naboth is a foreshadow of Jesus. They were both righteous man that had received a vineyard from their Father. In the same way, the earthly powers and authorities such as the kings, princes and elders plot together to judge and incriminate the righteous and take over the land from them.

Nowadays a similar phenomenon is also taking place across the world. Churches and other Christian institutions such as schools are being taken over and turned for other purposes by worldly powers:

1. Churches and other properties that were made to further God’s kingdom are being bought or just taken for secular use such as museums, offices, restaurants, living place, etc.

2. Older churches and Christian institutions become increasingly taken over by liberal and unspiritual leaders by continuous influence of the world or direct intervention of some countries’ governments so that entire congregations are led astray.

3. Churches are being demolished and burned

4. Churches, Christian leaders and Christians are publicaly being hated, slandered, falsely accused and judged by the world and worldly media.

Please pray that, in the midst of all this, the church, Christians and its leaders may not succumb to the fear of man and be corrupted or sold-out but rather live with the wisdom of fearing God and obey and please him only. Pray also for the persecutors and worldly leaders, that they may turn from their ignorant and wicked ways, fear God and submit to Him. Pray for our community to grow with godly leaders and inherit well the Christian history and vineyards so they can be continuously used for their original purpose of furthering God’s kingdom in Europe and the rest of the world, till the day of the Lord will come.