This is a story in the private life of Ahab. Next to his own broad and rich possessions was a vineyard, the inheritance of a man who by comparison with Ahab was poor. Naboth, loyal to the law of God, and standing within his own personal rights, declined to part with his vineyard. Once more we read that the king was sad and angry. But again his heart was not right with God, and consequently he lacked the one sufficient inspiration of rectitude in conduct toward his brother.
His brooding sadness arrested the attention of Jezebel, and he left himself in her hands. The result was the dastardly crime of Naboth's murder.
Then we see Ahab in Naboth's vineyard, apparently in possession. Men, however, do not so easily possess the things they obtain by unrighteous methods. Right there in the coveted garden, with startling abruptness, the rough prophet of Horeb, Elijah, stood before Ahab. One can imagine the mixture of terror and passion in the voice of Ahab as he cried, "Hast thou found me, O mine enemy?" Here again Elijah rose to the dignity of the true prophetic office as in words that must have scorched the inner soul of Ahab he pronounced the doom for his terrible wrongdoing. Filled with fear, Ahab assumed the external attitude of penitence, which in all likelihood was as selfish as was his sin. Yet even this was enough to stay the hand of judgment for the moment.
the First Week after Epiphany