Title:- Fling Out The Old Hag Today
2 Kings 9:30-33
Now when Jehu had come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she put paint on her eyes and adorned her head, and looked through a window. Then, as Jehu entered at the gate, she said, "Is it peace, Zimri, murderer of your master?" And he looked up at the window, and said, "Who is on my side? Who?" So two or three eunuchs looked out at him. Then he said, "Throw her down."
A poor eyesighted pink-faced albino, with a head too large for his little body, the Reverend William Archibald Spooner (1844-1930) for some 60 years lectured at Oxford University in history, philosophy and divinity, eventually serving as both Dean and President. The problem with Spooner was that his tongue could not keep up with the lightening speed of his brain! A kind, hospitable, absent-minded professor, he was renowned for the frequent and hilarious slips of his tongue. 'Spoonerisms', now so famous, are phrases, sentences or words in language that have swapped sounds. For example Reverend Spooner, when one day eulogising about Britain’s farmers, called them “Noble tons of soil.” instead of noble sons of toil. Quoting 1 Cor 13:12, and wanting to encourage his hearers that their Lord was a loving shepherd, instead said that, “Our Lord is a shoving leopard.” Or when officiating at a wedding, he prompted a hesitant bridegroom by saying, “Son, it is now kisstomary to cuss the bride!” And finally, for today, during WWI he may well have wanted to hang out the flags when the boys came home from France, but in trying to re-assure his students he actually said, “When our boys come home from France, we will have the hags flung out.”!
Jehu, driving furiously, returned from war. His hands bloody with the death of bad kings, this hurricane of a half-hearted hero, swept clean the land of the ashes of Jezebel's tragic magic. She was waiting for him.
Even after the death of her husband Ahab, Jezebel, beautiful and powerful, still managed to infest the land with idolatry and manipulating witchcraft as her son, Joram, remained simply a pathetic puppet in her continuing strong hand. There is no question in my mind, that Jezebel follows the etymology of the word “hag,” in that she was demonised, and to such an extent, that her very spirit was corrupted, aged, ugly, slatternly, evil looking and frightening. All of this inward corruption mind you, was somehow seemingly cloaked in the dignity of an alluring royalty, her deep and suggestive eyes highlighted with inviting antimony. Even as her prophesied death approaches, the old hag still tries to summon up her proud seductions to use against Jehu; but not this time though Jezebel, not this time.
I am no misogynist when I say that Jezebel, that wild and wanton, wayward woman, has become a picture of every seducing, manipulative and powerful spirit, which will deceive and lure people away from God. There is something about this spirit that wants the power to rule; teach heresy in God’s name; encourage the eating of unclean things, and the immorality of unfaithfulness in all its forms. Such a marching monstrosity, you would think, would be seen in all its detestableness from a great distance; history shows us however that this is not the case. The utter blindness that the wide eyes of the sweet talking Jezebel spirit bring to us is truly astonishing. Friends look at the state of the organised church. Look at what we allow and are allowing in our very midst. What just a few years ago, would have been dismissed out of hand in our congregations as abhorrent sin, is now embraced wholesale and done so in terms of love and “live and let live,” compassionate understanding. Today, many of our bishops are full of her sins and her diseases and today, many of us are tainted with her awful antimony. It seems we need some eye salve from heaven's pharmacy to get the ruinous rot out of our heads.
When there is no fear of God Almighty; when all is calm in troubled “blighty” then maybe it is time for some of our fighters to return from the field? And maybe, when some of our boys come home, they will fling out the old hag once more?
Listen: “Nonetheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts.” Revelation 2:20-23.
Pray: We bow our hearts, we bend our knees, O Spirit come make us humble. We turn our eyes from evil things, O Lord we cast down our idols. Give us clean hearts, give us clean hands, let us not lift our souls to another. Give us clean hearts, give us clean hands, let us not lift our souls to another. O God let us be, a generation that seeks; that seeks your face, O God of Jacob!