6. The spirit of Jezebel
We will look at three examples in the Bible of a Jezebel Spirit.
1. 1 Kings 16:30-31we read about queen Jezebel the wife of king Ahab. Jezebel was the daughter of the high priest of Sidon. She worshiped the idols of Baal and Ashtoreth. The worship of these gods was linked to sexual perversion and lust. She lived in an atmosphere where sex was used to gain influence and authority. She controlled and manipulated her husband Ahab to introduce Baal worship to Israel. She was so effective that she turned all the men of Israel away from God except for a small group of 7000 that would not come under her influence. The spirit called ‘Jezebel’ existed long before Queen Jezebel existed, but was given her name because she was so completely controlled by this demon. This same demon is evident today in the church and in our society.
2. The example of Herodias in the New Testament. We read about her in Matthew 14:1-12.She was the wife of Philip the brother of King Herod. She was obviously involved in an adulterous relationship with Herod. When John the Baptist rebuked the king about this relationship, he was put in prison and later executed at the request of Herodias. There are many similarities between Herodias and Jezebel in the Old Testament. One of the main characteristics is that they both opposed spiritual authority. Just as Jezebel was against Elijah in the Old Testament, Herodias was against John the Baptist, who came in the spirit of Elijah.
3. Jezebel in the Book ofRevelations 2:20-22.“Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduceMyservants 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.”
We will look at three important aspects of the spirit of Jezebel. Firstly,how can we know whether or not we have this spirit. Secondly, how we can know whether or not we are under the control of this spirit coming from others. And thirdly, how to destroy the influence of this spirit over our lives.
The characteristics of the spirit of Jezebel:
– Control and manipulation: Jezebel in the Old Testament manipulated and controlled her weak husband Ahab. In 1 Kings 21:8-10we read, about the death of Naboth. Jezebel used the authority of the king and manipulated the men of Israel to kill the innocent Naboth and steal his vineyard. We also have the example of Herodias, who had a Jezebel spirit, manipulate Herod to kill John the Baptist.
This spirit is evident today in the church where spiritual leaders manipulate and control those under them. Just as Jezebel misused the authority of the king, so these leaders misuse their spiritual authority and control and threaten the people that they lead. They often manipulate people to give money. This spirit can also manifest in the family, where a wife will dominate and control her husband. Although this spirit can influence both men and women, it likes to control and manipulate people without force. Therefore, it is more frequently manifested in women than in men. However, there are many men who also have a spirit of Jezebel. This spirit is very prevalent in certain religions where the women are totally controlled and dominated by men, especially by their husbands.
The spirit of Jezebel does not like to be under spiritual authority and will only have relationships where it can control people. If it cannot control people, it withdraws from people. The word “Jezebel” means, “without “co-habilitation.” In other words, a person with a Jezebel spirit has an independent spirit and does not like to be part of a team. He or she will often withdraw from fellowship with other Christians.
– Intimidation:We read how Jezebel intimidated Elijah and threatened to kill him. The day before, Elijah was so bold that he called down fire from heaven and killed the prophets of Baal. However, when Jezebel threatened him, he was so filled with fear that he fled into the wilderness. When we become afraid of spiritual leaders, it is often a sign that they have a spirit of Jezebel. A spiritual leader may use this phrase, “If you leave this church you will go to hell.” A wife with a Jezebel spirit may say to her husband, “If you do this, I will divorce you.”
– Pride and arrogance: Jezebel always wants to be in first place. In Revelations 2:20we read, that, “She calls herself a prophetess.”People with this spirit often like to convince others that they have a ministry and a calling. They will try to promote their ministry and force themselves into positions of authority. As a result they often criticize other leaders. A pastor with a Jezebel spirit, criticizes other pastors. This spirit hates authority and tries to destroy those who have spiritual authority.
– Sexual compromise and impurity: Just a Jezebel used sex to gain control of the men of Israel, so those with Jezebel spirit, often use sexual seduction to control and destroy people. A woman with this spirit will often seduce married men and destroy their marriages. In Revelations 2:20we read, “”Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduceMyservants to commit sexual immorality…” They like to draw close to spiritual leaders and use their influence to achieve their own goals. There are many cases where younger women with this spirit, have used sex to destroy the ministry and marriages of older spiritual leaders.
This is the same spirit that influences many of the films in Hollywood. In a survey, it was found that about 90 percent of sexual relationships shown in films were between people outside of a marriage covenant. The fact that Jezebel means, “without co habilitation,” means that those who have this spirit are often not able to stay in a healthy marriage relationship.
How we can know that we are under the influence of the spirit of Jezebel:
We will look at how this spirit influenced others, especially in the life of Elijah.
1. Fear: After the victory that Elijah has on Mount Carmel, he receives a threat from Jezebel and flees into the wilderness in fear. The powerful demonic influence of this spirit often sows fear in the lives of God’s children. That is why some Christians are afraid of their spiritual leaders, because their leaders move in a spirit of Jezebel. People with a Jezebel spirit often react violently when they are confronted or challenged. Therefore, if we have any type of fear, without any reason, it may be an attack of a Jezebel spirit.
2. Depression: 1 Kings 19:4.“But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he prayed that he might die …”This has been the experience of many spiritual leaders. For no reason, they want to give up the ministry and even want to die. This is often because they have been attacked by the spirit of Jezebel. Therefore, if we are depressed for no valid reason, and we begin to worry about things that are not important, it may be a sign that we have been influenced by a spirit of Jezebel. Often we just want to give up even although God wants to bless us and use us.
3. Unclean sexual thoughts: Revelations 2:20-22.“Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduceMyservants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. Jezebel in the Old Testament was brought up in an atmosphere where sex was used to gain authority and influence people. Many, who are addicted to the pornography and lust, are often under the influence of this spirit. This spirit tempts many who were formerly anointed and used by God to waste a lot of their time in front of the television or looking at pornography on the internet. Many of these have lost their anointing and continually feel condemned and useless and cannot do anything for God.
4. Isolation: 1 Kings 19:3. “And when he saw that, he arose and ran for his life…” Elijah went away from everyone. When we have an unnatural desire to withdraw from people and be on our own, it can be an attack from this spirit. Even although it is good to withdraw from people and spend time with God, these people withdraw from people and spend their time doing worthless things such as watching movies and reading magazines all day.
5. Tiredness and exhaustion: 1 Kings 19:5. “Then as he lay and slept under a broom tree…” The moment he got away from the influence of Jezebel, he slept and slept. He was obviously very tired. If we are always tired and have no energy to do anything, it can be the influence of a Jezebel spirit. Our ministry should strengthen us and revive us and not make us tired. Jesus said in Matthew 11:30, “My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Therefore, if we have problems with sleep, it may be an attack of a spirit of Jezebel. In Psalms 127:2the Bible says, that “God gives His beloved sleep.” The further we get away from Jezebel, the better we should be able to sleep.
6. Strange and continual sickness: Revelations 2:21-22.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.” If there is no reason for a sickness and we cannot get well through medicine or prayer, it may be an attack from the spirit of Jezebel. Also if the sickness continues for a long time, it may be an attack from this spirit. When we break the influence of this spirit, we often receive our healing. In Proverbs 18:14we read, “The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness, But who can bear a broken spirit?”
How to break the influence of the spirit of Jezebel
In the Old Testament, God chose Jehu, to destroy Jezebel and house of Ahab. He was radical and ruthless. He destroyed all Ahab’s family and also killed Jezebel. We too must have the spirit of Jehu if we want to have victory over this spirit. In Revelations 2:20, Jesus says to this church, “You tolerate that woman Jezebel!” In other words, we must be radical and not tolerate the spirit at all in our lives!
The following steps can help us break the influence of the spirit of Jezebel in our lives:
Firstly we must repent and turn away from the sins of Jezebel: Revelations 2:21. “AndI gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent.” There are a number of important things that we need to repent of if we want to be free from the influence of the spirit of Jezebel:
1. The sins of controlling, manipulating or intimidating others.
2. The sins of pride, arrogance and our critical attitudes towards others.
3. The sins of lust, pornography and sexual compromise.
4. The sins of rebellion, of an independent spirit and lack of submission to spiritual authority.
If we have withdrawn from people, we need to get back into fellowship and make a commitment to a local church. Once we have done these things, we can then take authority of the spirit of Jezebel in our own lives and command it to leave. We must have the spirit of Jehu and have nothing to do with Jezebel.
Secondly: We must not tolerate the influence Jezebel in our lives.We may need to break off relationships with or confront those who have a Jezebel spirit. We need to get away from them if we can. Some people may need to find another church if their leader is controlling them through this spirit. If our boss at work has this spirit, it would be wise to find another job! We need to “kill” this spirit, just as Jehu, killed Jezebel in the Old Testament. (2 Kings 9:22.”So he answered, “What peace, as long as the harlotries of your mother Jezebel and her witchcraft are so many?”)
Thirdly, we must break the control of this spirit: If we have the spirit of Jezebel, we must cast it out. We can do this by ourselves or we can ask others to pray for us. It may be useful to confess this sin to others so that we can be free (James 5:18) If we have been under the influence of this spirit, we must use our spiritual authority and break its influence. In James 4:7, it says, “Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you!”
Finally:There is great blessing when we are free from this spirit. We will experience a new level of joy and freedom. We will have more energy and anointing to do the work of God. May God bless you as you completely destroy the power and influence of Jezebel in your life. Amen