Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, which is in Samaria: behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, where he is gone down to possess it.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Which is in Samaria.—These words are almost unmeaning, unless they literally signify that Ahab was then in Samaria, not in Jezreel. To interpret them as simply part of Ahab’s title, or as signifying the country, not the town of Samaria, is to explain them away.1 Kings 21:18-19. Arise, go to meet Ahab, which is in Samaria — That is, who reigns in Samaria. Behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth — Or, rather, he will be there by the time thou comest thither. And speak unto him, Hast thou killed and also taken possession? — Thou hast murdered an innocent and righteous man; and, instead of repenting of thy crime, hast added another piece of injustice and violence to it, and art going, confidently and cheerfully, to reap the fruit of thy wickedness. He ascribes Jezebel’s act to Ahab, because Jezebel did it by his connivance, consent, and authority, and for the gratification of his inordinate desire. In the place where dogs licked, &c. — Instead of the place, some would render the original word here used, the manner, and so the sense of the passage will be, As the dogs licked, or, in like manner as they licked Naboth’s blood, even so shall they lick thy blood: mark what I say, even thine. According to this reading, the prophet foretold that this judgment should come upon him, but did not assign the place; accordingly, the dogs licked Ahab’s blood, not in Jezreel, but in Samaria, 1 Kings 22:38. If, however, our translation be preferred, it may be observed, 1st, Ahab’s blood was licked by the dogs, if not in the same individual, yet in the same general place, Jezreel being in the territory of Samaria. 2d, This was particularly accomplished in his son Joram, as is affirmed 2 Kings 9:25-26, whose blood is not improperly called Ahab’s, children being said to be born of their parents’ blood. The expression, indeed, thy blood, even thine, seems to show that the threatening was at first denounced against Ahab’s person, and designed to be fulfilled in him: but afterward, upon his humiliation, the punishment was in part transferred from him to his son, as is expressed 1 Kings 21:29; yet upon Ahab’s returning to sin, as is related in the next chapter, he brought back the curse upon himself, and so it is no wonder that it was in some sort fulfilled in him also.2 Samuel 16:4.
17-19. Hast thou killed, and also taken possession?—While Ahab was in the act of surveying his ill-gotten possession, Elijah, by divine commission, stood before him. The appearance of the prophet, at such a time, was ominous of evil, but his language was much more so (compare Eze 45:8; 46:16-18). Instead of shrinking with horror from the atrocious crime, Ahab eagerly hastened to his newly acquired property.Which is in Samaria; either who now is there, and about to depart thence to Jezreel; or who commonly dwells there.
He is in the vineyard, or rather, he will be; by that time that thou comest thither thou shalt find him there.
behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth: or "will be" by the time thou gettest thither; though the Arabic version is, he is "now" in the vineyard of Naboth:
whither he is gone down to possess it; as if it was his legal inheritance.Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, which is in Samaria: behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, whither he is gone down to possess it.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)17–29. Elijah meets Ahab and tells him God’s sentence. Ahab repents and the punishment is deferred (Not in Chronicles)
18. which is [R.V. dwelleth] in Samaria] This change is necessary for consistency in the narrative. There is no verb in the original, as will be seen from the italics of A. V. The verbs describing the action first of Ahab and then of Elijah, shew that both had gone down, the one from Samaria, and the other, perhaps, from Carmel, to the city of Jezreel, which lay on lower ground than either.
to possess it] R.V. to take possession of it. Thus it is shewn that the expression is the same as in 1 Kings 21:15-16; 1 Kings 21:19.Verse 18. - Arise, go down [Bahr hence concludes that Elijah was at this time in a mountain district. But wherever he might be, this word would probably be used of journey to the plain of Esdraelon] to meet ["The word used 1 Samuel 17:48 of David going out to meet Goliath (Stanley). But the same word is used (1 Samuel 18:6) of the women going out to meet Saul, and indeed it is the usual word for all meetings. We cannot hence infer, consequently, that Elijah went forth as if to encounter a foe] Ahab king of Israel, which is in Samaria [i.e., whose seat is in Samaria; who rules there. There is no need to understand the word of the territory of Samaria]: behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, whither he is gone down to possess it. [The words imply that Elijah found Ahab - strode into his presence - in the vineyard; not that he was there already when the royal chariot entered it (Stanley).]
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