King Ahab had a palace in Jezreel, and near the palace was a vineyard owned by a man named Naboth.
One day Ahab said to Naboth, "Since your vineyard is so convenient to the palace, I would like to buy it to use as a vegetable garden. I will give you a better vineyard in exchange, or if you prefer, I will pay you for it."
But Naboth replied, "The LORD forbid that I should give you the inheritance that was passed down by my ancestors."
So Ahab went home angry and sullen because of Naboth's answer. The king went to bed with his face to the wall and refused to eat!
"What in the world is the matter?" his wife, Jezebel, asked him. "What has made you so upset that you are not eating?"
"I asked Naboth to sell me his vineyard or to trade it, and he refused!" Ahab told her.
"Are you the king of Israel or not?" Jezebel asked. "Get up and eat and don't worry about it. I'll get you Naboth's vineyard!"
So she wrote letters in Ahab's name, sealed them with his seal, and sent them to the elders and other leaders of the city where Naboth lived.
In her letters she commanded: "Call the citizens together for fasting and prayer and give Naboth a place of honor.
Find two scoundrels a who will accuse him of cursing God and the king. Then take him out and stone him to death."
So the elders and other leaders followed the instructions Jezebel had written in the letters.
They called for a fast and put Naboth at a prominent place before the people.
Then two scoundrels accused him before all the people of cursing God and the king. So he was dragged outside the city and stoned to death.
The city officials then sent word to Jezebel, "Naboth has been stoned to death."
When Jezebel heard the news, she said to Ahab, "You know the vineyard Naboth wouldn't sell you? Well, you can have it now! He's dead!"
So Ahab immediately went down to the vineyard to claim it.
But the LORD said to Elijah, who was from Tishbe,
"Go down to meet King Ahab, who rules in Samaria. He will be at Naboth's vineyard in Jezreel, taking possession of it.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)