One day Elisha the prophet ordered a member of the guild of prophets, "Get yourself ready, take a flask of oil, and go to Ramoth Gilead.
Look for Jehu son of Jehoshaphat son of Nimshi. When you find him, get him away from his companions and take him to a back room.
Take your flask of oil and pour it over his head and say, 'God's word: I anoint you king over Israel.' Then open the door and get out of there as fast as you can. Don't wait around."
The young prophet went to Ramoth Gilead.
On arrival he found the army officers all sitting around. He said, "I have a matter of business with you, officer." Jehu said, "Which one of us?" "With you, officer."
He got up and went inside the building. The young prophet poured the oil on his head and said, "God's word, the God of Israel: I've anointed you to be king over the people of God, over Israel.
Your assignment is to attack the regime of Ahab your master. I am avenging the massacre of my servants the prophets - yes, the Jezebel-massacre of all the prophets of God.
The entire line of Ahab is doomed. I'm wiping out the entire bunch of that sad lot.
I'll see to it that the family of Ahab experiences the same fate as the family of Jeroboam son of Nebat and the family of Baasha son of Ahijah.
As for Jezebel, the dogs will eat her carcass in the open fields of Jezreel. No burial for her!" Then he opened the door and made a run for it.
Jehu went back out to his master's officers. They asked, "Is everything all right? What did that crazy fool want with you?" He said, "You know that kind of man - all talk."
"That's a lie!" they said. "Tell us what's going on." He said, "He told me this and this and this - in effect, 'God's word: I anoint you king of Israel!'"
They sprang into action. Each man grabbed his robe; they piled them at the top of the steps for a makeshift throne. Then they blew the trumpet and declared, "Jehu is king!"
That ignited the conspiracy of Jehu son of Jehoshaphat son of Nimshi against Joram.
Except that Joram had pulled back to Jezreel to convalesce from the injuries he got from the Arameans in the battle with Hazael king of Aram. Jehu said, "If you really want me as king, don't let anyone sneak out of the city and blab the news in Jezreel."
Then Jehu mounted a chariot and rode to Jezreel, where Joram was in bed, resting. King Ahaziah of Judah had come down to visit Joram.
A sentry standing duty on the watchtower in Jezreel saw the company of Jehu arrive. He said, "I see a band of men." Joram said, "Get a horseman and send him out to meet them and inquire, 'Is anything wrong?'"
The horseman rode out to meet Jehu and said, "The king wants to know if there's anything wrong." Jehu said, "What's it to you whether things are right or wrong? Fall in behind me." The sentry said, "The messenger reached them, but he's not returning."
The king then sent a second horseman. When he reached them he said, "The king wants to know if there's anything wrong." Jehu said, "What's it to you whether things are right or wrong? Fall in behind me."
The sentry said, "The messenger reached them, but he's not returning. The driving is like the driving of Jehu son of Nimshi - crazy!"
Joram ordered, "Get my chariot ready!" They hitched up his chariot. Joram king of Israel and Ahaziah king of Judah, each in his own chariot, drove out to meet Jehu. They met in the field of Naboth of Jezreel.
hen Joram saw Jehu he called out, "Good day, Jehu!" Jehu answered, "What's good about it? How can there be anything good about it as long as the promiscuous whoring and sorceries of your mother Jezebel pollute the country?"
Joram wheeled his chariot around and fled, yelling to Ahaziah, "It's a trap, Ahaziah!"
Jehu pulled on his bow and released an arrow; it hit Joram between the shoulder blades and went right through his heart. He slumped to his knees in his chariot.
Jehu ordered Bidkar, his lieutenant, "Quick - throw him into the field of Naboth of Jezreel. Remember when you and I were driving our chariots behind Ahab his father? That's when God pronounced this doom upon him:
'As surely as I saw the blood of murdered Naboth and his sons yesterday, you'll pay for it on this exact piece of ground. God's word!' So take him and throw him out in the field. God's instructions carried out to the letter!"
Ahaziah king of Judah saw what was going on and made his escape on the road toward Beth Haggan. Jehu chased him, yelling out, "Get him, too!" Jehu's troops shot and wounded him in his chariot on the hill up to Gur, near Ibleam. He was able to make it as far as Megiddo; there he died.
His aides drove on to Jerusalem. They buried him in the family plot in the City of David.
In the eleventh year of the reign of Joram son of Ahab, Ahaziah had become king of Judah.
When Jezebel heard that Jehu had arrived in Jezreel, she made herself up - put on eyeshadow and arranged her hair - and posed seductively at the window.
When Jehu came through the city gate, she called down, "So, how are things, 'Zimri,' you dashing king-killer?"
Jehu looked up at the window and called, "Is there anybody up there on my side?" Two or three palace eunuchs looked out.
He ordered, "Throw her down!" They threw her out the window. Her blood spattered the wall and the horses, and Jehu trampled her under his horse's hooves.
Then Jehu went inside and ate his lunch. During lunch he gave orders, "Take care of that damned woman; give her a decent burial - she is, after all, a king's daughter."
They went out to bury her, but there was nothing left of her but skull, feet, and hands.
They came back and told Jehu. He said, "It's God's word, the word spoken by Elijah the Tishbite: In the field of Jezreel, dogs will eat Jezebel;
The body of Jezebel will be like dog-droppings on the ground in Jezreel. Old friends and lovers will say, 'I wonder, is this Jezebel?'"
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)