26 July 2012

The Worst Person in the World (according to the Bible)

In my last post I nominated Jehu for the Worst Person in the Bible award. It wasn't an easy choice, of course, since there are so many bad people in the Bible.

But who is the worst person in the Bible according to the Bible?

There are really only three candidates: Jeroboam, Omri, and Ahab.

God made Jeroboam the king of Israel, but he wasn't happy with him. He just wasn't perfect like David.
Thou hast not been as my servant David, who kept my commandments, and who followed me with all his heart, to do that only which was right in mine eyes. 1 Kings 14:8
In fact, Jeroboam wasn't just not perfect like David, he was worst person who had ever lived up to that time.
Go, tell Jeroboam, Thus saith the LORD God ... thou ... hast done evil above all that were before thee. 1 Kings 14:7-9
The Bible doesn't say what Jeroboam did that was so evil, but whatever it was it was so evil that God had to kill Jeroboamhis son and entire family. Here's the way God put it:
Behold, I will bring evil upon the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam him that pisseth against the wall ...  and will take away the remnant of the house of Jeroboam, as a man taketh away dung ... Him that dieth of Jeroboam in the city shall the dogs eat; and him that dieth in the field shall the fowls of the air eat: for the LORD hath spoken it. 1 Kings 14:10
There were others after Jeroboam that were evil, so evil, in fact, that God had to kill them too (like Baasha, whom God selected to slaughter Jeroboam's family; and Zimri, whom God selected to kill Baasha's family and who was later burned to death by God). But none of them qualified as the worst person in the world up to that time.

Until Omri, who replaced Jeroboam as the worst person in the world (and who led an attack on Zimri that resulted in Zimri burning to death).
Omri wrought evil in the eyes of the LORD, and did worse than all that were before him. 1 Kings 16:25
But Omni's reign as the worst person in the world didn't last long, since he was replaced by his son, Ahab.
Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD above all that were before him ... Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him. 1 Kings 16:30-33
What was it that Ahab did that was so awful?

He didn't kill a captured king.

To God, that is the worst thing a person can do. It cost Saul his kingdom and it cost Ahab his life. To punish Ahab for the crime of showing mercy, God killed Ahab and selected Jehu to murder Ahab's 70 sons, his wife, family and friends.

Since Ahab is the last person in the Bible to be called the worst person in the world, I guess he wins the Bible's prize.

(Next question: Who is the worst person in Breaking Bad?)


Ryo said...

Hi Steve.
I'm Italian and - as I said time ago - I'm going to translate some of your post.
Have I your permission?

In the last part of your post..

30 Acab, figlio di Omri, fece ciò che è male agli occhi del Signore piú di tutti quelli che l'avevano preceduto. 31 Come se fosse stato per lui poca cosa abbandonarsi ai peccati di Geroboamo, figlio di Nebat, prese in moglie *Izebel, figlia di Etbaal, re dei *Sidoni, andò ad adorare *Baal, a prostrarsi davanti a lui, 32 e innalzò un altare a Baal, nel tempio di Baal, che costruí a Samaria. 33 Acab fece anche l'idolo d'*ASTARTE. Acab fece piú di quello che avevano fatto tutti i precedenti re d'Israele per provocare lo sdegno del Signore, Dio d'Israele.

ASTARTE was the wife of God.. Mary was just a "bunga bunga".. :)

The part about the Omri dinasty is well described in "The Bible Unearthed" by Israel Finkelstein.
They were the kings of Israel kingdom, that's why they're so loathed by Judah's kingdom.

Sorry for my bad English, I'm going to improve it by translating your post..


Ryo said...

I have to say something but you have to translate it.

La conclusione a cui sei giunto è sbagliata.
Dio non punisce Acab per aver salvato la vita ad un re catturato, ma nella storia biblica viene additato come un eretico per il fatto di aver ripristinato il culto di Astarte, la moglie di Dio.


Stephen said...

Steve, thanks for the link to the Barbara Griffiths site (http://www.barbaragriffiths.com/books-bible.php#bible-10). Pure comedy gold... and great art work!