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Original Research

The “Jezebel spirit”: A scholarly inquiry

Trudie Stark, Hans J.M. van Deventer

Verbum et Ecclesia; Vol 30, No 2 (2009), 9 pages. doi: 10.4102/ve.v30i2.301

Submitted: 07 October 2009
Published:  15 December 2009


Queen Jezebel is rightly recognised as one of the powerful women in the Old Testament. In the biblical text she is introduced as a ‘foreign’ queen and wife to Ahab, the 8th century king of the northern kingdom, Israel. This article examines some of the interpretations of this character in the church over the centuries. The focus falls on the latest development in this regard whereby, in some circles, the biblical character is linked to the existence of a ‘Jezebel spirit’ within the contemporary church. On the basis of a narratological reading of the Jezebel texts it is indicated that such an interpretation is unfounded and fails to take cognisance of developments in biblical interpretation related to literary understandings of the text.

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Author affiliations

Trudie Stark, North-West University, South Africa
Hans J.M. van Deventer, North-West University


Old Testament; narrative; Jezebel; spirit; modern church


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ISSN: 1609-9982 (print) | ISSN: 2074-7705 (online)

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