Omri + Rivals
Oh, Zimri! Everything would have been better, if he had acted with LOVE! 1 Kings 16:18 "Hinter mir die Sindflut!" is the type of thing Zimri would have said. Zimri had killed to become king. He reigned just 7 days in Tirzah--and not even in the whole country.
Of course he had many rivals. One of them was even worse than him. Omri and his army beseiged Tirzah and Zimri's kingdom was bound to fall. Was the downfall due to the availability of water, of food, of oil or all of them? Omri naturally had trouble of his own--half of the people supported Tibni!
Why did all the rivals "just" HAVE to come out on top?
Zimri had had false pride. If he could not be king, then NOBODY would live well...then he would scorch the earth were he was, even if other people did not deserve such a future.
He hatched a wicked plan. HE WOULD NEVER SURRENDER!
He retreated as far as he could, into the citadel of the royal palace and then when he could see "no way out", he set the palace on fire. The fire was to spread according to his plan. He would watch the eerily beautiful city burn, just like the Roman Nero did many years later! He would murder everyone else too. An arson/murder/suicide scenario. Innocent people lost their lives. God had given each one of them precious life--but he permitted the earthly life to be taken as a consequence of Zimri's sins.
What a waste...what a shame!
Did Zimri repent when the flames got hot around him? Did the others love God when they died? We won't know. Only God would know.
Lord Jesus Christ, we put before you all potential Zimris, Omris and Tibnis. We hope that they will choose YOU within your LOVE and forgiveness. Show your countenance to them. And if they have committed their horrible deed already, show yourself to them too, so that it's possible that you can forgive them as you forgave the criminal(s) next to you on the cross. Amen