In 1 Kings 21-10 (KJB) you can read

And set two men, sons of Belial, before him, to bear witness against him, saying, Thou didst blaspheme God and the king. And then carry him out, and stone him, that he may die.

I've seen many translations that use "wicked men" or similar phrases, but there are many other translations that use "sons of Belial" too.

Who were these men? Do we know of some kind of priest that was under the allegiance of Belial in the times of Ahab and Jezebel?

There are two other occurrences of this phrase:

Deuteronomy 13:13

Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;


Judges 19:22

Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him.

Thanks for your responses and God bless you.

2 Answers 2


I found an article that explains the meaning of the name Belial and the use of the expression "sons of Belial" in the Old Testament.

Belial is a compound word, believed to have been taken from the Hebrew beliy, meaning “not,” and ya'al, meaning “profit” or “benefit.” It is used twenty-six times in the Old Testament, usually translated as “worthless” in the New American Standard Bible, but also as “base,” “destruction,” “rascally,” and “wicked.” In the earlier books of the Old Testament, when describing a wicked person, the King James sometimes uses “son of Belial” (or “daughter,” “man,” or “people” of Belial). Like many other uses of the term son of, the expression “son of Belial” doesn’t imply that Belial is a real person who fathers children; rather, it’s a description of people characterized by worthlessness or corruption.

The article goes on to explore the name as used in Jewish literature and, more recently, the suggestion Belial is a demon. The article concludes:

In Scripture, Belial was used to personify wickedness and worthlessness. The only time the word is used to identify a person is 2 Corinthians 6:15, where the name is applied to Satan. There is no indication from Scripture that Belial is the proper name of a specific demon. Source: https://www.gotquestions.org/who-Belial.html

I hope this information is helpful to you.


Though what you are saying may be true, it doesn't necessarily have to be so. A son of Belial doesn't need to be a direct Satan worshiper, but simply stray from God's commands, from God's Word. The Jewish Leaders had all the truth, but did not live according to it. In talking to them Jesus said:

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

John 8:44-47

In order to be a son of Satan, the devil, or Belial; all the same; all one has to do is not be in God's camp. There is no middle or neutral ground. You are either with God and obedient to Him, or you are against Him and a son of Belial.

  • Thanks. Actually in my Spanish translation (Biblia de Jerusalén) they are called "hijos del diablo", which would be "sons of the devil". It could be that Jezabel is talking therefore about people that just don't care about falsely accusing a man of Blasphemy. I was just wondering if we knew something about the organization of these pagan religions, because based in what we know of Jezabel she could be very easily using some of their priests to have Naboth killed. Apr 24, 2019 at 20:06
  • @LaOvejaDescarriada Ah that's interesting. I use Reina Valera 1960 and it just calls them "perversos". It's interesting that the same Hebrew word here used for these men, was also used for the sons of Eli in 1 Samuel 2:12, and they served as priests in House of the Lord. Apr 24, 2019 at 20:16

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