A Man of God Confronts Jeroboam
13 And behold, la man of God came out of Judah by the word of the Lord to Bethel. Jeroboam was standing by the altar mto make offerings. 2 nAnd the man cried against the altar by the word of the Lord and said, “O altar, altar, thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, a son shall be born to the house of David, oJosiah by name, and he shall sacrifice on you the priests of the high places who make offerings on you, and human bones shall be burned on you.’” 3 And he gave pa sign the same day, saying, “This is the sign that the Lord has spoken: ‘Behold, the altar shall be torn down, and the ashes that are on it shall be poured out.’” 4 And when the king heard the saying of the man of God, which he cried against the altar at Bethel, Jeroboam stretched out his hand from the altar, saying, “Seize him.” And his hand, which he stretched out against him, dried up, so that he could not draw it back to himself. 5 The altar also was torn down, and the ashes poured out from the altar, according to the sign that the man of God had given by the word of the Lord. 6 And the king said to the man of God, q“Entreat now the favor of the Lord your God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored to me.” And the man of God entreated the Lord, and the king’s hand was restored to him and became as it was before. 7 And the king said to the man of God, “Come home with me, and refresh yourself, and rI will give you a reward.” 8 And the man of God said to the king, s“If you give me half your house, tI will not go in with you. And I will not eat bread or drink water in this place, 9 for so was it commanded me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘You shall neither eat bread nor drink water nor return by the way that you came.’” 10 So he went another way and did not return by the way that he came to Bethel.
The Prophet’s Disobedience
11 Now uan old prophet lived in Bethel. And his sons1 came and told him all that the man of God had done that day in Bethel. They also told to their father the words that he had spoken to the king. 12 And their father said to them, “Which way did he go?” And his sons showed him the way that the man of God who came from Judah had gone. 13 And he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” So they saddled the donkey for him and he mounted it. 14 And he went after the man of God and found him sitting under an oak. And he said to him, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?” And he said, “I am.” 15 Then he said to him, “Come home with me and eat bread.” 16 And he said, v“I may not return with you, or go in with you, neither will I eat bread nor drink water with you in this place, 17 for it was said to me wby the word of the Lord, ‘You shall neither eat bread nor drink water there, nor return by the way that you came.’” 18 And he said to him, “I also am a prophet as you are, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘Bring him back with you into your house that he may eat bread and drink water.’” But he lied to him. 19 So he went back with him and ate bread in his house and drank water.
20 And as they sat at the table, the word of the Lord came to the prophet who had brought him back. 21 And he cried to the man of God who came from Judah, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Because you have disobeyed the word of the Lord and have not kept the command that the Lord your God commanded you, 22 but have come back and have eaten bread and drunk water in the place of which he said to you, “Eat no bread and drink no water,” your body shall not come to the tomb of your fathers.’” 23 And after he had eaten bread and drunk, he saddled the donkey for the prophet whom he had brought back. 24 And as he went away xa lion met him on the road and killed him. And his body was thrown in the road, and the donkey stood beside it; the lion also stood beside the body. 25 And behold, men passed by and saw the body thrown in the road and the lion standing by the body. And they came and told it in the city where ythe old prophet lived.
26 And when the prophet who had brought him back from the way heard of it, he said, “It is the man of God who disobeyed the word of the Lord; therefore the Lord has given him to the lion, which has torn him and killed him, according to the word that the Lord spoke to him.” 27 And he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” And they saddled it. 28 And he went and found his body thrown in the road, and the donkey and the lion standing beside the body. The lion had not eaten the body or torn the donkey. 29 And the prophet took up the body of the man of God and laid it on the donkey and brought it back to the city2 to mourn and to bury him. 30 And he laid the body in his own grave. And they mourned over him, saying, z“Alas, my brother!” 31 And after he had buried him, he said to his sons, “When I die, bury me in the grave in which the man of God is buried; alay my bones beside his bones. 32 bFor the saying that he called out by the word of the Lord against the altar in Bethel and against call the houses of the high places that are in the cities of dSamaria shall surely come to pass.”
33 After this thing Jeroboam did not turn from his evil way, but made priests for the high places again from among all the people. Any who would, he ordained to be priests of the high places. 34 eAnd this thing became sin to the house of Jeroboam, fso as to cut it off and to destroy it from the face of the earth.
Prophecy Against Jeroboam
14 At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick. 2 And Jeroboam said to his wife, “Arise, and disguise yourself, that it not be known that you are the wife of Jeroboam, and go to gShiloh. Behold, Ahijah the prophet is there, hwho said of me that I should be king over this people. 3 iTake with you ten loaves, some cakes, and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what shall happen to the child.”
4 Jeroboam’s wife did so. She arose and went to gShiloh and came to the house of jAhijah. Now jAhijah could not see, for his eyes were dim because of his age. 5 And the Lord said to jAhijah, “Behold, the wife of Jeroboam is coming to inquire of you concerning her son, for he is sick. Thus and thus shall you say to her.”
When she came, she pretended to be another woman. 6 But when jAhijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, he said, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam. Why do you pretend to be another? For I am charged with unbearable news for you. 7 Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: k“Because I exalted you from among the people and made you leader over my people Israel 8 and ltore the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you, and yet you have not been mlike my servant David, who kept my commandments and followed me with all his heart, doing only that which was right in my eyes, 9 but you have done evil above all who were before you and have gone and nmade for yourself other gods and ometal images, provoking me to anger, and phave cast me behind your back, 10 therefore behold, I will bring harm upon the house of Jeroboam and qwill cut off from Jeroboam every male, rboth bond and free in Israel, and swill burn up the house of Jeroboam, as a man burns up dung until it is all gone. 11 tAnyone belonging to Jeroboam who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone who dies in the open country the birds of the heavens shall eat, for the Lord has spoken it.”’ 12 Arise therefore, go to your house. uWhen your feet enter the city, the child shall die. 13 And all Israel shall mourn for him and bury him, for he only of Jeroboam shall come to the grave, because in him vthere is found something pleasing to the Lord, the God of Israel, in the house of Jeroboam. 14 wMoreover, the Lord will raise up for himself a king over Israel who shall cut off the house of Jeroboam today. And henceforth, 15 the Lord will strike Israel as a reed is shaken in the water, and xroot up Israel out of ythis good land that he gave to their fathers and scatter them zbeyond the Euphrates,3 because they have made their aAsherim, provoking the Lord to anger. 16 And he will give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, which he sinned and made Israel to sin.”
17 Then Jeroboam’s wife arose and departed and came to bTirzah. And cas she came to the threshold of the house, the child died. 18 And all Israel buried him and mourned for him, daccording to the word of the Lord, which he spoke by his servant Ahijah the prophet.
The Death of Jeroboam
19 Now the rest of the acts of Jeroboam, ehow he warred and how he reigned, behold, they are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel. 20 And the time that Jeroboam reigned was twenty-two years. And he slept with his fathers, and Nadab his son reigned in his place.
Rehoboam Reigns in Judah
21 fNow Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, gthe city that the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. hHis mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite. 22 iAnd Judah did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and they jprovoked him to jealousy with their sins that they committed, more than all that their fathers had done. 23 For they also built for themselves khigh places land pillars and mAsherim on every high hill and nunder every green tree, 24 and there were also omale cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations that the Lord drove out before the people of Israel.
25 pIn the fifth year of King Rehoboam, Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem. 26 He took away the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king’s house. qHe took away everything. He also took away all the shields of gold rthat Solomon had made, 27 and King Rehoboam made in their place shields of bronze, and committed them to the hands of the officers of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house. 28 And as often as the king went into the house of the Lord, the guard carried them and brought them back to the guardroom.
29 sNow the rest of the acts of Rehoboam and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? 30 tAnd there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually. 31 And Rehoboam slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. uHis mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite. And vAbijam his son reigned in his place.
Abijam Reigns in Judah
15 wNow in the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam the son of Nebat, Abijam began to reign over Judah. 2 He reigned for three years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom. 3 And he walked in all the sins that his father did before him, and xhis heart was not wholly true to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father. 4 Nevertheless, for David’s sake the Lord his God gave him ya lamp in Jerusalem, setting up his son after him, and establishing Jerusalem, 5 because zDavid did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and did not turn aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, aexcept in the matter of Uriah the Hittite. 6 bNow there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all the days of his life. 7 cThe rest of the acts of Abijam and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? dAnd there was war between Abijam and Jeroboam. 8 eAnd Abijam slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place.
Asa Reigns in Judah
9 In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Asa began to reign over Judah, 10 and he reigned forty-one years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom. 11 fAnd Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as David his father had done. 12 He put away the gmale cult prostitutes out of the land and removed hall the idols that his fathers had made. 13 iHe also removed Maacah his mother from being queen mother because she had made an abominable image for Asherah. And Asa cut down her image and jburned it at the brook Kidron. 14 kBut the high places were not taken away. Nevertheless, lthe heart of Asa was wholly true to the Lord all his days. 15 And mhe brought into the house of the Lord the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels.
Nadab Reigns in Israel
25 fNadab the son of Jeroboam began to reign over Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah, and he reigned over Israel two years. 26 He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord gand walked in the way of his father, and in his sin hwhich he made Israel to sin.
27 iBaasha the son of Ahijah, of the house of Issachar, conspired against him. And Baasha struck him down at jGibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines, for Nadab and all Israel were laying siege to Gibbethon. 28 So Baasha killed him in the third year of Asa king of Judah and reigned in his place. 29 And as soon as he was king, he killed all the house of Jeroboam. He left to the house of Jeroboam not one that breathed, until he had destroyed it, kaccording to the word of the Lord that he spoke by his servant Ahijah the Shilonite. 30 It was for the sins of Jeroboam that he sinned and hthat he made Israel to sin, and because of the anger to which he provoked the Lord, the God of Israel.
31 Now the rest of the acts of Nadab and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? 32 lAnd there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days.
Baasha Reigns in Israel
33 In the third year of Asa king of Judah, Baasha the son of Ahijah began to reign over all Israel at Tirzah, and he reigned twenty-four years. 34 He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord mand walked in the way of Jeroboam and in his sin which he made Israel to sin.
18 Rehoboam took as wife Mahalath the daughter of Jerimoth the son of David, and of Abihail the daughter of vEliab the son of Jesse, 19 and she bore him sons, Jeush, Shemariah, and Zaham. 20 After her he took wMaacah the daughter of Absalom, who bore him xAbijah, Attai, Ziza, and Shelomith. 21 Rehoboam loved Maacah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and concubines (he took eighteen wives and sixty concubines, and fathered twenty-eight sons and sixty daughters). 22 yAnd Rehoboam appointed xAbijah the son of Maacah as chief prince among his brothers, for he intended to make him king. 23 And he dealt wisely and distributed some of his sons through all the districts of Judah and Benjamin, in all the fortified cities, and he gave them abundant provisions and procured wives for them.1
Egypt Plunders Jerusalem
12 zWhen the rule of Rehoboam was established aand he was strong, bhe abandoned the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him. 2 cIn the fifth year of King Rehoboam, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, dShishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem 3 with 1,200 chariots and 60,000 horsemen. And the people were without number who came with him from Egypt—eLibyans, Sukkiim, and Ethiopians. 4 And he took fthe fortified cities of Judah and came as far as Jerusalem. 5 Then gShemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and to the princes of Judah, who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said to them, “Thus says the Lord, h‘You abandoned me, so I have abandoned you to the hand of Shishak.’” 6 Then the princes of iIsrael and the king humbled themselves and said, j“The Lord is righteous.” 7 When the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah: k“They have humbled themselves. I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance, land my wrath shall not be poured out on Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. 8 Nevertheless, they shall be servants to him, mthat they may know my service and the service of the kingdoms of the countries.”
9 nSo Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem. He took away the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king’s house. He took away everything. He also took away othe shields of gold that Solomon had made, 10 and King Rehoboam made in their place shields of bronze and committed them to the hands of the officers of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house. 11 And as often as the king went into the house of the Lord, the guard came and carried them and brought them back to the guardroom. 12 And when phe humbled himself the wrath of the Lord turned from him, so as not to make a complete destruction. Moreover, qconditions were good2 in Judah.
13 rSo King Rehoboam grew strong in Jerusalem and reigned. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city that the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel to put his name there. His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite. 14 And he did evil, sfor he did not set his heart to seek the Lord.
15 tNow the acts of Rehoboam, ufrom first to last, are they not written in the chronicles of vShemaiah the prophet and of wIddo xthe seer?3 There were continual wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam. 16 And Rehoboam slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David, and yAbijah4 his son reigned in his place.
Abijah Reigns in Judah
bNow there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. 3 Abijah went out to battle, having an army of valiant men of war, 400,000 chosen men. And Jeroboam cdrew up his line of battle against him with 800,000 chosen mighty warriors. 4 Then Abijah stood up on Mount dZemaraim that is in ethe hill country of Ephraim and said, “Hear me, O Jeroboam and all Israel! 5 Ought you not to know that the Lord God of Israel fgave the kingship over Israel forever to David and his sons by ga covenant of salt? 6 Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, a servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up hand rebelled against his lord, 7 and certain iworthless scoundrels6 gathered about him and defied Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was jyoung and irresolute7 and could not withstand them.
8 “And now you think to withstand the kingdom of the Lord in the hand of the sons of David, because you are a great multitude and have with you kthe golden calves that Jeroboam made you for gods. 9 lHave you not driven out the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves like the peoples of other lands? Whoever comes mfor ordination8 with a young bull or seven rams becomes a priest of what are nnot gods. 10 But as for us, the Lord is our God, and we have not forsaken him. We have priests ministering to the Lord who are sons of Aaron, and Levites for their service. 11 They offer to the Lord oevery morning and every evening burnt offerings and incense of sweet spices, set out pthe showbread on the table of pure gold, qand care for the golden lampstand that its lamps may rburn every evening. For we skeep the charge of the Lord our God, but you have forsaken him. 12 Behold, God is with us at our head, and his priests twith their battle trumpets to sound the call to battle against you. O sons of Israel, udo not fight against the Lord, the God of your fathers, for you cannot succeed.”
13 Jeroboam had sent van ambush around to come upon them from behind. Thus his troops9 were in front of Judah, and the ambush was behind them. 14 And when Judah looked, behold, the battle was in front of and behind them. wAnd they cried to the Lord, and the priests tblew the trumpets. 15 Then the men of Judah raised the battle shout. And when the men of Judah shouted, xGod defeated Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah. 16 The men of Israel fled before Judah, yand God gave them into their hand. 17 Abijah and his people struck them with great force, so there fell slain of Israel 500,000 chosen men. 18 Thus the men of Israel were subdued at that time, and the men of Judah prevailed, zbecause they relied on the Lord, the God of their fathers. 19 And Abijah pursued Jeroboam aand took cities from him, Bethel with its villages and Jeshanah with its villages and bEphron10 with its villages. 20 Jeroboam did not recover his power in the days of Abijah. cAnd the Lord struck him down, dand he died. 21 But Abijah grew mighty. And he took fourteen wives and had twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters. 22 The rest of the acts of Abijah, his ways and his sayings, are written in the estory of the prophet fIddo.11
Asa Reigns in Judah
14 gAbijah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place. In his days the land had rest for ten years. 2 12 And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God. 3 He took away the foreign altars hand the high places and broke down ithe pillars and cut down the jAsherim 4 and commanded Judah to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, and to keep the law and the commandment. 5 He also took out of all the cities of Judah hthe high places and the kincense altars. And the kingdom had rest under him. 6 He built lfortified cities in Judah, for the land had rest. He had no war in those years, mfor the Lord gave him peace. 7 And he said to Judah, “Let us build these cities and surround them with nwalls and towers, gates and bars. The land is still ours, because we have sought the Lord our God. We have sought him, mand he has given us peace on every side.” So they built and prospered. 8 And Asa had an army of o300,000 from Judah, armed with large shields and spears, and 280,000 men from Benjamin that carried shields and drew bows. All these were mighty men of valor.
9 Zerah pthe Ethiopian came out against them with an army of a million men and 300 chariots, and came as far as qMareshah. 10 And Asa went out to meet him, and rthey drew up their lines of battle in the Valley of Zephathah at qMareshah. 11 And Asa scried to the Lord his God, “O Lord, there is none like you to help, between the mighty and the weak. Help us, O Lord our God, tfor we rely on you, uand in your name we have come against this multitude. O Lord, you are our God; let not man prevail against you.” 12 vSo the Lord defeated the Ethiopians before Asa and before Judah, and the Ethiopians fled. 13 Asa and the people who were with him pursued them as far as wGerar, and the Ethiopians fell until none remained alive, for they were broken before the Lord and his army. The men of Judah13 carried away very much spoil. 14 And they attacked all the cities around wGerar, xfor the fear of the Lord was upon them. They plundered all the cities, for there was much plunder in them. 15 And they struck down the tents of those who had livestock and carried away sheep in abundance and camels. Then they returned to Jerusalem.
Asa’s Religious Reforms
15 yThe Spirit of God came14 upon Azariah the son of Oded, 2 and he went out to meet Asa and said to him, “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: zThe Lord is with you while you are with him. aIf you seek him, he will be found by you, bbut if you forsake him, he will forsake you. 3 cFor a long time Israel was without the true God, and without a teaching priest and without law, 4 dbut when in their distress they turned to the Lord, the God of Israel, and sought him, he was found by them. 5 In those times there was no peace eto him who went out or to him who came in, for great disturbances afflicted all the inhabitants of the lands. 6 They were broken in pieces. Nation was crushed by nation and city by city, for God troubled them with every sort of distress. 7 fBut you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, gfor your work shall be rewarded.”
8 As soon as Asa heard these words, hthe prophecy of Azariah the son of Oded, he took courage and put away the detestable idols from all the land of Judah and Benjamin and from ithe cities that he had taken in jthe hill country of Ephraim, and he repaired the altar of the Lord kthat was in front of the vestibule of the house of the Lord.15 9 And he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, land those from Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who were residing with them, for great numbers had deserted to him from Israel when they saw that the Lord his God was with him. 10 They were gathered at Jerusalem in the third month of the fifteenth year of the reign of Asa. 11 They sacrificed to the Lord on that day mfrom the spoil that they had brought 700 oxen and 7,000 sheep. 12 nAnd they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and with all their soul, 13 but that whoever would not seek the Lord, the God of Israel, oshould be put to death, whether young or old, man or woman. 14 They swore an oath to the Lord with a loud voice and with shouting and with trumpets and with horns. 15 And all Judah rejoiced over the oath, for they had sworn with all their heart and had sought him with their whole desire, and he was found by them, pand the Lord gave them rest all around.
16 qEven Maacah, rhis mother, King Asa removed from being queen mother because she had made a detestable image sfor Asherah. Asa cut down her image, tcrushed it, and burned it at the brook Kidron. 17 uBut the high places were not taken out of Israel. Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true all his days. 18 And he brought into the house of God the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels. 19 And there was no more war until the thirty-fifth year of the reign of Asa.