1 Kings 15-17 New International Version

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The Reign of Abijam

15 In the eighteenth year of the reign of Jeroboam son of Nebat, Abijah[1] became king of Judah, 2  and he reigned in Jerusalem three years. His mother's name was Maakah daughter of Abishalom.[2] 3  He committed all the sins his father had done before him; his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his forefather had been. 4  Nevertheless, for David's sake the Lord his God gave him a lamp in Jerusalem by raising up a son to succeed him and by making Jerusalem strong. 5  For David had done what was right in the eyes of the Lord and had not failed to keep any of the Lord's commands all the days of his life-except in the case of Uriah the Hittite. 6  There was war between Abijah[3] and Jeroboam throughout Abijah's lifetime. 7  As for the other events of Abijah's reign, and all he did, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah? There was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. 8  And Abijah rested with his ancestors and was buried in the City of David. And Asa his son succeeded him as king.

The Reign of Asa

9  In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Asa became king of Judah, 10  and he reigned in Jerusalem forty-one years. His grandmother's name was Maakah daughter of Abishalom. 11  Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as his father David had done. 12  He expelled the male shrine prostitutes from the land and got rid of all the idols his ancestors had made. 13  He even deposed his grandmother Maakah from her position as queen mother, because she had made a repulsive image for the worship of Asherah. Asa cut it down and burned it in the Kidron Valley. 14  Although he did not remove the high places, Asa's heart was fully committed to the Lord all his life. 15  He brought into the temple of the Lord the silver and gold and the articles that he and his father had dedicated.

Asa's League with Ben-hadad

16  There was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel throughout their reigns. 17  Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and fortified Ramah to prevent anyone from leaving or entering the territory of Asa king of Judah. 18  Asa then took all the silver and gold that was left in the treasuries of the Lord's temple and of his own palace. He entrusted it to his officials and sent them to Ben-Hadad son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, the king of Aram, who was ruling in Damascus. 19  "Let there be a treaty between me and you," he said, "as there was between my father and your father. See, I am sending you a gift of silver and gold. Now break your treaty with Baasha king of Israel so he will withdraw from me." 20  Ben-Hadad agreed with King Asa and sent the commanders of his forces against the towns of Israel. He conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel Beth Maakah and all Kinnereth in addition to Naphtali. 21  When Baasha heard this, he stopped building Ramah and withdrew to Tirzah. 22  Then King Asa issued an order to all Judah-no one was exempt-and they carried away from Ramah the stones and timber Baasha had been using there. With them King Asa built up Geba in Benjamin, and also Mizpah. 23  As for all the other events of Asa's reign, all his achievements, all he did and the cities he built, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah? In his old age, however, his feet became diseased. 24  Then Asa rested with his ancestors and was buried with them in the city of his father David. And Jehoshaphat his son succeeded him as king.

The Reign of Nadab

25  Nadab son of Jeroboam became king of Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah, and he reigned over Israel two years. 26  He did evil in the eyes of the Lord, following the ways of his father and committing the same sin his father had caused Israel to commit. 27  Baasha son of Ahijah from the tribe of Issachar plotted against him, and he struck him down at Gibbethon, a Philistine town, while Nadab and all Israel were besieging it. 28  Baasha killed Nadab in the third year of Asa king of Judah and succeeded him as king. 29  As soon as he began to reign, he killed Jeroboam's whole family. He did not leave Jeroboam anyone that breathed, but destroyed them all, according to the word of the Lord given through his servant Ahijah the Shilonite. 30  This happened because of the sins Jeroboam had committed and had caused Israel to commit, and because he aroused the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel. 31  As for the other events of Nadab's reign, and all he did, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel? 32  There was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel throughout their reigns.

The Reign of Baasha

33  In the third year of Asa king of Judah, Baasha son of Ahijah became king of all Israel in Tirzah, and he reigned twenty-four years. 34  He did evil in the eyes of the Lord, following the ways of Jeroboam and committing the same sin Jeroboam had caused Israel to commit.

16 Then the word of the Lord came to Jehu son of Hanani concerning Baasha: 2  "I lifted you up from the dust and appointed you ruler over my people Israel, but you followed the ways of Jeroboam and caused my people Israel to sin and to arouse my anger by their sins. 3  So I am about to wipe out Baasha and his house, and I will make your house like that of Jeroboam son of Nebat. 4  Dogs will eat those belonging to Baasha who die in the city, and birds will feed on those who die in the country." 5  As for the other events of Baasha's reign, what he did and his achievements, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel? 6  Baasha rested with his ancestors and was buried in Tirzah. And Elah his son succeeded him as king. 7  Moreover, the word of the Lord came through the prophet Jehu son of Hanani to Baasha and his house, because of all the evil he had done in the eyes of the Lord, arousing his anger by the things he did, becoming like the house of Jeroboam-and also because he destroyed it.

The Reigns of Elah and Zimri

8  In the twenty-sixth year of Asa king of Judah, Elah son of Baasha became king of Israel, and he reigned in Tirzah two years. 9  Zimri, one of his officials, who had command of half his chariots, plotted against him. Elah was in Tirzah at the time, getting drunk in the home of Arza, the palace administrator at Tirzah. 10  Zimri came in, struck him down and killed him in the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah. Then he succeeded him as king. 11  As soon as he began to reign and was seated on the throne, he killed off Baasha's whole family. He did not spare a single male, whether relative or friend. 12  So Zimri destroyed the whole family of Baasha, in accordance with the word of the Lord spoken against Baasha through the prophet Jehu- 13  because of all the sins Baasha and his son Elah had committed and had caused Israel to commit, so that they aroused the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel, by their worthless idols. 14  As for the other events of Elah's reign, and all he did, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel?

15  In the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, Zimri reigned in Tirzah seven days. The army was encamped near Gibbethon, a Philistine town. 16  When the Israelites in the camp heard that Zimri had plotted against the king and murdered him, they proclaimed Omri, the commander of the army, king over Israel that very day there in the camp. 17  Then Omri and all the Israelites with him withdrew from Gibbethon and laid siege to Tirzah. 18  When Zimri saw that the city was taken, he went into the citadel of the royal palace and set the palace on fire around him. So he died, 19  because of the sins he had committed, doing evil in the eyes of the Lord and following the ways of Jeroboam and committing the same sin Jeroboam had caused Israel to commit. 20  As for the other events of Zimri's reign, and the rebellion he carried out, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel?

The Reign of Omri

21  Then the people of Israel were split into two factions; half supported Tibni son of Ginath for king, and the other half supported Omri. 22  But Omri's followers proved stronger than those of Tibni son of Ginath. So Tibni died and Omri became king. 23  In the thirty-first year of Asa king of Judah, Omri became king of Israel, and he reigned twelve years, six of them in Tirzah. 24  He bought the hill of Samaria from Shemer for two talents[4] of silver and built a city on the hill, calling it Samaria, after Shemer, the name of the former owner of the hill. 25  But Omri did evil in the eyes of the Lord and sinned more than all those before him. 26  He followed completely the ways of Jeroboam son of Nebat, committing the same sin Jeroboam had caused Israel to commit, so that they aroused the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel, by their worthless idols. 27  As for the other events of Omri's reign, what he did and the things he achieved, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel? 28  Omri rested with his ancestors and was buried in Samaria. And Ahab his son succeeded him as king.

The Reign of Ahab

29  In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, Ahab son of Omri became king of Israel, and he reigned in Samaria over Israel twenty-two years. 30  Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him. 31  He not only considered it trivial to commit the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, but he also married Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and began to serve Baal and worship him. 32  He set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal that he built in Samaria. 33  Ahab also made an Asherah pole and did more to arouse the anger of the Lord, the God of Israel, than did all the kings of Israel before him. 34  In Ahab's time, Hiel of Bethel rebuilt Jericho. He laid its foundations at the cost of his firstborn son Abiram, and he set up its gates at the cost of his youngest son Segub, in accordance with the word of the Lord spoken by Joshua son of Nun.

Elijah Predicts Drought

17 Now Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe[5] in Gilead, said to Ahab, "As the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word." 2  Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: 3  "Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. 4  You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there." 5  So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. 6  The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook. 7  Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land.

Elijah and the Widow of Zarephath

8  Then the word of the Lord came to him: 9  "Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widow there to supply you with food." 10  So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, "Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?" 11  As she was going to get it, he called, "And bring me, please, a piece of bread." 12  "As surely as the Lord your God lives," she replied, "I don't have any bread-only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it-and die." 13  Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. 14  For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: 'The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.' " 15  She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. 16  For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.

17  Some time later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing. 18  She said to Elijah, "What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?" 19  "Give me your son," Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 20  Then he cried out to the Lord, "Lord my God, have you brought tragedy even on this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?" 21  Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried out to the Lord, "Lord my God, let this boy's life return to him!" 22  The Lord heard Elijah's cry, and the boy's life returned to him, and he lived. 23  Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, "Look, your son is alive!" 24  Then the woman said to Elijah, "Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the Lord from your mouth is the truth."

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Footnotes

[1] 15:1 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (see also 2 Chron. 12:16); most Hebrew manuscripts "Abijam" ; also in verses 7 and 8

[2] 15:2 A variant of "Absalom" ; also in verse 10

[3] 15:6 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Syriac "Abijam" (that is, Abijah); most Hebrew manuscripts "Rehoboam"

[4] 16:24 That is, about 150 pounds or about 68 kilograms

[5] 17:1 Or "Tishbite, of the settlers"

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