11 1 And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled the house of Judah and Benjamin, a hundred and fourscore thousand chosen men, that were warriors, to fight against Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam. 2 But the word of Jehovah came to Shemaiah the man of God, saying, 3 Speak unto Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all Israel in Judah and Benjamin, saying, 4 Thus saith Jehovah, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren: return every man to his house; for this thing is of me. So they hearkened unto the words of Jehovah, and returned from going against Jeroboam.
The Prosperity of Rehoboam
5 And Rehoboam dwelt in Jerusalem, and built cities for defence in Judah. 6 He built Beth-lehem, and Etam, and Tekoa, 7 And Beth-zur, and Soco, and Adullam, 8 and Gath, and Mareshah, and Ziph, 9 and Adoraim, and Lachish, and Azekah, 10 and Zorah, and Aijalon, and Hebron, which are in Judah and in Benjamin, fortified cities. 11 And he fortified the strongholds, and put captains in them, and stores of victuals, and oil and wine. 12 And in every city [he put] shields and spears, and made them exceeding strong. And Judah and Benjamin belonged to him.
13 And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him out of all their border. 14 For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons cast them off, that they should not execute the priest's office unto Jehovah; 15 and he appointed him priests for the high places, and for the he-goats, and for the calves which he had made. 16 And after them, out of all the tribes of Israel, such as set their hearts to seek Jehovah, the God of Israel, came to Jerusalem to sacrifice unto Jehovah, the God of their fathers. 17 So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam the son of Solomon strong, three years; for they walked three years in the way of David and Solomon. 18 And Rehoboam took him a wife, Mahalath the daughter of Jerimoth the son of David, [and of] Abihail the daughter of Eliab the son of Jesse; 19 and she bare him sons: Jeush, and Shemariah, and Zaham. 20 And after her he took Maacah the daughter of Absalom; and she bare him Abijah, and Attai, and Ziza, and Shelomith. 21 And Rehoboam loved Maacah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and his concubines: (for he took eighteen wives, and threescore concubines, and begat twenty and eight sons and threescore daughters.) 22 And Rehoboam appointed Abijah the son of Maacah to be chief, [even] the prince among his brethren; for [he was minded] to make him king. 23 And he dealt wisely, and dispersed of all his sons throughout all the lands of Judah and Benjamin, unto every fortified city: and he gave them victuals in abundance. And he sought [for them] many wives.
Shishak's Invasion of Judah
12 1 And it came to pass, when the kingdom of Rehoboam was established, and he was strong, that he forsook the law of Jehovah, and all Israel with him. 2 And it came to pass in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, because they had trespassed against Jehovah, 3 with twelve hundred chariots, and threescore thousand horsemen. And the people were without number that came with him out of Egypt: the Lubim, the Sukkiim, and the Ethiopians. 4 And he took the fortified cities which pertained to Judah, and came unto Jerusalem. 5 Now Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam, and to the princes of Judah, that were gathered together to Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said unto them, Thus saith Jehovah, Ye have forsaken me, therefore have I also left you in the hand of Shishak. 6 Then the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, Jehovah is righteous. 7 And when Jehovah saw that they humbled themselves, the word of Jehovah came to Shemaiah, saying, They have humbled themselves: I will not destroy them; but I will grant them some deliverance, and my wrath shall not be poured out upon Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. 8 Nevertheless they shall be his servants, that they may know my service, and the service of the kingdoms of the countries. 9 So Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, and took away the treasures of the house of Jehovah, and the treasures of the king's house: he took all away: he took away also the shields of gold which Solomon had made. 10 And king Rehoboam made in their stead shields of brass, and committed them to the hands of the captains of the guard, that kept the door of the king's house. 11 And it was so, that, as oft as the king entered into the house of Jehovah, the guard came and bare them, and brought them back into the guard-chamber. 12 And when he humbled himself, the wrath of Jehovah turned from him, so as not to destroy him altogether: and moreover in Judah there were good things [found].
13 So king Rehoboam strengthened himself in Jerusalem, and reigned: for Rehoboam was forty and one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which Jehovah had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there: and his mother's name was Naamah the Ammonitess. 14 And he did that which was evil, because he set not his heart to seek Jehovah. 15 Now the acts of Rehoboam, first and last, are they not written in the histories of Shemaiah the prophet and of Iddo the seer, after the manner of genealogies? And there were wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually. 16 And Rehoboam slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David: and Abijah his son reigned in his stead.
The Reign of Abijah
13 1 In the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam began Abijah to reign over Judah. 2 Three years reigned he in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Micaiah the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. And there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. 3 And Abijah joined battle with an army of valiant men of war, even four hundred thousand chosen men: and Jeroboam set the battle in array against him with eight hundred thousand chosen men, who were mighty men of valor. 4 And Abijah stood up upon mount Zemaraim, which is in the hill-country of Ephraim, and said, Hear me, O Jeroboam and all Israel: 5 Ought ye not to know that Jehovah, the God of Israel, gave the kingdom over Israel to David for ever, even to him and to his sons by a covenant of salt? 6 Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up, and rebelled against his lord. 7 And there were gathered unto him worthless men, base fellows, that strengthened themselves against Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was young and tender-hearted, and could not withstand them. 8 And now ye think to withstand the kingdom of Jehovah in the hand of the sons of David; and ye are a great multitude, and there are with you the golden calves which Jeroboam made you for gods. 9 Have ye not driven out the priests of Jehovah, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made you priests after the manner of the peoples of [other] lands? so that whosoever cometh to consecrate himself with a young bullock and seven rams, the same may be a priest of [them that are] no gods. 10 But as for us, Jehovah is our God, and we have not forsaken him; and [we have] priests ministering unto Jehovah, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites in their work: 11 and they burn unto Jehovah every morning and every evening burnt-offerings and sweet incense: the showbread also [set they] in order upon the pure table; and the candlestick of gold with the lamps thereof, to burn every evening: for we keep the charge of Jehovah our God; but ye have forsaken him. 12 And, behold, God is with us at our head, and his priests with the trumpets of alarm to sound an alarm against you. O children of Israel, fight ye not against Jehovah, the God of your fathers; for ye shall not prosper.
13 But Jeroboam caused an ambushment to come about behind them: so they were before Judah, and the ambushment was behind them. 14 And when Judah looked back, behold, the battle was before and behind them; and they cried unto Jehovah, and the priests sounded with the trumpets. 15 Then the men of Judah gave a shout: and as the men of Judah shouted, it came to pass, that God smote Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah. 16 And the children of Israel fled before Judah; and God delivered them into their hand. 17 And Abijah and his people slew them with a great slaughter: so there fell down slain of Israel five hundred thousand chosen men. 18 Thus the children of Israel were brought under at that time, and the children of Judah prevailed, because they relied upon Jehovah, the God of their fathers. 19 And Abijah pursued after Jeroboam, and took cities from him, Beth-el with the towns thereof, and Jeshanah with the towns thereof, and Ephron with the towns thereof. 20 Neither did Jeroboam recover strength again in the days of Abijah: and Jehovah smote him, and he died. 21 But Abijah waxed mighty, and took unto himself fourteen wives, and begat twenty and two sons, and sixteen daughters. 22 And the rest of the acts of Abijah, and his ways, and his sayings, are written in the commentary of the prophet Iddo.
The Reign of Asa
14 1 So Abijah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David; and Asa his son reigned in his stead. In his days the land was quiet ten years. 2 And Asa did that which was good and right in the eyes of Jehovah his God: 3 for he took away the foreign altars, and the high places, and brake down the pillars, and hewed down the Asherim, 4 and commanded Judah to seek Jehovah, the God of their fathers, and to do the law and the commandment. 5 Also he took away out of all the cities of Judah the high places and the sun-images: and the kingdom was quiet before him. 6 And he built fortified cities in Judah; for the land was quiet, and he had no war in those years, because Jehovah had given him rest. 7 For he said unto Judah, Let us build these cities, and make about them walls, and towers, gates, and bars; the land is yet before us, because we have sought Jehovah our God; we have sought him, and he hath given us rest on every side. So they built and prospered. 8 And Asa had an army that bare bucklers and spears, out of Judah three hundred thousand; and out of Benjamin, that bare shields and drew bows, two hundred and fourscore thousand: all these were mighty men of valor.
9 And there came out against them Zerah the Ethiopian with an army of a thousand thousand, and three hundred chariots; and he came unto Mareshah. 10 Then Asa went out to meet him, and they set the battle in array in the valley of Zephathah at Mareshah. 11 And Asa cried unto Jehovah his God, and said, Jehovah, there is none besides thee to help, between the mighty and him that hath no strength: help us, O Jehovah our God; for we rely on thee, and in thy name are we come against this multitude. O Jehovah, thou art our God; let not man prevail against thee. 12 So Jehovah smote the Ethiopians before Asa, and before Judah; and the Ethiopians fled. 13 And Asa and the people that were with him pursued them unto Gerar: and there fell of the Ethiopians so many that they could not recover themselves; for they were destroyed before Jehovah, and before his host; and they carried away very much booty. 14 And they smote all the cities round about Gerar; for the fear of Jehovah came upon them: and they despoiled all the cities; for there was much spoil in them. 15 They smote also the tents of cattle, and carried away sheep in abundance, and camels, and returned to Jerusalem.