1 Kings 12-14 World English Bible

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Israel's Revolt

12 1  Rehoboam went to Shechem: for all Israel were come to Shechem to make him king. 2  It happened, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard of it (for he was yet in Egypt, where he had fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam lived in Egypt, 3  and they sent and called him), that Jeroboam and all the assembly of Israel came, and spoke to Rehoboam, saying, 4  “Your father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make you the grievous service of your father, and his heavy yoke which he put on us, lighter, and we will serve you.” 5  He said to them, “Depart for three days, then come back to me.”

The people departed. 6  King Rehoboam took counsel with the old men, who had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, saying, “What counsel do you give me to return answer to this people?” 7  They spoke to him, saying, “If you will be a servant to this people this day, and will serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants forever.” 8  But he forsook the counsel of the old men which they had given him, and took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him, who stood before him. 9  He said to them, “What counsel do you give, that we may return answer to this people, who have spoken to me, saying, ‘Make the yoke that your father did put on us lighter?’” 10  The young men who had grown up with him spoke to him, saying, “Thus you shall tell this people who spoke to you, saying, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, but make it lighter to us;’ you shall say to them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist. 11  Now whereas my father burdened you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.’” 12  So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king asked, saying, “Come to me again the third day.” 13  The king answered the people roughly, and forsook the counsel of the old men which they had given him, 14  and spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men, saying, “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.” 15  So the king didn’t listen to the people; for it was a thing brought about of Yahweh, that he might establish his word, which Yahweh spoke by Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

16  When all Israel saw that the king didn’t listen to them, the people answered the king, saying, “What portion have we in David? Neither do we have an inheritance in the son of Jesse. To your tents, Israel! Now see to your own house, David.” So Israel departed to their tents. 17  But as for the children of Israel who lived in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them. 18  Then king Rehoboam sent Adoram, who was over the men subject to forced labor; and all Israel stoned him to death with stones. King Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem. 19  So Israel rebelled against the house of David to this day. 20  It happened, when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was returned, that they sent and called him to the congregation, and made him king over all Israel: there was none who followed the house of David, but the tribe of Judah only. 21  When Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled all the house of Judah, and the tribe of Benjamin, a hundred and eighty thousand chosen men, who were warriors, to fight against the house of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam the son of Solomon. 22  But the word of God came to Shemaiah the man of God, saying, 23  “Speak to Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the rest of the people, saying, 24  ‘Thus says Yahweh, “You shall not go up, nor fight against your brothers, the children of Israel. Everyone return to his house; for this thing is of me.”’” So they listened to the word of Yahweh, and returned and went their way, according to the word of Yahweh.

Jeroboam Leads Israel into Sin

25  Then Jeroboam built Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and lived in it; and he went out from there, and built Penuel. 26  Jeroboam said in his heart, “Now the kingdom will return to the house of David. 27  If this people goes up to offer sacrifices in the house of Yahweh at Jerusalem, then the heart of this people will turn again to their lord, even to Rehoboam king of Judah; and they will kill me, and return to Rehoboam king of Judah.” 28  Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold; and he said to them, “It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem. Look and see your gods, Israel, which brought you up out of the land of Egypt!” 29  He set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. 30  This thing became a sin; for the people went to worship before the one, even to Dan. 31  He made houses of high places, and made priests from among all the people, who were not of the sons of Levi. 32  Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like the feast that is in Judah, and he went up to the altar; so did he in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places that he had made. 33  He went up to the altar which he had made in Bethel on the fifteenth day in the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart: and he ordained a feast for the children of Israel, and went up to the altar, to burn incense.

The Prophet of Judah Warns Jeroboam

13 1  Behold, there came a man of God out of Judah by the word of Yahweh to Beth El: and Jeroboam was standing by the altar to burn incense. 2  He cried against the altar by the word of Yahweh, and said, “Altar, altar, thus says Yahweh: ‘Behold, a son shall be born to the house of David, Josiah by name. On you he shall sacrifice the priests of the high places who burn incense on you, and they will burn men’s bones on you.’” 3  He gave a sign the same day, saying, “This is the sign which Yahweh has spoken: Behold, the altar will be split apart, and the ashes that are on it will be poured out.” 4  It happened, when the king heard the saying of the man of God, which he cried against the altar in Bethel, that Jeroboam put out his hand from the altar, saying, “Seize him!” His hand, which he put out against him, dried up, so that he could not draw it back again to himself. 5  The altar also was split apart, and the ashes poured out from the altar, according to the sign which the man of God had given by the word of Yahweh. 6  The king answered the man of God, “Now entreat the favor of Yahweh your God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored me again.”

The man of God entreated Yahweh, and the king’s hand was restored him again, and became as it was before. 7  The king said to the man of God, “Come home with me, and refresh yourself, and I will give you a reward.” 8  The man of God said to the king, “Even if you gave me half of your house, I would not go in with you, neither would I eat bread nor drink water in this place; 9  for so was it commanded me by the word of Yahweh, saying, ‘You shall eat no bread, nor drink water, neither return by the way that you came.’” 10  So he went another way, and didn’t return by the way that he came to Bethel.

11  Now there lived an old prophet in Bethel; and one of his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel. They also told their father the words which he had spoken to the king. 12  Their father said to them, “Which way did he go?” Now his sons had seen which way the man of God went, who came from Judah. 13  He said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” So they saddled the donkey for him; and he rode on it. 14  He went after the man of God, and found him sitting under an oak. He said to him, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?”

He said, “I am.” 15  Then he said to him, “Come home with me, and eat bread.” 16  He said, “I may not return with you, nor go in with you; neither will I eat bread nor drink water with you in this place. 17  For it was said to me by the word of Yahweh, ‘You shall eat no bread nor drink water there, nor turn again to go by the way that you came.’” 18  He said to him, “I also am a prophet as you are; and an angel spoke to me by the word of Yahweh, saying, ‘Bring him back with you into your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.’” He lied to him. 19  So he went back with him, and ate bread in his house, and drank water. 20  It happened, as they sat at the table, that the word of Yahweh came to the prophet who brought him back; 21  and he cried to the man of God who came from Judah, saying, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘Because you have been disobedient to the mouth of Yahweh, and have not kept the commandment which Yahweh your God commanded you, 22  but came 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  It happened, after he had eaten bread, and after he had drunk, that he saddled the donkey for the prophet whom he had brought back. 24  When he had gone, a lion met him by the way, and killed him. His body was cast in the way, and the donkey stood by it. The lion also stood by the body. 25  Behold, men passed by, and saw the body cast in the way, and the lion standing by the body; and they came and told it in the city where the old prophet lived. 26  When the prophet who brought him back from the way heard of it, he said, “It is the man of God who was disobedient to the mouth of Yahweh. Therefore Yahweh has delivered him to the lion, which has mauled him and slain him, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke to him.” 27  He spoke to his sons, saying, “Saddle the donkey for me.” They saddled it. 28  He went and found his body cast in the way, and the donkey and the lion standing by the body. The lion had not eaten the body, nor mauled the donkey. 29  The prophet took up the body of the man of God, and laid it on the donkey, and brought it back. He came to the city of the old prophet to mourn, and to bury him. 30  He laid his body in his own grave; and they mourned over him, saying, “Alas, my brother!” 31  It happened, after he had buried him, that he spoke to his sons, saying, “When I am dead, then bury me in the tomb in which the man of God is buried. Lay my bones beside his bones. 32  For the saying which he cried by the word of Yahweh against the altar in Bethel, and against all the houses of the high places which are in the cities of Samaria, will surely happen.” 33  After this thing Jeroboam didn’t return from his evil way, but again made priests of the high places from among all the people. Whoever wanted to, he consecrated him, that there might be priests of the high places. 34  This thing became sin to the house of Jeroboam, even to cut it off, and to destroy it from off the surface of the earth.

Ahijah's Prophecy against Jeroboam

14 1  At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick. 2  Jeroboam said to his wife, “Please get up and disguise yourself, that you won’t be recognized as the wife of Jeroboam. Go to Shiloh. Behold, there is Ahijah the prophet, who spoke concerning me that I should be king over this people. 3  Take with you ten loaves, and cakes, and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what will become of the child.” 4  Jeroboam’s wife did so, and arose, and went to Shiloh, and came to the house of Ahijah. Now Ahijah could not see; for his eyes were set by reason of his age. 5  Yahweh said to Ahijah, “Behold, the wife of Jeroboam comes to inquire of you concerning her son; for he is sick. Thus and thus you shall tell her; for it will be, when she comes in, that she will pretend to be another woman.” 6  It was so, when Ahijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, that he said, “Come in, you wife of Jeroboam! Why do you pretend to be another? For I am sent to you with heavy news.

7  Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel: “Because I exalted you from among the people, and made you prince over my people Israel, 8  and tore the kingdom away from the house of David, and gave it you; and yet you have not been as my servant David, who kept my commandments, and who followed me with all his heart, to do that only which was right in my eyes, 9  but have done evil above all who were before you, and have gone and made you other gods, and molten images, to provoke me to anger, and have cast me behind your back: 10  therefore, behold, I will bring evil on the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam everyone who urinates on a wall, [1] he who is shut up and he who is left at large in Israel, and will utterly sweep away the house of Jeroboam, as a man sweeps away dung, until it is all gone. 11  He who dies of Jeroboam in the city shall the dogs eat; and he who dies in the field shall the birds of the sky eat: for Yahweh has spoken it.”’ 12  Arise therefore, and go to your house. When your feet enter into the city, the child shall die. 13  All Israel shall mourn for him, and bury him; for he only of Jeroboam shall come to the grave, because in him there is found some good thing toward Yahweh, the God of Israel, in the house of Jeroboam. 14  Moreover Yahweh will raise him up a king over Israel, who shall cut off the house of Jeroboam. This is day! What? Even now. 15  For Yahweh will strike Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water; and he will root up Israel out of this good land which he gave to their fathers, and will scatter them beyond the River, because they have made their Asherim, provoking Yahweh to anger. 16  He will give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, which he has sinned, and with which he has made Israel to sin.” 17  Jeroboam’s wife arose, and departed, and came to Tirzah. As she came to the threshold of the house, the child died. 18  All Israel buried him, and mourned for him, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke by his servant Ahijah the prophet. 19  The rest of the acts of Jeroboam, how he warred, and how he reigned, behold, they are written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel. 20  The days which Jeroboam reigned were two and twenty years: and he slept with his fathers, and Nadab his son reigned in his place.

The Reign of Rehoboam

21  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, the city which Yahweh had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there: and his mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess. 22  Judah did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they committed, above all that their fathers had done. 23  For they also built them high places, and pillars, and Asherim, on every high hill, and under every green tree; 24  and there were also sodomites in the land: they did according to all the abominations of the nations which Yahweh drove out before the children of Israel. 25  It happened in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem; 26  and he took away the treasures of the house of Yahweh, and the treasures of the king’s house; he even took away all: and he took away all the shields of gold which Solomon had made. 27  King Rehoboam made in their place shields of brass, and committed them to the hands of the captains of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house. 28  It was so, that as often as the king went into the house of Yahweh, the guard bore them, and brought them back into the guard chamber. 29  Now the rest of the acts of Rehoboam, and all that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? 30  There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually. 31  Rehoboam slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David: and his mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess. Abijam his son reigned in his place.

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Footnotes

[1] 14:10 or, male

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