Now 1this came about because the sons of Israel had sinned against the LORD their God, 2who had brought them up from the land of Egypt from under the hand of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, 3and they had afearedothergods8
and 4walked in the bcustoms of the nationswhom the LORD had driven out before the sons of Israel, and in the customs 5of the kings of Israelwhich they had cintroduced.
The sons of Israelddidthingssecretlywhich were not rightagainst the LORD their God. Moreover, they built for themselves highplaces in all their towns, from 6watchtower to fortifiedcity.
107They set for themselves sacred pillars and e8Asherim on everyhighhill and undereverygreentree,
and there they burnedincense on all the highplaces as the nations did which the LORD had carriedaway to exilebefore them; and they didevilthingsprovoking the LORD.
They servedidols, 9concerning which the LORD had said to them, "You shall not dothisthing."
Yet the 10LORDwarnedIsrael and Judah11throughall His prophets and 12everyseer, saying, "13Turn from your evilways and keep My commandments, My statutes according to all the lawwhich I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you through My servants the prophets."
However, they did not listen, but 14stiffened their neckflike their fathers, who did not believe in the LORD their God.
1515They rejected His statutes and 16His covenantwhich He made with their fathers and His warnings with which He warned them. And 17they followedvanity and 18becamevain, and went after the nationswhichsurrounded them, concerning which the 19LORD had commanded them not to do like them.
They forsookall the commandments of the LORD their God and made for themselves moltenimages, even 20twocalves, and 21made an gAsherah and 22worshipedall the host of heaven and 23servedBaal.
Then 24they made their sons and their daughterspass through the fire, and 25practiceddivination and enchantments, and 26sold themselves to doevil in the sight of the LORD, provoking Him.
So the LORD was veryangry with Israel and 27removed them from His hsight ; 28none was leftexcept the tribe of Judah.
19Also29Judah did not keep the commandments of the LORD their God, but 30walked in the icustomsjwhichIsrael had kintroduced.
The LORDrejectedall the ldescendants of Israel and afflicted them and 31gave them into the hand of plunderers, until He had cast them mout of His sight.
21When32He had tornIsrael from the house of David, 33they madeJeroboam the son of Nebatking. Then 34JeroboamdroveIsraelaway from following the LORD and made them ncommit a greatsin.
The sons of Israelwalked in all the sins of Jeroboamwhich he did ; they did not depart from them
2335until the LORDremovedIsrael from His sight, 36as He spokethroughall His servants the prophets. 37So Israel was carriedaway into exile from their own land to Assyriauntilthisday.
2438The king of Assyriabrought men from Babylon and from Cuthah and from o39Avva and from 40Hamath and Sephar-vaim, and settled them in the cities of Samaria in place of the sons of Israel. So they possessedSamaria and lived in its cities.
At the beginning of their livingthere, they 41did not fear the LORD ; therefore the LORDsentlions among them which killed some of them.
So they spoke to the king of Assyria, saying, "The nationswhom you have carriedaway into exile in the cities of Samaria do not know the custom of the god of the land ; so he has sentlions among them, and behold, they kill them because they do not know the custom of the god of the land."
Then the king of Assyriacommanded, saying, "Takethereone of the priestswhom you carriedaway into pexile and let qhim go and livethere ; and let him teach them the custom of the god of the land."
So one of the priestswhom they had carriedaway into exile from Samariacame and lived at Bethel, and taught them how they should fear the LORD.
But everynation still madegods of its own and put them 42in the houses of the highplaceswhich the people of Samaria had made, everynation in their cities in which they lived.
3043The men of BabylonmadeSuccoth-benoth, the men of CuthmadeNergal, the men of HamathmadeAshima,
and the AvvitesmadeNibhaz and Tartak ; and 44the Sepharvitesburned their children in the fire to 45Adrammelech and Anammelech the gods of 46Sepharvaim.
3247They also feared the LORD and r48appointed from among themselves priests of the highplaces, who acted for them in the houses of the highplaces.
They feared the LORD and served their own gods according to the custom of the nations from among whom they had been carriedaway into exile.
To thisday they do according to the earliercustoms : they do not fear the LORD, nor do they sfollow their statutes or their ordinances or the law, or the commandmentswhich the LORDcommanded the sons of Jacob, 49whom He namedIsrael ;
with whom the LORDmade a covenant and commanded them, saying, "50You shall not fearothergods, nor51bowdown yourselves to them nor52serve them norsacrifice to them.
"But the LORD, 53whobrought you up from the land of Egypt with greatpower and with 54an outstretchedarm, 55Him you shall fear, and to Him you shall bow yourselves down, and to Him you shall sacrifice.
"The statutes and the ordinances and the law and the commandmentwhich He wrote for you, 56you shall observe to doforever ; and you shall not fearothergods.
"The covenant that I have made with you, 57you shall not forget, nor shall you fearothergods.
"But the LORD your God you shall fear ; and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies."
However, they did not listen, but they did according to their earliercustom.
4158So while thesenationsfeared the LORD, they also served their tidols ; their childrenlikewise and their grandchildren, as their fathersdid, so they do to thisday.