Abijah stood on the heights of Mount Zemaraim in Ephraim's highlands and said: “Listen to me, Jeroboam and all Israel!
Surely you know that the LORD, Israel's God, made an unbreakable covenanta with David and his descendants that they would rule Israel forever.
It was Jeroboam, Nebat's son, the servant of Solomon, David's son, who rebelled against his master.
When some useless, worthless people joined his cause, they overpowered Rehoboam, Solomon's son, who was too young and timid to resist them.
And now do you intend to challenge the LORD's royal rule, entrusted to David's descendants? You may have a numerical advantage, as well as the gold calves Jeroboam made for you as gods.
But you've banished the LORD's priests, Aaron's sons, along with the Levites, so that you could appoint your own priests as other countries do. Now anyone who shows up with a young bull and seven rams can become a priest of these phony gods!
"But us? The LORD is our God, and we haven't abandoned him. Aaron's descendants serve as the LORD's priests, assisted in the work by the Levites.
Every morning and every evening they offer entirely burned offerings and fragrant incense to the LORD, and set out bread in stacks upon a clean table. At night they light the lamps on the gold lampstand. Yes, while you are abandoning the LORD our God, we are doing what he requires.
Listen! God is on our side, at our head, along with his priests, who are ready to sound the battle trumpets against you. So, Israelites, don't fight against the LORD, the God of your ancestors, for you won't succeed!"