In the eighteenth year of King Jerobo'am Abi'jah began to reign over Judah.
He reigned for three years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Micai'ah the daughter of U'riel of Gib'e-ah. Now there was war between Abi'jah and Jerobo'am.
Abi'jah went out to battle having an army of valiant men of war, four hundred thousand picked men; and Jerobo'am drew up his line of battle against him with eight hundred thousand picked mighty warriors.
Then Abi'jah stood up on Mount Zemara'im which is in the hill country of E'phraim, and said, "Hear me, O Jerobo'am and all Israel!
Ought you not to know that the LORD God of Israel gave the kingship over Israel for ever to David and his sons by a covenant of salt?
Yet Jerobo'am the son of Nebat, a servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up and rebelled against his lord;
and certain worthless scoundrels gathered about him and defied Rehobo'am the son of Solomon, when Rehobo'am was young and irresolute and could not withstand them.
"And now you think to withstand the kingdom of the LORD in the hand of the sons of David, because you are a great multitude and have with you the golden calves which Jerobo'am made you for gods.
Have you not driven out the priests of the LORD, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves like the peoples of other lands? Whoever comes to consecrate himself with a young bull or seven rams becomes a priest of what are no gods.
But as for us, the LORD is our God, and we have not forsaken him. We have priests ministering to the LORD who are sons of Aaron, and Levites for their service.
They offer to the LORD every morning and every evening burnt offerings and incense of sweet spices, set out the showbread on the table of pure gold, and care for the golden lampstand that its lamps may burn every evening; for we keep the charge of the LORD our God, but you have forsaken him.
Behold, God is with us at our head, and his priests with their battle trumpets to sound the call to battle against you. O sons of Israel, do not fight against the LORD, the God of your fathers; for you cannot succeed."
Jerobo'am had sent an ambush around to come on them from behind; thus his troops were in front of Judah, and the ambush was behind them.
And when Judah looked, behold, the battle was before and behind them; and they cried to the LORD, and the priests blew the trumpets.
Then the men of Judah raised the battle shout. And when the men of Judah shouted, God defeated Jerobo'am and all Israel before Abi'jah and Judah.
The men of Israel fled before Judah, and God gave them into their hand.
Abi'jah and his people slew them with a great slaughter; so there fell slain of Israel five hundred thousand picked men.
Thus the men of Israel were subdued at that time, and the men of Judah prevailed, because they relied upon the LORD, the God of their fathers.
And Abi'jah pursued Jerobo'am, and took cities from him, Bethel with its villages and Jesha'nah with its villages and Ephron with its villages.
Jerobo'am did not recover his power in the days of Abi'jah; and the LORD smote him, and he died.
But Abi'jah grew mighty. And he took fourteen wives, and had twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters.
The rest of the acts of Abi'jah, his ways and his sayings, are written in the story of the prophet Iddo.
Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1952 [2nd edition, 1971] by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (Revised Standard Version w/ Apocrypha)