1 Kings 12; 1 Kings 13; 1 Kings 14

1 Rehoboam went to Shechem where all Israel had come to make him king. 2 When Jeroboam, Nebat's son, heard the news, he returned from Egypt where he had fled from King Solomon. 3 The people sent and called for Jeroboam, who along with the entire Israelite assembly went and said to Rehoboam, 4 "Your father made our workload very hard for us. If you will lessen the demands your father made of us and lighten the heavy workload he demanded from us, then we will serve you." 5 He answered them, "Come back in three days." So the people left. 6 King Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served his father Solomon when he was alive. "What do you advise?" Rehoboam asked. "How should I respond to these people?" 7 "If you will be a servant to this people by answering them and speaking good words today," they replied, "then they will be your servants forever." 8 But Rehoboam ignored the advice the elders gave him and instead sought the counsel of the young advisors who had grown up with him and now served him. 9 "What do you advise?" he asked them. "How should we respond to these people who have said to me, ‘Lighten the workload your father demanded of us'?" 10 The young people who had grown up with him said to him, "This people said to you, ‘Your father made our workload heavy; lighten it for us!' Now this is what you should say to them: ‘My baby finger is thicker than my father's entire waist! 11 So if my father made your workload heavy, I'll make it even heavier! If my father disciplined you with whips, I'll do it with scorpions!'" 12 Jeroboam and all the people returned to Rehoboam on the third day, just as the king had specified when he said, "Come back to me in three days." 13 The king then answered the people harshly. He ignored the elders' advice 14 and instead followed the young people's advice. He said, "My father made your workload heavy, but I'll make it even heavier! My father disciplined you with whips, but I'll do it with scorpions!" 15 The king didn't listen to the people because this turn of events came from the LORD so that he might keep the promise he delivered through Ahijah from Shiloh concerning Jeroboam, Nebat's son. 16 When all Israel saw that the king wouldn't listen to them, the people answered the king: "Why should we care about David? We have no stake in Jesse's son! Go back to your homes, Israel! You better look after your own house now, David!" Then the Israelites went back to their homes, 17 and Rehoboam ruled over only the Israelites who lived in the cities of Judah. 18 When King Rehoboam sent Adoram to them (he was the leader of the work gang), all Israel stoned him to death. King Rehoboam quickly got into his chariot and fled to Jerusalem. 19 Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day. 20 When all Israel heard that Jeroboam had returned, they sent for him. They called him to the assembly and crowned him king of all Israel. Nothing was left to the house of David except the tribe of Judah. 21 When Rehoboam arrived at Jerusalem, he assembled the whole house of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin—one hundred eighty thousand select warriors—to fight against the house of Israel and restore the kingdom for Rehoboam, Solomon's son. 22 But God's word came to Shemaiah the man of God, 23 "Tell Judah's King Rehoboam, Solomon's son, and all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and the rest of the people, 24 ‘This is what the LORD says: Don't make war against your relatives the Israelites. Go home, every one of you, because this is my plan.'" When they heard the LORD's words, they went back home, just as the LORD had said. 25 Jeroboam fortified Shechem at Mount Ephraim and lived there. From there he also fortified Penuel. 26 Jeroboam thought to himself, The kingdom is in danger of reverting to the house of David. 27 If these people continue to sacrifice at the LORD's temple in Jerusalem, they will again become loyal to their master Rehoboam, Judah's king, and they will kill me so they can return to Judah's King Rehoboam. 28 So the king asked for advice and then made two gold calves. He said to the people, "It's too far for you to go all the way up to Jerusalem. Look, Israel! Here are your gods who brought you out from the land of Egypt." 29 He put one calf in Bethel, and the other he placed in Dan. 30 This act was sinful. The people went to worship before the one calf at Bethel and before the other one as far as Dan. 31 Jeroboam made shrines on the high places and appointed priests from all sorts of people, but none were Levites. 32 Jeroboam set a date for a celebration on the fifteenth day of the eighth month. It was just like the celebration in Judah. He sacrificed on the altar. At Bethel he sacrificed to the calves he had made. There also he installed the priests for the shrines he had made. 33 On the fifteenth day of the eighth month—the time he alone had decided—Jeroboam went up to the altar he had built in Bethel. He made a celebration for the Israelites and offered sacrifices on the altar by burning them up.
1 A man of God came from Judah by God's command to Bethel. Jeroboam was standing at the altar burning incense. 2 By the LORD's word, the man of God cried out to the altar: "Altar! Altar! The LORD says this: Look! A son will be born to the house of David. His name will be Josiah. He will sacrifice on you, Altar, the very priests of the shrines who offer incense on you. They will burn human bones on you." 3 At that time the man of God gave a sign: "This is the sign that the LORD mentioned: ‘Look! The altar will be broken apart, and its ashes will spill out.'" 4 When the king heard the word of the man of God and how he cried out to the altar at Bethel, Jeroboam stretched his hand from the altar and said, "Seize him!" But the hand that Jeroboam stretched out against the man of God grew stiff. Jeroboam wasn't able to bend it back to himself. 5 The altar broke apart, and the ashes spilled out from the altar, just like the sign that the man of God gave by the LORD's word. 6 The king said to the man of God, "Plead before the LORD your God and pray for me so that I can bend my hand back again." So the man of God pleaded before the LORD, and the king's hand returned to normal and was like it used to be. 7 The king spoke to the man of God: "Come with me to the palace and refresh yourself. Let me give you a gift." 8 The man of God said to the king, "Even if you gave me half your palace, I wouldn't go with you, nor would I eat food or drink water in this place. 9 This is what God commanded me by the LORD's word: Don't eat food! Don't drink water! Don't return by the way you came!" 10 So the man of God went by a different way. He didn't return by the way he came to Bethel. 11 Now there was an old prophet living in Bethel. His sons came and told him everything that the man of God had done that day at Bethel. They also told their father the words that he spoke to the king. 12 "Which way did he go?" their father asked them. His sons had seen the way the man of God went when he came from Judah. 13 The old prophet said to his sons, "Saddle my donkey." So they saddled his donkey, and he got on it. 14 He went after the man of God and found him sitting underneath a terebinth tree. He said to him, "Are you the man of God who came from Judah?" "I am," he replied. 15 The old prophet then said to him, "Come home with me and eat some food." 16 But the man of God answered, "I can't return or go with you, and I can't eat food or drink water with you in this place 17 because of the message that came to me from the LORD's word: Don't eat food! Don't drink water! Don't return by the way you came!" 18 The old prophet said to the man of God, "I'm also a prophet like you. A messenger spoke to me with the LORD's word, ‘Bring him back with you to your house so that he may eat food and drink water.'" But the old prophet was lying to him. 19 So the man of God went back with the old prophet. He ate food in his home and drank water. 20 Then as they were sitting at the table, the LORD's word came to the prophet who had brought him back. 21 He cried out to the man of God who had come from Judah: “The LORD says this: You rebelled against the LORD's word! You didn't keep the command that the LORD your God gave you! 22 You came back and ate food and drank water in this place. "But he had commanded you: ‘Don't eat food! Don't drink water!' Now your body won't go to the grave of your ancestors." 23 After he ate food and drank, the old prophet saddled the donkey for the prophet he had brought back. 24 The man of God departed, and a lion found him on the road and killed him. His body was thrown down on the road. The donkey stood beside it, and the lion also stood beside the body. 25 Some people were traveling nearby, and they discovered the body thrown down on the road and the lion standing beside it. They entered the town where the old prophet lived and were talking about it. 26 The prophet who brought the man of God back from the road overheard. He thought: That's the man of God who rebelled against the LORD's command. The LORD has given him to that lion that tore him apart, killing him in agreement with the LORD's word that was spoken to him. 27 The old prophet told his sons, "Saddle the donkey." They did so, 28 and he went and found the body thrown down on the road. The donkey and the lion were still standing beside the body. The lion hadn't eaten the body, nor had it torn the donkey apart. 29 The prophet lifted the body of the man of God and put it on the donkey. He brought it back, arriving in the old prophet's town to mourn and bury the man of God. 30 He placed the body in his own grave, and they mourned over him, "Oh, my brother!" 31 After the old prophet buried him, he said to his sons, "When I die, bury me in the grave where the man of God is. Put my bones beside his bones. 32 The message he gave by the LORD's word concerning the altar of Bethel and all the shrines in the towns of Samaria will most certainly come true." 33 Even after this happened, Jeroboam didn't change his evil ways. Instead, he continued to appoint all sorts of people as priests of the shrines. Anyone who wanted to be a priest Jeroboam made a priest for the shrines. 34 In this way the house of Jeroboam acted sinfully, leading to its downfall and elimination from the earth.
1 At that time, Jeroboam's son Abijah became sick. 2 Jeroboam said to his wife, "Please go with a disguise so no one will recognize you as Jeroboam's wife. Go to Shiloh where the prophet Ahijah is. He told me I would be king of this people. 3 Take ten loaves of bread, cakes, and a bottle of honey with you. Go to him. He will tell you what will happen to the boy." 4 Jeroboam's wife did precisely this. She left and went to Shiloh and came to Ahijah's house. Now Ahijah had become blind in his old age. 5 The LORD said to Ahijah, "Look! Jeroboam's wife has come seeking a word from you about her son. He is sick. Say this and that to her. When she comes, she will be disguised." 6 When Ahijah heard the sound of her feet coming through the doorway, he said, “Come in, Jeroboam's wife! Why have you disguised yourself? I have hard news for you. 7 Tell Jeroboam: This is what the LORD, Israel's God, says: When I lifted you up from among the people, I appointed you as a leader over my people Israel. 8 I tore the kingdom from David's house and gave it to you. But you haven't been like my servant David, who kept my commands and followed me with all his heart by doing only what is right in my eyes. 9 Instead, you have done more evil than any who were before you. You have made other gods and metal images to anger me. You have turned your back on me. 10 Therefore, I'm going to bring disaster on Jeroboam's house! Because of Jeroboam, I will eliminate everyone who urinates on a wall, whether slave or free. Then I will set fire to the house of Jeroboam, as one burns dung until it is gone. 11 Dogs will eat any of Jeroboam's family who die in town. Birds will eat those who die in the field. The LORD has spoken! 12 "As for you, get up and go back home. When your feet enter the town, the boy will die. 13 All Israel will mourn for him and will bury him. Out of the whole line of Jeroboam, he alone will have a tomb, because only in him did Israel's God, the LORD, find something good. 14 For this reason the LORD will raise up a king over Israel who will eliminate the house of Jeroboam. This begins today. What's that? Even now! 15 The LORD will strike Israel so that it shakes like a reed in water. He will uproot Israel from this fertile land that he gave to their ancestors and their offspring, and he will scatter them across the Euphrates River, because they made the LORD angry by making their sacred poles. 16 Because of the sins Jeroboam committed, and because he made Israel sin too, God will give Israel up." 17 Then Jeroboam's wife left and went to Tirzah. When she stepped across the threshold of the house, the boy died. 18 All Israel buried him and mourned him in agreement with the LORD's word spoken through his servant the prophet Ahijah. 19 The rest of Jeroboam's deeds—how he fought and how he ruled—are written in the official records of Israel's kings. 20 Jeroboam ruled twenty-two years and he lay down with his ancestors. His son Nadab succeeded him as king. 21 Rehoboam, Solomon's son, ruled over Judah. Rehoboam was 41 years old when he became king. He ruled for seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city the LORD chose from among all the tribes of Israel to set his name. Rehoboam's mother's name was Naamah from Ammon. 22 Judah did evil in the LORD's eyes. The sins they committed made the LORD angrier than anything their ancestors had done. 23 They also built shrines, standing stones, and sacred poles on top of every high hill and under every green tree. 24 Moreover, the consecrated workers in the land did detestable things, just like those nations that the LORD had removed among the Israelites. 25 During King Rehoboam's fifth year, King Shishak of Egypt attacked Jerusalem. 26 He seized the treasures of the LORD's temple and the royal palace. He took everything, even all the gold shields that Solomon had made. 27 King Rehoboam replaced them with bronze shields and assigned them to the officers of the guard who protected the entrance to the royal palace. 28 Whenever the king entered the LORD's temple, the guards would carry the shields and then return them to the guardroom. 29 The rest of Rehoboam's deeds and all that he accomplished, aren't they written in the official records of Judah's kings? 30 There was continual warfare between Rehoboam and Jeroboam. 31 When Rehoboam died, he was buried with his ancestors in David's City. His mother's name was Naamah from Ammon. His son Abijam succeeded him as king.
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