1 Kings 14

Listen to 1 Kings 14
1 At that time Jeroboam’s son Abijah became very sick.
2 So Jeroboam told his wife, “Disguise yourself so that no one will recognize you as my wife. Then go to the prophet Ahijah at Shiloh—the man who told me I would become king.
3 Take him a gift of ten loaves of bread, some cakes, and a jar of honey, and ask him what will happen to the boy.”
4 So Jeroboam’s wife went to Ahijah’s home at Shiloh. He was an old man now and could no longer see.
5 But the LORD had told Ahijah, “Jeroboam’s wife will come here, pretending to be someone else. She will ask you about her son, for he is very sick. Give her the answer I give you.”
6 So when Ahijah heard her footsteps at the door, he called out, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam! Why are you pretending to be someone else?” Then he told her, “I have bad news for you.
7 Give your husband, Jeroboam, this message from the LORD, the God of Israel: ‘I promoted you from the ranks of the common people and made you ruler over my people Israel.
8 I ripped the kingdom away from the family of David and gave it to you. But you have not been like my servant David, who obeyed my commands and followed me with all his heart and always did whatever I wanted.
9 You have done more evil than all who lived before you. You have made other gods for yourself and have made me furious with your gold calves. And since you have turned your back on me,
10 I will bring disaster on your dynasty and will destroy every one of your male descendants, slave and free alike, anywhere in Israel. I will burn up your royal dynasty as one burns up trash until it is all gone.
11 The members of Jeroboam’s family who die in the city will be eaten by dogs, and those who die in the field will be eaten by vultures. I, the LORD, have spoken.’”
12 Then Ahijah said to Jeroboam’s wife, “Go on home, and when you enter the city, the child will die.
13 All Israel will mourn for him and bury him. He is the only member of your family who will have a proper burial, for this child is the only good thing that the LORD, the God of Israel, sees in the entire family of Jeroboam.
14 “In addition, the LORD will raise up a king over Israel who will destroy the family of Jeroboam. This will happen today, even now!
15 Then the LORD will shake Israel like a reed whipped about in a stream. He will uproot the people of Israel from this good land that he gave their ancestors and will scatter them beyond the Euphrates River, for they have angered the LORD with the Asherah poles they have set up for worship.
16 He will abandon Israel because Jeroboam sinned and made Israel sin along with him.”
17 So Jeroboam’s wife returned to Tirzah, and the child died just as she walked through the door of her home.
18 And all Israel buried him and mourned for him, as the LORD had promised through the prophet Ahijah.
19 The rest of the events in Jeroboam’s reign, including all his wars and how he ruled, are recorded in
20 Jeroboam reigned in Israel twenty-two years. When Jeroboam died, his son Nadab became the next king.
21 Meanwhile, Rehoboam son of Solomon was king in Judah. He was forty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city the LORD had chosen from among all the tribes of Israel as the place to honor his name. Rehoboam’s mother was Naamah, an Ammonite woman.
22 During Rehoboam’s reign, the people of Judah did what was evil in the LORD ’s sight, provoking his anger with their sin, for it was even worse than that of their ancestors.
23 For they also built for themselves pagan shrines and set up sacred pillars and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every green tree.
24 There were even male and female shrine prostitutes throughout the land. The people imitated the detestable practices of the pagan nations the LORD had driven from the land ahead of the Israelites.
25 In the fifth year of King Rehoboam’s reign, King Shishak of Egypt came up and attacked Jerusalem.
26 He ransacked the treasuries of the LORD ’s Temple and the royal palace; he stole everything, including all the gold shields Solomon had made.
27 King Rehoboam later replaced them with bronze shields as substitutes, and he entrusted them to the care of the commanders of the guard who protected the entrance to the royal palace.
28 Whenever the king went to the Temple of the LORD, the guards would also take the shields and then return them to the guardroom.
29 The rest of the events in Rehoboam’s reign and everything he did are recorded in
30 There was constant war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam.
31 When Rehoboam died, he was buried among his ancestors in the City of David. His mother was Naamah, an Ammonite woman. Then his son Abijam became the next king.

1 Kings 14 Commentary

Chapter 14

Abijah being sick, his mother consults Ahijah. (1-6) The destruction of Jeroboam's house. (7-20) Rehoboam's wicked reign. (21-31)

Verses 1-6 "At that time," when Jeroboam did evil, his child sickened. When sickness comes into our families, we should inquire whether there may not be some particular sin harboured in our houses, which the affliction is sent to convince us of, and reclaim us from. It had been more pious if he had desired to know wherefore God contended with him; had begged the prophet's prayers, and cast away his idols from him; but most people would rather be told their fortune, than their faults or their duty. He sent to Ahijah, because he had told him he should be king. Those who by sin disqualify themselves for comfort, yet expect that their ministers, because they are good men, should speak peace and comfort to them, greatly wrong themselves and their ministers. He sent his wife in disguise, that the prophet might only answer her question concerning her son. Thus some people would limit their ministers to smooth things, and care not for having the whole counsel of God declared to them, lest it should prophesy no good concerning them, but evil. But she shall know, at the first word, what she has to trust to. Tidings of a portion with hypocrites will be heavy tidings. God will judge men according to what they are, not by what they seem to be.

Verses 7-20 Whether we keep an account of God's mercies to us or not, he does; and he will set them in order before us, if we are ungrateful, to our greater confusion. Ahijah foretells the speedy death of the child then sick, in mercy to him. He only in the house of Jeroboam had affection for the true worship of God, and disliked the worship of the calves. To show the power and sovereignty of his grace, God saves some out of the worst families, in whom there is some good thing towards the Lord God of Israel. The righteous are removed from the evil to come in this world, to the good to come in a better world. It is often a bad sign for a family, when the best in it are buried out of it. Yet their death never can be a loss to themselves. It was a present affliction to the family and kingdom, by which both ought to have been instructed. God also tells the judgments which should come upon the people of Israel, for conforming to the worship Jeroboam established. After they left the house of David, the government never continued long in one family, but one undermined and destroyed another. Families and kingdoms are ruined by sin. If great men do wickedly, they draw many others, both into the guilt and punishment. The condemnation of those will be severest, who must answer, not only for their own sins, but for sins others have been drawn into, and kept in, by them.

Verses 21-31 Here is no good said of Rehoboam, and much said to the disadvantage of his subjects. The abounding of the worst crimes, of the worst of the heathen, in Jerusalem, the city the Lord had chosen for his temple and his worship, shows that nothing can mend the hearts of fallen men but the sanctifying grace of the Holy Spirit. On this alone may we depend; for this let us daily pray, in behalf of ourselves and all around us. The splendour of their temple, the pomp of their priesthood, and all the advantages with which their religion was attended, could not prevail to keep them close to it; nothing less than the pouring out the Spirit will keep God's Israel in their allegiance to him. Sin exposes, makes poor, and weakens any people. Shishak, king of Egypt, came and took away the treasures. Sin makes the gold become dim, changes the most fine gold, and turns it into brass.

Footnotes 2

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO 1 KINGS 14

This chapter relates the sickness of Jeroboam's son, the application of his wife, at his instance, to the prophet Ahijah, in the child's favour, 1Ki 14:1-6, the prophecy of the prophet concerning the ruin of Jeroboam's house, and the death of the child, which came to pass, 1Ki 14:7-18, an account of the years of Jeroboam's reign, and also of Rehoboam's, 1Ki 14:19-21, and of the evil things done and suffered by the latter in his kingdom, and the calamities that came upon him for it, 1Ki 14:22-28 and the conclusion of his reign, 1Ki 14:29-31.

1 Kings 14 Commentaries