Online Bible in Modern English The First Book of the Kings
Intro 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22
1 Kings 1
David in His Old Age *Outline Headers are added as a study aid only, and should not be considered as part of the actual Biblical text
Now king David was old and stricken in years; and they covered him with clothes, but he couldn’t keep warm. Therefore his servants said to him, “Let there be sought for my lord the king a young virgin: and let her stand before the king, and cherish him; and let her lie in your bosom, that my lord the king may keep warm.” So they sought for a beautiful young lady throughout all the borders of Israel, and found Abishag the Shunammite, and brought her to the king. The young lady was very beautiful; and she cherished the king, and ministered to him; but the king didn’t know her intimately.
Adonijah Claims the Throne of Israel
Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, “I will be king.” Then he prepared him chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him. His father had not displeased him at any time in saying, “Why have you done so?” and he was also a very handsome man; and he was born after Absalom. He conferred with Joab the son of Zeruiah, and with Abiathar the priest: and they following Adonijah helped him. But Zadok the priest, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and Nathan the prophet, and Shimei, and Rei, and the mighty men who belonged to David, were not with Adonijah. Adonijah killed sheep and cattle and fatlings by the stone of Zoheleth, which is beside En Rogel; and he called all his brothers, the king’s sons, and all the men of Judah, the king’s servants: but Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah, and the mighty men, and Solomon his brother, he didn’t call.
Then Nathan spoke to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon, saying, “Haven’t you heard that Adonijah the son of Haggith reigns, and David our lord doesn’t know it? Now therefore come, please let me give you counsel, that you may save your own life, and the life of your son Solomon. Go in to king David, and tell him, ‘Didn’t you, my lord, king, swear to your handmaid, saying, Assuredly Solomon your son shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne? Why then does Adonijah reign?’ Behold, while you yet talk there with the king, I also will come in after you, and confirm your words.”
Nathan and Bathsheba Appeal to David on Behalf of Solomon
Bathsheba went in to the king into the room. The king was very old; and Abishag the Shunammite was ministering to the king. Bathsheba bowed, and did obeisance to the king. The king said, “What would you like?” She said to him, “My lord, you swore by Yahweh Yahweh is God’s proper Name, sometimes rendered “LORD”. your GodThe Hebrew word rendered “God” is “Elohim” to your handmaid, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne.’ Now, behold, Adonijah reigns; and you, my lord the king, don’t know it. He has slain cattle and fatlings and sheep in abundance, and has called all the sons of the king, and Abiathar the priest, and Joab the captain of the army; but he hasn’t called Solomon your servant. You, my lord the king, the eyes of all Israel are on you, that you should tell them who shall sit on the throne of my lord the king after him. Otherwise it will happen, when my lord the king shall sleep with his fathers, that I and my son Solomon shall be counted offenders.”
Behold, while she yet talked with the king, Nathan the prophet came in. They told the king, saying, “Behold, Nathan the prophet!”
When he had come in before the king, he bowed himself before the king with his face to the ground. Nathan said, “My lord, king, have you said, ‘Adonijah shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne?’ For he is gone down this day, and has slain cattle and fatlings and sheep in abundance, and has called all the king’s sons, and the captains of the army, and Abiathar the priest. Behold, they are eating and drinking before him, and say, ‘Long live king Adonijah!’ But he hasn’t called me, even me your servant, and Zadok the priest, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and your servant Solomon. Is this thing done by my lord the king, and you haven’t shown to your servants who should sit on the throne of my lord the king after him?”
Solomon Anointed as King
Then king David answered, “Call to me Bathsheba.” She came into the king’s presence, and stood before the king. The king swore, and said, “As Yahweh lives, who has redeemed my soul out of all adversity, most certainly as I swore to you by Yahweh, the God of Israel, saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place;’ most certainly so will I do this day.”
Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and did obeisance to the king, and said, “Let my lord king David live forever!”
King David said, “Call to me Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada.” They came before the king. The king said to them, “Take with you the servants of your lord, and cause Solomon my son to ride on my own mule, and bring him down to Gihon. Let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him there king over Israel. Blow the trumpet, and say, ‘Long live king Solomon!’ Then you shall come up after him, and he shall come and sit on my throne; for he shall be king in my place. I have appointed him to be prince over Israel and over Judah.”
Benaiah the son of Jehoiada answered the king, and said, “Amen. May Yahweh, the God of my lord the king, say so. As Yahweh has been with my lord the king, even so may he be with Solomon, and make his throne greater than the throne of my lord king David.”
So Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites, went down, and caused Solomon to ride on king David’s mule, and brought him to Gihon. Zadok the priest took the horn of oil out of the Tent, and anointed Solomon. They blew the trumpet; and all the people said, “Long live king Solomon!”
All the people came up after him, and the people piped with pipes, and rejoiced with great joy, so that the earth shook with the sound of them. Adonijah and all the guests who were with him heard it as they had made an end of eating. When Joab heard the sound of the trumpet, he said, “Why is this noise of the city being in an uproar?”
While he yet spoke, behold, Jonathan the son of Abiathar the priest came: and Adonijah said, “Come in; for you are a worthy man, and bring good news.”
Jonathan answered Adonijah, “Most certainly our lord king David has made Solomon king. The king has sent with him Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and they have caused him to ride on the king’s mule. Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet have anointed him king in Gihon. They have come up from there rejoicing, so that the city rang again. This is the noise that you have heard. Also, Solomon sits on the throne of the kingdom. Moreover the king’s servants came to bless our lord king David, saying, ‘May your God make the name of Solomon better than your name, and make his throne greater than your throne;’ and the king bowed himself on the bed. Also thus said the king, ‘Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Israel, who has given one to sit on my throne this day, my eyes even seeing it.’”
All the guests of Adonijah were afraid, and rose up, and each man went his way. Adonijah feared because of Solomon; and he arose, and went, and caught hold on the horns of the altar. It was told Solomon, saying, “Behold, Adonijah fears king Solomon; for, behold, he has laid hold on the horns of the altar, saying, ‘Let king Solomon swear to me first that he will not kill his servant with the sword.’”
Solomon said, “If he shows himself a worthy man, not a hair of him shall fall to the earth; but if wickedness be found in him, he shall die.”
So king Solomon sent, and they brought him down from the altar. He came and did obeisance to king Solomon; and Solomon said to him, “Go to your house.”[Top of Page]
1 Kings 2
David’s Final Instructions to Solomon
Now the days of David drew near that he should die; and he commanded Solomon his son, saying, “I am going the way of all the earth. You be strong therefore, and show yourself a man; and keep the instruction of Yahweh your God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, his commandments, his ordinances, and his testimonies, according to that which is written in the law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do, and wherever you turn yourself. That Yahweh may establish his word which he spoke concerning me, saying, ‘If your children take heed to their way, to walk before me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail you,’ he said, ‘a man on the throne of Israel.’
“Moreover you know also what Joab the son of Zeruiah did to me, even what he did to the two captains of the armies of Israel, to Abner the son of Ner, and to Amasa the son of Jether, whom he killed, and shed the blood of war in peace, and put the blood of war on his sash that was about his waist, and in his shoes that were on his feet. Do therefore according to your wisdom, and don’t let his gray head go down to Sheol Sheol is the place of the dead. in peace. But show kindness to the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be of those who eat at your table; for so they came to me when I fled from Absalom your brother.
“Behold, there is with you Shimei the son of Gera, the Benjamite, of Bahurim, who cursed me with a grievous curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim; but he came down to meet me at the Jordan, and I swore to him by Yahweh, saying, ‘I will not put you to death with the sword.’ Now therefore don’t hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man; and you will know what you ought to do to him, and you shall bring his gray head down to Sheol with blood.”
The Death of David
David slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David. The days that David reigned over Israel were forty years; seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty-three years reigned he in Jerusalem.
Solomon’s Rule Established
Solomon sat on the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was firmly established. Then Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon. She said, “Do you come peaceably?”
He said, “Peaceably. He said moreover, I have something to tell you.”
She said, “Say on.”
He said, “You know that the kingdom was mine, and that all Israel set their faces on me, that I should reign. However the kingdom is turned around, and has become my brother’s; for it was his from Yahweh. Now I ask one petition of you. Don’t deny me.”
She said to him, “Say on.” He said, “Please speak to Solomon the king (for he will not tell you ‘no’), that he give me Abishag the Shunammite as wife.”
Bathsheba said, “Alright. I will speak for you to the king.”
Bathsheba therefore went to king Solomon, to speak to him for Adonijah. The king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself to her, and sat down on his throne, and caused a throne to be set for the king’s mother; and she sat on his right hand. Then she said, “I ask one small petition of you; don’t deny me.”
The king said to her, “Ask on, my mother; for I will not deny you.”
She said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah your brother as wife.”
King Solomon answered his mother, “Why do you ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? Ask for him the kingdom also; for he is my elder brother; even for him, and for Abiathar the priest, and for Joab the son of Zeruiah.” Then king Solomon swore by Yahweh, saying, “God do so to me, and more also, if Adonijah has not spoken this word against his own life. Now therefore as Yahweh lives, who has established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who has made me a house, as he promised, surely Adonijah shall be put to death this day.”
King Solomon sent by Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he fell on him, so that he died. To Abiathar the priest the king said, “Go to Anathoth, to your own fields; for you are worthy of death. But I will not at this time put you to death, because you bore the ark of the Lord The word translated “Lord” is “Adonai”. Yahweh before David my father, and because you were afflicted in all in which my father was afflicted.” So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest to Yahweh, that he might fulfill the word of Yahweh, which he spoke concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh.
The news came to Joab; for Joab had turned after Adonijah, though he didn’t turn after Absalom. Joab fled to the Tent of Yahweh, and caught hold on the horns of the altar. It was told king Solomon, “Joab has fled to the Tent of Yahweh, and behold, he is by the altar.” Then Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, “Go, fall on him.”
Benaiah came to the Tent of Yahweh, and said to him, “Thus says the king, ‘Come forth!’”
He said, “No; but I will die here.”
Benaiah brought the king word again, saying, “Thus said Joab, and thus he answered me.”
The king said to him, “Do as he has said, and fall on him, and bury him; that you may take away the blood, which Joab shed without cause, from me and from my father’s house. Yahweh will return his blood on his own head, because he fell on two men more righteous and better than he, and killed them with the sword, and my father David didn’t know it: Abner the son of Ner, captain of the army of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether, captain of the army of Judah. So shall their blood return on the head of Joab, and on the head of his seed forever. But to David, and to his seed, and to his house, and to his throne, there shall be peace forever from Yahweh.”
Then Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up, and fell on him, and killed him; and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness. The king put Benaiah the son of Jehoiada in his place over the army; and Zadok the priest did the king put in the place of Abiathar. The king sent and called for Shimei, and said to him, “Build yourself a house in Jerusalem, and dwell there, and don’t go out from there anywhere. For on the day you go out, and pass over the brook Kidron, know for certain that you shall surely die: your blood shall be on your own head.”
Shimei said to the king, “The saying is good. As my lord the king has said, so will your servant do.” Shimei lived in Jerusalem many days.
It happened at the end of three years, that two of the servants of Shimei ran away to Achish, son of Maacah, king of Gath. They told Shimei, saying, “Behold, your servants are in Gath.”
Shimei arose, and saddled his donkey, and went to Gath to Achish, to seek his servants; and Shimei went, and brought his servants from Gath. It was told Solomon that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath, and was come again.
The king sent and called for Shimei, and said to him, “Didn’t I adjure you by Yahweh, and warn you, saying, ‘Know for certain, that on the day you go out, and walk abroad any where, you shall surely die?’ You said to me, ‘The saying that I have heard is good.’ Why then have you not kept the oath of Yahweh, and the commandment that I have instructed you with?” The king said moreover to Shimei, “You know all the wickedness which your heart is privy to, that you did to David my father. Therefore Yahweh shall return your wickedness on your own head. But king Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David shall be established before Yahweh forever.” So the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he went out, and fell on him, so that he died. The kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 3
Solomon Asks for Wisdom
Solomon made affinity with Pharaoh king of Egypt, and took Pharaoh’s daughter, and brought her into the city of David, until he had made an end of building his own house, and the house of Yahweh, and the wall of Jerusalem all around. Only the people sacrificed in the high places, because there was no house built for the name of Yahweh until those days. Solomon loved Yahweh, walking in the statutes of David his father: only he sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places. The king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there; for that was the great high place: a thousand burnt offerings did Solomon offer on that altar. In Gibeon Yahweh appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask what I shall give you.”
Solomon said, “You have shown to your servant David my father great loving kindness, according as he walked before you in truth, and in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with you. You have kept for him this great loving kindness, that you have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. Now, Yahweh my God, you have made your servant king instead of David my father. I am but a little child. I don’t know how to go out or come in. Your servant is in the midst of your people which you have chosen, a great people, that can’t be numbered nor counted for multitude. Give your servant therefore an understanding heart to judge your people, that I may discern between good and evil; for who is able to judge this your great people?”
The speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. God said to him, “Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked for yourself long life, neither have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice; behold, I have done according to your word. Behold, I have given you a wise and an understanding heart; so that there has been none like you before you, neither after you shall any arise like you. I have also given you that which you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that there shall not be any among the kings like you, all your days. If you will walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.”
Solomon awoke; and behold, it was a dream. Then he came to Jerusalem, and stood before the ark of the covenant of Yahweh, and offered up burnt offerings, offered peace offerings, and made a feast to all his servants.
Solomon’s Wise Ruling
Then two women who were prostitutes came to the king, and stood before him. The one woman said, “Oh, my lord, I and this woman dwell in one house. I delivered a child with her in the house. It happened the third day after I delivered, that this woman delivered also. We were together. There was no stranger with us in the house, just us two in the house. This woman’s child died in the night, because she lay on it. She arose at midnight, and took my son from beside me, while your handmaid slept, and laid it in her bosom, and laid her dead child in my bosom. When I rose in the morning to nurse my child, behold, it was dead; but when I had looked at it in the morning, behold, it was not my son, whom I bore.”
The other woman said, “No; but the living is my son, and the dead is your son.”
This said, “No; but the dead is your son, and the living is my son.” Thus they spoke before the king.
Then the king said, “The one says, ‘This is my son who lives, and your son is the dead;’ and the other says, ‘No; but your son is the dead one, and my son is the living one.’” The king said, “Get me a sword.” They brought a sword before the king. The king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one, and half to the other.”
Then the woman whose the living child was spoke to the king, for her heart yearned over her son, and she said, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and in no way kill it!”
But the other said, “It shall be neither mine nor yours. Divide it.”
Then the king answered, “Give her the living child, and in no way kill it. She is its mother.”
All Israel heard of the judgment which the king had judged; and they feared the king: for they saw that the wisdom of God was in him, to do justice.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 4
King Solomon was king over all Israel. These were the princes whom he had: Azariah the son of Zadok, the priest; Elihoreph and Ahijah, the sons of Shisha, scribes; Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud, the recorder; and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the army; and Zadok and Abiathar were priests; and Azariah the son of Nathan was over the officers; and Zabud the son of Nathan was chief minister, and the king’s friend; and Ahishar was over the household; and Adoniram the son of Abda was over the men subject to forced labor.
Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel, who provided food for the king and his household: each man had to make provision for a month in the year. These are their names: Ben Hur, in the hill country of Ephraim; Ben Deker, in Makaz, and in Shaalbim, and Beth Shemesh, and Elon Beth Hanan; Ben Hesed, in Arubboth (to him pertained Socoh, and all the land of Hepher); Ben Abinadab, in all the height of Dor (he had Taphath the daughter of Solomon as wife); Baana the son of Ahilud, in Taanach and Megiddo, and all Beth Shean which is beside Zarethan, beneath Jezreel, from Beth Shean to Abel Meholah, as far as beyond Jokmeam; Ben Geber, in Ramoth Gilead (to him pertained the towns of Jair the son of Manasseh, which are in Gilead; even to him pertained the region of Argob, which is in Bashan, sixty great cities with walls and bronze bars); Ahinadab the son of Iddo, in Mahanaim; Ahimaaz, in Naphtali (he also took Basemath the daughter of Solomon as wife); Baana the son of Hushai, in Asher and Bealoth; Jehoshaphat the son of Paruah, in Issachar; Shimei the son of Ela, in Benjamin; Geber the son of Uri, in the land of Gilead, the country of Sihon king of the Amorites and of Og king of Bashan; and he was the only officer who was in the land.
Solomon’s Power, Wealth and Wisdom
Judah and Israel were many as the sand which is by the sea in multitude, eating and drinking and making merry. Solomon ruled over all the kingdoms from the River to the land of the Philistines, and to the border of Egypt: they brought tribute, and served Solomon all the days of his life.
Solomon’s provision for one day was thirty measures of fine flour, and sixty measures of meal, ten head of fat cattle, and twenty head of cattle out of the pastures, and one hundred sheep, besides harts, and gazelles, and roebucks, and fattened fowl. For he had dominion over all the region on this side the River, from Tiphsah even to Gaza, over all the kings on this side the River: and he had peace on all sides around him. Judah and Israel lived safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon. Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen. Those officers provided food for king Solomon, and for all who came to king Solomon’s table, every man in his month; they let nothing be lacking. Barley also and straw for the horses and swift steeds brought they to the place where the officers were, every man according to his duty.
God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and very great understanding, even as the sand that is on the seashore. Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east, and all the wisdom of Egypt. For he was wiser than all men; than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, and Calcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol: and his fame was in all the nations all around. He spoke three thousand proverbs; and his songs were one thousand five. He spoke of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon even to the hyssop that springs out of the wall; he spoke also of animals, and of birds, and of creeping things, and of fish. There came of all peoples to hear the wisdom of Solomon, from all kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 5
Preparations for Temple Construction
Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants to Solomon; for he had heard that they had anointed him king in the place of his father: for Hiram was ever a lover of David. Solomon sent to Hiram, saying, “You know how that David my father could not build a house for the name of Yahweh his God for the wars which were about him on every side, until Yahweh put them under the soles of his feet. But now Yahweh my God has given me rest on every side. There is neither adversary, nor evil occurrence. Behold, I purpose to build a house for the name of Yahweh my God, as Yahweh spoke to David my father, saying, ‘Your son, whom I will set on your throne in your place, he shall build the house for my name.’ Now therefore command that they cut me cedar trees out of Lebanon. My servants shall be with your servants; and I will give you wages for your servants according to all that you shall say. For you know that there is not among us any who knows how to cut timber like the Sidonians.”
It happened, when Hiram heard the words of Solomon, that he rejoiced greatly, and said, “Blessed is Yahweh this day, who has given to David a wise son over this great people.” Hiram sent to Solomon, saying, “I have heard the message which you have sent to me. I will do all your desire concerning timber of cedar, and concerning timber of fir. My servants shall bring them down from Lebanon to the sea. I will make them into rafts to go by sea to the place that you shall appoint me, and will cause them to be broken up there, and you shall receive them. You shall accomplish my desire, in giving food for my household.”
So Hiram gave Solomon timber of cedar and timber of fir according to all his desire. Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand measures of wheat for food to his household, and twenty measures of pure oil. Solomon gave this to Hiram year by year. Yahweh gave Solomon wisdom, as he promised him; and there was peace between Hiram and Solomon; and they two made a treaty together. King Solomon raised a levy out of all Israel; and the levy was thirty thousand men. He sent them to Lebanon, ten thousand a month by courses; a month they were in Lebanon, and two months at home; and Adoniram was over the men subject to forced labor. Solomon had seventy thousand who bore burdens, and eighty thousand who were stone cutters in the mountains; besides Solomon’s chief officers who were over the work, three thousand and three hundred, who bore rule over the people who labored in the work. The king commanded, and they cut out great stones, costly stones, to lay the foundation of the house with worked stone. Solomon’s builders and Hiram’s builders and the Gebalites did fashion them, and prepared the timber and the stones to build the house.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 6
Building the Temple
It happened in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month Ziv, which is the second month, that he began to build the house of Yahweh. The house which king Solomon built for Yahweh, its length was sixty cubits, and its breadth twenty cubits, and its height thirty cubits. The porch before the temple of the house, twenty cubits was its length, according to the breadth of the house; and ten cubits was its breadth before the house. For the house he made windows of fixed lattice work. Against the wall of the house he built stories all around, against the walls of the house all around, both of the temple and of the oracle; and he made side rooms all around. The nethermost story was five cubits broad, and the middle was six cubits broad, and the third was seven cubits broad; for on the outside he made offsets in the wall of the house all around, that the beams should not have hold in the walls of the house.
The house, when it was in building, was built of stone prepared at the quarry; and there was neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building. The door for the middle side rooms was in the right side of the house: and they went up by winding stairs into the middle story, and out of the middle into the third. So he built the house, and finished it; and he covered the house with beams and planks of cedar. He built the stories against all the house, each five cubits high: and they rested on the house with timber of cedar.
The word of Yahweh came to Solomon, saying, “Concerning this house which you are building, if you will walk in my statutes, and execute my ordinances, and keep all my commandments to walk in them; then will I establish my word with you, which I spoke to David your father. I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will not forsake my people Israel.”
So Solomon built the house, and finished it. He built the walls of the house within with boards of cedar: from the floor of the house to the walls of the ceiling, he covered them on the inside with wood; and he covered the floor of the house with boards of fir. He built twenty cubits on the hinder part of the house with boards of cedar from the floor to the walls of the ceiling: he built them for it within, for an oracle, even for the most holy place. The house, that is, the temple before the oracle, was forty cubits long. There was cedar on the house within, carved with buds and open flowers: all was cedar; there was no stone seen. He prepared an oracle in the midst of the house within, to set there the ark of the covenant of Yahweh. Within the oracle was a space of twenty cubits in length, and twenty cubits in breadth, and twenty cubits in its height; and he overlaid it with pure gold: and he covered the altar with cedar. So Solomon overlaid the house within with pure gold: and he drew chains of gold across before the oracle; and he overlaid it with gold. The whole house he overlaid with gold, until all the house was finished: also the whole altar that belonged to the oracle he overlaid with gold.
In the oracle he made two cherubim of olive wood, each ten cubits high. Five cubits was the one wing of the cherub, and five cubits the other wing of the cherub: from the uttermost part of the one wing to the uttermost part of the other were ten cubits. The other cherub was ten cubits: both the cherubim were of one measure and one form. The height of the one cherub was ten cubits, and so was it of the other cherub. He set the cherubim within the inner house; and the wings of the cherubim were stretched forth, so that the wing of the one touched the one wall, and the wing of the other cherub touched the other wall; and their wings touched one another in the midst of the house. He overlaid the cherubim with gold.
He carved all the walls of the house around with carved figures of cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, inside and outside. The floor of the house he overlaid with gold, inside and outside. For the entrance of the oracle he made doors of olive wood: the lintel and door posts were a fifth part of the wall. So he made two doors of olive wood; and he carved on them carvings of cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, and overlaid them with gold; and he spread the gold on the cherubim, and on the palm trees. So also made he for the entrance of the temple door posts of olive wood, out of a fourth part of the wall; and two doors of fir wood: the two leaves of the one door were folding, and the two leaves of the other door were folding. He carved thereon cherubim and palm trees and open flowers; and he overlaid them with gold fitted on the engraved work. He built the inner court with three courses of cut stone, and a course of cedar beams.
In the fourth year was the foundation of the house of Yahweh laid, in the month Ziv. In the eleventh year, in the month Bul, which is the eighth month, was the house finished throughout all its parts, and according to all its fashion. So was he seven years in building it.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 7
Solomon Builds His Palace
Solomon was building his own house thirteen years, and he finished all his house. For he built the house of the forest of Lebanon; its length was one hundred cubits, and its breadth fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits, on four rows of cedar pillars, with cedar beams on the pillars. It was covered with cedar above over the forty-five beams, that were on the pillars; fifteen in a row. There were beams in three rows, and window was over against window in three ranks. All the doors and posts were made square with beams: and window was over against window in three ranks. He made the porch of pillars; its length was fifty cubits, and its breadth thirty cubits; and a porch before them; and pillars and a threshold before them.
He made the porch of the throne where he was to judge, even the porch of judgment: and it was covered with cedar from floor to floor. His house where he was to dwell, the other court within the porch, was of the like work. He made also a house for Pharaoh’s daughter (whom Solomon had taken as wife), like this porch.
All these were of costly stones, even of cut stone, according to measure, sawed with saws, inside and outside, even from the foundation to the coping, and so on the outside to the great court. The foundation was of costly stones, even great stones, stones of ten cubits, and stones of eight cubits. Above were costly stones, even cut stone, according to measure, and cedar wood. The great court around had three courses of cut stone, and a course of cedar beams; like as the inner court of the house of Yahweh, and the porch of the house.
Furnishings for the Temple
King Solomon sent and fetched Hiram out of Tyre. He was the son of a widow of the tribe of Naphtali, and his father was a man of Tyre, a worker in brass; and he was filled with wisdom and understanding and skill, to work all works in brass. He came to king Solomon, and performed all his work.
For he fashioned the two pillars of brass, eighteen cubits high apiece: and a line of twelve cubits encircled either of them about. He made two capitals of molten brass, to set on the tops of the pillars: the height of the one capital was five cubits, and the height of the other capital was five cubits. There were nets of checker work, and wreaths of chain work, for the capitals which were on the top of the pillars; seven for the one capital, and seven for the other capital. So he made the pillars; and there were two rows around on the one network, to cover the capitals that were on the top of the pillars: and so did he for the other capital. The capitals that were on the top of the pillars in the porch were of lily work, four cubits. There were capitals above also on the two pillars, close by the belly which was beside the network: and the pomegranates were two hundred, in rows around on the other capital. He set up the pillars at the porch of the temple: and he set up the right pillar, and called its name Jachin; and he set up the left pillar, and called its name Boaz. On the top of the pillars was lily work: so was the work of the pillars finished.
He made the molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim, round in compass, and its height was five cubits; and a line of thirty cubits encircled it. Under its brim around there were buds which encircled it, for ten cubits, encircling the sea: the buds were in two rows, cast when it was cast. It stood on twelve oxen, three looking toward the north, and three looking toward the west, and three looking toward the south, and three looking toward the east; and the sea was set on them above, and all their hinder parts were inward. It was a handbreadth thick: and its brim was worked like the brim of a cup, like the flower of a lily: it held two thousand baths.
He made the ten bases of brass; four cubits was the length of one base, and four cubits its breadth, and three cubits its height. The work of the bases was like this: they had panels; and there were panels between the ledges; and on the panels that were between the ledges were lions, oxen, and cherubim; and on the ledges there was a pedestal above; and beneath the lions and oxen were wreaths of hanging work. Every base had four bronze wheels, and axles of brass; and the four feet of it had supports: beneath the basin were the supports molten, with wreaths at the side of each. The mouth of it within the capital and above was a cubit: and its mouth was round after the work of a pedestal, a cubit and a half; and also on its mouth were engravings, and their panels were foursquare, not round. The four wheels were underneath the panels; and the axles of the wheels were in the base: and the height of a wheel was a cubit and half a cubit. The work of the wheels was like the work of a chariot wheel: their axles, and their rims, and their spokes, and their naves, were all molten. There were four supports at the four corners of each base: its supports were of the base itself. In the top of the base was there a round compass half a cubit high; and on the top of the base its stays and its panels were of the same. On the plates of its stays, and on its panels, he engraved cherubim, lions, and palm trees, according to the space of each, with wreaths all around. In this way, he made the ten bases: all of them had one casting, one measure, and one form.
He made ten basins of brass: one basin contained forty baths; and every basin was four cubits; and on every one of the ten bases one basin. He set the bases, five on the right side of the house, and five on the left side of the house: and he set the sea on the right side of the house eastward, toward the south. Hiram made the basins, and the shovels, and the basins.
So Hiram made an end of doing all the work that he worked for king Solomon in the house of Yahweh: the two pillars, and the two bowls of the capitals that were on the top of the pillars; and the two networks to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the top of the pillars; and the four hundred pomegranates for the two networks; two rows of pomegranates for each network, to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the pillars; and the ten bases, and the ten basins on the bases; and the one sea, and the twelve oxen under the sea; and the pots, and the shovels, and the basins: even all these vessels, which Hiram made for king Solomon, in the house of Yahweh, were of burnished brass. In the plain of the Jordan did the king cast them, in the clay ground between Succoth and Zarethan. Solomon left all the vessels unweighed, because they were exceeding many: the weight of the brass could not be found out.
Solomon made all the vessels that were in the house of Yahweh: the golden altar, and the table whereupon the show bread was, of gold; and the lampstands, five on the right side, and five on the left, before the oracle, of pure gold; and the flowers, and the lamps, and the tongs, of gold; and the cups, and the snuffers, and the basins, and the spoons, and the fire pans, of pure gold; and the hinges, both for the doors of the inner house, the most holy place, and for the doors of the house, to wit, of the temple, of gold.
Thus all the work that king Solomon worked in the house of Yahweh was finished. Solomon brought in the things which David his father had dedicated, even the silver, and the gold, and the vessels, and put them in the treasuries of the house of Yahweh.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 8
The Ark Brought into the Temple
Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes, the princes of the fathers’ houses of the children of Israel, to king Solomon in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of Yahweh out of the city of David, which is Zion. All the men of Israel assembled themselves to king Solomon at the feast, in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month. All the elders of Israel came, and the priests took up the ark. They brought up the ark of Yahweh, and the Tent of Meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the Tent; even these did the priests and the Levites bring up. King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel, who were assembled to him, were with him before the ark, sacrificing sheep and cattle, that could not be counted nor numbered for multitude.
The priests brought in the ark of the covenant of Yahweh to its place, into the oracle of the house, to the most holy place, even under the wings of the cherubim. For the cherubim spread forth their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubim covered the ark and its poles above. The poles were so long that the ends of the poles were seen from the holy place before the oracle; but they were not seen outside: and there they are to this day. There was nothing in the ark except the two tables of stone which Moses put there at Horeb, when Yahweh made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt. It came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the cloud filled the house of Yahweh, so that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud; for the glory of Yahweh filled the house of Yahweh.
Solomon Dedicates the Temple
Then Solomon said, “Yahweh has said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. I have surely built you a house of habitation, a place for you to dwell in forever.”
The king turned his face about, and blessed all the assembly of Israel: and all the assembly of Israel stood. He said, “Blessed is Yahweh, the God of Israel, who spoke with his mouth to David your father, and has with his hand fulfilled it, saying, ‘Since the day that I brought forth my people Israel out of Egypt, I chose no city out of all the tribes of Israel to build a house, that my name might be there; but I chose David to be over my people Israel.’
“Now it was in the heart of David my father to build a house for the name of Yahweh, the God of Israel. But Yahweh said to David my father, ‘Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart. Nevertheless, you shall not build the house; but your son who shall come forth out of your body, he shall build the house for my name.’ Yahweh has established his word that he spoke; for I have risen up in the place of David my father, and I sit on the throne of Israel, as Yahweh promised, and have built the house for the name of Yahweh, the God of Israel. There I have set a place for the ark, in which is the covenant of Yahweh, which he made with our fathers, when he brought them out of the land of Egypt.”
Solomon stood before the altar of Yahweh in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, and spread forth his hands toward heaven; and he said, “Yahweh, the God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven above, or on earth beneath; who keep covenant and loving kindness with your servants, who walk before you with all their heart; who have kept with your servant David my father that which you promised him. Yes, you spoke with your mouth, and have fulfilled it with your hand, as it is this day. Now therefore, may Yahweh, the God of Israel, keep with your servant David my father that which you have promised him, saying, ‘There shall not fail you a man in my sight to sit on the throne of Israel, if only your children take heed to their way, to walk before me as you have walked before me.’
“Now therefore, God of Israel, please let your word be verified, which you spoke to your servant David my father. But will God in very deed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens can’t contain you; how much less this house that I have built! Yet have respect for the prayer of your servant, and for his supplication, Yahweh my God, to listen to the cry and to the prayer which your servant prays before you this day; that your eyes may be open toward this house night and day, even toward the place of which you have said, ‘My name shall be there;’ to listen to the prayer which your servant shall pray toward this place. Listen to the supplication of your servant, and of your people Israel, when they shall pray toward this place. Yes, hear in heaven, your dwelling place; and when you hear, forgive.
“If a man sins against his neighbor, and an oath is laid on him to cause him to swear, and he comes and swear before your altar in this house; then hear in heaven, and do, and judge your servants, condemning the wicked, to bring his way on his own head, and justifying the righteous, to give him according to his righteousness.
“When your people Israel are struck down before the enemy, because they have sinned against you; if they turn again to you, and confess your name, and pray and make supplication to you in this house: then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of your people Israel, and bring them again to the land which you gave to their fathers.
“When the sky is shut up, and there is no rain, because they have sinned against you; if they pray toward this place, and confess your name, and turn from their sin, when you afflict them: then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of your servants, and of your people Israel, when you teach them the good way in which they should walk; and send rain on your land, which you have given to your people for an inheritance.
“If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence, if there is blight, mildew, locust or caterpillar; if their enemy besieges them in the land of their cities; whatever plague, whatever sickness there is; whatever prayer and supplication is made by any man, or by all your people Israel, who shall each know the plague of his own heart, and spread forth his hands toward this house: then hear in heaven, your dwelling place, and forgive, and do, and render to every man according to all his ways, whose heart you know; (for you, even you only, know the hearts of all the children of men;) that they may fear you all the days that they live in the land which you gave to our fathers.
“Moreover concerning the foreigner, who is not of your people Israel, when he shall come out of a far country for your name’s sake (for they shall hear of your great name, and of your mighty hand, and of your outstretched arm); when he shall come and pray toward this house; hear in heaven, your dwelling place, and do according to all that the foreigner calls to you for; that all the peoples of the earth may know your name, to fear you, as do your people Israel, and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by your name.
“If your people go out to battle against their enemy, by whatever way you shall send them, and they pray to Yahweh toward the city which you have chosen, and toward the house which I have built for your name; then hear in heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause. If they sin against you (for there is no man who doesn’t sin), and you are angry with them, and deliver them to the enemy, so that they carry them away captive to the land of the enemy, far off or near; yet if they shall repent in the land where they are carried captive, and turn again, and make supplication to you in the land of those who carried them captive, saying, ‘We have sinned, and have done perversely; we have dealt wickedly;’ if they return to you with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their enemies, who carried them captive, and pray to you toward their land, which you gave to their fathers, the city which you have chosen, and the house which I have built for your name: then hear their prayer and their supplication in heaven, your dwelling place, and maintain their cause; and forgive your people who have sinned against you, and all their transgressions in which they have transgressed against you; and give them compassion before those who carried them captive, that they may have compassion on them (for they are your people, and your inheritance, which you brought forth out of Egypt, from the midst of the furnace of iron); that your eyes may be open to the supplication of your servant, and to the supplication of your people Israel, to listen to them whenever they cry to you. For you separated them from among all the peoples of the earth, to be your inheritance, as you spoke by Moses your servant, when you brought our fathers out of Egypt, Lord Yahweh.”
It was so, that when Solomon had made an end of praying all this prayer and supplication to Yahweh, he arose from before the altar of Yahweh, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread forth toward heaven. He stood, and blessed all the assembly of Israel with a loud voice, saying, “Blessed be Yahweh, who has given rest to his people Israel, according to all that he promised. There has not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by Moses his servant. May Yahweh our God be with us, as he was with our fathers. Let him not leave us, nor forsake us; that he may incline our hearts to him, to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and his statutes, and his ordinances, which he commanded our fathers. Let these my words, with which I have made supplication before Yahweh, be near to Yahweh our God day and night, that he may maintain the cause of his servant, and the cause of his people Israel, as every day shall require; that all the peoples of the earth may know that Yahweh, he is God. There is none else.
“Let your heart therefore be perfect with Yahweh our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day.”
The king, and all Israel with him, offered sacrifice before Yahweh. Solomon offered for the sacrifice of peace offerings, which he offered to Yahweh, two and twenty thousand head of cattle, and one hundred twenty thousand sheep. So the king and all the children of Israel dedicated the house of Yahweh. The same day did the king make the middle of the court holy that was before the house of Yahweh; for there he offered the burnt offering, and the meal offering, and the fat of the peace offerings, because the bronze altar that was before Yahweh was too little to receive the burnt offering, and the meal offering, and the fat of the peace offerings. So Solomon held the feast at that time, and all Israel with him, a great assembly, from the entrance of Hamath to the brook of Egypt, before Yahweh our God, seven days and seven days, even fourteen days. On the eighth day he sent the people away; and they blessed the king, and went to their tents joyful and glad of heart for all the goodness that Yahweh had shown to David his servant, and to Israel his people.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 9
God Responds to Solomon’s Prayer
It happened, when Solomon had finished the building of the house of Yahweh, and the king’s house, and all Solomon’s desire which he was pleased to do, that Yahweh appeared to Solomon the second time, as he had appeared to him at Gibeon. Yahweh said to him, “I have heard your prayer and your supplication, that you have made before me. I have made this house holy, which you have built, to put my name there forever; and my eyes and my heart shall be there perpetually. As for you, if you will walk before me, as David your father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded you, and will keep my statutes and my ordinances; then I will establish the throne of your kingdom over Israel forever, according as I promised to David your father, saying, ‘There shall not fail you a man on the throne of Israel.’
But if you turn away from following me, you or your children, and not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you, but shall go and serve other gods, and worship them; then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have made holy for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all peoples. Though this house is so high, yet shall everyone who passes by it be astonished, and shall hiss; and they shall say, ‘Why has Yahweh done thus to this land, and to this house?’ and they shall answer, ‘Because they forsook Yahweh their God, who brought forth their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and laid hold of other gods, and worshiped them, and served them. Therefore Yahweh has brought all this evil on them.’”
Solomon’s Other Building Projects
It happened at the end of twenty years, in which Solomon had built the two houses, the house of Yahweh and the king’s house (now Hiram the king of Tyre had furnished Solomon with cedar trees and fir trees, and with gold, according to all his desire), that then king Solomon gave Hiram twenty cities in the land of Galilee. Hiram came out from Tyre to see the cities which Solomon had given him; and they didn’t please him. He said, “What cities are these which you have given me, my brother?” He called them the land of Cabul to this day. Hiram sent to the king one hundred twenty talents of gold.
This is the reason of the levy which king Solomon raised, to build the house of Yahweh, and his own house, and Millo, and the wall of Jerusalem, and Hazor, and Megiddo, and Gezer. Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire, and slain the Canaanites who lived in the city, and given it for a portion to his daughter, Solomon’s wife. Solomon built Gezer, and Beth Horon the lower, and Baalath, and Tamar in the wilderness, in the land, and all the storage cities that Solomon had, and the cities for his chariots, and the cities for his horsemen, and that which Solomon desired to build for his pleasure in Jerusalem, and in Lebanon, and in all the land of his dominion.
As for all the people who were left of the Amorites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, who were not of the children of Israel; their children who were left after them in the land, whom the children of Israel were not able utterly to destroy, of them did Solomon raise a levy of bondservants to this day. But of the children of Israel did Solomon make no bondservants; but they were the men of war, and his servants, and his princes, and his captains, and rulers of his chariots and of his horsemen.
These were the chief officers who were over Solomon’s work, five hundred fifty, who bore rule over the people who labored in the work.
But Pharaoh’s daughter came up out of the city of David to her house which Solomon had built for her: then did he build Millo.
Three times a year did Solomon offer burnt offerings and peace offerings on the altar which he built to Yahweh, burning incense therewith, on the altar that was before Yahweh. So he finished the house.
King Solomon made a navy of ships in Ezion Geber, which is beside Eloth, on the shore of the Red Sea or Sea of Reeds, in the land of Edom. Hiram sent in the navy his servants, sailors who had knowledge of the sea, with the servants of Solomon. They came to Ophir, and fetched from there gold, four hundred and twenty talents, and brought it to king Solomon.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 10
The Queen of Sheba Visits Solomon
When the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of Yahweh, she came to prove him with hard questions. She came to Jerusalem with a very great train, with camels that bore spices, and very much gold, and precious stones; and when she was come to Solomon, she talked with him of all that was in her heart. Solomon told her all her questions: there was not anything hidden from the king which he didn’t tell her. When the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, and the house that he had built, and the food of his table, and the sitting of his servants, and the attendance of his ministers, and their clothing, and his cup bearers, and his ascent by which he went up to the house of Yahweh; there was no more spirit in her.
She said to the king, “It was a true report that I heard in my own land of your acts, and of your wisdom. However I didn’t believe the words, until I came, and my eyes had seen it. Behold, the half was not told me! Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame which I heard. Happy are your men, happy are these your servants, who stand continually before you, who hear your wisdom. Blessed is Yahweh your God, who delighted in you, to set you on the throne of Israel. Because Yahweh loved Israel forever, therefore made he you king, to do justice and righteousness.” She gave the king one hundred twenty talents of gold, and of spices very great store, and precious stones. There came no more such abundance of spices as these which the queen of Sheba gave to king Solomon.
The navy also of Hiram, that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir great plenty of almug trees and precious stones. The king made of the almug trees pillars for the house of Yahweh, and for the king’s house, harps also and stringed instruments for the singers: there came no such almug trees, nor were seen, to this day.
King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatever she asked, besides that which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned, and went to her own land, she and her servants.
Solomon’s Wealth and Splender
Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred sixty-six talents of gold, besides that which the traders brought, and the traffic of the merchants, and of all the kings of the mixed people, and of the governors of the country. King Solomon made two hundred bucklers of beaten gold; six hundred shekels of gold went to one buckler. he made three hundred shields of beaten gold; three minas of gold went to one shield: and the king put them in the house of the forest of Lebanon. Moreover the king made a great throne of ivory, and overlaid it with the finest gold. There were six steps to the throne, and the top of the throne was round behind; and there were stays on either side by the place of the seat, and two lions standing beside the stays. Twelve lions stood there on the one side and on the other on the six steps: there was nothing like it made in any kingdom. All king Solomon’s drinking vessels were of gold, and all the vessels of the house of the forest of Lebanon were of pure gold: none were of silver; it was nothing accounted of in the days of Solomon. For the king had at sea a navy of Tarshish with the navy of Hiram: once every three years came the navy of Tarshish, bringing gold, and silver, ivory, and apes, and peacocks.
So king Solomon exceeded all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. All the earth sought the presence of Solomon, to hear his wisdom, which God had put in his heart. They brought every man his tribute, vessels of silver, and vessels of gold, and clothing, and armor, and spices, horses, and mules, a rate year by year.
Solomon gathered together chariots and horsemen: and he had a thousand and four hundred chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen, that he bestowed in the chariot cities, and with the king at Jerusalem. The king made silver to be in Jerusalem as stones, and cedars made he to be as the sycamore trees that are in the lowland, for abundance. The horses which Solomon had were brought out of Egypt; and the king’s merchants received them in droves, each drove at a price. A chariot came up and went out of Egypt for six hundred shekels of silver, and a horse for one hundred fifty; and so for all the kings of the Hittites, and for the kings of Syria, did they bring them out by their means.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 11
Solomon’s Many Wives and Resulting Unfaithfulness to God
Now King Solomon loved many foreign women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites; of the nations concerning which Yahweh said to the children of Israel, “You shall not go among them, neither shall they come among you; for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.” Solomon joined to these in love. He had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart. For it happened, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods; and his heart was not perfect with Yahweh his God, as was the heart of David his father. For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. Solomon did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and didn’t go fully after Yahweh, as did David his father. Then did Solomon build a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the mountain that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the children of Ammon. So did he for all his foreign wives, who burnt incense and sacrificed to their gods.
Yahweh was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned away from Yahweh, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he didn’t keep that which Yahweh commanded. Therefore Yahweh said to Solomon, “Because this is done by you, and you have not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom from you, and will give it to your servant. Notwithstanding I will not do it in your days, for David your father’s sake; but I will tear it out of the hand of your son. However I will not tear away all the kingdom; but I will give one tribe to your son, for David my servant’s sake, and for Jerusalem’s sake which I have chosen.”
God Raises Enemies Against Solomon
Yahweh raised up an adversary to Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king’s seed in Edom. For it happened, when David was in Edom, and Joab the captain of the army was gone up to bury the slain, and had struck every male in Edom (for Joab and all Israel remained there six months, until he had cut off every male in Edom); that Hadad fled, he and certain Edomites of his father’s servants with him, to go into Egypt, Hadad being yet a little child. They arose out of Midian, and came to Paran; and they took men with them out of Paran, and they came to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, who gave him a house, and appointed him food, and gave him land. Hadad found great favor in the sight of Pharaoh, so that he gave him as wife the sister of his own wife, the sister of Tahpenes the queen. The sister of Tahpenes bore him Genubath his son, whom Tahpenes weaned in Pharaoh’s house; and Genubath was in Pharaoh’s house among the sons of Pharaoh. When Hadad heard in Egypt that David slept with his fathers, and that Joab the captain of the army was dead, Hadad said to Pharaoh, “Let me depart, that I may go to my own country.”
Then Pharaoh said to him, “But what have you lacked with me, that behold, you seek to go to your own country?”
He answered, “Nothing, however only let me depart.”
God raised up another adversary to him, Rezon the son of Eliada, who had fled from his lord Hadadezer king of Zobah. He gathered men to him, and became captain over a troop, when David killed them of Zobah: and they went to Damascus, and lived therein, and reigned in Damascus. He was an adversary to Israel all the days of Solomon, besides the mischief that Hadad did: and he abhorred Israel, and reigned over Syria. Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephraimite of Zeredah, a servant of Solomon, whose mother’s name was Zeruah, a widow, he also lifted up his hand against the king. This was the reason why he lifted up his hand against the king: Solomon built Millo, and repaired the breach of the city of David his father. The man Jeroboam was a mighty man of valor; and Solomon saw the young man that he was industrious, and he put him in charge of all the labor of the house of Joseph. It happened at that time, when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite found him in the way; now Ahijah had clad himself with a new garment; and they two were alone in the field. Ahijah laid hold of the new garment that was on him, and tore it in twelve pieces. He said to Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces; for thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, ‘Behold, I will tear the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to you (but he shall have one tribe, for my servant David’s sake and for Jerusalem’s sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel); because that they have forsaken me, and have worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of Moab, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon. They have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in my eyes, and to keep my statutes and my ordinances, as David his father did.
“‘However I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand; but I will make him prince all the days of his life, for David my servant’s sake whom I chose, who kept my commandments and my statutes; but I will take the kingdom out of his son’s hand, and will give it to you, even ten tribes. To his son will I give one tribe, that David my servant may have a lamp always before me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen me to put my name there. I will take you, and you shall reign according to all that your soul desires, and shall be king over Israel. It shall be, if you will listen to all that I command you, and will walk in my ways, and do that which is right in my eyes, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as David my servant did; that I will be with you, and will build you a sure house, as I built for David, and will give Israel to you. I will for this afflict the seed of David, but not forever.’” Solomon sought therefore to kill Jeroboam; but Jeroboam arose, and fled into Egypt, to Shishak king of Egypt, and was in Egypt until the death of Solomon.
The Death of Solomon
Now the rest of the acts of Solomon, and all that he did, and his wisdom, aren’t they written in the book of the acts of Solomon? The time that Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel was forty years. Solomon slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David his father: and Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 12
The Northern Tribes Revolt against Rehoboam
Rehoboam went to Shechem: for all Israel were come to Shechem to make him king. It happened, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard of it (for he was yet in Egypt, where he had fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam lived in Egypt, and they sent and called him), that Jeroboam and all the assembly of Israel came, and spoke to Rehoboam, saying, “Your father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make you the grievous service of your father, and his heavy yoke which he put on us, lighter, and we will serve you.”
He said to them, “Depart for three days, then come back to me.”
The people departed. King Rehoboam took counsel with the old men, who had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, saying, “What counsel do you give me to return answer to this people?”
They spoke to him, saying, “If you will be a servant to this people this day, and will serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants forever.”
But he forsook the counsel of the old men which they had given him, and took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him, who stood before him. He said to them, “What counsel do you give, that we may return answer to this people, who have spoken to me, saying, ‘Make the yoke that your father did put on us lighter?’”
The young men who had grown up with him spoke to him, saying, “Thus you shall tell this people who spoke to you, saying, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, but make it lighter to us;’ you shall say to them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist. Now whereas my father burdened you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.’”
So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king asked, saying, “Come to me again the third day.” The king answered the people roughly, and forsook the counsel of the old men which they had given him, and spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men, saying, “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.”
So the king didn’t listen to the people; for it was a thing brought about of Yahweh, that he might establish his word, which Yahweh spoke by Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
The Divided Kingdom
When all Israel saw that the king didn’t listen to them, the people answered the king, saying, “What portion have we in David? Neither do we have an inheritance in the son of Jesse. To your tents, Israel! Now see to your own house, David.” So Israel departed to their tents.
But as for the children of Israel who lived in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them. Then king Rehoboam sent Adoram, who was over the men subject to forced labor; and all Israel stoned him to death with stones. King Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem. So Israel rebelled against the house of David to this day. It happened, when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was returned, that they sent and called him to the congregation, and made him king over all Israel: there was none who followed the house of David, but the tribe of Judah only. When Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled all the house of Judah, and the tribe of Benjamin, a hundred and eighty thousand chosen men, who were warriors, to fight against the house of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam the son of Solomon. But the word of God came to Shemaiah the man of God, saying, “Speak to Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the rest of the people, saying, ‘Thus says Yahweh, “You shall not go up, nor fight against your brothers, the children of Israel. Everyone return to his house; for this thing is of me.”’” So they listened to the word of Yahweh, and returned and went their way, according to the word of Yahweh.
Idolatry of Israel Ruler Jeroboam
Then Jeroboam built Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and lived in it; and he went out from there, and built Penuel. Jeroboam said in his heart, “Now the kingdom will return to the house of David. If this people goes up to offer sacrifices in the house of Yahweh at Jerusalem, then the heart of this people will turn again to their lord, even to Rehoboam king of Judah; and they will kill me, and return to Rehoboam king of Judah.” Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold; and he said to them, “It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem. Look and see your gods, Israel, which brought you up out of the land of Egypt!” He set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. This thing became a sin; for the people went to worship before the one, even to Dan. He made houses of high places, and made priests from among all the people, who were not of the sons of Levi. Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like the feast that is in Judah, and he went up to the altar; so did he in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places that he had made. He went up to the altar which he had made in Bethel on the fifteenth day in the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart: and he ordained a feast for the children of Israel, and went up to the altar, to burn incense.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 13
A Man of God Pronounces Judgment on Jeroboam
Behold, there came a man of God out of Judah by the word of Yahweh to Beth El: and Jeroboam was standing by the altar to burn incense. He cried against the altar by the word of Yahweh, and said, “Altar, altar, thus says Yahweh: ‘Behold, a son shall be born to the house of David, Josiah by name. On you he shall sacrifice the priests of the high places who burn incense on you, and they will burn men’s bones on you.’” He gave a sign the same day, saying, “This is the sign which Yahweh has spoken: Behold, the altar will be split apart, and the ashes that are on it will be poured out.”
It happened, when the king heard the saying of the man of God, which he cried against the altar in Bethel, that Jeroboam put out his hand from the altar, saying, “Seize him!” His hand, which he put out against him, dried up, so that he could not draw it back again to himself. The altar also was split apart, and the ashes poured out from the altar, according to the sign which the man of God had given by the word of Yahweh. The king answered the man of God, “Now entreat the favor of Yahweh your God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored me again.”
The man of God entreated Yahweh, and the king’s hand was restored him again, and became as it was before.
The king said to the man of God, “Come home with me, and refresh yourself, and I will give you a reward.”
The man of God said to the king, “Even if you gave me half of your house, I would not go in with you, neither would I eat bread nor drink water in this place; for so was it commanded me by the word of Yahweh, saying, ‘You shall eat no bread, nor drink water, neither return by the way that you came.’” So he went another way, and didn’t return by the way that he came to Bethel.
An Old Prophet’s Disobedience
Now there lived an old prophet in Bethel; and one of his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel. They also told their father the words which he had spoken to the king.
Their father said to them, “Which way did he go?” Now his sons had seen which way the man of God went, who came from Judah. He said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” So they saddled the donkey for him; and he rode on it. He went after the man of God, and found him sitting under an oak. He said to him, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?”
He said, “I am.” Then he said to him, “Come home with me, and eat bread.”
He said, “I may not return with you, nor go in with you; neither will I eat bread nor drink water with you in this place. For it was said to me by the word of Yahweh, ‘You shall eat no bread nor drink water there, nor turn again to go by the way that you came.’”
He said to him, “I also am a prophet as you are; and an angel spoke to me by the word of Yahweh, saying, ‘Bring him back with you into your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.’” He lied to him.
So he went back with him, and ate bread in his house, and drank water. It happened, as they sat at the table, that the word of Yahweh came to the prophet who brought him back; and he cried to the man of God who came from Judah, saying, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘Because you have been disobedient to the mouth of Yahweh, and have not kept the commandment which Yahweh your God commanded you, but came back, and have eaten bread and drunk water in the place of which he said to you, “Eat no bread, and drink no water;” your body shall not come to the tomb of your fathers.’”
It happened, after he had eaten bread, and after he had drunk, that he saddled the donkey for the prophet whom he had brought back. When he had gone, a lion met him by the way, and killed him. His body was cast in the way, and the donkey stood by it. The lion also stood by the body. Behold, men passed by, and saw the body cast in the way, and the lion standing by the body; and they came and told it in the city where the old prophet lived. When the prophet who brought him back from the way heard of it, he said, “It is the man of God who was disobedient to the mouth of Yahweh. Therefore Yahweh has delivered him to the lion, which has mauled him and slain him, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke to him.” He spoke to his sons, saying, “Saddle the donkey for me.” They saddled it. He went and found his body cast in the way, and the donkey and the lion standing by the body. The lion had not eaten the body, nor mauled the donkey. The prophet took up the body of the man of God, and laid it on the donkey, and brought it back. He came to the city of the old prophet to mourn, and to bury him. He laid his body in his own grave; and they mourned over him, saying, “Alas, my brother!”
It happened, after he had buried him, that he spoke to his sons, saying, “When I am dead, then bury me in the tomb in which the man of God is buried. Lay my bones beside his bones. For the saying which he cried by the word of Yahweh against the altar in Bethel, and against all the houses of the high places which are in the cities of Samaria, will surely happen.”
After this thing Jeroboam didn’t return from his evil way, but again made priests of the high places from among all the people. Whoever wanted to, he consecrated him, that there might be priests of the high places. This thing became sin to the house of Jeroboam, even to cut it off, and to destroy it from off the surface of the earth.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 14
Ahijah’s Prophecy against Jeroboam
At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick. Jeroboam said to his wife, “Please get up and disguise yourself, that you won’t be recognized as the wife of Jeroboam. Go to Shiloh. Behold, there is Ahijah the prophet, who spoke concerning me that I should be king over this people. Take with you ten loaves, and cakes, and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what will become of the child.”
Jeroboam’s wife did so, and arose, and went to Shiloh, and came to the house of Ahijah. Now Ahijah could not see; for his eyes were set by reason of his age. Yahweh said to Ahijah, “Behold, the wife of Jeroboam comes to inquire of you concerning her son; for he is sick. Thus and thus you shall tell her; for it will be, when she comes in, that she will pretend to be another woman.”
It was so, when Ahijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, that he said, “Come in, you wife of Jeroboam! Why do you pretend to be another? For I am sent to you with heavy news. Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel: “Because I exalted you from among the people, and made you prince over my people Israel, and tore the kingdom away from the house of David, and gave it you; and yet you have not been as my servant David, who kept my commandments, and who followed me with all his heart, to do that only which was right in my eyes, but have done evil above all who were before you, and have gone and made you other gods, and molten images, to provoke me to anger, and have cast me behind your back: therefore, behold, I will bring evil on the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam every last male, he who is shut up and he who is left at large in Israel, and will utterly sweep away the house of Jeroboam, as a man sweeps away dung, until it is all gone. He who dies of Jeroboam in the city shall the dogs eat; and he who dies in the field shall the birds of the sky eat: for Yahweh has spoken it.”’
Arise therefore, and go to your house. When your feet enter into the city, the child shall die. All Israel shall mourn for him, and bury him; for he only of Jeroboam shall come to the grave, because in him there is found some good thing toward Yahweh, the God of Israel, in the house of Jeroboam. Moreover Yahweh will raise him up a king over Israel, who shall cut off the house of Jeroboam. This is day! What? Even now. For Yahweh will strike Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water; and he will root up Israel out of this good land which he gave to their fathers, and will scatter them beyond the River, because they have made their Asherim, provoking Yahweh to anger. He will give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, which he has sinned, and with which he has made Israel to sin.”
Jeroboam’s wife arose, and departed, and came to Tirzah. As she came to the threshold of the house, the child died. All Israel buried him, and mourned for him, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke by his servant Ahijah the prophet.
The Death of Jeroboam
The rest of the acts of Jeroboam, how he warred, and how he reigned, behold, they are written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel. The days which Jeroboam reigned were two and twenty years: and he slept with his fathers, and Nadab his son reigned in his place.
Judah’s King Rehoboam
Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which Yahweh had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there: and his mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess. Judah did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they committed, above all that their fathers had done. For they also built them high places, and pillars, and Asherim, on every high hill, and under every green tree; and there were also sodomites in the land: they did according to all the abominations of the nations which Yahweh drove out before the children of Israel.
It happened in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem; and he took away the treasures of the house of Yahweh, and the treasures of the king’s house; he even took away all: and he took away all the shields of gold which Solomon had made. King Rehoboam made in their place shields of brass, and committed them to the hands of the captains of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house. It was so, that as often as the king went into the house of Yahweh, the guard bore them, and brought them back into the guard room.
Now the rest of the acts of Rehoboam, and all that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually. Rehoboam slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David: and his mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess. Abijam his son reigned in his place.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 15
Abijam King of Judah
Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam the son of Nebat began Abijam to reign over Judah. Three years reigned he in Jerusalem: and his mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom. He walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him; and his heart was not perfect with Yahweh his God, as the heart of David his father. Nevertheless for David’s sake did Yahweh his God give him a lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem; because David did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh, and didn’t turn aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, except only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite. Now there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all the days of his life. The rest of the acts of Abijam, and all that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? There was war between Abijam and Jeroboam.
Abijam slept with his fathers; and they buried him in the city of David: and Asa his son reigned in his place.
Asa King of Judah
In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel began Asa to reign over Judah. Forty-one years reigned he in Jerusalem: and his mother’s name was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom. Asa did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh, as did David his father. He put away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made. Also Maacah his mother he removed from being queen, because she had made an abominable image for an Asherah; and Asa cut down her image, and burnt it at the brook Kidron. But the high places were not taken away: nevertheless the heart of Asa was perfect with Yahweh all his days. He brought into the house of Yahweh the things that his father had dedicated, and the things that himself had dedicated, silver, and gold, and vessels.
There was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days. Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah, and built Ramah, that he might not allow anyone to go out or come in to Asa king of Judah. Then Asa took all the silver and the gold that were left in the treasures of the house of Yahweh, and the treasures of the king’s house, and delivered them into the hand of his servants; and king Asa sent them to Ben Hadad, the son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, king of Syria, who lived at Damascus, saying, “There is a treaty between me and you, between my father and your father. Behold, I have sent to you a present of silver and gold. Go, break your treaty with Baasha king of Israel, that he may depart from me.”
Ben Hadad listened to king Asa, and sent the captains of his armies against the cities of Israel, and struck Ijon, and Dan, and Abel Beth Maacah, and all Chinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali. It happened, when Baasha heard of it, that he left off building Ramah, and lived in Tirzah. Then king Asa made a proclamation to all Judah; none was exempted: and they carried away the stones of Ramah, and its timber, with which Baasha had built; and king Asa built therewith Geba of Benjamin, and Mizpah.
Now the rest of all the acts of Asa, and all his might, and all that he did, and the cities which he built, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? But in the time of his old age he was diseased in his feet. Asa slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father; and Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place.
Nadab King of Israel
Nadab the son of Jeroboam began to reign over Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah; and he reigned over Israel two years. He did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and walked in the way of his father, and in his sin with which he made Israel to sin.
Baasha the son of Ahijah, of the house of Issachar, conspired against him; and Baasha struck him at Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines; for Nadab and all Israel were laying siege to Gibbethon. Even in the third year of Asa king of Judah did Baasha kill him, and reigned in his place. It happened that, as soon as he was king, he struck all the house of Jeroboam: he didn’t leave to Jeroboam any who breathed, until he had destroyed him; according to the saying of Yahweh, which he spoke by his servant Ahijah the Shilonite; for the sins of Jeroboam which he sinned, and with which he made Israel to sin, because of his provocation with which he provoked Yahweh, the God of Israel, to anger.
Now the rest of the acts of Nadab, and all that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? There was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days.
Baasha King of Israel
In the third year of Asa king of Judah began Baasha the son of Ahijah to reign over all Israel in Tirzah, and reigned twenty-four years. He did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and walked in the way of Jeroboam, and in his sin with which he made Israel to sin.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 16
Jehu’s Prophecy against Baasha
The word of Yahweh came to Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha, saying, “Because I exalted you out of the dust, and made you prince over my people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam, and have made my people Israel to sin, to provoke me to anger with their sins; behold, I will utterly sweep away Baasha and his house; and I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat. The dogs will eat Baasha’s descendants who die in the city; and he who dies of his in the field the birds of the sky will eat.”
Now the rest of the acts of Baasha, and what he did, and his might, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? Baasha slept with his fathers, and was buried in Tirzah; and Elah his son reigned in his place. Moreover by the prophet Jehu the son of Hanani came the word of Yahweh against Baasha, and against his house, both because of all the evil that he did in the sight of Yahweh, to provoke him to anger with the work of his hands, in being like the house of Jeroboam, and because he struck him.
Elah King of Israel
In the twenty-sixth year of Asa king of Judah began Elah the son of Baasha to reign over Israel in Tirzah, and reigned two years. His servant Zimri, captain of half his chariots, conspired against him. Now he was in Tirzah, drinking himself drunk in the house of Arza, who was over the household in Tirzah: and Zimri went in and struck him, and killed him, in the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, and reigned in his place.
It happened, when he began to reign, as soon as he sat on his throne, that he struck all the house of Baasha: he didn’t leave him a single male, neither of his relatives, nor of his friends. Thus Zimri destroyed all the house of Baasha, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke against Baasha by Jehu the prophet, for all the sins of Baasha, and the sins of Elah his son, which they sinned, and with which they made Israel to sin, to provoke Yahweh, the God of Israel, to anger with their vanities. Now the rest of the acts of Elah, and all that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
Zimri King of Israel
In the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah did Zimri reign seven days in Tirzah. Now the people were encamped against Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines. The people who were encamped heard say, Zimri has conspired, and has also struck the king: therefore all Israel made Omri, the captain of the army, king over Israel that day in the camp. Omri went up from Gibbethon, and all Israel with him, and they besieged Tirzah. It happened, when Zimri saw that the city was taken, that he went into the castle of the king’s house, and burnt the king’s house over him with fire, and died, for his sins which he sinned in doing that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, in walking in the way of Jeroboam, and in his sin which he did, to make Israel to sin. Now the rest of the acts of Zimri, and his treason that he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
Omri King of Israel
Then were the people of Israel divided into two parts: half of the people followed Tibni the son of Ginath, to make him king; and half followed Omri. But the people who followed Omri prevailed against the people who followed Tibni the son of Ginath: so Tibni died, and Omri reigned. In the thirty-first year of Asa king of Judah began Omri to reign over Israel, and reigned twelve years: six years reigned he in Tirzah. He bought the hill Samaria of Shemer for two talents of silver; and he built on the hill, and called the name of the city which he built, after the name of Shemer, the owner of the hill, Samaria.
Omri did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and dealt wickedly above all who were before him. For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and in his sins with which he made Israel to sin, to provoke Yahweh, the God of Israel, to anger with their vanities. Now the rest of the acts of Omri which he did, and his might that he showed, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? So Omri slept with his fathers, and was buried in Samaria; and Ahab his son reigned in his place.
Ahab begins his Reign as King of Israel
In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah began Ahab the son of Omri to reign over Israel: and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty-two years. Ahab the son of Omri did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh above all that were before him. It happened, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took as wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and went and served Baal, and worshiped him. He reared up an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. Ahab made the Asherah; and Ahab did yet more to provoke Yahweh, the God of Israel, to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him. In his days did Hiel the Bethelite build Jericho: he laid its foundation with the loss of Abiram his firstborn, and set up its gates with the loss of his youngest son Segub, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke by Joshua the son of Nun.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 17
The Prophet Elijah Predicts as Drought and is Fed by Ravens
Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the foreigners of Gilead, said to Ahab, “As Yahweh, the God of Israel, lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.” The word of Yahweh came to him, saying, “Go away from here, turn eastward, and hide yourself by the brook Cherith, that is before the Jordan. It shall be, that you shall drink of the brook. I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.” So he went and did according to the word of Yahweh; for he went and lived by the brook Cherith, that is before the Jordan. The ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. It happened after a while, that the brook dried up, because there was no rain in the land.
Elijah and the Widow at Zarephath
The word of Yahweh came to him, saying, “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and stay there. Behold, I have commanded a widow there to sustain you.”
So he arose and went to Zarephath; and when he came to the gate of the city, behold, a widow was there gathering sticks: and he called to her, and said, “Please get me a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.”
As she was going to get it, he called to her, and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.”
She said, “As Yahweh your God lives, I don’t have a cake, but a handful of meal in the jar, and a little oil in the jar. Behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and bake it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.”
Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go and do as you have said; but make me of it a little cake first, and bring it out to me, and afterward make some for you and for your son. For thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, ‘The jar of meal shall not empty, neither shall the jar of oil fail, until the day that Yahweh sends rain on the earth.’”
She went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, ate many days. The jar of meal didn’t empty, neither did the jar of oil fail, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke by Elijah.
Elijah Raises the Widow's Son
It happened after these things, that the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, fell sick; and his sickness was so severe, that there was no breath left in him. She said to Elijah, “What have I to do with you, you man of God? You have come to me to bring my sin to memory, and to kill my son!”
He said to her, “Give me your son.” He took him out of her bosom, and carried him up into the room where he stayed, and laid him on his own bed. He cried to Yahweh, and said, “Yahweh my God, have you also brought evil on the widow with whom I stay, by killing her son?”
He stretched himself on the child three times, and cried to Yahweh, and said, “Yahweh my God, please let this child’s soul come into him again.”
Yahweh listened to the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived. Elijah took the child, and brought him down out of the room into the house, and delivered him to his mother; and Elijah said, “Behold, your son lives.”
The woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of Yahweh in your mouth is truth.”[Top of Page]
1 Kings 18
Elijah Confronts Ahab
It happened after many days, that the word of Yahweh came to Elijah, in the third year, saying, “Go, show yourself to Ahab; and I will send rain on the earth.”
Elijah went to show himself to Ahab. The famine was severe in Samaria. Ahab called Obadiah, who was over the household. (Now Obadiah feared Yahweh greatly: for it was so, when Jezebel cut off the prophets of Yahweh, that Obadiah took one hundred prophets, and hid them by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water.) Ahab said to Obadiah, “Go through the land, to all the springs of water, and to all the brooks. Perhaps we may find grass and save the horses and mules alive, that we not lose all the animals.”
So they divided the land between them to pass throughout it: Ahab went one way by himself, and Obadiah went another way by himself. As Obadiah was in the way, behold, Elijah met him: and he recognized him, and fell on his face, and said, “Is it you, my lord Elijah?”
He answered him, “It is I. Go, tell your lord, ‘Behold, Elijah is here!’”
He said, “Wherein have I sinned, that you would deliver your servant into the hand of Ahab, to kill me? As Yahweh your God lives, there is no nation or kingdom, where my lord has not sent to seek you. When they said, ‘He is not here,’ he took an oath of the kingdom and nation, that they didn’t find you. Now you say, ‘Go, tell your lord, “Behold, Elijah is here.”’ It will happen, as soon as I am gone from you, that the Spirit of Yahweh will carry you I don’t know where; and so when I come and tell Ahab, and he can’t find you, he will kill me. But I, your servant, have feared Yahweh from my youth. Wasn’t it told my lord what I did when Jezebel killed the prophets of Yahweh, how I hid one hundred men of Yahweh’s prophets with fifty to a cave, and fed them with bread and water? Now you say, ‘Go, tell your lord, “Behold, Elijah is here;”’ and he will kill me.”
Elijah said, “As Yahweh of Armies lives, before whom I stand, I will surely show myself to him today.” So Obadiah went to meet Ahab, and told him; and Ahab went to meet Elijah. It happened, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, “Is that you, you troubler of Israel?”
He answered, “I have not troubled Israel; but you, and your father’s house, in that you have forsaken the commandments of Yahweh, and you have followed the Baals. Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel to Mount Carmel, and four hundred fifty of the prophets of Baal, and four hundred of the prophets of the Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table.”
Battle of the Gods
So Ahab sent to all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together to Mount Carmel. Elijah came near to all the people, and said, “How long will you waver between the two sides? If Yahweh is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.”
The people answered him not a word.
Then Elijah said to the people, “I, even I only, am left a prophet of Yahweh; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred fifty men. Let them therefore give us two bulls; and let them choose one bull for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on the wood, and put no fire under; and I will dress the other bull, and lay it on the wood, and put no fire under it. You call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of Yahweh. The God who answers by fire, let him be God.”
All the people answered, “It is well said.”
Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, “Choose one bull for yourselves, and dress it first; for you are many; and call on the name of your god, but put no fire under it.”
They took the bull which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any who answered. They leaped about the altar which was made. It happened at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, “Cry aloud; for he is a god. Either he is musing, or he has gone aside, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he sleeps and must be awakened.”
They cried aloud, and cut themselves in their way with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them. It was so, when midday was past, that they prophesied until the time of the offering of the offering; but there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any who regarded.
Elijah said to all the people, “Come near to me;” and all the people came near to him. He repaired the altar of Yahweh that was thrown down. Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of Yahweh came, saying, “Israel shall be your name.” With the stones he built an altar in the name of Yahweh. He made a trench around the altar, large enough to contain two measures of seed. He put the wood in order, and cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood. He said, “Fill four jars with water, and pour it on the burnt offering, and on the wood.” He said, “Do it a second time;” and they did it the second time. He said, “Do it a third time;” and they did it the third time. The water ran around the altar; and he also filled the trench with water.
It happened at the time of the offering of the offering, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, “Yahweh, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. Hear me, Yahweh, hear me, that this people may know that you, Yahweh, are God, and that you have turned their heart back again.”
Then the fire of Yahweh fell, and consumed the burnt offering, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces. They said, “Yahweh, he is God! Yahweh, he is God!”
Elijah said to them, “Seize the prophets of Baal! Don’t let one of them escape!”
They seized them. Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and killed them there. Elijah said to Ahab, “Get up, eat and drink; for there is the sound of abundance of rain.”
So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he bowed himself down on the earth, and put his face between his knees. He said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.”
He went up, and looked, and said, “There is nothing.”
He said, “Go again” seven times.
It happened at the seventh time, that he said, “Behold, a small cloud, like a man’s hand, is rising out of the sea.”
He said, “Go up, tell Ahab, ‘Get ready and go down, so that the rain doesn’t stop you.’”
It happened in a little while, that the sky grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel. The hand of Yahweh was on Elijah; and he tucked his cloak into his belt and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 19
Elijah Flees from Jezebel
Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I don’t make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time!”
When he saw that, he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there. But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, “It is enough. Now, O Yahweh, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers.”
He lay down and slept under a juniper tree; and behold, an angel touched him, and said to him, “Arise and eat!”
He looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on the coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank, and laid down again. The angel of Yahweh came again the second time, and touched him, and said, “Arise and eat, because the journey is too great for you.”
He arose, and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb the Mount of God.
God Appears to Elijah
He came there to a cave, and lodged there; and behold, the word of Yahweh came to him, and he said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
He said, “I have been very jealous for Yahweh, the God of Armies; for the children of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and slain your prophets with the sword. I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.”
He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before Yahweh.”
Behold, Yahweh passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains, and broke in pieces the rocks before Yahweh; but Yahweh was not in the wind. After the wind an earthquake; but Yahweh was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake a fire passed; but Yahweh was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. It was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entrance of the cave. Behold, a voice came to him, and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
He said, “I have been very jealous for Yahweh, the God of Armies; for the children of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and slain your prophets with the sword. I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.”
Yahweh said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. When you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. You shall anoint Jehu the son of Nimshi to be king over Israel; and you shall anoint Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel Meholah to be prophet in your place. It shall happen, that he who escapes from the sword of Hazael, Jehu will kill; and he who escapes from the sword of Jehu, Elisha will kill. Yet will I leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth which has not kissed him.”
The Call of Elisha as Elijah’s Successor
So he departed there, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing, with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed over to him, and cast his mantle on him. He left the oxen, and ran after Elijah, and said, “Let me please kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow you.”
He said to him, “Go back again; for what have I done to you?”
He returned from following him, and took the yoke of oxen, and killed them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave to the people, and they ate. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, and served him.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 20
Israel’s Victories over Syria (Aram)
Ben Hadad the king of Syria gathered all his army together; and there were thirty-two kings with him, and horses and chariots: and he went up and besieged Samaria, and fought against it. He sent messengers to Ahab king of Israel, into the city, and said to him, “Thus says Ben Hadad, ‘Your silver and your gold is mine. Your wives also and your children, even the best, are mine.’”
The king of Israel answered, “It is according to your saying, my lord, O king. I am yours, and all that I have.”
The messengers came again, and said, “Ben Hadad says, ‘I sent indeed to you, saying, “You shall deliver me your silver, and your gold, and your wives, and your children; but I will send my servants to you tomorrow about this time, and they shall search your house, and the houses of your servants; and it shall be, that whatever is pleasant in your eyes, they shall put it in their hand, and take it away.”’”
Then the king of Israel called all the elders of the land, and said, “Please notice how this man seeks mischief; for he sent to me for my wives, and for my children, and for my silver, and for my gold; and I didn’t deny him.”
All the elders and all the people said to him, “Don’t listen, neither consent.”
Therefore he said to the messengers of Ben Hadad, “Tell my lord the king, ‘All that you sent for to your servant at the first I will do; but this thing I cannot do.’”
The messengers departed, and brought him back the message. Ben Hadad sent to him, and said, “The gods do so to me, and more also, if the dust of Samaria shall suffice for handfuls for all the people who follow me.”
The king of Israel answered, “Tell him, ‘Don’t let him who puts on his armor brag like he who takes it off.’”
It happened, when Ben Hadad heard this message, as he was drinking, he and the kings, in the pavilions, that he said to his servants, “Prepare to attack!” They prepared to attack the city.
Behold, a prophet came near to Ahab king of Israel, and said, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘Have you seen all this great multitude? Behold, I will deliver it into your hand this day; and you shall know that I am Yahweh.’”
Ahab said, “By whom?”
He said, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘By the young men of the princes of the provinces.’”
Then he said, “Who shall begin the battle?”
He answered, “You.”
Then he mustered the young men of the princes of the provinces, and they were two hundred and thirty-two. After them, he mustered all the people, even all the children of Israel, being seven thousand. They went out at noon. But Ben Hadad was drinking himself drunk in the pavilions, he and the kings, the thirty-two kings who helped him. The young men of the princes of the provinces went out first; and Ben Hadad sent out, and they told him, saying, “Men are coming out from Samaria.”
He said, “If they have come out for peace, take them alive; or if they have come out for war, take them alive.”
So these went out of the city, the young men of the princes of the provinces, and the army which followed them. They each killed his man. The Syrians fled, and Israel pursued them. Ben Hadad the king of Syria escaped on a horse with horsemen. The king of Israel went out, and struck the horses and chariots, and killed the Syrians with a great slaughter. The prophet came near to the king of Israel, and said to him, “Go, strengthen yourself, and mark, and see what you do; for at the return of the year the king of Syria will come up against you.”
The servants of the king of Syria said to him, “Their god is a god of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we. But let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they. Do this thing: take the kings away, every man out of his place, and put captains in their place. Muster an army, like the army that you have lost, horse for horse, and chariot for chariot. We will fight against them in the plain, and surely we will be stronger than them.”
He listened to their voice, and did so. It happened at the return of the year, that Ben Hadad mustered the Syrians, and went up to Aphek, to fight against Israel. The children of Israel were mustered, and were provisioned, and went against them. The children of Israel encamped before them like two little flocks of young goats; but the Syrians filled the country. A man of God came near and spoke to the king of Israel, and said, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘Because the Syrians have said, “Yahweh is a god of the hills, but he is not a god of the valleys;” therefore I will deliver all this great multitude into your hand, and you shall know that I am Yahweh.’”
They encamped one over against the other seven days. So it was, that in the seventh day the battle was joined; and the children of Israel killed one hundred thousand footmen of the Syrians in one day. But the rest fled to Aphek, into the city; and the wall fell on twenty-seven thousand men who were left. Ben Hadad fled, and came into the city, into an inner room. His servants said to him, “See now, we have heard that the kings of the house of Israel are merciful kings. Please let us put sackcloth on our bodies, and ropes on our heads, and go out to the king of Israel. Maybe he will save your life.”
So they put sackcloth on their bodies and ropes on their heads, and came to the king of Israel, and said, “Your servant Ben Hadad says, ‘Please let me live.’”
He said, “Is he still alive? He is my brother.”
Now the men observed diligently, and hurried to take this phrase; and they said, “Your brother Ben Hadad.”
Then he said, “Go, bring him.”
Then Ben Hadad came out to him; and he caused him to come up into the chariot. Ben Hadad said to him, “The cities which my father took from your father I will restore. You shall make streets for yourself in Damascus, as my father made in Samaria.”
“I,” said Ahab, “will let you go with this covenant.” So he made a covenant with him, and let him go.
A Prophet Condemns Ahab
A certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his fellow by the word of Yahweh, “Please strike me!”
The man refused to strike him. Then he said to him, “Because you have not obeyed the voice of Yahweh, behold, as soon as you are departed from me, a lion shall kill you.” As soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and killed him.
Then he found another man, and said, “Please strike me.”
The man struck him, smiting and wounding him. So the prophet departed, and waited for the king by the way, and disguised himself with his headband over his eyes. As the king passed by, he cried to the king; and he said, “Your servant went out into the midst of the battle; and behold, a man turned aside, and brought a man to me, and said, ‘Guard this man! If by any means he be missing, then your life shall be for his life, or else you shall pay a talent of silver.’ As your servant was busy here and there, he was gone.”
The king of Israel said to him, “So your judgment shall be; yourself have decided it.”
He hurried, and took the headband away from his eyes; and the king of Israel recognized that he was of the prophets. He said to him, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘Because you have let go out of your hand the man whom I had devoted to destruction, therefore your life shall go for his life, and your people for his people.’”
The king of Israel went to his house sullen and angry, and came to Samaria.[Top of Page]
1 Kings 21
It happened after these things, that Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard, which was in Jezreel, hard by the palace of Ahab king of Samaria. Ahab spoke to Naboth, saying, “Give me your vineyard, that I may have it for a garden of herbs, because it is near to my house; and I will give you for it a better vineyard than it. Or, if it seems good to you, I will give you its worth in money.”
Naboth said to Ahab, “May Yahweh forbid me, that I should give the inheritance of my fathers to you!”
Ahab came into his house sullen and angry because of the word which Naboth the Jezreelite had spoken to him; for he had said, “I will not give you the inheritance of my fathers.” He laid himself down on his bed, and turned away his face, and would eat no bread. But Jezebel his wife came to him, and said to him, “Why is your spirit so sad, that you eat no bread?”
He said to her, “Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite, and said to him, ‘Give me your vineyard for money; or else, if it pleases you, I will give you another vineyard for it.’ He answered, ‘I will not give you my vineyard.’”
Jezebel his wife said to him, “Do you now govern the kingdom of Israel? Arise, and eat bread, and let your heart be merry. I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.” So she wrote letters in Ahab’s name, and sealed them with his seal, and sent the letters to the elders and to the nobles who were in his city, who lived with Naboth. She wrote in the letters, saying, “Proclaim a fast, and set Naboth on high among the people. Set two men, base fellows, before him, and let them testify against him, saying, ‘You cursed God and the king!’ Then carry him out, and stone him to death.”
The men of his city, even the elders and the nobles who lived in his city, did as Jezebel had sent to them, according as it was written in the letters which she had sent to them. They proclaimed a fast, and set Naboth on high among the people. The two men, the base fellows, came in and sat before him. The base fellows testified against him, even against Naboth, in the presence of the people, saying, “Naboth cursed God and the king!” Then they carried him out of the city, and stoned him to death with stones. Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, “Naboth has been stoned, and is dead.”
It happened, when Jezebel heard that Naboth was stoned, and was dead, that Jezebel said to Ahab, “Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give you for money; for Naboth is not alive, but dead.”
It happened, when Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, that Ahab rose up to go down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, to take possession of it.
God Announces Judgment against Ahab
The word of Yahweh came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, “Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, who dwells in Samaria. Behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, where he has gone down to take possession of it. You shall speak to him, saying, ‘Thus says Yahweh, “Have you killed and also taken possession?”’ You shall speak to him, saying, ‘Thus says Yahweh, “In the place where dogs licked the blood of Naboth, dogs will lick your blood, even yours.”’”
Ahab said to Elijah, “Have you found me, my enemy?”
He answered, “I have found you, because you have sold yourself to do that which is evil in the sight of Yahweh. Behold, I will bring evil on you, and will utterly sweep you away and will cut off from Ahab every last male, and him who is shut up and him who is left at large in Israel. I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah for the provocation with which you have provoked me to anger, and have made Israel to sin.” Yahweh also spoke of Jezebel, saying, “The dogs shall eat Jezebel by the rampart of Jezreel. The dogs will eat he who dies of Ahab in the city; and the birds of the sky will eat he who dies in the field.”
But there was none like Ahab, who sold himself to do that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, whom Jezebel his wife stirred up. He did very abominably in following idols, according to all that the Amorites did, whom Yahweh cast out before the children of Israel. It happened, when Ahab heard those words, that he tore his clothes, and put sackcloth on his flesh, and fasted, and lay in sackcloth, and went softly.
The word of Yahweh came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, “See how Ahab humbles himself before me? Because he humbles himself before me, I will not bring the evil in his days; but in his son’s days will I bring the evil on his house.”[Top of Page]
1 Kings 22
Micaiah Predicts Ahab’s Death
They continued three years without war between Syria and Israel. It happened in the third year, that Jehoshaphat the king of Judah came down to the king of Israel. The king of Israel said to his servants, “You know that Ramoth Gilead is ours, and we are still, and don’t take it out of the hand of the king of Syria?” He said to Jehoshaphat, “Will you go with me to battle to Ramoth Gilead?”
Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.” Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “Please inquire first for the word of Yahweh.”
Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said to them, “Shall I go against Ramoth Gilead to battle, or shall I forbear?”
They said, “Go up; for the Lord will deliver it into the hand of the king.”
But Jehoshaphat said, “Isn’t there here a prophet of Yahweh, that we may inquire of him?”
The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of Yahweh, Micaiah the son of Imlah; but I hate him; for he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil.”
Jehoshaphat said, “Don’t let the king say so.”
Then the king of Israel called an officer, and said, “Quickly get Micaiah the son of Imlah.”
Now the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah were sitting each on his throne, arrayed in their robes, in an open place at the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets were prophesying before them. Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made him horns of iron, and said, “Thus says Yahweh, ‘With these you shall push the Syrians, until they are consumed.’” All the prophets prophesied so, saying, “Go up to Ramoth Gilead, and prosper; for Yahweh will deliver it into the hand of the king.”
The messenger who went to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, “See now, the prophets declare good to the king with one mouth. Please let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak good.”
Micaiah said, “As Yahweh lives, what Yahweh says to me, that I will speak.”
When he had come to the king, the king said to him, “Micaiah, shall we go to Ramoth Gilead to battle, or shall we forbear?”
He answered him, “Go up and prosper; and Yahweh will deliver it into the hand of the king.” The king said to him, “How many times do I have to adjure you that you speak to me nothing but the truth in the name of Yahweh?”
He said, “I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd. Yahweh said, ‘These have no master. Let them each return to his house in peace.’”
The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “Didn’t I tell you that he would not prophesy good concerning me, but evil?”
Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of Yahweh. I saw Yahweh sitting on his throne, and all the army of heaven standing by him on his right hand and on his left. Yahweh said, ‘Who shall entice Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth Gilead?’ One said one thing; and another said another. A spirit came out and stood before Yahweh, and said, ‘I will entice him.’ Yahweh said to him, ‘How?’ He said, ‘I will go out and will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ He said, ‘You will entice him, and will also prevail. Go out and do so.’ Now therefore, behold, Yahweh has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these your prophets; and Yahweh has spoken evil concerning you.”
Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near, and struck Micaiah on the cheek, and said, “Which way did the Spirit of Yahweh go from me to speak to you?”
Micaiah said, “Behold, you will see on that day, when you go into an inner room to hide yourself.”
The king of Israel said, “Take Micaiah, and carry him back to Amon the governor of the city, and to Joash the king’s son. Say, ‘Thus says the king, “Put this fellow in the prison, and feed him with bread of affliction and with water of affliction, until I come in peace.”’”
Micaiah said, “If you return at all in peace, Yahweh has not spoken by me.” He said, “Listen, all you people!”
The Death of Ahab
So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth Gilead. The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “I will disguise myself, and go into the battle; but you put on your robes.” The king of Israel disguised himself, and went into the battle.
Now the king of Syria had commanded the thirty-two captains of his chariots, saying, Fight neither with small nor great, except only with the king of Israel. It happened, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, “Surely that is the king of Israel!” and they turned aside to fight against him. Jehoshaphat cried out. It happened, when the captains of the chariots saw that it was not the king of Israel, that they turned back from pursuing him. A certain man drew his bow at random, and struck the king of Israel between the joints of the armor. Therefore he said to the driver of his chariot, “Turn your hand, and carry me out of the battle; for I am severely wounded.” The battle increased that day. The king was propped up in his chariot facing the Syrians, and died at evening. The blood ran out of the wound into the bottom of the chariot. A cry went throughout the army about the going down of the sun, saying, “Every man to his city, and every man to his country!”
So the king died, and was brought to Samaria; and they buried the king in Samaria. They washed the chariot by the pool of Samaria; and the dogs licked up his blood where the prostitutes washed themselves; according to the word of Yahweh which he spoke.
Now the rest of the acts of Ahab, and all that he did, and the ivory house which he built, and all the cities that he built, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? So Ahab slept with his fathers; and Ahaziah his son reigned in his place.
Jehoshaphat King of Judah
Jehoshaphat the son of Asa began to reign over Judah in the fourth year of Ahab king of Israel. Jehoshaphat was thirty-five years old when he began to reign; and he reigned twenty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Azubah the daughter of Shilhi. He walked in all the way of Asa his father; He didn’t turn aside from it, doing that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh: however the high places were not taken away; the people still sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places. Jehoshaphat made peace with the king of Israel. Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, and his might that he showed, and how he warred, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? The remnant of the sodomites, that remained in the days of his father Asa, he put away out of the land. There was no king in Edom: a deputy was king. Jehoshaphat made ships of Tarshish to go to Ophir for gold: but they didn’t go; for the ships were broken at Ezion Geber. Then Ahaziah the son of Ahab said to Jehoshaphat, “Let my servants go with your servants in the ships.” But Jehoshaphat would not.
Jehoshaphat slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father; Jehoram his son reigned in his place.
Ahaziah King of Israel
Ahaziah the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and he reigned two years over Israel. He did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, and walked in the way of his father, and in the way of his mother, and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, in which he made Israel to sin. He served Baal, and worshiped him, and provoked to anger Yahweh, the God of Israel, according to all that his father had done.[Top of Page]
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