1 Kings 141 ▼ At that time Jeroboam’s son Abijah became sick. 2 Jeroboam told his wife, “Disguise ▼
▼ Heb “Get up, change yourself.”yourself so that people cannot recognize you are Jeroboam’s wife. Then go to Shiloh; Ahijah the prophet, who told me I would rule over this nation, lives there. ▼
▼ Heb “look, Ahijah the prophet is there, he told me [I would be] king over this nation.”3 Take ▼
▼ Heb “take in your hand.”ten loaves of bread, some small cakes, and a container of honey and visit him. He will tell you what will happen to the boy.”
4 Jeroboam’s wife did as she was told. She went to Shiloh and visited Ahijah. ▼
▼ Heb “and the wife of Jeroboam did so; she arose and went to Shiloh and entered the house of Ahijah.”Now Ahijah could not see; he had lost his eyesight in his old age. ▼
▼ Heb “his eyes were set because of his old age.”5 But the Lord had told Ahijah, “Look, Jeroboam’s wife is coming to find out from you what will happen to her son, for he is sick. Tell her so-and-so. ▼
▼ Tell her so-and-so. Certainly the Lord gave Ahijah a specific message to give to Jeroboam’s wife (see vv. 6–16), but the author of Kings here condenses the Lord’s message with the words “so-and-so.” For dramatic effect he prefers to have us hear the message from Ahijah’s lips as he speaks to the king’s wife.When she comes, she will be in a disguise.” 6 When Ahijah heard the sound of her footsteps as she came through the door, he said, “Come on in, wife of Jeroboam! Why are you pretending to be someone else? I have been commissioned to give you bad news. ▼
▼ Heb “I am sent to you [with] a hard [message].”7 Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘This is what the Lord God of Israel says: “I raised you up ▼
▼ The Hebrew text has “because” at the beginning of the sentence. In the Hebrew text vv. 7–11 are one long sentence comprised of a causal clause giving the reason for divine punishment (vv. 7–9) and the main clause announcing the punishment (vv. 10–11). The translation divides this lengthy sentence for stylistic reasons.from among the people and made you ruler over my people Israel. 8 I tore the kingdom away from the Davidic dynasty and gave it to you. But you are not like my servant David, who kept my commandments and followed me wholeheartedly by doing only what I approve. ▼
▼ Heb “what was right in my eyes.”9 You have sinned more than all who came before you. You went and angered me by making other gods, formed out of metal; you have completely disregarded me. ▼
▼ Heb “you went and you made for yourself other gods, metal [ones], angering me, and you threw me behind your back.”10 So I am ready to bring disaster ▼ on the dynasty ▼ of Jeroboam. I will cut off every last male belonging to Jeroboam in Israel, including even the weak and incapacitated. ▼
▼ Heb “and I will cut off from Jeroboam those who urinate against a wall (including both those who are) restrained and let free (or “abandoned”) in Israel.” The precise meaning of the idiomatic phrase עָצוּר וְעָזוּב (’atsur ve’azuv) is uncertain. For various options see HALOT 871 s.v. עצר 6 and M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 107. The two terms are usually taken as polar opposites (“slaves and freemen” or “minors and adults”), but Cogan and Tadmor, on the basis of contextual considerations (note the usage with אֶפֶס [’efes], “nothing but”) in Deut 32:36 and 2 Kgs 14:26, argue convincingly that the terms are synonyms, meaning “restrained and abandoned,” and refer to incapable or incapacitated individuals.I will burn up the dynasty of Jeroboam, just as one burns manure until it is completely consumed. ▼
▼ The traditional view understands the verb בָּעַר (ba’ar) to mean “burn.” Manure was sometimes used as fuel (see Ezek 4:12, 15). However, an alternate view takes בָּעַר as a homonym meaning “sweep away” (HALOT 146 s.v. II בער). In this case one might translate, “I will sweep away the dynasty of Jeroboam, just as one sweeps away manure it is gone” (cf. ASV, NASB, TEV). Either metaphor emphasizes the thorough and destructive nature of the coming judgment.11 Dogs will eat the members of your family ▼
▼ The Hebrew text has “belonging to Jeroboam” here.who die in the city, and the birds of the sky will eat the ones who die in the country.”’ Indeed, the Lord has announced it!
12 “As for you, get up and go home. When you set foot in the city, the boy will die. 13 All Israel will mourn him and bury him. He is the only one in Jeroboam’s family ▼ who will receive a decent burial, for he is the only one in whom the Lord God of Israel found anything good. 14 The Lord will raise up a king over Israel who will cut off Jeroboam’s dynasty. ▼ It is ready to happen! ▼
▼ Heb “This is the day. What also now?” The precise meaning of the second half of the statement is uncertain.15 The Lord will attack Israel, making it like a reed that sways in the water. ▼
▼ The elliptical Hebrew text reads literally “and the Lord will strike Israel as a reed sways in the water.”He will remove Israel from this good land he gave to their ancestors ▼ and scatter them beyond the Euphrates River, ▼
▼ Heb “the River.” In biblical Hebrew this is a typical reference to the Euphrates River. The name “Euphrates” has been supplied in the translation for clarity.because they angered the Lord by making Asherah poles. ▼
▼ Heb “because they made their Asherah poles that anger the Lord”; or “their images of Asherah”; ASV, NASB “their Asherim”; NCV “they set up idols to worship Asherah.”▼
▼ Asherah was a leading deity of the Canaanite pantheon, wife/sister of El and goddess of fertility. She was commonly worshiped at shrines in or near groves of evergreen trees, or, failing that, at places marked by wooden poles. These were to be burned or cut down (Deut 12:3; 16:21; Judg 6:25, 28, 30; 2 Kgs 18:4).16 He will hand Israel over to their enemies ▼
▼ Heb “and he will give [up] Israel.”because of the sins which Jeroboam committed and which he made Israel commit.”
17 So Jeroboam’s wife got up and went back to ▼
▼ Heb “went and entered.”Tirzah. As she crossed the threshold of the house, the boy died. 18 All Israel buried him and mourned for him, just as the Lord had predicted ▼
▼ Heb “according to the word of the Lord which he spoke.”through his servant the prophet Ahijah.
Jeroboam’s Reign Ends19 The rest of the events of Jeroboam’s reign, including the details of his battles and rule, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Israel. ▼
▼ Heb “As for the rest of the events of Jeroboam, how he fought and how he ruled, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Israel?”20 Jeroboam ruled for twenty-two years; then he passed away. ▼
▼ Heb “lay down with his fathers.”His son Nadab replaced him as king.
Rehoboam’s Reign over Judah21 Now Rehoboam son of Solomon ruled in Judah. He ▼
▼ Heb “Rehoboam.” The proper name has been replaced by the pronoun (“he”) in the translation for stylistic reasons.was forty-one years old when he became king and he ruled for seventeen years in Jerusalem, ▼ the city the Lord chose from all the tribes of Israel to be his home. ▼
▼ Heb “the city where the Lord chose to place his name from all the tribes of Israel.”His mother was an Ammonite woman ▼
▼ Heb “an Ammonite”; the word “woman” is implied.named Naamah.
22 Judah did evil in the sight of ▼
▼ Heb “in the eyes of.”the Lord. They made him more jealous by their sins than their ancestors had done. ▼
▼ Heb “and they made him jealous more than all which their fathers had done by their sins which they sinned.”23 They even built for themselves high places, sacred pillars, and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every green tree. 24 There were also male cultic prostitutes ▼
▼ The Old Greek translation has “a conspiracy” rather than “male cultic prostitutes.”in the land. They committed the same horrible sins as the nations ▼
▼ Heb “they did according to all the abominable acts of the nations.”that the Lord had driven out from before the Israelites.
25 In King Rehoboam’s fifth year, King Shishak of Egypt attacked Jerusalem. 26 He took away the treasures of the Lord’s temple and of the royal palace; he took everything, including all the golden shields that Solomon had made. 27 King Rehoboam made bronze shields to replace them and assigned them to the officers of the royal guard ▼
▼ Heb “runners.”who protected the entrance to the royal palace. 28 Whenever the king visited the Lord’s temple, the royal guard carried them and then brought them back to the guardroom.
29 The rest of the events of Rehoboam’s reign, including his accomplishments, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the
Kings of Judah. ▼
▼ Heb “As for the rest of the events of Rehoboam, and all which he did, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Judah?”30 Rehoboam and Jeroboam were continually at war with each other. 31 Rehoboam passed away ▼
▼ Heb “lay down with his fathers.”and was buried with his ancestors in the city of David. His mother was an Ammonite named Naamah. His son Abijah ▼ replaced him as king.
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