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Jeroboam’s Son Dies

14 About the same time, Abijah son of Jeroboam got sick. 2-3 Jeroboam told his wife:

Disguise yourself so no one will know you’re my wife, then go to Shiloh, where the prophet Ahijah lives. Take him ten loaves of bread, some small cakes, and honey, and ask him what will happen to our son. He can tell you, because he’s the one who told me I would become king.

She got ready and left for Ahijah’s house in Shiloh.

Ahijah was now old and blind, but the Lord told him, “Jeroboam’s wife is coming to ask about her son. I will tell you what to say to her.”

Jeroboam’s wife came to Ahijah’s house, pretending to be someone else. But when Ahijah heard her walking up to the door, he said:

Come in! I know you’re Jeroboam’s wife—why are you pretending to be someone else? I have some bad news for you. Give your husband this message from the Lord God of Israel: “Jeroboam, you know that I, the Lord, chose you over anyone else to be the leader of my people Israel. I even took David’s kingdom away from his family and gave it to you. But you are not like my servant David. He always obeyed me and did what was right.

“You have made me very angry by rejecting me and making idols out of gold. Jeroboam, you have done more evil things than any king before you.

10 “Because of this, I will destroy your family by killing every man and boy in it, whether slave or free. I will wipe out your family, just as fire burns up trash. 11 Dogs will eat the bodies of your relatives who die in town, and vultures will eat the bodies of those who die in the country. I, the Lord, have spoken and will not change my mind!”

12 That’s the Lord’s message to your husband. As for you, go back home, and right after you get there, your son will die. 13 Everyone in Israel will mourn at his funeral. But he will be the last one from Jeroboam’s family to receive a proper burial, because he’s the only one the Lord God of Israel is pleased with.

14 The Lord will soon choose a new king of Israel, who will destroy Jeroboam’s family. And I mean very soon.[a] 15 The people of Israel have made the Lord angry by setting up sacred poles[b] for worshiping the goddess Asherah. So the Lord will punish them until they shake like grass in a stream. He will take them out of the land he gave to their ancestors, then scatter them as far away as the Euphrates River. 16 Jeroboam sinned and caused the Israelites to sin. Now the Lord will desert Israel.

17 Jeroboam’s wife left and went back home to the town of Tirzah. As soon as she set foot in her house, her son died. 18 Everyone in Israel came and mourned at his funeral, just as the Lord’s servant Ahijah had said.

Jeroboam Dies

19 Everything else Jeroboam did while he was king, including the battles he won, is written in The History of the Kings of Israel. 20 He was king of Israel for twenty-two years, then he died, and his son Nadab became king.

King Rehoboam of Judah

21 Rehoboam son of Solomon was forty-one years old when he became king of Judah, and he ruled seventeen years from Jerusalem, the city where the Lord had chosen to be worshiped. His mother Naamah was from Ammon.

22 The people of Judah disobeyed the Lord and made him even angrier than their ancestors had. 23 They also built their own local shrines[c] and stone images of foreign gods, and they set up sacred poles[d] for worshiping the goddess Asherah on every hill and in the shade of large trees. 24 Even worse, they allowed prostitutes[e] at the shrines, and followed the disgusting customs of the foreign nations that the Lord had forced out of Canaan.

25 After Rehoboam had been king for four years, King Shishak of Egypt attacked Jerusalem. 26 He took everything of value from the temple and the palace, including Solomon’s gold shields.

27 Rehoboam had bronze shields made to replace the gold ones, and he ordered the guards at the city gates to keep them safe. 28 Whenever Rehoboam went to the Lord’s temple, the guards carried the shields. But they always took them back to the guardroom as soon as he was finished.

29 Everything else Rehoboam did while he was king is written in The History of the Kings of Judah. 30 He and Jeroboam were constantly at war. 31 Rehoboam’s mother Naamah was from Ammon, but when Rehoboam died, he was buried beside his ancestors in Jerusalem.[f] His son Abijam then became king.


  1. 14.14 And I mean very soon: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  2. 14.15 sacred poles: Or “trees,” used as symbols of Asherah, the goddess of fertility.
  3. 14.23 local shrines: See the note at 3.2.
  4. 14.23 sacred poles: See the note at 14.15.
  5. 14.24 prostitutes: Men and women sometimes served at the local shrines as prostitutes in the worship of Canaanite gods, but the Lord had forbidden the people of Israel to worship in this way (see Deuteronomy 23.17,18).
  6. 14.31 Jerusalem: See the note at 2.10,11.

Ahijah’s Prophecy Against Jeroboam

14 At that time Abijah son of Jeroboam became ill, and Jeroboam said to his wife, “Go, disguise yourself, so you won’t be recognized as the wife of Jeroboam. Then go to Shiloh. Ahijah(A) the prophet is there—the one who told me I would be king over this people. Take ten loaves of bread(B) with you, some cakes and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what will happen to the boy.” So Jeroboam’s wife did what he said and went to Ahijah’s house in Shiloh.

Now Ahijah could not see; his sight was gone because of his age. But the Lord had told Ahijah, “Jeroboam’s wife is coming to ask you about her son, for he is ill, and you are to give her such and such an answer. When she arrives, she will pretend to be someone else.”

So when Ahijah heard the sound of her footsteps at the door, he said, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam. Why this pretense?(C) I have been sent to you with bad news. Go, tell Jeroboam that this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says:(D) ‘I raised you up from among the people and appointed you ruler(E) over my people Israel. I tore(F) the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you, but you have not been like my servant David, who kept my commands and followed me with all his heart, doing only what was right(G) in my eyes. You have done more evil(H) than all who lived before you.(I) You have made for yourself other gods, idols(J) made of metal; you have aroused(K) my anger and turned your back on me.(L)

10 “‘Because of this, I am going to bring disaster(M) on the house of Jeroboam. I will cut off from Jeroboam every last male in Israel—slave or free.[a](N) I will burn up the house of Jeroboam as one burns dung, until it is all gone.(O) 11 Dogs(P) will eat those belonging to Jeroboam who die in the city, and the birds(Q) will feed on those who die in the country. The Lord has spoken!’

12 “As for you, go back home. When you set foot in your city, the boy will die. 13 All Israel will mourn for him and bury him. He is the only one belonging to Jeroboam who will be buried, because he is the only one in the house of Jeroboam in whom the Lord, the God of Israel, has found anything good.(R)

14 “The Lord will raise up for himself a king over Israel who will cut off the family of Jeroboam. Even now this is beginning to happen.[b] 15 And the Lord will strike Israel, so that it will be like a reed swaying in the water. He will uproot(S) Israel from this good land that he gave to their ancestors and scatter them beyond the Euphrates River, because they aroused(T) the Lord’s anger by making Asherah(U) poles.[c] 16 And he will give Israel up because of the sins(V) Jeroboam has committed and has caused Israel to commit.”

17 Then Jeroboam’s wife got up and left and went to Tirzah.(W) As soon as she stepped over the threshold of the house, the boy died. 18 They buried him, and all Israel mourned for him, as the Lord had said through his servant the prophet Ahijah.

19 The other events of Jeroboam’s reign, his wars and how he ruled, are written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel. 20 He reigned for twenty-two years and then rested with his ancestors. And Nadab his son succeeded him as king.

Rehoboam King of Judah(X)

21 Rehoboam son of Solomon was king in Judah. He was forty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel in which to put his Name. His mother’s name was Naamah; she was an Ammonite.(Y)

22 Judah(Z) did evil in the eyes of the Lord. By the sins they committed they stirred up his jealous anger(AA) more than those who were before them had done. 23 They also set up for themselves high places, sacred stones(AB) and Asherah poles(AC) on every high hill and under every spreading tree.(AD) 24 There were even male shrine prostitutes(AE) in the land; the people engaged in all the detestable(AF) practices of the nations the Lord had driven out before the Israelites.

25 In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, Shishak king of Egypt attacked(AG) Jerusalem. 26 He carried off the treasures of the temple(AH) of the Lord and the treasures of the royal palace. He took everything, including all the gold shields(AI) Solomon had made. 27 So King Rehoboam made bronze shields to replace them and assigned these to the commanders of the guard on duty at the entrance to the royal palace.(AJ) 28 Whenever the king went to the Lord’s temple, the guards bore the shields, and afterward they returned them to the guardroom.

29 As for the other events of Rehoboam’s reign, and all he did, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah? 30 There was continual warfare(AK) between Rehoboam and Jeroboam. 31 And Rehoboam rested with his ancestors and was buried with them in the City of David. His mother’s name was Naamah; she was an Ammonite.(AL) And Abijah[d] his son succeeded him as king.


  1. 1 Kings 14:10 Or Israel—every ruler or leader
  2. 1 Kings 14:14 The meaning of the Hebrew for this sentence is uncertain.
  3. 1 Kings 14:15 That is, wooden symbols of the goddess Asherah; here and elsewhere in 1 Kings
  4. 1 Kings 14:31 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (see also 2 Chron. 12:16); most Hebrew manuscripts Abijam

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