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1 Kings 11-12 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Solomon’s Unfaithfulness to God

11 King Solomon loved many foreign women in addition to Pharaoh’s daughter: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women from the nations about which the Lord had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, and they must not intermarry with you, because they will turn your heart away to follow their gods.” To these women Solomon was deeply attached[a] in love. He had seven hundred wives who were princesses and three hundred who were concubines, and they turned his heart away.

When Solomon was old, his wives turned his heart away to follow other gods. He was not wholeheartedly devoted to the Lord his God, as his father David had been. Solomon followed Ashtoreth, the goddess of the Sidonians, and Milcom, the abhorrent idol of the Ammonites. Solomon did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, and unlike his father David, he did not remain loyal to the Lord.

At that time, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh, the abhorrent idol of Moab, and for Milcom,[b] the abhorrent idol of the Ammonites, on the hill across from Jerusalem. He did the same for all his foreign wives, who were burning incense and offering sacrifices to their gods.

The Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice. 10 He had commanded him about this, so that he would not follow other gods, but Solomon did not do what the Lord had commanded.

11 Then the Lord said to Solomon, “Since you have done this[c] and did not keep my covenant and my statutes, which I commanded you, I will tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant. 12 However, I will not do it during your lifetime for the sake of your father David; I will tear it out of your son’s hand. 13 Yet I will not tear the entire kingdom away from him. I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of my servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem that I chose.”

Solomon’s Enemies

14 So the Lord raised up Hadad the Edomite as an enemy against Solomon. He was of the royal family in Edom. 15 Earlier, when David was in Edom, Joab, the commander of the army, had gone to bury the dead and had struck down every male in Edom. 16 For Joab and all Israel had remained there six months, until he had killed every male in Edom. 17 Hadad fled to Egypt, along with some Edomites from his father’s servants. At the time Hadad was a small boy. 18 Hadad and his men set out from Midian and went to Paran. They took men with them from Paran and went to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, who gave Hadad a house, ordered that he be given food, and gave him land. 19 Pharaoh liked Hadad so much[d] that he gave him a wife, the sister of his own wife, Queen Tahpenes. 20 Tahpenes’s sister gave birth to Hadad’s son Genubath. Tahpenes herself weaned him in Pharaoh’s palace, and Genubath lived there along with Pharaoh’s sons.

21 When Hadad heard in Egypt that David rested with his fathers and that Joab, the commander of the army, was dead, Hadad said to Pharaoh, “Let me leave, so I may go to my own country.”

22 But Pharaoh asked him, “What do you lack here with me for you to want to go back to your own country?”

“Nothing,” he replied, “but please let me leave.”

23 God raised up Rezon son of Eliada as an enemy against Solomon. Rezon had fled from his master King Hadadezer of Zobah 24 and gathered men to himself. He became leader of a raiding party when David killed the Zobaites. He[e] went to Damascus, lived there, and became king in Damascus. 25 Rezon was Israel’s enemy throughout Solomon’s reign, adding to the trouble Hadad had caused. He reigned over Aram[f] and loathed Israel.

26 Now Solomon’s servant, Jeroboam son of Nebat, was an Ephraimite from Zeredah. His widowed mother’s name was Zeruah. Jeroboam rebelled against Solomon, 27 and this is the reason he rebelled against the king: Solomon had built the supporting terraces and repaired the opening in the wall of the city of his father David. 28 Now the man Jeroboam was capable, and Solomon noticed the young man because he was getting things done. So he appointed him over the entire labor force of the house of Joseph.

29 During that time, the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met Jeroboam on the road as Jeroboam came out of Jerusalem. Now Ahijah had wrapped himself with a new cloak, and the two of them were alone in the open field. 30 Then Ahijah took hold of the new cloak he had on, tore it into twelve pieces, 31 and said to Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the Lord God of Israel says: ‘I am about to tear the kingdom out of Solomon’s hand. I will give you ten tribes, 32 but one tribe will remain his for the sake of my servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city I chose out of all the tribes of Israel. 33 For they have abandoned me; they have bowed down to Ashtoreth, the goddess of the Sidonians, to Chemosh, the god of Moab, and to Milcom, the god of the Ammonites. They have not walked in my ways to do what is right in my sight and to carry out my statutes and my judgments as his father David did.

34 “‘However, I will not take the whole kingdom from him but will let him be ruler all the days of his life for the sake of my servant David, whom I chose and who kept my commands and my statutes. 35 I will take ten tribes of the kingdom from his son and give them to you. 36 I will give one tribe to his son, so that my servant David will always have a lamp before me in Jerusalem, the city I chose for myself to put my name there. 37 I will appoint you, and you will reign as king over all you want, and you will be king over Israel.

38 “‘After that, if you obey all I command you, walk in my ways, and do what is right in my sight in order to keep my statutes and my commands as my servant David did, I will be with you. I will build you a lasting dynasty just as I built for David, and I will give you Israel. 39 I will humble David’s descendants, because of their unfaithfulness, but not forever.’”[g]

40 Therefore, Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam, but he fled to Egypt, to King Shishak of Egypt, where he remained until Solomon’s death.

Solomon’s Death

41 The rest of the events of Solomon’s reign, along with all his accomplishments and his wisdom, are written in the Book of Solomon’s Events. 42 The length of Solomon’s reign in Jerusalem over all Israel totaled forty years. 43 Solomon rested with his fathers and was buried in the city of his father David. His son Rehoboam became king in his place.

The Kingdom Divided

12 Then Rehoboam went to Shechem, for all Israel had gone to Shechem to make him king. When Jeroboam son of Nebat heard about it, he stayed in Egypt, where he had fled from King Solomon’s presence. Jeroboam stayed in Egypt.[h] But they summoned him, and Jeroboam and the whole assembly of Israel came and spoke to Rehoboam: “Your father made our yoke harsh. You, therefore, lighten your father’s harsh service and the heavy yoke he put on us, and we will serve you.”

Rehoboam replied, “Go away for three days and then return to me.” So the people left. Then King Rehoboam consulted with the elders who had served his father Solomon when he was alive, asking, “How do you advise me to respond to this people?”

They replied, “Today if you will be a servant to this people and serve them, and if you respond to them by speaking kind words to them, they will be your servants forever.”

But he rejected the advice of the elders who had advised him and consulted with the young men who had grown up with him and attended him. He asked them, “What message do you advise that we send back to this people who said to me, ‘Lighten the yoke your father put on us’?”

10 Then the young men who had grown up with him told him, “This is what you should say to this people who said to you, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, but you, make it lighter on us!’ This is what you should tell them: ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist! 11 Although my father burdened you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke; my father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with barbed whips.’”[i]

12 So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam on the third day, as the king had ordered: “Return to me on the third day.” 13 Then the king answered the people harshly. He rejected the advice the elders had given him 14 and spoke to them according to the young men’s advice: “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to your yoke; my father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with barbed whips.”

15 The king did not listen to the people, because this turn of events came from the Lord to carry out his word, which the Lord had spoken through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam son of Nebat. 16 When all Israel saw that the king had not listened to them, the people answered him:

What portion do we have in David?
We have no inheritance in the son of Jesse.
Israel, return to your tents;
David, now look after your own house!

So Israel went to their tents, 17 but Rehoboam reigned over the Israelites living in the cities of Judah.

18 Then King Rehoboam sent Adoram,[j] who was in charge of forced labor, but all Israel stoned him to death. King Rehoboam managed to get into the chariot and flee to Jerusalem. 19 Israel is still in rebellion against the house of David today.

Rehoboam in Jerusalem

20 When all Israel heard that Jeroboam had come back, they summoned him to the assembly and made him king over all Israel. No one followed the house of David except the tribe of Judah alone. 21 When Rehoboam arrived in Jerusalem, he mobilized one hundred eighty thousand fit young soldiers from the entire house of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin to fight against the house of Israel to restore the kingdom to Rehoboam son of Solomon. 22 But the word of God came to Shemaiah, the man of God: 23 “Say to Rehoboam son of Solomon, king of Judah, to the whole house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the rest of the people, 24 ‘This is what the Lord says: You are not to march up and fight against your brothers, the Israelites. Each of you return home, for this situation is from me.’”

So they listened to the word of the Lord and went back according to the word of the Lord.

Jeroboam’s Idolatry

25 Jeroboam built Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim and lived there. From there he went out and built Penuel. 26 Jeroboam said to himself, “The kingdom might now return to the house of David. 27 If these people regularly go to offer sacrifices in the Lord’s temple in Jerusalem, the heart of these people will return to their lord, King Rehoboam of Judah. They will kill me and go back to the king of Judah.” 28 So the king sought advice.

Then he made two golden calves, and he said to the people, “Going to Jerusalem is too difficult for you. Israel, here are your gods[k] who brought you up from the land of Egypt.” 29 He set up one in Bethel, and put the other in Dan. 30 This led to sin; the people walked in procession before one of the calves all the way to Dan.[l]

31 Jeroboam also made shrines[m] on the high places and made priests from the ranks of the people who were not Levites. 32 Jeroboam made a festival in the eighth month on the fifteenth day of the month, like the festival in Judah. He offered sacrifices on the altar; he made this offering in Bethel to sacrifice to the calves he had made. He also stationed the priests in Bethel for the high places he had made. 33 He offered sacrifices on[n] the altar he had set up in Bethel on the fifteenth day of the eighth month. He chose this month on his own. He made a festival for the Israelites, offered sacrifices on the altar, and burned incense.

Footnotes:

  1. 11:2 Lit Solomon clung
  2. 11:7 Lit Molech
  3. 11:11 Lit “Since this was with you
  4. 11:19 Lit Hadad found much favor in Pharaoh’s eyes
  5. 11:24 LXX; Hb reads They
  6. 11:25 Some Hb mss, LXX, Syr read Edom
  7. 11:38-39 LXX omits and I will give... but not forever
  8. 12:2 LXX, Vg read Jeroboam returned from Egypt; 2Ch 10:2
  9. 12:11 Lit with scorpions, also in v. 14
  10. 12:18 LXX reads Adoniram; 1Kg 4:6; 5:14
  11. 12:28 Or here is your God, or here is your god
  12. 12:30 Some LXX mss read calves to Bethel and the other to Dan
  13. 12:31 Lit a house
  14. 12:33 Or He went up to
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

1 Kings 11-12 New International Version (NIV)

Solomon’s Wives

11 King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter—Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites. They were from nations about which the Lord had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.” Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love. He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray. As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been. He followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites. So Solomon did evil in the eyes of the Lord; he did not follow the Lord completely, as David his father had done.

On a hill east of Jerusalem, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the detestable god of Moab, and for Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites. He did the same for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and offered sacrifices to their gods.

The Lord became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice. 10 Although he had forbidden Solomon to follow other gods, Solomon did not keep the Lord’s command. 11 So the Lord said to Solomon, “Since this is your attitude and you have not kept my covenant and my decrees, which I commanded you, I will most certainly tear the kingdom away from you and give it to one of your subordinates. 12 Nevertheless, for the sake of David your father, I will not do it during your lifetime. I will tear it out of the hand of your son. 13 Yet I will not tear the whole kingdom from him, but will give him one tribe for the sake of David my servant and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.”

Solomon’s Adversaries

14 Then the Lord raised up against Solomon an adversary, Hadad the Edomite, from the royal line of Edom. 15 Earlier when David was fighting with Edom, Joab the commander of the army, who had gone up to bury the dead, had struck down all the men in Edom. 16 Joab and all the Israelites stayed there for six months, until they had destroyed all the men in Edom. 17 But Hadad, still only a boy, fled to Egypt with some Edomite officials who had served his father. 18 They set out from Midian and went to Paran. Then taking people from Paran with them, they went to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, who gave Hadad a house and land and provided him with food.

19 Pharaoh was so pleased with Hadad that he gave him a sister of his own wife, Queen Tahpenes, in marriage. 20 The sister of Tahpenes bore him a son named Genubath, whom Tahpenes brought up in the royal palace. There Genubath lived with Pharaoh’s own children.

21 While he was in Egypt, Hadad heard that David rested with his ancestors and that Joab the commander of the army was also dead. Then Hadad said to Pharaoh, “Let me go, that I may return to my own country.”

22 “What have you lacked here that you want to go back to your own country?” Pharaoh asked.

“Nothing,” Hadad replied, “but do let me go!”

23 And God raised up against Solomon another adversary, Rezon son of Eliada, who had fled from his master, Hadadezer king of Zobah. 24 When David destroyed Zobah’s army, Rezon gathered a band of men around him and became their leader; they went to Damascus, where they settled and took control. 25 Rezon was Israel’s adversary as long as Solomon lived, adding to the trouble caused by Hadad. So Rezon ruled in Aram and was hostile toward Israel.

Jeroboam Rebels Against Solomon

26 Also, Jeroboam son of Nebat rebelled against the king. He was one of Solomon’s officials, an Ephraimite from Zeredah, and his mother was a widow named Zeruah.

27 Here is the account of how he rebelled against the king: Solomon had built the terraces[a] and had filled in the gap in the wall of the city of David his father. 28 Now Jeroboam was a man of standing, and when Solomon saw how well the young man did his work, he put him in charge of the whole labor force of the tribes of Joseph.

29 About that time Jeroboam was going out of Jerusalem, and Ahijah the prophet of Shiloh met him on the way, wearing a new cloak. The two of them were alone out in the country, 30 and Ahijah took hold of the new cloak he was wearing and tore it into twelve pieces. 31 Then he said to Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘See, I am going to tear the kingdom out of Solomon’s hand and give you ten tribes. 32 But for the sake of my servant David and the city of Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, he will have one tribe. 33 I will do this because they have[b] forsaken me and worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Molek the god of the Ammonites, and have not walked in obedience to me, nor done what is right in my eyes, nor kept my decrees and laws as David, Solomon’s father, did.

34 “‘But I will not take the whole kingdom out of Solomon’s hand; I have made him ruler all the days of his life for the sake of David my servant, whom I chose and who obeyed my commands and decrees. 35 I will take the kingdom from his son’s hands and give you ten tribes. 36 I will give one tribe to his son so that David my servant may always have a lamp before me in Jerusalem, the city where I chose to put my Name. 37 However, as for you, I will take you, and you will rule over all that your heart desires; you will be king over Israel. 38 If you do whatever I command you and walk in obedience to me and do what is right in my eyes by obeying my decrees and commands, as David my servant did, I will be with you. I will build you a dynasty as enduring as the one I built for David and will give Israel to you. 39 I will humble David’s descendants because of this, but not forever.’”

40 Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam, but Jeroboam fled to Egypt, to Shishak the king, and stayed there until Solomon’s death.

Solomon’s Death

41 As for the other events of Solomon’s reign—all he did and the wisdom he displayed—are they not written in the book of the annals of Solomon? 42 Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel forty years. 43 Then he rested with his ancestors and was buried in the city of David his father. And Rehoboam his son succeeded him as king.

Israel Rebels Against Rehoboam

12 Rehoboam went to Shechem, for all Israel had gone there to make him king. When Jeroboam son of Nebat heard this (he was still in Egypt, where he had fled from King Solomon), he returned from[c] Egypt. So they sent for Jeroboam, and he and the whole assembly of Israel went to Rehoboam and said to him: “Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but now lighten the harsh labor and the heavy yoke he put on us, and we will serve you.”

Rehoboam answered, “Go away for three days and then come back to me.” So the people went away.

Then King Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served his father Solomon during his lifetime. “How would you advise me to answer these people?” he asked.

They replied, “If today you will be a servant to these people and serve them and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your servants.”

But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him. He asked them, “What is your advice? How should we answer these people who say to me, ‘Lighten the yoke your father put on us’?”

10 The young men who had grown up with him replied, “These people have said to you, ‘Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but make our yoke lighter.’ Now tell them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist. 11 My father laid on you a heavy yoke; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.’”

12 Three days later Jeroboam and all the people returned to Rehoboam, as the king had said, “Come back to me in three days.” 13 The king answered the people harshly. Rejecting the advice given him by the elders, 14 he followed the advice of the young men and said, “My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.” 15 So the king did not listen to the people, for this turn of events was from the Lord, to fulfill the word the Lord had spoken to Jeroboam son of Nebat through Ahijah the Shilonite.

16 When all Israel saw that the king refused to listen to them, they answered the king:

“What share do we have in David,
    what part in Jesse’s son?
To your tents, Israel!
    Look after your own house, David!”

So the Israelites went home. 17 But as for the Israelites who were living in the towns of Judah, Rehoboam still ruled over them.

18 King Rehoboam sent out Adoniram,[d] who was in charge of forced labor, but all Israel stoned him to death. King Rehoboam, however, managed to get into his chariot and escape to Jerusalem. 19 So Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.

20 When all the Israelites heard that Jeroboam had returned, they sent and called him to the assembly and made him king over all Israel. Only the tribe of Judah remained loyal to the house of David.

21 When Rehoboam arrived in Jerusalem, he mustered all Judah and the tribe of Benjamin—a hundred and eighty thousand able young men—to go to war against Israel and to regain the kingdom for Rehoboam son of Solomon.

22 But this word of God came to Shemaiah the man of God: 23 “Say to Rehoboam son of Solomon king of Judah, to all Judah and Benjamin, and to the rest of the people, 24 ‘This is what the Lord says: Do not go up to fight against your brothers, the Israelites. Go home, every one of you, for this is my doing.’” So they obeyed the word of the Lord and went home again, as the Lord had ordered.

Golden Calves at Bethel and Dan

25 Then Jeroboam fortified Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim and lived there. From there he went out and built up Peniel.[e]

26 Jeroboam thought to himself, “The kingdom will now likely revert to the house of David. 27 If these people go up to offer sacrifices at the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem, they will again give their allegiance to their lord, Rehoboam king of Judah. They will kill me and return to King Rehoboam.”

28 After seeking advice, the king made two golden calves. He said to the people, “It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem. Here are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.” 29 One he set up in Bethel, and the other in Dan. 30 And this thing became a sin; the people came to worship the one at Bethel and went as far as Dan to worship the other.[f]

31 Jeroboam built shrines on high places and appointed priests from all sorts of people, even though they were not Levites. 32 He instituted a festival on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, like the festival held in Judah, and offered sacrifices on the altar. This he did in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves he had made. And at Bethel he also installed priests at the high places he had made. 33 On the fifteenth day of the eighth month, a month of his own choosing, he offered sacrifices on the altar he had built at Bethel. So he instituted the festival for the Israelites and went up to the altar to make offerings.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Kings 11:27 Or the Millo
  2. 1 Kings 11:33 Hebrew; Septuagint, Vulgate and Syriac because he has
  3. 1 Kings 12:2 Or he remained in
  4. 1 Kings 12:18 Some Septuagint manuscripts and Syriac (see also 4:6 and 5:14); Hebrew Adoram
  5. 1 Kings 12:25 Hebrew Penuel, a variant of Peniel
  6. 1 Kings 12:30 Probable reading of the original Hebrew text; Masoretic Text people went to the one as far as Dan
New International Version (NIV)

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