1 Kings 15
New English Translation
Abijah’s Reign over Judah
15 In the eighteenth year of the reign of Jeroboam son of Nebat, Abijah[a] became king over Judah. 2 He ruled for three years in Jerusalem. His mother was Maacah, the daughter of Abishalom.[b] 3 He followed all the sinful practices of his father before him. He was not wholeheartedly devoted to the Lord his God, as his ancestor David had been.[c] 4 Nevertheless for David’s sake the Lord his God maintained his dynasty[d] in Jerusalem by giving him a son[e] to succeed him[f] and by protecting Jerusalem.[g] 5 He did this[h] because David had done what he approved[i] and had not disregarded any of his commandments[j] his entire lifetime, except for the incident involving Uriah the Hittite. 6 Rehoboam[k] and Jeroboam were continually at war with each other throughout Abijah’s[l] lifetime. 7 The rest of the events of Abijah’s reign, including all his accomplishments, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Judah.[m] Abijah and Jeroboam had been at war with each other. 8 Abijah passed away[n] and was buried[o] in the City of David. His son Asa replaced him as king.
Asa’s Reign over Judah
9 In the twentieth year of Jeroboam’s reign over Israel, Asa became the king of Judah. 10 He ruled for forty-one years in Jerusalem. His grandmother[p] was Maacah daughter of Abishalom. 11 Asa did what the Lord approved[q] as his ancestor[r] David had done. 12 He removed the male cultic prostitutes from the land and got rid of all the disgusting idols[s] his ancestors[t] had made. 13 He also removed Maacah his grandmother[u] from her position as queen mother[v] because she had made a loathsome Asherah pole. Asa cut down her loathsome pole and burned it in the Kidron Valley. 14 The high places were not eliminated, yet Asa was wholeheartedly devoted to the Lord throughout his lifetime.[w] 15 He brought the holy items that he and his father had made into the Lord’s temple, including the silver, gold, and other articles.[x]
16 Now Asa and King Baasha of Israel were continually at war with each other.[y] 17 King Baasha of Israel attacked Judah and established Ramah as a military outpost to prevent anyone from leaving or entering the land of King Asa of Judah.[z] 18 Asa took all the silver and gold that was left in the treasuries of the Lord’s temple and of the royal palace and handed it to his servants. He then told them to deliver it[aa] to Ben Hadad son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, king of Syria, ruler in Damascus, along with this message: 19 “I want to make a treaty with you, like the one our fathers made.[ab] See, I have sent you silver and gold as a present. Break your treaty with King Baasha of Israel, so he will retreat from my land.”[ac] 20 Ben Hadad accepted King Asa’s offer and ordered his army commanders to attack the cities of Israel.[ad] They conquered[ae] Ijon, Dan, Abel Beth Maacah, and all the territory of Naphtali, including the region of Kinnereth.[af] 21 When Baasha heard the news, he stopped fortifying[ag] Ramah and settled down in Tirzah. 22 King Asa ordered all the men of Judah (no exemptions were granted) to carry away the stones and wood that Baasha had used to build Ramah.[ah] King Asa used the materials to build up[ai] Geba (in Benjamin) and Mizpah.
23 The rest of the events of Asa’s reign, including all his successes and accomplishments, as well as a record of the cities he built, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Judah.[aj] Yet when he was very old he developed a foot disease.[ak] 24 Asa passed away[al] and was buried with his ancestors in the city of his ancestor David. His son Jehoshaphat replaced him as king.
Nadab’s Reign over Israel
25 In the second year of Asa’s reign over Judah, Jeroboam’s son Nadab became the king of Israel; he ruled Israel for two years. 26 He did evil in the sight of[am] the Lord. He followed in his father’s footsteps and encouraged Israel to sin.[an]
27 Baasha son of Ahijah, from the tribe of Issachar, conspired against Nadab[ao] and assassinated him in Gibbethon, which was in Philistine territory. This happened while Nadab and all the Israelite army were besieging Gibbethon. 28 Baasha killed him in the third year of Asa’s reign over Judah and replaced him as king. 29 When he became king, he executed Jeroboam’s entire family.[ap] He wiped out[aq] everyone who breathed, in keeping with the Lord’s message that he had spoken through his servant Ahijah the Shilonite. 30 This happened because of the sins which Jeroboam committed and which he made Israel commit. These sins angered the Lord God of Israel.[ar]
31 The rest of the events of Nadab’s reign, including all his accomplishments, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Israel.[as] 32 Asa and King Baasha of Israel were continually at war with each other.
Baasha’s Reign over Israel
33 In the third year of Asa’s reign over Judah, Baasha son of Ahijah became king over all Israel in Tirzah; he ruled for twenty-four years. 34 He did evil in the sight of[at] the Lord; he followed in Jeroboam’s footsteps and encouraged Israel to sin.[au]
- 1 Kings 15:1 tc The Old Greek also has the phrase “the son of Rehoboam.”
- 1 Kings 15:2 sn Abishalom (also in v. 10) is a variant of the name Absalom (cf. 2 Chr 11:20). The more common form is used by TEV, NLT.
- 1 Kings 15:3 tn Heb “his heart was not complete with the Lord his God, like the heart of David his father.”
- 1 Kings 15:4 tn Heb “gave him a lamp.”
- 1 Kings 15:4 tc The Old Greek has the plural “his sons.”
- 1 Kings 15:4 tn Heb “by raising up his son after him.”
- 1 Kings 15:4 tn Heb “and by causing Jerusalem to stand firm.”
- 1 Kings 15:5 tn The words “he did this” are added for stylistic reasons.
- 1 Kings 15:5 tn Heb “what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
- 1 Kings 15:5 tn Heb “and had not turned aside from all which he commanded him.”
- 1 Kings 15:6 tc Most Hebrew mss read “Rehoboam”; a few Hebrew mss and the Syriac read “Abijam” (a variant of Abijah).
- 1 Kings 15:6 tn Heb “his”; the referent (Abijah) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- 1 Kings 15:7 tn Heb “As for the rest of the events of Abijah, and all which he did, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Judah?”
- 1 Kings 15:8 tn Heb “lay down with his fathers.” The Old Greek also has these words: “in the twenty-eighth year of Jeroboam.”
- 1 Kings 15:8 tn Heb “and they buried him.”
- 1 Kings 15:10 tn Heb “mother,” but Hebrew often uses the terms “father” and “mother” for grandparents and more remote ancestors.
- 1 Kings 15:11 tn Heb “what was right in the eyes of the Lord.”
- 1 Kings 15:11 tn Heb “father,” but Hebrew often uses the terms “father” and “mother” for grandparents and more remote ancestors.
- 1 Kings 15:12 tn The word used here, גִלּוּלִים [gillulim], is always used as a disdainful reference to idols. It is generally thought to have originally referred to “dung pellets” (cf. KBL 183 s.v. גִלּוּלִים). It is only one of several terms used in this way, such as “worthless things” (אֱלִילִים, ʾelilim), “vanities” or “empty winds” (הֲבָלִים, havalim).
- 1 Kings 15:12 tn Heb “fathers” (also in v. 24).
- 1 Kings 15:13 tn Heb “mother,” but Hebrew often uses the terms “father” and “mother” for grandparents and more remote ancestors.
- 1 Kings 15:13 tn The Hebrew term גְּבִירָה (gevirah) can denote “queen” or “queen mother” depending on the context. Here the latter is indicated, since Maacah was the wife of Rehoboam and mother of Abijah.
- 1 Kings 15:14 tn Heb “yet the heart of Asa was complete with the Lord all his days.”
- 1 Kings 15:15 tn Heb “and he brought the holy things of his father and his holy things (into) the house of the Lord, silver, gold, and items.” Instead of “his holy things,” a marginal reading (Qere) in the Hebrew text has “the holy things of [the house of the Lord].”
- 1 Kings 15:16 tn Heb “There was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days.”
- 1 Kings 15:17 tn Heb “and he built up Ramah so as to not permit going out or coming in to Asa king of Judah.”
- 1 Kings 15:18 tn Heb “King Asa sent it.”
- 1 Kings 15:19 tn Heb “[May there be] a covenant between me and you [as there was] between my father and your father.”
- 1 Kings 15:19 tn Heb “so he will go up from upon me.”
- 1 Kings 15:20 tn Heb “and Ben Hadad listened to King Asa and sent the commanders of the armies which belonged to him against the cities of Israel.”
- 1 Kings 15:20 tn Heb “he struck down.”
- 1 Kings 15:20 sn A city in Galilee (Deut 3:17) along with its surrounding region; Kinnereth was also another name for the Sea of Galilee.
- 1 Kings 15:21 tn Heb “building.”
- 1 Kings 15:22 tn Heb “and King Asa made a proclamation to all Judah, there was no one exempt, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its wood which Baasha had built.”
- 1 Kings 15:22 tn Heb “and King Asa built with them.”
- 1 Kings 15:23 tn Heb “As for the rest of all the events of Asa, and all his strength and all which he did and the cities which he built, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Judah?”
- 1 Kings 15:23 tn Heb “Yet in the time of his old age he became sick in his feet.”
- 1 Kings 15:24 tn Heb “lay down with his fathers.”
- 1 Kings 15:26 tn Heb “in the eyes of.”
- 1 Kings 15:26 tn Heb “and he walked in the way of his father and in his sin which he made Israel sin.”
- 1 Kings 15:27 tn Heb “against him”; the referent (Nadab) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- 1 Kings 15:29 tn Heb “house,” meaning “family” by metonymy.
- 1 Kings 15:29 tn Heb “He did not allow to survive.”
- 1 Kings 15:30 tn Heb “because of Jeroboam which he committed and which he made Israel commit, by his provocation by which he made the Lord God of Israel angry.”
- 1 Kings 15:31 tn Heb “As for the rest of the events of Nadab, and all which he did, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Israel?”
- 1 Kings 15:34 tn Heb “in the eyes of.”
- 1 Kings 15:34 tn Heb “and he walked in the way of Jeroboam and in his sin which he made Israel sin.”