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children in fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharvaim.
So they feared the Lord, and made unto themselves of the lowest of them priests of the high places, which sacrificed for them in the houses of the high places. They feared the Lord, and served their own gods, after the manner of the nations whom they carried away from thence. So these nations feared the Lord, and served their graven images, both their children, and their children's children: as did their fathers, so do they unto this day.1
1 Samaria was evidently colonized by successive settlements under different kings (see p. 439). As a sect, the Samaritans acknowledge the Mosaic rites and ordinances. Gerizim is their holy mountain, on which was built, about 432 B. C., the Samaritan temple destroyed some three hundred years after by John Hyrcanus. The enmity between Samaritans and Jews, beginning after the return from captivity, was marked in New Testament times. About 150 of them still persist in Nablus (Shechem), and observe the Passover annually on Gorizim.
JUDAH TO JEHOIACHIN'S RELEASE
Rehoboam (1 Kings xiv. 21-31; 2 Chron. xi. 13–17; xii. 5-8). And Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty and one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which the Lord did choose out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. And his mother's name was Naamah an Ammonitess.
And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him out of all their coasts. For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the Lord: and he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the he-goats, and for the calves 1 which he had made. And after them out of all the tribes of Israel such as set their hearts to seek the Lord God of Israel came to Jerusalem, to sacrifice unto the Lord God of their fathers. So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam the son of Solomon strong, three years: for three years they walked in the way of David and Solomon.
And Judah did evil in the sight of the Lord, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they had 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: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the Lord cast out before the children of Israel.
And it came to pass in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem. Then came
1 The he-goats were probably satyrlike demons; the calves were symbolic of Jehovah.
2 sodomites. 'Temple prostitutes' persons of either sex, who made a practice of the unchaste rites connected especially with the cult of Ashtart.
8 Shishak. Sheshonk I, the Libyan founder of the 22d dynasty. He reigned about 945-924 B. C. His inscription on a wall of the great temple at Karnak gives a list of subjected cities both in Judah and Israel.
Shemaiah the prophet to Rehoboam, and to the princes of Judah, that were gathered together to Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said unto them: "Thus saith the Lord, Ye have forsaken me, and therefore have I also left you in the hand of Shishak." Whereupon the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, "The Lord is righteous." And when the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah, saying: "They have humbled themselves; therefore I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance; and my wrath shall not be poured out upon Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. Nevertheless they shall be his servants; that they may know my service, and the service of the kingdoms of the countries." So Shishak king of Egypt came up, and he took away the treasures of the house of the Lord, 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. And king Rehoboam made in their stead brazen shields, and committed them unto the hands of the chief of the guard, which kept the door of the king's house. And it was so when the king went into the house of the Lord, that the guard bare them, and brought them back into the guard chamber.
Now the rest of the acts of Re- The God Amon bringing captive Cities of hoboam, and all that he did, are
Palestine to Shishak. From a relief at
they not written in the book of
1 The Greek version makes these shields those which David had taken from the Syrians under Hadadezer.
slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David.
Abijam (1 Kings xiv. 31-xv. 8). And Abijam his son reigned in his stead. Three years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom.1 And he walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father. Nevertheless for David's sake did the Lord 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 the Lord, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life. Now the rest of the acts of Abijam, and all that he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? And there was war between Abijam and Jeroboam. And Abijam slept with his fathers; and they buried him in the city of David: and Asa his son reigned in his stead.
Asa (1 Kings xv. 9-22; 2 Chron. xvi. 7-14). In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel reigned Asa over Judah. And forty and one years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Maachah,' the daughter of Abishalom. And Asa did that which was right in the eyes of the Lord, as did David his father. And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made. And als Maachah his mother, even her he removed from being queen, because she had made an abominable image for an asherah; and Asa destroyed her idol, and burnt it by the brook Kidron. But the high places were not removed: nevertheless Asa's heart was perfect with the Lord all his days. And he brought in the things which his father had dedicated, and the things which himself had dedicated, into the house of the Lord, silver, and gold, and vessels.
And there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days. And Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah, and built Ramah, that he might not suffer any to go out or come
1 Abishalom. Absalom. Josephus makes Maachah the daughter of Tamar, and hence the granddaughter of Absalom.
2 If this is the Maachah of the preceding paragraph, she must have been Asa's grandmother.
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 the Lord, 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, that dwelt at Damascus, saying: "There is a league between me and thee, as there was between my father and thy father: behold,
have sent unto thee a present of silver and gold; come and break thy league with Baasha king of Israel, that he may depart from me. "So Ben-hadad hearkened unto king Asa, and sent the captains of the hosts which he had against the cities of Israel, and smote Ijon, and Dan, and Abel-beth-maachah, and all Cinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali. And it came to pass, when Baasha heard thereof, that he left off building of Ramah, and returned to Tirzah. Then king Asa made a proclamation throughout all Judah; none was exempted: and they took away the stones of Ramah, and the timber thereof, wherewith Baasha had builded; and king Asa built with them Geba of Benjamin, and Mizpah.
And at that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah, and said unto him: "Because thou hast relied on the king of Syria, and not relied on the Lord thy God, therefore is the host of the king of Syria escaped out of thine hand. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. Herein thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars." Then Asa was wroth with the seer, and put him in a prison house; for he was in a rage with him because of this thing. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time.
And behold, the acts of Asa, first and last, lo they are written in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel. And Asa in the thirty and ninth year of his reign was diseased in his feet, until his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not to the Lord, but to the physicians. And Asa slept with his fathers, and died in the one and fortieth year of his reign. And they buried him in his own sepulchres, which he had made for himself in the city of David, and laid him in the bed which was filled with sweet odors and divers kinds of spices prepared by the apothecaries' art: and they made a very great burning for him.