Abijam Reigns over Judah
1 In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam the son of Nebat, Abijam became king over Judah. 2 He reigned three years in Jerusalem. His mother was Maacah [grand]daughter of Abishalom ((a)Absalom). 3 He walked in all the sins [of idol worship] that his father [Rehoboam] committed before him; and his heart was not entirely devoted to the Lord his God, like the heart of his father (forefather) David. 4 Nevertheless, for David’s sake the Lord his God gave him a lamp (descendant on the throne) in Jerusalem, setting up his son after him and establishing Jerusalem, 5 because David did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and had not turned aside from anything that He commanded him all the days of his life, except in the matter of [the betrayal of] Uriah the Hittite. 6 There was war between Rehoboam [Abijam’s father] and Jeroboam all the days of Rehoboam’s life.
7 Now as for the rest of the acts of Abijam and everything 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.
Asa Succeeds Abijam
8 Abijam slept with his fathers [in death] and they buried him in the City of David. Asa his son became king in his place.
9 So in the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Asa began to reign as king over Judah. 10 He reigned forty-one years in Jerusalem. His [great-grand]mother was Maacah the daughter of Abishalom (Absalom).(A) 11 Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as did his father (forefather) David. 12 He expelled the male cult prostitutes (sodomites) from the land and removed all the idols that his fathers [Solomon, Rehoboam, and Abijam] had made.(B) 13 He also deposed his [great-grand]mother Maacah from being queen mother, because she had made a horrid (obscene, vulgar) image for [the goddess] Asherah. Asa cut down her horrid image, and burned it by the Brook Kidron. 14 But the high places [of idol worship] were not removed. Nevertheless, Asa’s heart was entirely devoted to the Lord all his days. 15 He brought the things which his father had dedicated and the things which he had dedicated into the house of the Lord—silver, gold, and utensils and accessories.
16 Now there was war between Asa and Baasha king of Israel all their days. 17 Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and fortified Ramah [north of Jerusalem], in order to prevent anyone from going out or coming in to Asa king of Judah. 18 Then Asa took all the silver and gold left in the treasuries of the house of the Lord and the treasuries of the palace of the king and handed them over to his servants. And King Asa sent them to Ben-hadad the son of Tabrimmon, the son of Hezion, king of Aram (Syria), who lived in Damascus, saying, 19 “Let there be a treaty between me and you, as there was between my father and your father. Behold, I have sent you a gift of silver and gold; go, break your treaty with Baasha king of Israel, so that he will (b)withdraw from me.” 20 So Ben-hadad listened to king Asa and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel, and conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel-beth-maacah, and all Chinneroth [the region of the Sea of Galilee], along with all the land of Naphtali. 21 When Baasha heard about it, he stopped (c)fortifying Ramah and stayed in Tirzah. 22 Then King Asa made a proclamation to all Judah—none was exempt—and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber with which Baasha had built [the fortifications]. And King Asa built with them [border fortresses at] Geba of Benjamin and Mizpah.
Jehoshaphat Succeeds Asa
23 Now as for the rest of all the acts of Asa, all his might, everything that he did, and the cities which he built, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? But during the time of his old age he had a foot disease. 24 Asa slept with his fathers [in death] and was buried with his fathers in the city of his father David. Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place.
Nadab, then Baasha, Rules over Israel
25 Now Nadab the son of Jeroboam began to reign over Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah, and he reigned over Israel for two years. 26 He did evil in the sight of the Lord and walked in the way of his father [Jeroboam] and in his sin [of idolatry], with which he made Israel sin. 27 Baasha the son of Ahijah of the house (tribe) of Issachar conspired against Nadab, and Baasha struck him down at Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines, while Nadab and all Israel were laying siege to Gibbethon.
28 So Baasha killed Nadab in the third year of Asa king of Judah, and reigned in his place. 29 As soon as he was king, Baasha struck down all the household of Jeroboam. He did not leave for Jeroboam anyone alive, but he destroyed them in accordance with the word of the Lord which He had spoken through His servant Ahijah the Shilonite—(C) 30 because of the sins committed by Jeroboam and which he made Israel commit, and because he provoked the Lord God of Israel to anger.
31 Now as for the rest of Nadab’s acts and everything that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?
War with Judah
33 In the third year of Asa king of Judah, Baasha the son of Ahijah became king over all Israel in Tirzah [the capital city], and reigned twenty-four years. 34 He did evil in the sight of the Lord and walked in the way of Jeroboam and in his sin [of idolatry] with which he made Israel sin.
a. 1 Kings 15:2: Absalom’s mother was also named Maacah (2 Sam 3:3). She was the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur.
b. 1 Kings 15:19: I.e. stop the blockade of Jerusalem.
c. 1 Kings 15:21: Lit building.