Home \ Bible \ 1 Kings

< Previous Chapter: 1 Kings 10

1 Kings 11

Solomon’s Foreign Wives

1 King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women along with the daughter of Pharaoh—women of Moab, Ammon, Edom, and Sidon, as well as Hittite women. 2 These women were from the nations about which the LORD had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, for surely they will turn your hearts after their gods.” Yet Solomon clung to these women in love. 3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines—and his wives turned his heart away.

4 For when Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and he was not wholeheartedly devoted to the LORD his God, as his father David had been. 5 Solomon followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians and Milcom a the abomination of the Ammonites. 6 So Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD; unlike his father David, he did not follow the LORD completely.

7 At that time on a hill east of Jerusalem, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab and for Molech the abomination of the Ammonites. 8 He did the same for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.

God’s Anger against Solomon

9 Now the LORD grew 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 warned Solomon explicitly not to follow other gods, Solomon did not keep the LORD’s command.

11 Then the LORD said to Solomon, “Because you have done this and have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant. 12 Nevertheless, for the sake of your father David, 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 away from him. I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of My servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.”

Hadad’s Return

14 Then the LORD raised up against Solomon an adversary, Hadad the Edomite, from the royal line of 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 Joab and all Israel had stayed there six months, until he had killed every male in Edom. 17 But Hadad, still just a young boy, had fled to Egypt, along with some Edomites who were servants of his father.

18 Hadad and his men set out from Midian and went to Paran. They took men from Paran with them and went to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, who gave Hadad a house and land and provided him with food.

19 There Hadad found such great favor in the sight of Pharaoh that he gave to him in marriage the sister of Queen Tahpenes, his own wife. 20 And the sister of Tahpenes bore Hadad a son named Genubath. Tahpenes herself weaned him in Pharaoh’s palace, and Genubath lived there among the sons of Pharaoh.

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

22 But Pharaoh asked him, “What have you lacked here with me that you suddenly want to go back to your own country?”

“Nothing,” Hadad replied, “but please let me go.”

Rezon’s Hostility

23 And God raised up against Solomon another adversary, Rezon the son of Eliada, who had fled from his master, Hadadezer king of Zobah, 24 and had gathered men to himself. When David killed the Zobaites, Rezon captained a band of raiders and went to Damascus, where they settled and gained control.

25 Rezon was Israel’s enemy throughout the days of Solomon, adding to the trouble caused by Hadad. So Rezon ruled over Aram with hostility toward Israel.

Jeroboam’s Rebellion

26 Now Jeroboam son of Nebat was an Ephraimite from Zeredah whose mother was a widow named Zeruah. Jeroboam was a servant of Solomon, but he rebelled against the king, 27 and this is the account of his rebellion against the king.

Solomon had built the supporting terraces b and repaired the gap in the wall of the city of his father David. 28 Now Jeroboam was a mighty man of valor. So when Solomon noticed that the young man was industrious, he put him in charge of the whole labor force of the house of Joseph.

29 During that time, the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met Jeroboam on the road as he was going out of Jerusalem. Now Ahijah had wrapped himself in a new cloak, and the two of them were alone in the open field.

30 And Ahijah took hold of the new cloak he was wearing, tore it into twelve pieces, 31 and said to Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Behold, I will tear the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and I will give you ten tribes. 32 But one tribe will remain for the sake of My servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel.

33 For they have c forsaken Me to worship Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the Ammonites. They have not walked in My ways, nor done what is right in My eyes, nor kept My statutes and judgments, as Solomon’s father David did.

34 Nevertheless, I will not take the whole kingdom out of Solomon’s hand, because I have made him ruler all the days of his life for the sake of David My servant, whom I chose because he kept My commandments and statutes. 35 But I will take ten tribes of the kingdom from the hand of 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 where I chose to put My Name. 37 But as for you, I will take you, and you shall reign over all that your heart desires, and you will be king over Israel.

38 If you listen to all that I command you, walk in My ways, and do what is right in My sight in order to keep My statutes and commandments as My servant David did, then I will be with you. I will build you a lasting dynasty just as I built for David, and I will give Israel to you. 39 Because of this, I will humble David’s descendants—but not forever.’ ”

40 Solomon therefore sought to kill Jeroboam. But Jeroboam arose and fled to Egypt, to Shishak king of Egypt, where he remained until the death of Solomon.

The Death of Solomon
(2 Chronicles 9:29–31)

41 As for the rest of the acts of Solomon—all that he did, as well as his wisdom—are they not written in the Book of the Acts of Solomon? 42 Thus the time that Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel was forty years.

43 And Solomon rested with his fathers and was buried in the city of his father David. And his son Rehoboam reigned in his place.

 

Footnotes:

5 a Milcom is a variant of Molech ; also in verse 33; see verse 7 and Leviticus 18:21.
27 b Hebrew the Millo
33 c Hebrew; LXX, Syriac, and Vulgate he has ; twice in this verse

Next Chapter: 1 Kings 12 >