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The Chronicles of the Kings of Juda

The Second Book


Chapters 1-7 | 8-16 | 17-24 | 25-31 | 32-end | Next Book


The 8th Chapter

      And after twenty years when Salomon had built the house of the Lord, and his own house: he built the cities that Hiram gave him, and put of the children of Israel in them. And Salomon went to Hemath Zobah and strengthened it. And he built Thadmor in the wilderness and all the store cities which he built in Hemath. And he built Bethhoron the upper and Bethhoron the nether, and made them strong cities with walls, gates and bars. And Baalath and all the store cities that Salomon had, and all the chariot cities and the cities of Horsemen, and all that Salomon had *lust to build in Jerusalem and Libanon, and throughout all the land of his dominion.
      And all the people that were left of the Hethites, Amorites, Pheresites, Hevites and Jebusites, which were not of the children of Israel: even the children of them, which were left after them in the land, and were not consumed of the children of Israel, them did Salomon make tributaries unto this day. But of the children of Israel did Salomon make no bondmen in his work: but they were men of war and rulers and great Lords with him, and captains over his chariots and Horsemen. And king Salomons officers that oversaw and ruled the people, were two hundred and fifty.
      And Salomon brought the daughter of Pharao out of the city of David into the house that he had made for her. For he said: my wife shall not dwell in the house of David king of Israel, for it is holy, because the Ark of the Lord came into it.
      And from thenceforth Salomon offered burntofferings unto the Lord on the altar of the Lord which he had built before the porch to offer day by day according to the commandment of Moses, and in the sabbaths and new moons, and the three solemn feasts of the year, the feast of sweetbread, the feast of weeks and the feast of booths.
      And Salomon put the sorts of priests in companies as David his father had ordered them, unto the offices, and the Levites unto their wait, for to praise and minister before the priests day by day, and the porters by course at every gate. For so had David the man of God commanded. And the commandment of the king unto the priests and the Levites concerning whatsoever cause it was, and concerning the treasures, was not disobeyed.
      And all the work of Salomon went lustily forward even unto the day of the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid: and from thence till he had finished it, that the house of the Lord was perfect. And then went king Salomon to Azion Gaber and to Eloth and to the seas side in the land of Edom. And Hiram sent him by the hand of his servants, ships and servants that could skill of the sea: Which went with the servants of Salomon to Ophir, and brought thence four hundred and fifty talents of gold, and brought it to king Salomon.


*lust (earnest desire)




The 9th Chapter

      And the queen of Saba heard of the fame of Salomon and came to prove him with riddles at Jerusalem, with a very great company, and with camels that bare sweet odors and plenty of gold and precious stone. And when she was come to Salomon, she communed with him of all that was in her heart. And Salomon *soiled her all her questions, that there was nothing hid from Salomon, which he told her not.
      And when the queen of Saba had seen the wisdom of Salomon and the house that he had built, and the meat of his table and the sitting of his servants and the standing of his waiters, and their apparel, and his butlers with their apparel, and his parlor out of which he went into the house of the Lord, there was no more heart in her.
      And then she said to the king: the saying which I heard in mine own land, of thine acts and of thy wisdom, is truth. But I believed not the words of them, until I came and mine eyes had seen it. And see, the one half of thy wisdom was not told me: thou exceedest the same that I heard, happy are thy men, and happy are these thy servants which stand before thee always and hear thy wisdom. Blessed be the Lord thy God which had lust to thee, to make thee king on his seat, unto the Lord thy God. Because thy God loved Israel, to make them continue ever, therefore made he the king over them to do right and equity.
      And she gave the king an hundred and twenty talents of gold, and of sweet odors an exceeding great abundance with precious stones, that there was no such sweet odors as the queen of Saba, gave king Salomon. And thereto the servants of Hiram and the servants of Salomon which brought gold from Ophir, brought also Algume wood and precious stones. And the king made of the Algume wood stairs for the house of the Lord and in the kings palace, and harps and psalteries for singers. And there was no such wood seen before in the land of Juda. And king Salomon gave to the queen of Saba all her desire that she asked above that she brought unto the king. And so she turned and went away unto her own land with her servants.
      The sum of gold that came to Salomon in one year, was six hundred and sixty six talents of gold, besides that which chapmen and merchants brought, and all the kings of Arabia and dukes of countries brought gold and silver to Salomon. And king Salomon made two hundred bucklers of gold, six hundred sickles of beaten gold to a buckler: and three hundred shields of Beaten gold, three hundred sickles of gold to a shield, and he put them in the house of the forest of Libanon.
      And the king made a great seat of Ivory and overlaid it with pure gold. And there were six steps to the seat with a footstool of gold fastened to the seat: and pommels on each side of the sitting place, and two lions standing by the pommels. And twelve lions stood one side and on the other, upon six steps, and there was no such in any kingdom.
      And all the drinking vessels of king Salomon were gold, and all the vessels of the house of the forest of Libanon, were pure gold. And as for silver, it was counted nothing worth in the days of Salomon. For the kings ships went to Tharsis with the servants of Hiram every three years once. And the ships of Tharsis brought gold, silver, the teeth of elephants, apes and peacocks.
      And king Salomon passed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom. And all the kings of the earth sought the presence of Salomon, to hear the wisdom that God had put in his heart. And they brought every man his present in vessels of silver and vessels of gold, and raiment, harness, sweet odors, horses and mules year by year.
      And Salomon had four thousand mangers of horses and chariots for them, and twelve thousand horsemen. And he bestowed them in the chariot cities and with the king at Jerusalem. And he reigned over all the kings from Euphrates unto the land of the Philistines and to the borders of Egypt. And the king made silver in Jerusalem as plenteous as stones, and Cedar trees as plenteous as the mulberry trees that grow in the valleys. And Salomon had horses brought him out of Egypt and out of all lands.
      And the rest of the acts of king Salomon both first and last are written in the book of Nathan the Prophet and in the prophecy of Ahiah the Silonite and in the visions of Jadi the sear of visions against Jeroboam the son of Nabat. And when Salomon had reigned in Jerusalem upon all Israel forty years, he laid him to rest with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David his father, and Rehoboam his son reigned in his stead.


*soiled: to resolve; clear up ; explain ; may be that planting of the seed of wisdom.




The 10th Chapter

      And Rehoboam went to Sichem: for to Sichem were all Israel come to make him king. And when Jeroboam the son of Nabat, being in Egypt heard it (for he was fled for fear of Salomon the king) he returned out of Egypt. And they sent and called him. And so Jeroboam and all Israel came and communed with Rehoboam and said. Thy father made us a grievous yoke: but remit thou somewhat of the grievous service of thy father and of his heavy yoke that he put upon us, and we will serve thee. And he said to them: come again after three days to me. And the people departed.
      And king Rehoboam counselled with elders that stood before Salomon his father, while he lived, and said: what counsel give ye me, to answer this people again? And they told him saying: if thou shalt be kind to this people and please them and shalt speak loving words to them, they will be thy servants for ever. But he left the counsel which the elders gave him, and took counsel with the young men that were nursed up with him and had stand in his presence, and said to them: what advice give ye that I may answer this people which have communed with me saying: *Abate somewhat of the yoke which thy father did put upon us.
      And the young men that were nursed up with him talked with him saying: thus answer the people that spake to thee saying. Thy father made our yoke heavy: But make thou our yoke somewhat lighter. Thus wise answer them: my little finger shall be heavier than thy fathers loins. For where my father put a heavy yoke upon you I will put more thereto, and where my father chastised you with whips I will chastise you with scorpions.
      And when Jeroboam and all Israel were come the third day, as the king bade saying: come again to me the third day. The king answered them cruelly, for king Rehoboam left the counsel of the aged men, and answered them after the advice of the young men saying. If my father made your yoke grievous, I will add thereto, and where my father chastised you with whips, I will chastise you with scorpions. And so the king hearkened not unto the people, for the turning away was of God, that the Lord might make good his saying which he spake by the hand of Ahiah the Silonite to Jeroboam the son of Nabat.
      And when all Israel saw that the King would not hear them, the people answered the king saying: what part have we with David or inheritance with the son of Isai? let every man of Israel go to his tent. And now David see to thine own house. And thereupon all Israel gat them to their tents, so that Rehoboam reigned over no more of the children of Israel than dwelt in the cities of Juda. Then king Rehoboam sent to them Haburam that was over the tribute, and the children of Israel stoned him with stones that he died. But king Rehoboam made speed and gat him up in his chariot to fly to Jerusalem. And so Israel departed from the house of David unto this day.


*Abate (make less)




The 11th Chapter

      And when Rehobam was come to Jerusalem, he gathered of the house of David and Benjamin to the number of nine score thousand choice men of war to fight with Israel, for to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam. But the word of the Lord came to Semeiah the man of God saying: speak unto Rehoboam the son of Salomon king of Juda and to all Israel that are in Juda, and to Benjamin and say: thus saith the Lord. Go not nor fight with your brethren: But return every man to his house, for this thing is done of me. And they obeyed the words of the Lord and returned from going against Jeroboam.
      And Rehoboam dwelt in Jerusalem, and built strong cities in Juda: as Bethlehem, Etam and Thekuah: Bethzur, Socho and Odollam: Geth, Maresah and Ziph: Adurahim, Lachis and Asecah: Zarah Aialon and Hebron. Which were the strong cities of Juda and Benjamin. And when he had repaired such strong cities, he put captains in them and store of victuals, and of oil and wine. And he ordained in all cities shields and spears, and made them exceeding strong. And so Juda and Benjamin were under him.
      And the priests and Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him, out of all their coasts. In so much that the Levites left their Suburbs and possessions and came to Juda and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them out from ministering unto the Lord. And he ordained him priests of hillaltars both to field devils and also to the calves which he had made. And after them there came of all the tribes of Israel ( such as their hearts moved them to seek the Lord God of Israel ) to Jerusalem to offer unto the Lord God of their fathers. And so they strengthened the kingdom of Juda and made Rehoboam the son of Salomon mighty three years long, for three years they walked in the way of David and Salomon.
      And Rehoboam took him Mahalath the daughter of Jerimoth the son of David to wife, and Abihail the daughter of Eliab the son of Isai, which bare him children: Jeus, Samariah and Zaham. And after her he took Maacah the daughter of Absalom which bare him Abiah, Ethai, Ziza and Salumith. But Rehoboam loved Maacah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and concubines for he took eighteen wives and three score concubines, and begat three score daughters and twenty eight sons. And Rehoboam made Abiah the son of Maacah the chief ruler among his brethren, for to make him king. And he played wisely and scattered of all his children throughout all the countries of Judah and Benjamin in every strong city. And he gave them abundance of victuals, and asked many wives.




The 12th Chapter

      And when Rehoboam had stablished the kingdom, and made it strong, he forsook the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him, wherefore the fifth year of king Rehoboam, Sesak the king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem because they had transgressed against the Lord with twelve hundred chariots and three score thousand horsemen. And the people were without number that came with him out of Egypt, with them of Libia, and the Succhites and the blackmoors. And they took the strong cities that were in Juda and came to Jerusalem.
      Then came Semeiah the Prophet to Rehoboam and to the Lords of Juda that were gathered to Jerusalem for fear of Sesak, and said to them: thus saith the Lord, ye have left me, and therefore will I leave you also in the hands of Sesak. Whereupon the Lords of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said: the Lord is righteous. And when the Lord saw that they submitted themselves, the word of the Lord came to Semeiah saying: they meek themselves, and therefore I will not destroy them. But I will deliver them somewhat, and my wrath shall not fall upon Jerusalem. Neverthelater they shall be his servants, to know what difference is between my service and the service of the kingdoms of other lands.
      And Sesak king of Egypt came to Jerusalem and took away the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the kings house, and shortly he took all. And he took also the shields of gold which Salomon made. Instead of which king Rehoboam made shields of brass, and put them in the keeping of the captains of his guard which waited in the gate of the kings house. And as oft as the king went to the house of the Lord, the guard went and fetched them, and brought them again unto the guard chamber. And so because he humbled himself, the wrath of the Lord turned from him, and destroyed not all together. And thereto there were many good things yet in Juda.
      And king Rehoboam waxed mighty in Jerusalem and reigned. And Rehoboam was forty one years old when he was made king, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem the city which the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel to put his name there. And his mothers name was Naamah an Ammonite. And he did evil: for he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord.
      The acts of Rehoboam first and last are written in the sayings of Semeiah the Prophet and of Ado the sear of visions, so much as his genealogy and the perpetual war that was between Rehoboam and Jeroboam during their life. And Rehoboam laid him to sleep with his fathers and was buried in the city of David, and Abiah his son reigned in his stead.




The 13th Chapter

      The eighteenth year of king Jeroboam began Abiah to reign over Juda, and he reigned three years in Jerusalem. His mothers name was Michaiah the daughter of Uriel of Gabaah. And there was war between Abiah and Jeroboam. And Abiah made a battle with an Host of fighting men of four hundred thousand chosen men. And Jeroboam put in array to fight against him, with eight hundred thousand picked men and strong.
      And Abiah stood up upon Zemaraim an hill in mount Ephraim and said: hear me thou Jeroboam and all Israel. Becometh it not you to know how the Lord God of Israel gave the kingdom of Israel to David for ever, even to him and to his sons, with a salted covenant. But Jeroboam the son of Nabat the servant of Salomon the son of David, rebelled against the Lord. And there gathered to him lewd men and unthrifties, and prevailed against Rehoboam the son of Salomon: for Rehoboam was young and tender hearted and not strong enough for them.
      And now ye think to prevail against the kingdom of the Lord in the hand of the sons of David, because ye be a great multitude and have with you the golden calves which Jeroboam made you for Gods. And have ye not cast out the priests of the Lord the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and have made you priests like the nations of other lands: even whosoever cometh and filleth his hand with an ox and seven rams, the same is made priest to them that are no Gods.
      But with us is the Lord our God whom we have not forsaken, and the priests of the sons of Aaron ministering unto the Lord, and the Levites in office, burning unto the Lord every morning and every evening burntofferings and sweet cense: and the showbread put in order upon a pure table: and the candlestick of gold with the lamps of the same, to be lighted every evening. For we keep the watch of the Lord our God: but ye have forsaken him. Moreover see, God is with us in the forward, and his priests, and the roaring trumpets to cry alarm against you. Ye children of Israel fight not with the Lord God of your fathers: for it will not prosper with you.
      But for all that Jeroboam sent men privily above to come behind upon them: and so they were before Juda, and the layers in wait were behind them. And when Juda turned and saw the battle behind and before, they cried unto the Lord, and the priests blew the trumpets and the men of Juda gave a shout. And as the men of Juda shouted, God smote Jeroboam and all Israel before Abiah and Juda. And the children of Israel fled before Juda, and the Lord delivered them into the hands of Juda. And Abiah and his people slew a great slaughter of them: so that there were stricken down dead of Israel five hundred thousand chosen men. And so the children of Israel were brought under at that time, and the children of Juda prevailed: because they leaned unto the Lord God of their fathers. And Abiah followed after Jeroboam and won certain cities from him: Bethel with the towns belonging thereto, and Jesanah with the towns that longed thereto, and Ephron with her towns. And Jeroboam recovered not strength again in the days of Abiah. And at the last the Lord plagued him, that he died.
      And Abiah waxed mighty, and took him fourteen wives, and begat twenty two sons and sixteen daughters. The rest of the acts of Abiah and his ways and his doings are written in the story of the Prophet Ado. And when Abiah was laid to sleep with his fathers, they buried him in the city of David, and Asa his son reigned in his stead. In whose days the land was quiet ten years.




The 14th Chapter

      And Asa did that was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God, and took away the altars of strangers and the hillaltars, and brake the Images and cut down the groves, and commanded Juda to seek the Lord God of their fathers, and to do according to the law and commandment. And he put away out of all the cities of Juda, the hillaltars and the idols: for the kingdom was quiet before him. And he built strong cities in Juda: because the land was in rest, and he had no war in those years. For the Lord had given him rest.
      And therefore he said to Juda: let us build these cities and compass them with walls and towers, gates and bars, while we have the land quiet. For we have fought the Lord our God: and because we have fought him, he hath given us rest on every side. And so they built and prospered. And Asa had an Army that bare shield and spear, out of Juda three hundred thousand, and out of Benjamin that bare shield and drew bows two hundred and eighty thousand, and were all strong men.
      And there came out against them Zarah the Morian with an Host of ten hundred thousand, and three hundred chariots, and came as far of Maresa. And Asa went out to him, and they put in array to battle in the valley of Zephatah beside Maresa. And Asa cried unto the Lord his God and said: Lord, it is all one with thee to help them that have no power, with few or with many: help us O' Lord our God, for we trust to thee, and in thine name be come against this multitude. Thou art the Lord our God. let not man prevail against thee.
      And the Lord smote the black Moors before Asa and Juda, that they fled. And Asa and the people that was with him, followed after them as far as Gerar. And the black Moors were overthrown, that there bode none alive of them, but were destroyed of the Lord and of his Host. And they carried away a mighty great prey. And they smote all the cities round about Gerar. For the fear of the Lord came upon them. And they robbed all the cities for there was exceeding much to be robbed in them. And thereto they smote the tents of cattle and carried away plenty of sheep and camels, and returned to Jerusalem.




The 15th Chapter

      And the spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Obed. And he went out against Asa and said to him: hear me Asa and all Juda and Benjamin. The Lord is with you, while ye be with him, and if ye shall seek him, he will be found of you: but and if ye shall forsake him, he will forsake you. There will come many days in Israel, in which there shall be no true God nor priest that teacheth, nor any law. And in their tribulation they shall turn unto the Lord God of Israel and shall seek him, and he shall be found of them. And in those days there shall be no peace to them that go out and in. But great vexation upon the inhabitors of all lands. For one nation shall destroy another, and one city another: for God will trounce them with all adversity. But pluck you up your hearts and let not your hands faint, for your works shall be rewarded.
      When Asa heard those words and the prophecy of Azariah the son of Obed the Prophet, he took courage and put away the abominations out of all the land of Juda and Benjamin, and out of the cities which he won in mount Ephraim, and renewed the altar of the Lord that was before the porch of the Lord. And he gathered all Juda and Benjamin, and the strangers with them out of Ephraim, Manasse and Simeon. For there fell many to him out of Israel, when they saw that God was with him. And they assembled at Jerusalem the third month of the fifteen year of the reign of Asa. And they offered unto the Lord that same time of the spoil which they had brought seven hundred oxen and seven thousand sheep.
      And they made a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers, with all their hearts and all their souls: so that all that sought not the Lord God of Israel, should die for it, whether he were small or great, man or woman. And they sware unto the Lord with a loud voice and shouting and with trumpets and horns. And all Juda rejoiced in the oath, for they had sworn with all their hearts, and sought him with all their lust, and he was found of them. And the Lord gave them rest round about.
      And thereto king Asa put Maacah his mother out of authority, because she had made an idol in a grove: and brake down her idol and stamped it and burnt it by the brook Cedron. But they put not the hillaltars out of Israel: nevertheless the heart of Asa was pure all his life. And he brought into the house of God the dedicate gifts which he and his father had dedicated in gold, silver and other Jewels. And there was no more war unto the thirty fifth year of the reign of Asa.




The 16th Chapter

      In the thirty sixth year of the reign of Asa, came Baasa king of Israel against Juda and built Ramah, to the intent that he would let none that pertained to Asa king of Juda, have passage in and out. Whereupon Asa fetched out silver and gold out of the treasures of the house of the Lord and of the kings house, and sent it to Benhadad king of Siria, that dwelt at Damasco, and said. There is a confederation between me and thee, and so was between my father and thine, wherefore I have sent thee silver and gold, that thou go and break thine appointment with Baasa king of Israel, that he may depart from me. And Benhadad granted unto king Asa, and sent the captains of his army against the cities of Israel. And they beat Aion, Dan, Abelmaim and all the store cities of Nephthali. And when Baasa heard that, he left building of Ramah and let his work cease. And then Asa the king took all Juda and carried away and stones and timber of Ramah wherewith Baasa was abuilding: and he built therewith Gabaa and Mazphah.
      At that same time Hanani the sear, came to Asa king of Juda and said to him: because thou trustedest in the king of Siria, and trustest not in the Lord thy God, therefore is the host of the king of Siria escaped out of thine hand. Were not the black moors and they of Libia a great host with exceeding many chariots and horsemen? And yet because thou trustedest in the Lord, he delivered them into thine hands. For the eyes of the Lord behold all the earth, to strength the hearts of them that are whole with him. Herein thou hast done foolishly, and therefore from henceforth thou shalt have war. Whereupon Asa was wroth with the sear and put him in the converting house, for he was displeased with him because of that. Moreover Asa oppressed certain of the people the same season.
      The deeds of Asa both first and last, are written in the book of the kings of Juda and Israel. And the thirty ninth year of his reign Asa fell sick of his feet, and that his disease exceeded. And thereto in his sickness he asked no counsel of the Lord, but of Physicians. And at the last Asa fell on sleep with his fathers and died when he had reigned fifty one years. And they buried him in his own sepulcher which he had made in the city of David, and laid him in the bed which he had filled with sweet odors of diverse kinds, made by the craft of the apothecaries. And they did exceeding great cost about burying of him.


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