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1 Kings 11:29-39

Context
11:29 At that time, when Jeroboam had left Jerusalem, the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met him on the road; the two of them were alone in the open country. Ahijah 1  was wearing a brand new robe, 11:30 and he grabbed the robe 2  and tore it into twelve pieces. 11:31 Then he told Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces, for this is what the Lord God of Israel says: ‘Look, I am about to tear the kingdom from Solomon’s hand and I will give ten tribes to you. 11:32 He will retain one tribe, for my servant David’s sake and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel. 11:33 I am taking the kingdom from him 3  because they have 4  abandoned me and worshiped the Sidonian goddess Astarte, the Moabite god Chemosh, and the Ammonite god Milcom. They have not followed my instructions 5  by doing what I approve and obeying my rules and regulations, like Solomon’s father David did. 6  11:34 I will not take the whole kingdom from his hand. I will allow him to be ruler for the rest of his life for the sake of my chosen servant David who kept my commandments and rules. 11:35 I will take the kingdom from the hand of his son and give ten tribes to you. 7  11:36 I will leave 8  his son one tribe so my servant David’s dynasty may continue to serve me 9  in Jerusalem, the city I have chosen as my home. 10  11:37 I will select 11  you; you will rule over all you desire to have and you will be king over Israel. 11:38 You must obey 12  all I command you to do, follow my instructions, 13  do what I approve, 14  and keep my rules and commandments, like my servant David did. Then I will be with you and establish for you a lasting dynasty, as I did for David; 15  I will give you Israel. 11:39 I will humiliate David’s descendants because of this, 16  but not forever.” 17 

1 tn The Hebrew text has simply “he,” making it a bit unclear whether Jeroboam or Ahijah is the subject, but in the Hebrew word order Ahijah is the nearer antecedent, and this is followed by the present translation.

2 tn Heb “and Ahijah grabbed the new robe that was on him.”

3 tn The words “I am taking the kingdom from him” are supplied in the translation for clarification.

4 tc This is the reading of the MT; the LXX, Syriac, and Vulgate read “he has.”

5 tn Heb “walked in my ways.”

6 tn Heb “by doing what is right in my eyes, my rules and my regulations, like David his father.”

7 tn Heb “and I will give it to you, ten tribes.”

8 tn Heb “give.”

9 tn Heb “so there might be a lamp for David my servant all the days before me in Jerusalem.” The metaphorical “lamp” symbolizes the Davidic dynasty. Because this imagery is unfamiliar to the modern reader, the translation “so my servant David’s dynasty may continue to serve me” has been used.

10 tn Heb “so there might be a lamp for David my servant all the days before me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen for myself to put my name there.”

11 tn Heb “take.”

12 tn Heb “If you obey.” In the Hebrew text v. 38 is actually one long conditional sentence, which has been broken into two parts in the translation for stylistic purposes.

13 tn Heb “walk in my ways.”

14 tn Heb “do what is right in my eyes.”

15 tn Heb “I will build for you a permanent house, like I built for David.”

16 sn Because of this. Reference is made to the idolatry mentioned earlier.

17 tn Heb “but not all the days.”



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