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Bible Commentaries
1 Kings 14

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick.

At that time. — While Jeroboam did evil as he could, walking contrary to God, God also walked as contrary to him; for is it fit that he should lay down the bucklers first

Abijah the son of Jeroboam. — His son and heir, likely, as was also Rehoboam’s son Abijah, not Abiud, as Sulpitius Severus calleth him.

Verse 2

And Jeroboam said to his wife, Arise, I pray thee, and disguise thyself, that thou be not known to be the wife of Jeroboam; and get thee to Shiloh: behold, there [is] Ahijah the prophet, which told me that [I should be] king over this people.

And Jeroboam said to his wife. — To her, rather than to another messenger, for secrecy’s sake; for although he knew that his son’s sickness was sent of God, yet he was loath openly to seek help of him, lest people should think the worse of his idols, as not able to relieve him; or by his example, run to God’s true prophets in their distress. Whether Jeroboam’s wife was sister to the queen of Egypt, and called by the name of Ano, as the Septuagint say, or Anna, as some others, is not very material.

Behold, there is Abijah the prophet. — Either there he dwelt, or thither he had retired himself, as irked at the king’s idolatries.

Which told me that I should be king. — Therein he told truth; and therefore also he will in this case.

Verse 3

And take with thee ten loaves, and cracknels, and a cruse of honey, and go to him: he shall tell thee what shall become of the child.

And take with thee ten loaves. — A poor country present, that she might seem none other than a plain country woman, yet willing to show her thankfulness.

And cracknels. — Or, Plain cakes; Heb., Punctata, tenues placentulas punctis respersas.

And a cruse of honey. — Or, Bottle, a narrow mouthed vessel, that when it is emptied soundeth bakbuk, that is the Hebrew word here used. See the like in Job 39:30 , where the vultures are said to glut glut blood, by an onomatopoeia.

Verse 4

And Jeroboam’s wife did so, and arose, and went to Shiloh, and came to the house of Ahijah. But Ahijah could not see; for his eyes were set by reason of his age.

And Jeroboam’s wife did so. — Putting off her royal attire, and putting on more demure apparel; like as many hypocrites do, conforming themselves to the company they come into, and walking in a disguise, till God detect them.

For his eyes were set by reason of his age. — These things, therefore, were done toward the end of Jeroboam’s reign.

Verse 5

And the LORD said unto Ahijah, Behold, the wife of Jeroboam cometh to ask a thing of thee for her son; for he [is] sick: thus and thus shalt thou say unto her: for it shall be, when she cometh in, that she shall feign herself [to be] another [woman].

She shall feign herself to be another woman.Ut ipsa agit extraneam. She would have deceived the prophet, if she could; so would hypocrites deceive God of heaven, if they knew how. But he is too wise to be cajoled or cheated.

Verse 6

And it was [so], when Ahijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, that he said, Come in, thou wife of Jeroboam; why feignest thou thyself [to be] another? for I [am] sent to thee [with] heavy [tidings].

Come in, thou wife of Jeroboam. — How God laughs in heaven at the frivolous fetches of crafty politicians and double-minded dissemblers! Surely when they think themselves most sure, he shameth them with a defeat. What an idleness is it for foolish hypocrites to hope that they can dance: in a net unseen of Heaven!

For I am sent to thee with heavy tidings. — Heb., Hard. Jeroboam was hard-hearted and refractory: a hard and heavy message is therefore sent unto him, that a hard knot may have a hard wedge. Neither is the voice of God’s word ever any better to the guilty, if impenitent. It is as the knuckles of a man’s hand were to Belshazzar, to write them their destiny, or as Daniel was to him, to read it unto them.

Verse 7

Go, tell Jeroboam, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Forasmuch as I exalted thee from among the people, and made thee prince over my people Israel,

Forasmuch as I exalted thee. — God upbraideth not any unless it be in case of extreme ingratitude; as here, with James 1:5 . Qui exprobat reposcit.

And made thee prince.Antecessorem, a leader to others, a loade-star upon whom all should fix their eyes, and shape their course.

Verse 8

And rent the kingdom away from the house of David, and gave it thee: and [yet] thou hast not been as my servant David, who kept my commandments, and who followed me with all his heart, to do [that] only [which was] right in mine eyes;

Who kept my commandments. — Did all my wills, Acts 13:22 in desire and endeavour at least; repenting heartily for his involuntary and unavoidable infirmities, which therefore were not imputed unto him.

To do that only which was right, — viz., In mine account and acceptation.

Verse 9

But hast done evil above all that were before thee: for thou hast gone and made thee other gods, and molten images, to provoke me to anger, and hast cast me behind thy back:

But hast done evil above all that were before thee. — Not Saul and Solomon only, but the kings of the heathens also, - as Tostatus maketh the sense, - because they knew no better: but he fell with eyes open.

And hast cast me behind thy back. — Hast laid me aside and set light by me, quasi non satis essem ad ulciscendas iniurias, as if I were nobody with thee, nor had power to punish thee. Thou hast both despised and despited me. See on Psalms 50:17 Nehemiah 9:26 .

Verse 10

Therefore, behold, I will bring evil upon the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam him that pisseth against the wall, [and] him that is shut up and left in Israel, and will take away the remnant of the house of Jeroboam, as a man taketh away dung, till it be all gone.

Him that pisseth against the, wallNe canibus quidem parcam; not so much as a dog of his shall escape.

And him that is shut up - in some garrison - and left, — viz., To shift as they may, there being not room in the hold to receive them; as there is not for all the bees in a hive, but some are fain to hang on it at the hive’s mouth on heaps

As a man taketh away dung. — That the pavement may be pure. Delebo omnes reliquias et quisquilias tuae familiae, I will sweep thee with the besem of destruction; and make an utter riddance of thee. Scopis everram, evertam.

Verse 11

Him that dieth of Jeroboam in the city shall the dogs eat; and him that dieth in the field shall the fowls of the air eat: for the LORD hath spoken [it].

Shall the dogs eat. — A fearful judgment, such as befell Euripides the poet, and Lucian the atheist, eaten alive by dogs, as it is storied.

Verse 12

Arise thou therefore, get thee to thine own house: [and] when thy feet enter into the city, the child shall die.

The child shall die. — This heavy news could not but pierce through the mother’s soul as a sword. Luke 2:35 A child he is called, because dearly beloved of his parents; but he was of age enough to choose the good and refuse the evil. 1 Kings 14:13

Verse 13

And all Israel shall mourn for him, and bury him: for he only of Jeroboam shall come to the grave, because in him there is found [some] good thing toward the LORD God of Israel in the house of Jeroboam.

And all Israel shall mourn for him. — As great Britain was all in black for the loss of that hopeful Prince Henry. As Cardan sang at Edward VI’s death,

Flete nefas magnum, sed tote flebitis orbe

Mortales, vester corruit omnis honos.

Dignus Apollineis lacrymis doctaque Minervae

Flosculus, heu misero, concidit ante diem. ”

Briers, thorns, and thistles wither not so soon as lilies and roses. God’s darlings oft die betime: when worse men are preserved, or rather reserved, for further mischief to them.

Verse 14

Moreover the LORD shall raise him up a king over Israel, who shall cut off the house of Jeroboam that day: but what? even now.

But what? even now,Quis vero si iam? - Tigur. q.d., Why say I the Lord shall raise up Baasha for an executioner of his wrath? Is he not even now in doing of it? Is not Baasha busily laying his plots already for the kingdom?

Verse 15

For the LORD shall smite Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water, and he shall root up Israel out of this good land, which he gave to their fathers, and shall scatter them beyond the river, because they have made their groves, provoking the LORD to anger.

As a reed is shaken in the water. — That never resteth, being in continual motion by wind and water, see 1 Samuel 25:29 ; the soul of a wicked man is "in a sling," violently tossed with infinite turmoils and restless.

Verse 16

And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, who did sin, and who made Israel to sin.

And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam. — Whereunto they consented, being "carried away unto those dumb idols, even as they were led." 1 Corinthians 12:2

Verse 17

And Jeroboam’s wife arose, and departed, and came to Tirzah: [and] when she came to the threshold of the door, the child died;

And came to Tirzah. — A pleasant cry, Song of Solomon 6:4 but to her at this time dismal and dolorous: the door also thereof, - whereto when she came, the child died, - like the porta Scelerata in Rome, whereof see Florus, lib. i. cap. 12.

Verse 18

And they buried him; and all Israel mourned for him, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by the hand of his servant Ahijah the prophet.

And all Israel mourned. — See 1 Kings 14:13 .

Verse 19

And the rest of the acts of Jeroboam, how he warred, and how he reigned, behold, they [are] written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel.

Written in the book of the chronicles. — These were annals or public records, out of which, likely, were composed the Books of Chronicles, now part of the holy Scriptures.

Verse 20

And the days which Jeroboam reigned [were] two and twenty years: and he slept with his fathers, and Nadab his son reigned in his stead.

And he slept with his fathers. — Heb., He lay down. "This shall ye have of my hand, ye shall lie down in sorrow." Isaiah 50:11 "The Lord struck Jeroboam and he died." 2 Chronicles 13:20 He died not the common death of all men, but by some remarkable stroke: beside the loss of five hundred thousand of his men in one battle with Abijah king of Judah. 2 Chronicles 13:17

Verse 21

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.

His mother’s name was Naamah an Ammonitess. — Mentioned here, and again, 1 Kings 14:31 , but for no good. Omne malum ex Gynaeceo. She had the breeding of him, and corrupted him likely. His wicked wife also, Maachah, helped after.

Verse 22

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.

And Judah did evil.Qualis rex, talis plerunque grex. Howbeit there was a remnant among the twelve tribes, thus generally revolted, that "instantly served God day and night." Acts 26:7 See 1 Kings 19:10 ; 1 Kings 19:18 .

Verse 23

For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree.

For they also built them high places. — They fell to foul idolatry and sodomy, which are called evil by a specialty, 1 Kings 14:22 like as war is called evil, that is, misery, antonomastice Isaiah 45:7

Verse 24

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 there were also sodomites in the land.Meritorii, male harlots, unnaturally filthy. The word here used signifieth holy ones: either by antiphrasis in a contrary meaning, or because such abomination was committed under a pretext of religion. These abandoned their bodies to suffer abominable lust. This is common in Turkey, and under the Papacy.

Verse 25

And it came to pass in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, [that] Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem:

Shishak king of Egypt. — Diodorus Siculus calleth him Sasokis; Justin, Susakis.

Came up. — Drawn by a desire of Solomon’s ivory throne, say some; like as the pearls usually cast out with the flood and gathered with the ebb, drew Caesar’s affection for the conquest of Britain. Sueton.

Verse 26

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 he took away. — Without any great resistance; such was the pusillanimity and effeminacy of Rehoboam; which was also laid in his dish by Shishak setting up pillars and ugly pictures thereon, to the shame of the Jewish nation, as Diodorus Lib. i. showeth.

Verse 27

And king Rehoboam made in their stead brasen shields, and committed [them] unto the hands of the chief of the guard, which kept the door of the king’s house.

Brazen shields. — "The faithful city" was now "become a harlot"; no wonder therefore that her "silver was become dross," Isaiah 1:21-22 her gold brass.

Verse 28

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.

That the guard bare them.Propter periculum insidiarum etiam in ipsa domo Domini metuendarum, to prevent danger.

Verse 29

Now the rest of the acts of Rehoboam, and all that he did, [are] they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?

Now the rest. — See on 1 Kings 14:19 .

Verse 30

And there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all [their] days.

All their days. — Skirmishes there were continually about the borders.

Verse 31

And Rehoboam slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. And his mother’s name [was] Naamah an Ammonitess. And Abijam his son reigned in his stead.

And Rehoboam slept. — Jeroboam lived to see three successions in the throne of Judah. Thus the ivy liveth where the oak is dead.

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 14". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/1-kings-14.html. 1865-1868.
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