1 Kings 16:13
For all the sins of Baasha, and the sins of Elah his son, by which they sinned, and by which they made Israel to sin, in provoking the LORD God of Israel to anger with their vanities.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(13) Vanities—that is, idols (as in Deuteronomy 32:21; 1Samuel 12:21; Psalm 31:6; Isaiah 41:29; Jer. viii 19; &c.): not only the idols of Dan and Bethel, but the worse abominations which grew up under cover of these. In the Old Testament generally the contempt for idolatry and false worship as a gross folly, wasting faith on unrealities, is at least as strong as the condemnation of them, as outraging God’s law, and connected with sensual or bloody rites. (See, for example, the utter scorn of Isaiah 44:9-20; Psalm 115:4-8.)

16:1-14 This chapter relates wholly to the kingdom of Israel, and the revolutions of that kingdom. God calls Israel his people still, though wretchedly corrupted. Jehu foretells the same destruction to come upon Baasha's family, which that king had been employed to bring upon the family of Jeroboam. Those who resemble others in their sins, may expect to resemble them in the plagues they suffer, especially those who seem zealous against such sins in others as they allow in themselves. Baasha himself dies in peace, and is buried with honour. Herein plainly appears that there are punishments after death, which are most to be dreaded. Let Elah be a warning to drunkards, who know not but death may surprise them. Death easily comes upon men when they are drunk. Besides the diseases which men bring themselves into by drinking, when in that state, men are easily overcome by an enemy, and liable to bad accidents. Death comes terribly upon men in such a state, finding them in the act of sin, and unfitted for any act of devotion; that day comes upon them unawares. The word of God was fulfilled, and the sins of Baasha and Elah were reckoned for, with which they provoked God. Their idols are called their vanities, for idols cannot profit nor help; miserable are those whose gods are vanities.Their vanities - The "calves." The Hebrews call an idol by terms signifying "emptiness," "vapor," or "nothingness." (Compare marginal references.) 1Ki 16:9-22. Zimri's Conspiracy.

9-12. Zimri … conspired against him—"Arza which was over his house." During a carousal in the house of his chamberlain, Zimri slew him, and having seized the sovereignty, endeavored to consolidate his throne by the massacre of all the royal race.

i.e. Idols, oft called vanities, as Deu 32:21 1 Samuel 12:21 Jeremiah 14:22, because they are but imaginary deities, and mere nothings, 1 Corinthians 8:4, having nothing at all of a God in them, and nothing of power to do either good or hurt. For all the sins of Baasha, and the sins of Elah his son,.... By which it appears that the son trod in the steps of his father, and was therefore cut off:

by which they sinned, and by which they made Israel to sin, in provoking the Lord God of Israel to anger with their vanities; their idols, which had nothing in them, and cannot be of any service to their worshippers; and to serve such, and neglect the worship of the true God, and draw others into the same iniquity, must be very provoking to the most High.

For all the sins of Baasha, and the sins of Elah his son, by which they sinned, and by which they made Israel to sin, in provoking the LORD God of Israel to anger with their vanities.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
13. by which they sinned, and by which they made] R.V. which they sinned and wherewith they made, as in other places. The LXX. has nothing to represent ‘by which they sinned.’

vanities] This word is often employed in the Old Testament of false gods, and the worship paid to them. The idea is that such a deity is nothing, and such prayers can have no result.Verse 13. - For [אֶל corresponds with the עַל of ver. 7 = propter; cf. 1 Kings 14:5; 1 Kings 21:22] all the sins of Baasha, and the sins of Elah his son, by which they sinned, and by which they made Israel to sin, in provoking the Lord God of Israel to anger [the formula of 1 Kings 15:30, etc.] with their vanities. [The calves, not idols, are referred to here. Cf. Deuteronomy 32:21; 1 Corinthians 8:4. The same idea is embodied in the word Bethaven; Hosea 4:15; Hosea 5:8.] 1 Kings 16:7 adds a supplementary remark concerning the words of Jehu (1 Kings 16:2.), not to preclude an excuse that might be made, in which case וגם would have to be taken in the sense of nevertheless, or notwithstanding (Ewald, 354, a.), but to guard against a misinterpretation by adding a new feature, or rather to preclude an erroneous inference that might be drawn from the words, "I (Jehovah) have made thee prince" (1 Kings 16:2), as through Baasha had exterminated Nadab and his house by divine command (Thenius). וגם simply means "and also," and is not to be connected specially with יהוּא בּיד, but to be taken as belonging to the whole sentence: "also the word of Jehovah had come to Baasha through Jehu, ... not only because of the evil, etc., but also (ועל...ועל) because he had slain him (Jeroboam)." With regard to this last reason, we must call to mind the remark made at 1 Kings 11:39, viz., that the prediction of the prophet to Baasha gave him no right to put himself forward arbitrarily as the fulfiller of the prophecy. The very fact that Baasha continued Jeroboam's sin and caused the illegal worship to be perpetuated, showed clearly enough that in exterminating the family of Jeroboam he did not act under divine direction, but simply pursued his own selfish ends.
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