New Heart English Bible
1In the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam began Abijah to reign over Judah. 2He reigned three years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Maacah the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. There was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. 3Abijah joined battle with an army of valiant men of war, even four hundred thousand chosen men: and Jeroboam set the battle in array against him with eight hundred thousand chosen men, who were mighty men of valor.
4Abijah stood up on Mount Zemaraim, which is in the hill country of Ephraim, and said, "Hear me, Jeroboam and all Israel: 5Ought you not to know that the LORD, the God of Israel, gave the kingdom over Israel to David forever, even to him and to his sons by a covenant of salt? 6Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up, and rebelled against his lord. 7There were gathered to him worthless men, base fellows, who strengthened themselves against Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was young and tenderhearted, and could not withstand them.
8"Now you think to withstand the kingdom of the LORD in the hand of the sons of David; and you are a great multitude, and there are with you the golden calves which Jeroboam made you for gods. 9Haven't you driven out the priests of the LORD, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves after the ways of the peoples of other lands? so that whoever comes to consecrate himself with a young bull and seven rams, the same may be a priest of those who are no gods. 10"But as for us, the LORD is our God, and we have not forsaken him; and we have priests ministering to the LORD, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites in their work: 11and they burn to the LORD every morning and every evening burnt offerings and sweet incense. They also set the show bread in order on the pure table; and the lampstand of gold with its lamps, to burn every evening: for we keep the instruction of the LORD our God; but you have forsaken him. 12Look, God is with us at our head, and his priests with the trumpets of alarm to sound an alarm against you. children of Israel, do not fight against the LORD, the God of your fathers; for you shall not prosper."
13But Jeroboam caused an ambush to come about behind them: so they were before Judah, and the ambush was behind them. 14When Judah looked back, look, the battle was before and behind them; and they cried to the LORD, and the priests sounded with the trumpets. 15Then the men of Judah gave a shout: and as the men of Judah shouted, it happened, that God struck Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah. 16The children of Israel fled before Judah; and God delivered them into their hand. 17Abijah and his people killed them with a great slaughter: so there fell down slain of Israel five hundred thousand chosen men. 18Thus the children of Israel were brought under at that time, and the children of Judah prevailed, because they relied on the LORD, the God of their fathers. 19Abijah pursued after Jeroboam, and took cities from him, Bethel with its towns, and Jeshanah with its towns, and Ephron with its towns.
20Jeroboam did not recover strength again in the days of Abijah. The LORD struck him, and he died.
21But Abijah grew mighty, and took to himself fourteen wives, and became the father of twenty-two sons, and sixteen daughters. 22The rest of the acts of Abijah, and his ways, and his sayings, are written in the commentary of the prophet Iddo.