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June 23, 2019

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
Christian Standard Bible for 2019

Text: Psalm 51-57
Audio: Psalm 51-57

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

1 Kings 16 (ESV)

And the word of the Lord came to Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha, saying, “Since I exalted you out of the dust and made you leader over my people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam and have made my people Israel to sin, provoking me to anger with their sins, behold, I will utterly sweep away Baasha and his house, and I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat. Anyone belonging to Baasha who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone of his who dies in the field the birds of the heavens shall eat.”

Now the rest of the acts of Baasha and what he did, and his might, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? And Baasha slept with his fathers and was buried at Tirzah, and Elah his son reigned in his place.Moreover, the word of the Lord came by the prophet Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha and his house, both because of all the evil that he did in the sight of the Lord, provoking him to anger with the work of his hands, in being like the house of Jeroboam, and also because he destroyed it.

In the twenty-sixth year of Asa king of Judah, Elah the son of Baasha began to reign over Israel in Tirzah, and he reigned two years. But his servant Zimri, commander of half his chariots, conspired against him. When he was at Tirzah, drinking himself drunk in the house of Arza, who was over the household in Tirzah,10 Zimri came in and struck him down and killed him, in the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, and reigned in his place.

11 When he began to reign, as soon as he had seated himself on his throne, he struck down all the house of Baasha. He did not leave him a single male of his relatives or his friends. 12 Thus Zimri destroyed all the house of Baasha, according to the word of the Lord, which he spoke against Baasha by Jehu the prophet,13 for all the sins of Baasha and the sins of Elah his son, which they sinned and which they made Israel to sin, provoking the Lord God of Israel to anger with their idols. 14 Now the rest of the acts of Elah and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?

15 In the twenty-seventh year of Asa king of Judah, Zimri reigned seven days in Tirzah. Now the troops were encamped against Gibbethon, which belonged to the Philistines, 16 and the troops who were encamped heard it said, “Zimri has conspired, and he has killed the king.” Therefore all Israel made Omri, the commander of the army, king over Israel that day in the camp. 17 So Omri went up from Gibbethon, and all Israel with him, and they besieged Tirzah. 18 And when Zimri saw that the city was taken, he went into the citadel of the king’s house and burned the king’s house over him with fire and died, 19 because of his sins that he committed, doing evil in the sight of the Lord, walking in the way of Jeroboam, and for his sin which he committed, making Israel to sin. 20 Now the rest of the acts of Zimri, and the conspiracy that he made, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?

21 Then the people of Israel were divided into two parts. Half of the people followed Tibni the son of Ginath, to make him king, and half followed Omri. 22 But the people who followed Omri overcame the people who followed Tibni the son of Ginath. So Tibni died, and Omri became king. 23 In the thirty-first year of Asa king of Judah, Omri began to reign over Israel, and he reigned for twelve years; six years he reigned in Tirzah. 24 He bought the hill of Samaria from Shemer for two talents of silver, and he fortified the hill and called the name of the city that he built Samaria, after the name of Shemer, the owner of the hill.

25 Omri did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and did more evil than all who were before him. 26 For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and in the sins that he made Israel to sin, provoking the Lord, the God of Israel, to anger by their idols. 27 Now the rest of the acts of Omri that he did, and the might that he showed, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? 28 And Omri slept with his fathers and was buried in Samaria, and Ahab his son reigned in his place.

29 In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, Ahab the son of Omri began to reign over Israel, and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty-two years. 30 And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord, more than all who were before him. 31 And as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, he took for his wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and went and served Baal and worshiped him. 32 He erected an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he built in Samaria. 33 And Ahab made an Asherah. Ahab did more to provoke the Lord, the God of Israel, to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him. 34 In his days Hiel of Bethel built Jericho. He laid its foundation at the cost of Abiram his firstborn, and set up its gates at the cost of his youngest son Segub, according to the word of the Lord, which he spoke by Joshua the son of Nun.

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Next: 1 Kings 17

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This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. More Evil

    1 Kings 16:25 Omri did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and did more evil than all who were before him.

    1 Kings 16:30 And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord, more than all who were before him.

    While we don't know the specifics of Omri's sin since we don't have the "Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel" mentioned in 1 Kings 16:27, we do know of Ahab's sin which provoked the anger of the lord more than all the kings of Israel who were before him (including his father Omri):

    1. He took for his wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and 2. 2. He served Baal
    3. He worshiped Baal
    4. He erected an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he built in Samaria.
    5. He made an Asherah

    The ESV Study Bible offers valuable insight into not only the devastating effects of Ahab taking Jezebel as his wife but also the significance of Ahab making an Asherah:

    "[Jezebel] led [Ahab] into the worship of a foreign god, Baal. Baal is not strictly a name but a title (meaning “lord”) for the ancient Semitic god Hadad—“Lord Hadad” (Baal-Hadad)—first known from the ancient city of Ebla in northwestern Syria and from Egypt, but most thoroughly understood through the Ugaritic texts from Ras Shamra on the Syrian coast. These texts depict Baal (Hadad) as a storm god; the fertility of the land depends on his sending rain. He is son of the high god El and husband of the goddess Anat; his enemies are Yam (“Sea”) and Mot (“Death”); his weapons are thunder and lightning; and his symbolic representation is the bull. Baal worship presented an attractive alternative or supplement to the worship of the Lord (Yahweh) for many Israelites throughout their time in Canaan, no doubt partly because that land was so utterly dependent on rain for its fertility.

    "The idolatrous worship that lies at the root of Israel’s problem is here summed up in terms of the making of Asherim, or Asherah poles. The goddess Asherah is known from Ugaritic texts under the name Athirat, the wife of the chief god El and the mother of the gods. In syncretistic Israelite circles she inevitably appears as the wife of the Lord. The Asherim were cult symbols connected with the worship of this goddess, probably wooden artifacts representing a tree (cf. Deut. 16:21, which suggests that sometimes an “Asherah” could actually be a tree; Hos. 4:12)."

    Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 627). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

    We can all relate to the downward spiral of sin. It seems that each generation plunges further down into the pit of depravity with seemingly unstoppable momentum. But those of us who have been born again, who have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, have the power to overcome sin and not be defeated or controlled by it. Each of us has a long way to go (and a lot to overcome) as new stumbling blocks and temptations appear in our path daily. Even with great, sustained victory over sin, we all have the capacity to stumble and fall. 

    But each day that we submit ourselves to the Lordship of Christ by denying ourselves, taking up our crosses and following Jesus, sin looses its grip on us and we enjoy the fruit of God's sanctifying work in our lives to be freed from sin's dominance so God can have full control over our lives. 

    We may not worship Baal or make an Asherah in modern times, but if we're not careful, alert, and in God's Word (while putting on the whole armor of God), we will find ourselves drifting (or running) away from God and into the waiting arms of distractions and sin. 

    The principles which provoked the Lord to anger still exist today. We can't serve two masters (as our Lord Jesus said in Matthew 6:24). 

    "Now therefore fear the Lord and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness. Put away the gods that your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. 15 And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:14-15).

  2. As I was reading this chapter, exactly what you said in your comment came to mind, that with each generation, the depravity just gets worse, and it's still happening today. 

    "They will be lovers of money and themselves" constantly comes to mind every time I turn on the TV. 

    It's really scary to know what lies ahead for some, and my heart breaks for them. 

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