1 Then the LORD spoke against King Baasha through the prophet, Jehu son of Hanani. He said, 2 “I made you an important prince over my people Israel. But you have done the same things Jeroboam did. You have caused my people Israel to sin. Their sins have made me angry. 3 So Baasha, I will destroy you and your family, just as I did Jeroboam son of Nebat and his family. 4 Dogs will eat the bodies of those in your family who die in the city. And wild birds will eat the bodies of those who die out in the fields.”
5 The rest of the story about Baasha and the great things he did are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel. 6 Baasha died and was buried in Tirzah. His son Elah became the new king after him.
7 That book also has the story of the time the LORD gave the message to Jehu the prophet about Baasha and his family. Baasha did many things the LORD said were wrong, just as Jeroboam and his family had done. This and the fact that Baasha had killed everyone in Jeroboam’s family made the Lord very angry.
Elah, King of Israel
8 Elah son of Baasha became king during the 26th year that Asa was the king of Judah. He ruled in Tirzah for two years.
9 Zimri was one of King Elah’s officers. Zimri commanded half of Elah’s chariots, but Zimri plotted against Elah. King Elah was in Tirzah, drinking and getting drunk at Arza’s home. Arza was the man in charge of the palace at Tirzah. 10 Zimri went into the house and killed King Elah. Then Zimri became the new king of Israel after Elah. This was during the 27th year that Asa was king in Judah.
Zimri, King of Israel
11 After Zimri became the new king, he killed all of Baasha’s family and friends. He did not let any male in Baasha’s family live. 12 So Zimri destroyed Baasha’s family just as the LORD said he would when he spoke against Baasha through the prophet Jehu. 13 This happened because of all the sins of Baasha and his son, Elah. They sinned and they caused the Israelites to sin. They worshiped worthless idols, and this made the LORD angry.
14 The rest of what that Elah did is written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel.
15 Zimri became king of Israel during the 27th year that Asa was king of Judah. Zimri ruled in Tirzah only seven days. This is what happened: The army of Israel was at Gibbethon, which was under Philistine control. 16 Omri was the commander of the army of Israel. The men in the camp heard that Zimri had made secret plans against the king and killed him. So in the camp all the soldiers made Omri the new king. 17 Then Omri and all the soldiers of Israel left Gibbethon and went to Tirzah. They surrounded the city and attacked it. 18 When Zimri saw the city had been captured, he ran to the palace fortress, but the soldiers burned it down with him still in it. 19 So Zimri died because he sinned and did what the LORD said was wrong, just as Jeroboam did when he caused the Israelites to sin.
20 The story about Zimri’s secret plans and the other things that he did are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel.
Omri, King of Israel
21 Then the Israelites were divided. Half of the people followed Tibni the son of Ginath and wanted to make him king. The other half of the people followed Omri. 22 But Omri’s followers were stronger than the followers of Tibni son of Ginath. Tibni died, and Omri became king.
23 Omri became king of Israel during Asa’s 31st year as the king of Judah. Omri ruled over Israel for 12 years. Six of those years he ruled from Tirzah. 24 Then Omri bought the hill of Samaria from Shemer for about 150 pounds* 150 pounds Literally, “2 talents” (69 kg). of silver. Omri built a city on that hill. He named the city Samaria after the name of its owner, Shemer.
25 Omri did what the LORD said was wrong. He was worse than all the kings who were before him. 26 He committed all the sins that Jeroboam son of Nebat had committed when he caused the Israelites to sin. They worshiped worthless idols, and this made the LORD, the God of Israel, very angry.
27 The rest of the story about Omri and the great things he did are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel. 28 Omri died and was buried in Samaria. His son Ahab became the new king after him.
Ahab, King of Israel
29 Ahab son of Omri became king of Israel during the 38th year that Asa was king of Judah. Ahab ruled Israel from the town of Samaria for 22 years. 30 He did what the LORD said was wrong. Ahab was worse than all the kings who were before him. 31 It was not enough for Ahab to commit the same sins that Jeroboam, son of Nebat, had done. Ahab also married Jezebel, daughter of King Ethbaal of Sidon. Then Ahab began to serve and worship Baal. 32 He built a temple and an altar in Samaria for worshiping Baal. 33 He also set up a sacred pole.† sacred pole People used these to worship false gods. Ahab did more to make the LORD, the God of Israel, angry than all the other kings who were before him.
34 During Ahab’s time, Hiel from Bethel rebuilt the town of Jericho. When Hiel started work on the city, his oldest son Abiram died. And when Hiel built the gates of the city, his youngest son Segub died. This happened just as the LORD said it would happen when he spoke through Joshua son of Nun.‡ This happened … Joshua son of Nun See Josh. 6:26.
*16:24 150 pounds Literally, “2 talents” (69 kg).
†16:33 sacred pole People used these to worship false gods.
‡16:34 This happened … Joshua son of Nun See Josh. 6:26.