There is something to be said for teaching everything to somebody, as compared with the modern notion of teaching nothing, and the same sort of nothing, to everybody. — G. K. Chesterton

Story of the Bible Told for Young and Old - Jesse Hurlbut

The King Who Led Israel to Sin, and the Prophet Who Was Slain by a Lion

The Lord had told Jeroboam that he should become king over the Ten Tribes, as we read in Story Twenty of Part Third; and the Lord has promised Jeroboam that is he would serve the Lord, and do his will, then his kingdom would become great, and his descendants, those who should come after him, should sit long on the throne. But Jeroboam, though wise in worldly matters, was not faithful to the Lord God of Israel.

He saw that his people, though separated from the rule of King Rehoboam, still went up to Jerusalem to worship in the Temple, because there was the only altar in all the land. Jeroboam said to himself:

"If my people go up to worship at Jerusalem, then after a time they will become the friends of Rehoboam and his people; and then they will leave me, or perhaps kill me, and let Rehoboam rule again over all the land. I will build places for worship and altars in my own kingdom; and then my people will not need to go abroad to worship."

Jeroboam forgot that the Lord, who had given him the kingdom, could care for him and keep him, if he should be faithful to the Lord. But because he would not trust the Lord, he did that which was very evil. He chose two places, Bethel in the south, on the road to Jerusalem, and Dan far in the north; and made these places of worship for his people. And for each place he made a calf of god, and set it up; and he said to the people of Israel:

"It is too far for you to go up to Jerusalem to worship. Here are gods for you, at Bethel and at Dan. These are the gods which brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Come and worship these gods."

And as the priests of the tribe of Levi would not serve in Jeroboam's idol-temples, he took men out of all the tribes, some of them common and low men, and made them his priests. And all through the land, upon hills and high places, Jeroboam caused images to be set up, to lead the people in worshipping idols.

In the fall of the year there was held a feast to the Lord in Jerusalem, to which the people went from all the land. Jeroboam made a great feast at Bethel, a few weeks later than the feast at Jerusalem, in order to draw people to his idol-temple at Bethel, and to keep them away from the temple of the Lord at Jerusalem. At this feast King Jeroboam led his people away from the Lord to idols; and ever after this, when his name is mentioned in the Bible, he is spoken of as "Jeroboam, who made Israel to sin."

On a day when Jeroboam was offering incense at the altar, a man of God, a prophet, came from Judah; and he cried out against the altar, saying:

"O altar, altar, thus saith the Lord, Behold, in the time to come there shall rise up a man of the house of David, Josiah by name. And Josiah shall burn upon this altar the bones of the priests that have offered sacrifices to idols in this place. And this altar and this temple shall be destroyed."

The prophet from Judah also said to Jeroboam, "I will prove to you that I am speaking in the power of the Lord; and this shall be the sign. This altar shall fall apart, and the ashes upon it shall be poured out."

When King Jeroboam heard this, he was very angry. He stretched out his arm toward the prophet, and called to his guards, saying, "Take hold of that man!"

And instantly the hand which Jeroboam held out toward the prophet, dried up and became helpless And as if by an earthquake the altar before which the king stood was torn apart, and the ashes fell out upon the ground. Then the king saw that this was the work of the Lord. He said to the prophet, "Pray to the Lord your God for me, that he may make my hand well again."

Then the prophet prayed to the Lord, and the Lord heard his prayer, and made the king's hand well once more. Then King Jeroboam said to the prophet, "Come home with me, and dine, and rest; and I will give you a reward."

And the man of God said to the king:

"If you would give me half of your house, I will not go to your home, nor eat bread, nor drink water in this place. For the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 'Eat no bread, and drink no water in this place; and go to your home in the land of Judah by another way.' "

So the man of God left Bethel by a road different from that by which he came, and went toward his own home in the land of Judah.

There was living in Bethel at that time another prophet, and old man. His sons told him of the coming of the man of God from Judah, what he said, and what the Lord had wrought. The old man learned from his sons which road the prophet had taken, and followed after him, and found him resting under an oak tree. He said to him:

"Are you the man of God that came from Judah?"

And he said, "I am." Then said the old prophet of Bethel to him, "come home with me, and have supper with me."

But the man of God said to him, "The Lord has commanded me not to eat bread or drink water in this place; and I must therefore go back to my own home in the land of Judah."

Then the old man said:

"I am a prophet of the Lord as you are; and an angel spoke to me from the Lord, saying, 'Bring the prophet from Judah back to your house, and let him eat and drink with you.' "

Now this was not true. It was a wicked lie. Then the prophet from Judah went home with him, and took a meal at his house. This also was not right, for he should have obeyed what the Lord had said to him, even though another man claimed to have heard a different message from the Lord.

And even while they were sitting at the table, a word came from the Lord to the old prophet who had told the lie; and he cried out to the prophet from Judah, saying:

"Thus saith the Lord, 'Because you have disobeyed my command, have come back to this place, and have eaten bread and drunk water here, therefore you shall die and your body shall not be buried in the tomb with your fathers.' "

After dinner the prophet started again to ride upon his ass back to his own home. And on the way a lion came out, and killed him. But the lion did not eat the man's body. He stood beside it, and the ass stood by it also. And this was told to the old prophet whose lies had led him to disobey the Lord. Then the old prophet came, and took up his body, and laid it in his own tomb, and mourned over him. And he said to his sons:

"When I am dead, bury me beside the body of the prophet from the land of Judah For I know that what he spoke as the message of God against the altar at Bethel shall surely come to pass."

A lion came out and killed the prophet

At one time the child of King Jerboam was taken very ill; and his mother, the queen, went to the prophet Ahijah, the one who had promised the kingdom to Jeroboam, who was now an old man and blind, if the child would be well again. But Ahijah said to her: "Tell King Jeroboam that thus said the Lord to him:

"You have done evil worse than any before you; and have made graven images, and have cast the Lord behind your back. Therefore the Lord will bring evil upon you and upon your house. Your sick child shall die, and every other child of yours shall be slain; and your family shall be swept away. The dogs shall eat the bodies of your children in the city, and the birds of the air shall eat those that die in the field. And in times to come God shall smite Israel, and shall carry them into a land far away, because of the idols which they have worshipped."

The wife of jeroboam and the blind prophet

And after this Jeroboam died, and his son Nadab began to reign in his place. But after two years Baasha, one of his servants, rose up against Nadab, and killed him, and made himself king over Israel. And Baasha killed every child of Jeroboam, and left not one son or daughter of Jerboam alive, as Ahijah the prophet had said.

So, although Jeroboam was made king, as God had promised him, it came to pass that the kingdom was taken away from his family, because he did not obey the world of the Lord, but led his people into sin.


Front Matter

The Story of a Beautiful Garden
The First Baby in the World and His Brother
The Great Ship That Saved Eight People
The Tower That Was Never Finished
The Story of a Long Journey
How Abram's Choice Brought Blessing
The Angel by the Well
The Rain of Fire That Fell on a City
The Boy Who Became an Archer
How an Angel's Voice Saved a Boy's Life
The Story of a Journey after a Wife
How Jacob Stole His Brother's Blessing
Jacob's Wonderful Dream
A Midnight Wrestling Match
The Rich Man's Son Who Was Sold as a Slave
From the Prison to the Palace
How Joseph's Dream Came True
A Lost Brother Found
From the Land of Famine to the Land of Plenty
The Beautiful Baby Who Was Found in a River
The Voice from the Burning Bush
The River That Ran Blood
The Night When a Nation Was Born
How the Sea Became Dry Land and the Sky Rained Bre
The Mountain That Smoked and Words That Were Spoke
How Aaron Made a Golden Calf and What Became of It
The Tent Where God Lived Among His People
How They Worshipped God in the Tabernacle
What Strong Drink Brought to Aaron's Sons
The Scapegoat in the Wilderness
The Cluster of Grapes from the Land of Canaan
How the Long Journey of the Israelites Came to an
What a Wise Man Learned from an Ass
How Moses Looked upon the Promised Land
The Story of Job
The Story of a Scarlet Cord
How the River Jordan Became Dry
The Story of a Wedge of Gold
How Joshua Conquered the Land of Canaan
The Old Man Who Fought Against the Giants
The Avenger of Blook and the Cities of Refuge
The Story of an Altar Beside the River
The Presnt That Ehud Brought to King Eglon
How a Woman Won a Great Victory
Gideon and His Brave Three Hundred
Jephthah's Rash Promise and What Came from It
The Strong Man: How He Lived and How He Died
The Idol Temple at Dan and Its Priest
How Ruth Gleaned in the Field of Boaz
The Little Boy with a Linen Coat
How the Idol Fell Down Before the Ark
The Last of the Judges
The Tall Man Who Was Chosen King
How Saul Saved the Eyes of the Men of Jabesh
The Brave Young Prince
Saul's Great Sin and His Great Loss
The Shepherd Boy of Bethlehem
The Shepherd Boy's Fight with the Giant
The Little Boy Looking for the Arrows
Where David Found the Giant's Sword
How David Spared Saul's Life
The Last Days of King Saul
The Shepherd Boy Becomes a King
The Sound in the Treetops
The Cripple at the King's Table
The Prophet's Story of the Little Lamb
David's Handsome Son and How He Stole the Kingdom
Absalom in the Wood; David on the Throne
The Angel with the Drawn Sword on Mount Moriah
Solomon on This Father's Throne
The Wise Young King
The House of God on Mount Moriah
The Last Days of Solomon's Reign
The Breaking Up of a Great Kingdom
The King Who Led Israel to Sin
The Prophet Who Raised a Boy to Life
The Prayer That Was Answered in Fire
The Voice That Spoke to Elijah in the Mount
The Wounded Prophet and His Story
What Ahab Paid for His Vineyard
The Arrow That Killed a King
Elijah's Chariot of Fire
A Spring Sweetened by Salt
The Pot of Oil and the Pot of Poison
The Little Boy at Shunem
How a Little Girl Helped to Cure a Leper
The Chariots of Fire around Elisha
What the Lepers Found in the Camp
Jehu, the Furious Driver of His Chariot
Elisha and the Bow; Jonah and Nineveh
How the Ten Tribes Were Lost
The First Four Kings of Judah
The Little Boy Who Was Crowned King
Three Kings and a Great Prophet
The Good King Hezekiah
The Lost Book Found in the Temple
The Last Four Kings of Judah and the Weeping Proph
What Ezekiel Saw in the Valley
The Jewish Captives in the Court of the King
The Golden Image and the Fiery Furnace
The Tree That Was Cut Down and Grew Again
The Writing upon the Wall
Daniel in the Den of Lions
The Story of a Joyous Journey
The New Temple on Mount Moriah
The Beautiful Queen of Persia
The Scribe Who Wrote the Old Testament
The Nobleman Who Built the Wall of Jerusalem
Ezra's Great Bible Class in Jerusalem
The Angel by the Altar
The Manger of Bethlehem
The Star and the Wise Men
The Boy in his Father's House
The Prophet in the Wilderness
Jesus in the Desert, and beside the River
The Water Jars at the Wedding Feast
The Stranger at the Well
The Story of a Boy in Capernaum and a Riot
A Net Full of Fishes
The Leper and the Man Let Down through the Roof
The Cripple at the Pool and the Withered Hand
The Twelve Disciples and the Sermon on the Mount
The Captain's Servant, the Widow's Son, and a Sinn
Some Stories Jesus Told by the Sea
"Peace, Be Still"
The Little Girl Who Was Raised to Life
A Dancing Girl and What Was Given Her
The Feast beside the Sea and What Followed It
The Answer to a Mother's Prayer
The Glory of Jesus on the Mountain
The Little Child in the Arms of Jesus
At the Feast of Tabernacles
The Man with Clay on His Face
The Good Shepherd and the Good Samaritan
Lazarus Raised to Life
Some Parables in Perea
The Poor Rich Man and the Rich Poor Man
Jesus at Jericho
Palm Sunday
The Last Vistis of Jesus to the Temple
The Parables on the Mount of Olives
The Last Supper
The Olive Orchard and the High Priests Hall
The Crown of Thorns
The Darkest Day of All the World
The Brightest Day of All the World
The Stranger on the Shore
The Church of the First Days
The Man at the Beautiful Gate
The Right Way to Give, and the Wrong Way
Stephen with the Shining Face
The Man Reading in the Chariot
The Voice That Spoke to Saul
What Peter Saw by the Sea
How the Iron Gate Was Opened
The Earliest Missionaries
The Song in the Prison
Paul's Speech on the Hill
Paul at Corinth
Paul at Ephesus
Paul's Last Journey to Jerusalem
The Speech on the Stairs
Two Years in Prison
The Story That Paul Told to the King
Paul in the Storm
How Paul Came to Rome and How He Lived There
The Throne of God
The City of God