Chapter 13

1In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, Abijah began to reign over Judah.   אבִּשְׁנַ֛ת שְׁמוֹנֶ֥ה עֶשְׂרֵ֖ה לַמֶּ֣לֶךְ יָֽרָבְעָ֑ם וַיִּמְלֹ֥ךְ אֲבִיָּ֖ה עַל־יְהוּדָֽה:
2Three years he reigned in Jerusalem, and his mother's name was Micaiah the daughter of Uriel from Gibeah, and there was a war between Abijah and Jeroboam.   בשָׁל֣וֹשׁ שָׁנִ֗ים מָלַךְ֙ בִּיר֣וּשָׁלִַ֔ם וְשֵׁ֣ם אִמּ֔וֹ מִֽיכָיָ֥הוּ בַת־אֽוּרִיאֵ֖ל מִן־גִּבְעָ֑ה וּמִלְחָמָ֧ה הָֽיְתָ֛ה בֵּ֥ין אֲבִיָּ֖ה וּבֵ֥ין יָֽרָבְעָֽם:
Three years he reigned in Jerusalem: and no more, as is proven in I Kings (15:9): “And in the twentieth year of Jeroboam, king of Israel, Asa reigned over Judah.” We find that he did not reign even three whole years.  
Micaiah the daughter of Uriel: And above (11: 20), he calls her by a different name, Maacah the daughter of Absalom, and in I Kings (15:10), it is likewise written “Maacah the daughter of Absalom.” Micaiah the daughter of Uriel was her [real] name, and here he calls her thus because this is the genealogical record of Judah. In Kings, which is the book of the kings of Israel and Judah, he calls her by her nickname, Maacah the daughter of Absalom. Now, for this reason, they nicknamed her Maacah, rather than call her by her real name, Micaiah, (and the name of her father was Uriel Abishalom). She was called by the name of her daughter- in-law, who was a valiant woman, a heroic woman, as it is written (below 15:16): “And also Maacah the mother of King Asa he removed from being queen,” and in honor of her daughter-in-law, they called the mother-in-law by the daughter-in-law’s name. So it is explained in Yerushalmi (unknown). Now this tradition is in the name of Rabbi Eliezer, and he told me this in the name of his father, and so I found in his father’s commentary: Wherever a “vav” is added to the name of a woman, this is to her praise, like Athaliah (below 22:12): “and Athaliah reigned over the land,” for she was a valiant woman; similarly Jecaliah (ibid. 26:3) and Jecaliahu (II Kings 15:2), because she was a heroic woman, for Amaziah her husband fled to Lachish and was there fifteen years until he died, and she judged the people all those fifteen years, and later, when he died, they crowned his son Uzziah after him at the age of sixteen.  
3And Abijah conducted the war with an army of mighty warriors, four hundred thousand chosen men, and Jeroboam waged war with him with eight hundred thousand chosen men, mighty warriors.   גוַיֶּאְסֹ֨ר אֲבִיָּ֜ה אֶת־הַמִּלְחָמָ֗ה בְּחַ֙יִל֙ גִּבּוֹרֵ֣י מִלְחָמָ֔ה אַרְבַּע־מֵא֥וֹת אֶ֖לֶף אִ֣ישׁ בָּח֑וּר וְיָֽרָבְעָ֗ם עָרַ֚ךְ עִמּוֹ֙ מִלְחָמָ֔ה בִּשְׁמוֹנֶ֨ה מֵא֥וֹת אֶ֛לֶף אִ֥ישׁ בָּח֖וּר גִּבּ֥וֹר חָֽיִל:
4And Abijah arose at the top of Mount Zemaraim, which is on Mount Ephraim, and he said, "Hearken to me, Jeroboam and all Israel.   דוַיָּ֣קָם אֲבִיָּ֗ה מֵעַל֙ לְהַ֣ר צְמָרַ֔יִם אֲשֶׁ֖ר בְּהַ֣ר אֶפְרָ֑יִם וַיֹּ֕אמֶר שְׁמָע֖וּנִי יָֽרָבְעָ֥ם וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
And Abijah arose: For Abijah went to war against Jeroboam in Jeroboam’s territory on Mount Ephraim.  
5Should you not know that the Lord, the God of Israel, gave the kingdom to David over Israel forever, to him and to his sons, [with] a covenant of salt?   ההֲלֹ֚א לָכֶם֙ לָדַ֔עַת כִּ֞י יְהֹוָ֣ה| אֱלֹהֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל נָתַ֨ן מַמְלָכָ֧ה לְדָוִ֛יד עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל לְעוֹלָ֑ם ל֥וֹ וּלְבָנָ֖יו בְּרִ֥ית מֶֽלַח:
a covenant of salt: with endurance and permanence. And now -  
6But Jeroboam the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, arose and rebelled against his master.   ווַיָּ֙קָם֙ יָֽרָבְעָ֣ם בֶּן־נְבָ֔ט עֶ֖בֶד שְׁלֹמֹ֣ה בֶן־דָּוִ֑יד וַיִּמְרֹ֖ד עַל־אֲדֹנָֽיו:
Jeroboam, etc. the servant of Solomon the son of David, arose, etc.: and a great stigma is attached to this.  
7And there gathered to him worthless and unbridled men, and they overwhelmed Rehoboam the son of Solomon, and Rehoboam was young and soft-hearted, and he did not strengthen himself before them.   זוַיִּקָּֽבְצ֣וּ עָלָ֗יו אֲנָשִׁ֚ים רֵקִים֙ בְּנֵ֣י בְלִיַּ֔עַל וַיִּתְאַמְּצ֖וּ עַל־רְחַבְעָ֣ם בֶּן־שְׁלֹמֹ֑ה וּרְחַבְעָ֗ם הָ֚יָה נַ֙עַר֙ וְרַךְ־לֵבָ֔ב וְלֹ֥א הִתְחַזַּ֖ק לִפְנֵיהֶֽם:
And there gathered to him worthless: wicked.  
and they overwhelmed: Rehoboam the son of Solomon.  
and Rehoboam was young and soft-hearted: and since they found in him humility and soft- heartedness, they overwhelmed him.  
young: Heb. נַעַר. Although he was forty-one years old when he reigned, he is called a youth (נַעַר), as I explained above (I Chron. 22:5) in regards to Solomon.  
8And now, you are saying to strengthen yourselves before the kingdom of the Lord in the hand of the sons of David, and you are a great multitude, and with you are golden calves that Jeroboam made for you for gods.   חוְעַתָּ֣ה| אַתֶּ֣ם אֹֽמְרִ֗ים לְהִתְחַזֵּק֙ לִפְנֵי֙ מַמְלֶ֣כֶת יְהֹוָ֔ה בְּיַ֖ד בְּנֵ֣י דָוִ֑יד וְאַתֶּם֙ הָמ֣וֹן רָ֔ב וְעִמָּכֶם֙ עֶגְלֵ֣י זָהָ֔ב אֲשֶׁ֨ר עָשָׂ֥ה לָכֶ֛ם יָֽרָבְעָ֖ם לֵֽאלֹהִֽים:
9Did you not banish the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and make for yourselves priests like the peoples of the lands? Whoever comes to initiate himself with a young bull and seven rams, will be a priest to a non-god.   טהֲלֹ֚א הִדַּחְתֶּם֙ אֶת־כֹּֽהֲנֵ֣י יְהֹוָ֔ה אֶת־בְּנֵ֥י אַֽהֲרֹ֖ן וְהַֽלְוִיִּ֑ם וַתַּֽעֲשׂ֨וּ לָכֶ֚ם כֹּֽהֲנִים֙ כְּעַמֵּ֣י הָֽאֲרָצ֔וֹת כָּל־הַבָּ֗א לְמַלֵּ֨א יָד֜וֹ בְּפַ֚ר בֶּן־בָּקָר֙ וְאֵילִ֣ם שִׁבְעָ֔ה וְהָיָ֥ה כֹהֵ֖ן לְלֹ֥א אֱלֹהִֽים:
like the peoples of the lands: Whoever wishes to come and be initiated to be a priest to a golden calf, shall bring a young bull and seven rams, and be accepted.  
to initiate himself: Heb. לְמַלֵּא יָדוֹ. To differentiate between impure and pure, similar to (Exod. 29: 29): “to be anointed and initiated (וּלְמַלֵּא בָם אֶת יָדָם) through them.”  
10But, as for us-the Lord is our God, and we have not forsaken Him, and the priests who minister to the Lord are the sons of Aaron, and the Levites engage in the work.   יוַֽאֲנַ֛חְנוּ יְהֹוָ֥ה אֱלֹהֵ֖ינוּ וְלֹ֣א עֲזַבְנֻ֑הוּ וְכֹֽהֲנִים֞ מְשָֽׁרְתִ֚ים לַֽיהֹוָה֙ בְּנֵ֣י אַֽהֲרֹ֔ן וְהַֽלְוִיִּ֖ם בַּמְלָֽאכֶת:
engage in the work: i.e., in their work; this one to sing, and that one to guard the gates, every man to his work, as David prepared it.  
11And they burn to the Lord burnt offerings every morning and every evening, and incense and [set up] the showbread on the pure table, and the golden candelabrum and its lamps to kindle every evening, for we keep the watch of the Lord our God, but you have forsaken Him.   יאוּמַקְטִרִ֣ים לַֽיהֹוָ֡ה עֹל֣וֹת בַּבֹּֽקֶר־בַּבֹּ֣קֶר וּבָעֶ֗רֶב בָּעֶ֣רֶב וּקְטֹֽרֶת־סַמִּים֩ וּמַֽעֲרֶ֨כֶת לֶ֜חֶם עַל־הַשֻּׁלְחָ֣ן הַטָּה֗וֹר וּמְנוֹרַ֨ת הַזָּהָ֚ב וְנֵֽרֹתֶ֙יהָ֙ לְבָעֵר֙ בָּעֶ֣רֶב בָּעֶ֔רֶב כִּֽי־שֹֽׁמְרִ֣ים אֲנַ֔חְנוּ אֶת־מִשְׁמֶ֖רֶת יְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֵ֑ינוּ וְאַתֶּ֖ם עֲזַבְתֶּ֥ם אֹתֽוֹ:
12And behold, with us at the head are God and His priests and the sounding trumpets to sound over you. O Children of Israel, do not wage war with the Lord, the God of your forefathers, for you will not succeed."   יבוְהִנֵּה֩ עִמָּ֨נוּ בָרֹ֜אשׁ הָֽאֱלֹהִ֧ים| וְכֹֽהֲנָ֛יו וַֽחֲצֹֽצְר֥וֹת הַתְּרוּעָ֖ה לְהָרִ֣יעַ עֲלֵיכֶ֑ם בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל אַל־תִּלָּֽחֲמ֛וּ עִם־יְהֹוָ֥ה אֱלֹהֵֽי־אֲבֹֽתֵיכֶ֖ם כִּי־לֹ֥א תַצְלִֽיחוּ:
13And Jeroboam turned the ambush to come from behind them, and they were before Judah, and the ambush was behind them.   יגוְיָֽרָבְעָ֗ם הֵסֵב֙ אֶת־הַמַּֽאֲרָ֔ב לָב֖וֹא מֵֽאַֽחֲרֵיהֶ֑ם וַיִּֽהְיוּ֙ לִפְנֵ֣י יְהוּדָ֔ה וְהַמַּֽאֲרָ֖ב מֵאַֽחֲרֵיהֶֽם:
14And Judah turned around, and behold the battle was before them and behind them, and they cried out to the Lord, and the priests were sounding the trumpets.   ידוַיִּפְנ֣וּ יְהוּדָ֗ה וְהִנֵּ֨ה לָהֶ֚ם הַמִּלְחָמָה֙ פָּנִ֣ים וְאָח֔וֹר וַיִּצְעֲק֖וּ לַֽיהֹוָ֑ה וְהַכֹּ֣הֲנִ֔ים מַחְצְרִ֖ים (כתיב מַחְצְצרִ֖ים) בַּֽחֲצֹצְרֽוֹת:
15And the men of Judah shouted, and it came to pass, when the men of Judah shouted, God smote Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.   טווַיָּרִ֖יעוּ אִ֣ישׁ יְהוּדָ֑ה וַיְהִ֗י בְּהָרִ֙יעַ֙ אִ֣ישׁ יְהוּדָ֔ה וְהָֽאֱלֹהִ֗ים נָגַ֚ף אֶת־יָֽרָבְעָם֙ וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל לִפְנֵ֥י אֲבִיָּ֖ה וִֽיהוּדָֽה:
16And the Children of Israel fled before Judah, and God delivered them into their hands.   טזוַיָּנ֥וּסוּ בְנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מִפְּנֵ֣י יְהוּדָ֑ה וַיִּתְּנֵ֥ם אֱלֹהִ֖ים בְּיָדָֽם:
17And Abijah and his people smote them a great blow, and five hundred thousand chosen men of Israel fell slain.   יזוַיַּכּ֥וּ בָהֶ֛ם אֲבִיָּ֥ה וְעַמּ֖וֹ מַכָּ֣ה רַבָּ֑ה וַיִּפְּל֚וּ חֲלָלִים֙ מִיִּשְׂרָאֵ֔ל חֲמֵֽשׁ־מֵא֥וֹת אֶ֖לֶף אִ֥ישׁ בָּחֽוּר:
18And the Children of Israel were humbled at that time, and the Children of Judah became strong because they relied on the Lord, the God of their forefathers.   יחוַיִּכָּֽנְע֥וּ בְנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בָּעֵ֣ת הַהִ֑יא וַיֶּֽאֶמְצוּ֙ בְּנֵ֣י יְהוּדָ֔ה כִּ֣י נִשְׁעֲנ֔וּ עַל־יְהֹוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֥י אֲבֽוֹתֵיהֶֽם:
19And Abijah pursued Jeroboam, and he captured cities from him; Beth-El and its villages and Jeshanah and its villages and Ephrain and its villages.   יטוַיִּרְדֹּ֣ף אֲבִיָּה֘ אַֽחֲרֵ֣י יָֽרָבְעָם֒ וַיִּלְכֹּ֚ד מִמֶּ֙נּוּ֙ עָרִ֔ים אֶת־בֵּֽית־אֵל֙ וְאֶת־בְּנוֹתֶ֔יהָ וְאֶת־יְשָׁנָ֖ה וְאֶת־בְּנוֹתֶ֑יהָ וְאֶת־עֶפְרַ֖יִן (כתיב עֶפְרַ֖וִן) וּבְנֹתֶֽיהָ:
20And Jeroboam could muster no more strength in the days of Abijah, and the Lord smote him, and he died.   כוְלֹֽא־עָצַ֨ר כֹּ֧חַ־יָֽרָבְעָ֛ם ע֖וֹד בִּימֵ֣י אֲבִיָּ֑הוּ וַיִּגְּפֵ֥הוּ יְהֹוָ֖ה וַיָּמֹֽת:
And Jeroboam could muster no more strength, etc., and the Lord smote him: i.e., Jeroboam.  
and he died: He did not die immediately, but continuously deteriorated because of the wars, and in Genesis Rabbah (65:20), it is explained that the Lord smote Abijah.  
21And Abijah strengthened himself, and he took himself fourteen wives, and he begot twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters.   כאוַיִּתְחַזֵּ֣ק אֲבִיָּ֔הוּ וַיִּ֨שָּׂא־ל֔וֹ נָשִׁ֖ים אַרְבַּ֣ע עֶשְׂרֵ֑ה וַיּ֗וֹלֶד עֶשְׂרִ֚ים וּשְׁנַ֙יִם֙ בָּנִ֔ים וְשֵׁ֥שׁ עֶשְׂרֵ֖ה בָּנֽוֹת:
22And the rest of the deeds of Abijah and his ways and his deeds are written in the midrash of the prophet Iddo.   כבוְיֶ֙תֶר֙ דִּבְרֵ֣י אֲבִיָּ֔ה וּדְרָכָ֖יו וּדְבָרָ֑יו כְּתוּבִ֕ים בְּמִדְרַ֖שׁ הַנָּבִ֥יא עִדּֽוֹ:
23And Abijah slept with his forefathers, and they buried him in the City of David, and his son Asa reigned in his stead; in his time, the land was tranquil for ten years.   כגוַיִּשְׁכַּ֨ב אֲבִיָּ֜ה עִם־אֲבֹתָ֗יו וַיִּקְבְּר֚וּ אֹתוֹ֙ בְּעִ֣יר דָּוִ֔יד וַיִּמְלֹ֛ךְ אָסָ֥א בְנ֖וֹ תַּחְתָּ֑יו בְּיָמָ֛יו שָׁקְטָ֥ה הָאָ֖רֶץ עֶ֥שֶׂר שָׁנִֽים: