1 Kings 15:10
and he reigned in Jerusalem forty-one years. His grandmother's name was Maacah daughter of Abishalom.
ReformationJ.A. Macdonald 1 Kings 15:9-15
Zeal Without TrustJ. Urquhart 1 Kings 15:9-24

The moral condition of Judah was fearful when Asa came to the throne. The apostasy of Solomon had inaugurated a retrogression which was aggravated in the reigns following, so that for three generations the abominations of the heathens were increasing. The condition of Israel was even worse, under the system introduced by Jeroboam, to which the successors of that monarch tenaciously held. When the Holy Land was in such a state of degeneracy, what was the condition of the world at large! There was, therefore, the greatest need for reformation.

I. OF THIS ASA BECAME THE SUBJECT AND SPECIMEN. Reformations have ever been inaugurated by individuals who have embodied and exemplified their principles. Witness Luther in Germany, Knox in Scotland, etc. Such also was Asa.

1. He "did that which was right in the eyes of the Lord."

(1) To do right in the eyes of the world is praiseworthy. For wicked men "know better;" and they have keen vision to discover inconsistencies in professors of religion (see Philippians 2:15: 1 Peter 2:11-15).

(2) To do right in the eyes of good men is a higher commendation. They have a purer light, and consequently a finer appreciation of moral qualities. Things which the world will allow they. cannot approve.

(3) But to do right in the "eyes of the Lord" is the highest praise. He reads the heart - surveys the motives - requires "truth in the inward parts." What a searching vision shall we pass under in the day of judgment I If that vision approve us now we shall then have nothing to fear.

2. In this he is compared with David.

(1) David never followed idols. The one blur of his life was the matter of Uriah, of which he heartily repented. Who amongst us has nothing to repent of?

(2) David's loyalty to God was sincere and fervent. What a warm spirit of piety breathes in the Psalms I are they not, even in our gospel age, a fine vehicle for spiritual worship?

(3) David was a prophet. This Asa was not. He had the grace, not the gifts, of the founder of his house. Gifts are not equally within the reach of all; graces are.

3. Such commendation was eminently creditable to Asa.

(1) He stands out in remarkable contrast to his father. Abijam was wicked; Asa was good. The influence of the father was vicious; the son resisted it and was virtuous.

(2) Asa's mother seems to have died early, for Maachah, the daughter of Absalom, who was his grandmother, is here mentioned as his mother. Under the influence of Maachah, Abijah developed badly; notwithstanding that evil influence Asa developed well.

(3) We must not ignore, but fully recognize, individual moral responsibility. The will cannot be compared to a pair of scales which is mechanically moved by weights.

II. OF THIS ALSO HE BECAME THE INSTRUMENT. This is God's order (1 John 1:3). What he felt he tried to promote.

1. Beginning with his own house.

(1) He removed the idols which his father had made. He felt especially bound to do this in order to cut off the entail of sin from his house.

(2) He frowned also upon the idolatry of his grandmother. "She made an idol in a grove" (מפלצת לאשרה) a glory for an Ashere. The word is used for terribleness or majestic glory Jeremiah 49:16. Setting an image in the cloud of glory was setting it on an ark or chariot of cherubim to be worshipped. (See Psalm 50:3, where נשערה is used for the cloud of glory about Jehovah.) Asa demolished this nimbus, or glory, together with the Ashere, or idol, and probably threw the ashes into the Kedron in contempt (compare Deuteronomy 9:21; 2 Kings 23:12; 2 Chronicles 15:16).

(3) Furthermore, he removed Maachah from being queen (dowager). He thus merited the commendation of Levi (see Deuteronomy 33:9; see also Matthew 10:37).

2. Then influencing the nation.

(1) He removed the Sodomites out of the land. What prosperity can there be in any state where public immorality is tolerated by the magistrates?

(2) He destroyed the high places of idolatry with their altars and idols, in the country and in the cities (see 2 Chronicles 14:3, 5).

(3) The high places used in the worship of Jehovah after the fashion of the patriarchs, he spared. For this he is but lightly censured; to have limited the ordinances of public worship to the temple would have been the more excellent way.

(4) He encouraged the worship of Jehovah (see 2 Chronicles 14:4). Not by precept only, but by example also. He dedicated to the Lord the things which his father had vowed, but either neglected to pay or died before he could carry his purpose into effect. Also the spoil which he himself had taken from the Ethiopians (see 2 Chronicles 15:11, 12). Where the heart of God's people is loyal the treasuries of His house will be full. - J.A.M.

David kept my commandments... thou hast gone and made thee other gods.
The people of God had left their God, and He had left them, so that Shishak, the King of Egypt, came against them; and though the Lord had respect to their humble prayer, and would not suffer Shishak to destroy Jerusalem, yet He brought them into subjection to the Egyptian king. Our text tells us the reason for this servitude: "They shall be his servants; that they may know My service, and the service of the kingdoms of the countries."

I. THERE ARE SOME WHO HAVE ALREADY CHOSEN THE SERVICE OF THE KINGDOMS OF THE COUNTLESS. We have many round about us who have deliberately chosen not to serve God, but to serve other masters.

1. Some choose to be the slaves of open sin.

2. There are many persons who are not the worshippers of vice, but they are the votaries of money-making. They are the slaves of the thirst for wealth.

3. There are some others who do not try to get much money, but they are lovers of fashion, lovers of society, admirers of the world.

4. Then there is another cult that has lately come up, which some have chosen, so that they have become the devotees of "culture."

5. I will only refer to one more class of those who have chosen the service of the kingdoms; these are the seekers of self-righteousness. This is an old-fashioned and very respectable deity whom many still worship.

II. SOME SEEM TO BE PINING TO GIVE UP THE SERVICE OF GOD, AND TO GO TO THE SERVICE OF THE KINGDOMS. It is a strange thing; but this evil is always breaking out even among the people of God.

1. Some want to change out of sheer love of change.

2. Some want to be off to their idols, because of the outward aspect of the new thing.

3. Sometimes men turn aside because of their loss of joy in the service of God. They are not serving the Lord as they used to do; they are doing but little for Him.

4. Then there are many who are led to want a change from the service of God by the flagging of others.

5. There are some who turn aside because religion now has brought them to a point where it entails some extra self-sacrifice.


1. If you are about to engage in the service of God, there is nothing demanded of you that will harm you. There Is no commandment of God which, if you keep it, will injure either your body or your soul.

2. Next, notice that there is nothing denied you, in the service of God, that would be a blessing to you. The promise is, "No good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly"

3. Once more observe that in the service of God strength will always be given according to your day.

4. And all the while that you are the servant of God, you have a sweet peace in reflecting upon what you have done. As George Herbert said, when he helped a poor woman with her load, and men wondered that the parson of the parish should carry a poor woman's basket for her, "The memory of this will make the bells ring in my heart at night," so the service of God makes the bells ring in our hearts.

5. Lastly, there is above all this a hope of the eternal reward which is so soon to come.

( C. H. Spurgeon.)

Abel, Abijah, Abijam, Abishalom, Ahijah, Aram, Asa, Baasha, Ben, Benhadad, Ben-hadad, Benjamin, Dan, David, Hadad, Hezion, Issachar, Jehoshaphat, Jeroboam, Maacah, Maachah, Nadab, Naphtali, Nebat, Rehoboam, Rezon, Sodomites, Tabrimon, Tirzah, Uriah, Urijah
Abel-beth-maacah, Chinneroth, Damascus, Dan, Geba, Gibbethon, Ijon, Jerusalem, Kidron, Mizpah, Ramah, Syria, Tirzah
Abishalom, Abish'alom, Daughter, Forty, Forty-one, Grandmother's, Jerusalem, Maacah, Ma'acah, Maachah, Mother's, Reigned
1. Abijam's wicked reign
7. Asa succeeds him
9. Asa's good reign
16. The war between Baasha and him causes him to make a league with Ben-Hadad
23. Jehoshaphat succeeds Asa
25. Nadab's wicked reign
27. Baasha conspiring against him, executes Ahijah's prophecy
31. Nadab's acts and death
33. Baasha's wicked reign

Dictionary of Bible Themes
1 Kings 15:1-31

     5366   king

1 Kings 15:9-10

     5697   grandparents

David's Sin in the Matter of Uriah.
"And David said unto Nathan, 'I have sinned against the Lord.' And Nathan said unto David, 'The lord also hath put away thy sin; then shalt not die.'" The sin here referred to is that of David in the matter of Uriah. A strange and sad event--taken in all its circumstances and connections, it is without a parallel. But the circumstance most to be lamented, is that mentioned by the prophet, in the close of his message--"By this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme."
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

BY REV. ALFRED ROWLAND, D.D., LL.B. 1 KINGS xv. 8-24; 2 CHRON. xiv-xvi. Asa was the third king who reigned over the separated kingdoms of Judah. His father was Ahijah, of whom it is sternly said, "He walked in all the sins of his father, Rehoboam, which he had done before him." A worse bringing-up than Asa's could scarcely be imagined. As a child, and as a lad, he was grievously tempted by his father's example, and by the influence of an idolatrous court, which was crowded by flatterers and
George Milligan—Men of the Bible; Some Lesser-Known

Whether Christ is the Head of the Church?
Objection 1: It would seem that it does not belong to Christ as man to be Head of the Church. For the head imparts sense and motion to the members. Now spiritual sense and motion which are by grace, are not imparted to us by the Man Christ, because, as Augustine says (De Trin. i, 12; xv, 24), "not even Christ, as man, but only as God, bestows the Holy Ghost." Therefore it does not belong to Him as man to be Head of the Church. Objection 2: Further, it is not fitting for the head to have a head. But
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether it is Proper to Christ to be Head of the Church?
Objection 1: It seems that it is not proper to Christ to be Head of the Church. For it is written (1 Kings 15:17): "When thou wast a little one in thy own eyes, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel?" Now there is but one Church in the New and the Old Testament. Therefore it seems that with equal reason any other man than Christ might be head of the Church. Objection 2: Further, Christ is called Head of the Church from His bestowing grace on the Church's members. But it belongs to others
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether Obedience is the Greatest of the virtues?
Objection 1: It seems that obedience is the greatest of the virtues. For it is written (1 Kings 15:22): "Obedience is better than sacrifices." Now the offering of sacrifices belongs to religion, which is the greatest of all moral virtues, as shown above ([3173]Q[81], A[6]). Therefore obedience is the greatest of all virtues. Objection 2: Further, Gregory says (Moral. xxxv) that "obedience is the only virtue that ingrafts virtues in the soul and protects them when ingrafted." Now the cause is greater
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether Christ Died Out of Obedience?
Objection 1: It would seem that Christ did not die out of obedience. For obedience is referred to a command. But we do not read that Christ was commanded to suffer. Therefore He did not suffer out of obedience. Objection 2: Further, a man is said to do from obedience what he does from necessity of precept. But Christ did not suffer necessarily, but voluntarily. Therefore He did not suffer out of obedience. Objection 3: Further, charity is a more excellent virtue than obedience. But we read that Christ
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether Disobedience is the Most Grievous of Sins?
Objection 1: It seems that disobedience is the most grievous of sins. For it is written (1 Kings 15:23): "It is like the sin of witchcraft to rebel, and like the crime of idolatry to refuse to obey." But idolatry is the most grievous of sins, as stated above ([3182]Q[94], A[3]). Therefore disobedience is the most grievous of sins. Objection 2: Further, the sin against the Holy Ghost is one that removes the obstacles of sin, as stated above ([3183]Q[14], A[2]). Now disobedience makes a man contemn
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether Predestination Can be Furthered by the Prayers of the Saints?
Objection 1: It seems that predestination cannot be furthered by the prayers of the saints. For nothing eternal can be preceded by anything temporal; and in consequence nothing temporal can help towards making something else eternal. But predestination is eternal. Therefore, since the prayers of the saints are temporal, they cannot so help as to cause anyone to become predestined. Predestination therefore is not furthered by the prayers of the saints. Objection 2: Further, as there is no need of
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether it is Lawful for Clerics to Kill Evil-Doers?
Objection 1: It would seem lawful for clerics to kill evil-doers. For clerics especially should fulfil the precept of the Apostle (1 Cor. 4:16): "Be ye followers of me as I also am of Christ," whereby we are called upon to imitate God and His saints. Now the very God whom we worship puts evildoers to death, according to Ps. 135:10, "Who smote Egypt with their firstborn." Again Moses made the Levites slay twenty-three thousand men on account of the worship of the calf (Ex. 32), the priest Phinees
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether it is Becoming to Pray?
Objection 1: It would seem that it is unbecoming to pray. Prayer seems to be necessary in order that we may make our needs known to the person to whom we pray. But according to Mat. 6:32, "Your Father knoweth that you have need of all these things." Therefore it is not becoming to pray to God. Objection 2: Further, by prayer we bend the mind of the person to whom we pray, so that he may do what is asked of him. But God's mind is unchangeable and inflexible, according to 1 Kings 15:29, "But the Triumpher
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Asa's Reformation, and Consequent Peace and victory
'And Asa did that which was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God; 3. For he took away the altars of the strange gods, and the high places, and brake down the images, and cut down the groves: 4. And commanded Judah to seek the Lord God of their fathers, and to do the law and the commandment. 5. Also he took away out of all the cities of Judah the high places and the images: and the kingdom was quiet before him. 6. And he built fenced cities in Judah: for the land had rest, and he had no
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Whether Vengeance Should be Taken on those who have Sinned Involuntarily?
Objection 1: It seems that vengeance should be taken on those who have sinned involuntarily. For the will of one man does not follow from the will of another. Yet one man is punished for another, according to Ex. 20:5, "I am . . . God . . . jealous, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, unto the third and fourth generation." Thus for the sin of Cham, his son Chanaan was curse (Gn. 9:25) and for the sin of Giezi, his descendants were struck with leprosy (4 Kings 5). Again the blood
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Redemption for Man Lost to be Sought in Christ.
1. The knowledge of God the Creator of no avail without faith in Christ the Redeemer. First reason. Second reason strengthened by the testimony of an Apostle. Conclusion. This doctrine entertained by the children of God in all ages from the beginning of the world. Error of throwing open heaven to the heathen, who know nothing of Christ. The pretexts for this refuted by passages of Scripture. 2. God never was propitious to the ancient Israelites without Christ the Mediator. First reason founded on
John Calvin—The Institutes of the Christian Religion

Question Lxxxiii of Prayer
I. Is Prayer an Act of the Appetitive Powers? Cardinal Cajetan, On Prayer based on Friendship II. Is it Fitting to Pray? Cardinal Cajetan, On Prayer as a True Cause S. Augustine, On the Sermon on the Mount, II. iii. 14 " On the Gift of Perseverance, vii. 15 III. Is Prayer an Act of the Virtue of Religion? Cardinal Cajetan, On the Humility of Prayer S. Augustine, On Psalm cii. 10 " Of the Gift of Perseverance, xvi. 39 IV. Ought We to Pray to God Alone? S. Augustine, Sermon, cxxvii. 2 V.
St. Thomas Aquinas—On Prayer and The Contemplative Life

The book[1] of Kings is strikingly unlike any modern historical narrative. Its comparative brevity, its curious perspective, and-with some brilliant exceptions--its relative monotony, are obvious to the most cursory perusal, and to understand these things is, in large measure, to understand the book. It covers a period of no less than four centuries. Beginning with the death of David and the accession of Solomon (1 Kings i., ii.) it traverses his reign with considerable fulness (1 Kings iii.-xi.),
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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