1 Kings 13:1-10

A servant of God visits Jeroboam

13:1A servant of God was a way to describe a prophet.

1 King Jeroboam was standing in front of the altar at Bethel. He was ready to make an offering. At that time, the Lord told one of his servants to go from Judah to Bethel. 2 When he arrived at Bethel, he shouted the message that the Lord had given to him. He said, ‘Altar! Altar! This is what the Lord says to you: “Listen! One day, a son will be born in David's family. His name will be Josiah. On this altar, he will burn as sacrifices the priests who offer sacrifices on the hills. He will burn the bones of dead people on you!” ’

3 The same day, God's servant spoke another message to warn Jeroboam. He said, ‘This is the sign to show that the Lord has decided to do this: You will see the altar break into two pieces. The ashes of the sacrifices that are on it will fall to the ground.’

4 King Jeroboam heard the message that God's servant shouted against the altar at Bethel. As he stood there at the altar, the king pointed his hand at God's servant. He said, ‘Take hold of that man!’ But when he pointed with his hand, it suddenly became useless and he could not pull it back. 5 Then the altar broke into two pieces and the ashes fell to the ground. That is what God's servant had said would happen, to show that he spoke with the Lord's authority.

6 The king said to God's servant, ‘Please pray to the Lord your God that he will be kind to me. Pray that my hand will become strong again.’ So God's servant prayed to the Lord. And the king's hand became strong again, as it was before.

7 Then the king said to God's servant, ‘Come home with me. Have some food to eat. I would also like to give you a gift.’ 8 But God's servant said to the king, ‘I could never go with you, even if you gave me half of your riches. I could not eat or drink anything while I am here. 9 The Lord commanded me, “You must not eat or drink anything there. You must not return home on the same road that you came on.” ’ 10 So God's servant started to travel home on a different road. He did not go on the same road that he came to Bethel.