1st Kings

The book of First Kings covers the very end of the Davidic reign, the reign of his son Solomon over the United Kingdom, the building of the Temple, and after Solomon's death, the division of the kingdom into two parts - Israel in the north and Judah in the south.

In the Hebrew Old Testament the books of First and Second Kings are one book. The Septuagint (LXX, the Greek translation of the Old Testament) translators of the Hebrew Old Testament divided the book.

Because of sin, namely idolatry, both kingdoms were eventually carried away into captivity - first the northern Kingdom of Israel (by the Assyria in 722 B.C.) and second the southern Kingdom of Judah by Babylonia in 586 B.C.

But God did not punish his people quickly. In much patience and mercy he sent prophets to both kingdoms in an attempt to get the kings and the people to repent. All the kings of the northern kingdom were evil. Some of the kings of the southern kingdom were good but many were bad. In the end, God had to punish both the north and the south.

First Kings records the ministry of the great prophet Elijah to the northern kingdom of Israel. The four lessons below report on this ministry.