1 The Lord ordered a man of God from Judah to go to Bethel. He arrived just as Jeroboam was standing beside the altar about to present a burnt offering.
2 He shouted out the Lord's condemnation of the altar: “Altar, altar, this is what the Lord says. A son will be born to the house of David. His name will be Josiah, and on you he will sacrifice the priests of the high places who burn offerings on you, and human bones will be burned on you.”
3 The same day the man of God gave a sign, saying, “This is the sign to prove that the Lord has spoken. Look! The altar will be split apart, and the ashes on it will spill out.”
4 When King Jeroboam heard the condemnation the man of God had shouted out against the altar in Bethel, he pointed his hand at him and said, “Arrest him!” But the hand the king had pointed at him had become paralyzed and he couldn't draw it back.
5 The altar split apart, and the ashes spilled out from it, fulfilling the sign that the man of God had given from the Lord.
6 Then the king said to the man of God, “Please plead with the Lord your God—pray for me that I may have my hand back!” The man of God pleaded with the Lord, and the king was given back the use of his hand as it was before.
7 Then the king said to the man of God, “Come to my home and have a meal so I can give you a present.”
8 But the man of God told the king, “Even if you gave me half of everything you own, I still wouldn't go with you. In fact I refuse to eat or drink anything in this place.
9 The Lord ordered me not to eat or drink anything, and not to return by the way I came.”
10 So he went a different way—he did not return the way he had come to Bethel.
11 It so happened that an old prophet lived in Bethel. His sons came and told him everything the man of God had done that day in Bethel. They also told their father what the man had said to the king.
12 “Which way did he go?” their father asked them. So his sons showed him the way taken by the man of God from Judah.
13 “Saddle up a donkey for me,” he told his sons. They saddled up a donkey and he got on.
14 He rode after the man of God and found him sitting under an oak tree. “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?” he asked him. “Yes I am,” the man replied.
15 “Come home with me and have something to eat,” he told him.
16 “I can't turn around and go with you, and I won't eat or drink with you in this place,” the man of God replied.
17 “The Lord ordered me, saying ‘You must not eat or drink anything there, or return by the way you came.’ ”
18 But the old prophet told him, “I am also a prophet, just like you. An angel told me God said, ‘Take him home with you so that he can have something to eat and drink’ ” But he was lying to him.
19 So the man of God went back with him, and ate and drank in his house.
20 As they were sitting at the table, a message from the Lord came to the prophet who had brought him back.
21 He called out to the man of God who had come from Judah, “This is what the Lord says: Because you have disobeyed the word of the Lord and have not followed the orders that the Lord your God gave you,
22 instead you went back and ate and drank in the place where he told you not to, your body will not be buried in the tomb of your fathers.”
23 After the man of God had finished eating and drinking, the prophet who had brought him back saddled his own donkey for him.
24 But as he went on his way a lion came across him on the road and killed him. His body was left lying in the road, with both the donkey and the lion standing beside it.
25 Some passers-by saw the body lying in the road with the lion standing beside it, so they went and let people know about it in the town where the old prophet lived.
26 When the old prophet who had led the other astray heard what had happened, he said, “It's the man of God who disobeyed the Lord's orders. That's why the Lord put him in the path of the lion, and it has mauled him and killed him, just as the Lord told him would happen.”
27 The prophet told his sons, “Saddle up a donkey for me.” So they saddled a donkey,
28 and he went and found the body. It was still lying in the road, with the donkey and the lion standing beside it. The lion had not eaten the body or attacked the donkey.
29 The prophet picked up the body of the man of God, placed it on the donkey, and brought it back to his own town to mourn over him and bury him.
30 He laid the body in his own tomb, and they mourned over him, crying, “My poor brother!”
31 After he'd buried him, he told his sons, “When I die, bury me in the grave where the man of God is buried. Lay my bones beside his bones.
32 For the message from the Lord that he gave in condemnation against the altar in Bethel, and against all the shrines on the high places in the towns of Samaria, will definitely happen.”
33 But even after all this, Jeroboam did not change his evil ways. He went on choosing priests from all kinds of people. He appointed anyone who wanted to be a priest of the high places.
34 This was because of this sin that the house of Jeroboam was wiped out, completely destroyed from the face of the earth.