NLTNew Living Translation
25Jeroboam then built up the city of Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and it became his capital. Later he went and built up the town of Peniel.#12:25 Hebrew Penuel, a variant spelling of Peniel.
26Jeroboam thought to himself, “Unless I am careful, the kingdom will return to the dynasty of David. 27When these people go to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices at the Temple of the Lord, they will again give their allegiance to King Rehoboam of Judah. They will kill me and make him their king instead.”
28So on the advice of his counselors, the king made two gold calves. He said to the people,#12:28 Hebrew to them. “It is too much trouble for you to worship in Jerusalem. Look, Israel, these are the gods who brought you out of Egypt!”
29He placed these calf idols in Bethel and in Dan—at either end of his kingdom. 30But this became a great sin, for the people worshiped the idols, traveling as far north as Dan to worship the one there.
31Jeroboam also erected buildings at the pagan shrines and ordained priests from the common people—those who were not from the priestly tribe of Levi. 32And Jeroboam instituted a religious festival in Bethel, held on the fifteenth day of the eighth month,#12:32 This day of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar occurred in late October or early November, exactly one month after the annual Festival of Shelters in Judah (see Lev 23:34). in imitation of the annual Festival of Shelters in Judah. There at Bethel he himself offered sacrifices to the calves he had made, and he appointed priests for the pagan shrines he had made. 33So on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, a day that he himself had designated, Jeroboam offered sacrifices on the altar at Bethel. He instituted a religious festival for Israel, and he went up to the altar to burn incense.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation copyright 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois, 60188. All rights reserved.