Chapter 39

The Israelites Are Captured

“Chapter 39: The Israelites Are Captured,” Old Testament Stories (1980), 147–49

Israelite king speaking to boy

The Israelites had many kings. Some were good kings. They loved God and obeyed his commandments. They helped the Israelites live good lives.

Israelite people worshipping idol

Most of the kings were wicked. They did not obey God’s commandments. They worshiped idols. The people became wicked also.


There were wars in the land. The ten tribes of Israel were captured. They were taken away as slaves. The Israelites that were left lived in the Kingdom of Judah. They were called Jews.

Lehi with family

Lehi and his family lived in Jerusalem 600 years before Christ was born. Many people in Jerusalem were wicked. God sent prophets to teach them. Lehi was one of these prophets.

Lehi preaching

Lehi told the people to repent. He said Jerusalem would be destroyed if they did not repent. But the wicked people did not believe him. Some people laughed at him. Some were angry. They wanted to kill Lehi.

Lehi and sailing to America

God told Lehi to leave Jerusalem with his family. Lehi obeyed God. He and his family traveled to the sea. They built a ship and sailed to America.

Nephi writing on brass plates

Lehi’s son Nephi wrote what happened to them. Their story is in the Book of Mormon.

Babylonians attacking Jerusalem

The Jews heard the prophets, but they did not repent. God sent the king of Babylon and his army to destroy Jerusalem. There was a big battle.

Babylonian soldiers

The soldiers from Babylon captured Jerusalem. They took all the gold and silver from the temple. They took beautiful dishes from the temple.

Babylonians tearing down wall

Then they burned the temple of God. They also burned the homes of the people. They broke down the wall around Jerusalem.

Jews taken captive

Many Jews were killed. Many others were captured. They were taken to Babylon to be slaves.