I Kings 16:24.
"he built Shomron after Shemer, the lord of the mountain.
1. This implies that he named it after a false god.
2. Ben Yehoyada said that he built it for the sake of Israel and this deed led God to make him king.
How do I reconcile these opposite scenarios?
Barry Epstein, Dallas, USA
The beginning of the verse that you quote from Kings states, "He bought the mountain of Shomron from Shemer for two talents of silver." It is clear that Shemer was the previous owner, and was not the name of a false god.
It is the translation of the verse that seems to be the source of your question. Your translation, "the lord of the mountain," is misleading. The verse does not mean the "god of the mountain." Rather, it means the [previous] *owner* of the mountain. This is clear from the original Hebrew, "Adoney ha'Har Shomron" -- the word "Adon" means owner.
The Ben Yehoyada proves that from the fact that he did not name it after himself, it is clear that he built it for the glory of Israel and not for his own glory.