“He enlarges the people, the successor of Solomon on the throne,” “and apparently his only son. He was the son of Naamah “the” “Ammonitess,” some well-known Ammonitish princess (1 Kings 14:21;” 2 Chr. 12:13). He was forty-one years old when he ascended the “throne, and he reigned seventeen years (B.C. 975-958). Although” “he was acknowledged at once as the rightful heir to the throne,” yet there was a strongly-felt desire to modify the character of the government. The burden of taxation to which they had been “subjected during Solomon’s reign was very oppressive, and” therefore the people assembled at Shechem and demanded from the king an alleviation of their burdens. He went to meet them at “Shechem, and heard their demands for relief (1 Kings 12:4).” “After three days, having consulted with a younger generation of” “courtiers that had grown up around him, instead of following the” “advice of elders, he answered the people haughtily (6-15). “The” king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the “Lord” (comp. 11:31). This brought matters speedily to a crisis.” The terrible cry was heard (comp. 2 Sam. 20:1): “What portion have we in David? Neither have we inheritance in “the son of Jesse: To your tents, O Israel: Now see to thine own” “house, David” (1 Kings 12:16).” “And now at once the kingdom was rent in twain. Rehoboam was “appalled, and tried concessions, but it was too late (18). The” “tribe of Judah, Rehoboam’s own tribe, alone remained faithful to” “him. Benjamin was reckoned along with Judah, and these two” “tribes formed the southern kingdom, with Jerusalem as its” capital; while the northern ten tribes formed themselves into a “separate kingdom, choosing Jeroboam as their king. Rehoboam” tried to win back the revolted ten tribes by making war against “them, but he was prevented by the prophet Shemaiah (21-24; 2” Chr. 11:1-4) from fulfilling his purpose. (See [527]JEROBOAM.) “In the fifth year of Rehoboam’s reign, Shishak (q.v.), one of “the kings of Egypt of the Assyrian dynasty, stirred up, no” “doubt, by Jeroboam his son-in-law, made war against him.” “Jerusalem submitted to the invader, who plundered the temple and” virtually reduced the kingdom to the position of a vassal of “Egypt (1 Kings 14:25, 26; 2 Chr. 12:5-9). A remarkable memorial” “of this invasion has been discovered at Karnac, in Upper Egypt,” in certain sculptures on the walls of a small temple there. “These sculptures represent the king, Shishak, holding in his” “hand a train of prisoners and other figures, with the names of” “the captured towns of Judah, the towns which Rehoboam had” fortified (2 Chr. 11:5-12). “The kingdom of Judah, under Rehoboam, sank more and more in “moral and spiritual decay. “There was war between Rehoboam and” “Jeroboam all their days.” At length, in the fifty-eighth year of” “his age, Rehoboam “slept with his fathers, and was buried with” “his fathers in the city of David” (1 Kings 14:31). He was” succeeded by his son Abijah. (See EGYPT.)

Definition of Rehoboam: “who sets the people at liberty”

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