The Great Divorce: The Kingdom Divided (1 Kings 12; 2 Chronicles 10) | avesisland.info
At times, the two kingdoms will be at war with each other, and at other led to the division of the united kingdom: Solomon, Jeroboam, and Rehoboam. . I am inclined to conclude that God wants us to see this connection. as the beginning of the end for the Jewish kingdom was Solomon's marriage to There was a brilliant young scholar at the time by the name of Jeroboam ben Nebat. When Solomon died his son Rehoboam became king (I Kings ). . paganism, idolatry, empire, war, aggression – that is the legacy Jeroboam left. Shemiah prophesied that Rehoboam should not fight Jeroboam. Continual war with Israel: in response, Asa sent the recently-restored gold and silver (bad), Slaughtered all of Jeroboam's relations, in accordance with Abijah's prophecy.
Is it possible that these words are merely coincidental, or is Jeroboam exceedingly wicked? It seems virtually impossible for Jeroboam not to have known that he was leading Israel to disobey God by his worshipper-friendly religion. His religious revisions were not limited to golden calves. Jeroboam built temples on the high places. He appointed men to serve as priests who were not Levites. He instituted feasts that were designed to replace the divinely appointed Jewish feasts especially those which required the Israelites to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.
All-in-all, Jeroboam created a counterfeit religion.
It was one that imitated the Canaanite religions. It was one that appealed to the people of Israel. It was one that turned the Israelites away from the worship of the one true God.
Jeroboam therefore becomes the standard by which other evil kings are measured: Jeroboam did this, supposing that it would preserve and promote his reign as king over the northern kingdom. In reality, it did just the opposite. Even after being rebuked for his sins, Jeroboam persisted in his evil ways, which prompted divine judgment: But you are not like my servant David, who kept my commandments and followed me wholeheartedly by doing only what I approve.
You went and angered me by making other gods, formed out of metal; you have completely disregarded me. I will cut off every last male belonging to Jeroboam in Israel, including even the weak and incapacitated.
I will burn up the dynasty of Jeroboam, just as one burns manure until it is completely consumed. With the division of the kingdom, the Israelites reached a new level of sin and rebellion against God. Jeroboam led the northern kingdom into what was virtually a variation of Canaanite worship. They committed the same horrible sins as the nations that the Lord had driven out from before the Israelites 1 Kings Conclusion The division of the united kingdom is a very significant turning point in the history of the nation Israel.
The promised blessings that God had promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob all applied to the 12 tribes of Israel see, for example, Genesis The promised Messiah was to sit on the throne of David 2 Samuel 7: At this moment, the kingdom is divided into two nations, with two kings.
Worse yet, these two nations are frequently in conflict with one another. Once again, the purposes and promises of God seem in peril. It is a situation that only God can resolve, and resolve it, He will.
It will be many, many years, however, until this happens. The once united and powerful kingdom of Israel is now greatly weakened by division. Both the northern and the southern kingdoms will be more vulnerable to foreign powers. Both will be tempted to make alliances with Gentile nations. Both will be exposed to the idolatry of heathen religions. The division of the kingdom is, in one sense, the beginning of the end for both the northern and the southern kingdoms.
The northern kingdom of Israel will be ruled by various kings and various dynasties — all evil. The southern kingdom of Judah will have a somewhat checkered history. The Davidic dynasty will produce some good kings and more wicked kings.
What is the story of Rehoboam and Jeroboam?
The northern kingdom of Israel will be defeated and scattered abroad by the Assyrians. The southern kingdom of Judah will be carried off to captivity by the Babylonians. The division of the two kingdoms will only intensify. It will take a spectacular intervention on the part of God to put this nation back together. From this point on, it is a downhill and very slippery slope that Israel and Judah will walk. Things will quickly deteriorate from bad to worse, with only a few bright spots for Judah.
The prophecies of Deuteronomy are quickly beginning to find their fulfillment in this history of Israel, now a divided kingdom. Let me point out just a few. Our text is a vivid illustration of the way divisions occur.
The division of the united kingdom occurred in a way that is classic for all divisions. Churches have split and marriages have ended in divorce in precisely the same manner. Let me point out some of the key elements. The first element is pride or arrogance. Rehoboam was too proud to heed the petition of the people and to lighten the load his father had placed on them. The second element, closely related, is power.
Kingdom of Israel (united monarchy)
The fourth element is that of leadership. Rehoboam abused his position of leadership. He viewed his position as the opportunity to force others to serve him, rather than as his opportunity to serve others. Humility and servanthood would have saved his kingdom. Finally, there is the element of time. There was a window of opportunity for healing and reconciliation, and Rehoboam did not seize it.
The longer the division lasted, the more intense it became. We would do well to ponder the failures of Rehoboam, for divisions are still very much a part of the fallen world in which we live. Our text is also a great illustration of the relationship between divine sovereignty and human responsibility. From one perspective, the division of the kingdom was the result of the arrogance and the foolishness of Rehoboam.
One could look at the entire sequence of events from a totally human perspective. And yet we must take into account the words of 1 Kings The king refused to listen to the people, because the Lord was instigating this turn of events so that he might bring to pass the prophetic announcement he had made through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam son of Nebat 1 Kings The major problem that most people face in dealing with the sovereignty of God and the responsibility of man is that they assume it must be all one way or the other.
They assume that if God is sovereign, then man must not be free to make choices. The only other option for many is that men are free agents, causing God not to be in complete control of human history. How, they reason, can God hold any man accountable for choices that he was predestined to make?
The fact is that God gives men the freedom to make choices, but He is always in complete control of human history. When I seek to be in control of my children, I must do so by restricting their freedoms and by limiting their choices. I cannot let them out of my sight, or I lose control. We see this very clearly in the division of the nation Israel. Actions that may seem trivial at the time have profound consequences, for good or evil. Rehoboam did not set out to divide his kingdom or to set the nation on a path of disaster.
But the fact is that his foolish decision did have these consequences. Rehoboam should have known better. He followed the example of Solomon his father at a very foolish time in his life and the advice of his friends, rather than the Word of God and the words of wise men.
This whole matter of servanthood and leadership is prominent in the Bible, and especially in the New Testament. This is the way the scribes and Pharisees exercised their power: But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they teach.
The disciples were tempted to follow this path, but Jesus taught them otherwise: Are you able to drink the cup I drink or be baptized with the baptism I experience? It is for those for whom it has been prepared. Instead whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of all.
The church at Corinth was plagued with divisions and strife, and it had everything to do with pride, power, and arrogance see 1 Corinthians 1: The source of division is frequently pride and arrogance and a seeking for power. The key to unity is humility, manifested in true servanthood: The cross of Jesus Christ is a constant source of wonder and amazement to me.
Our Lord was God incarnate. He created the heavens and the earth see John 1: He, above any other person to set foot on this earth, was, and is, sovereign. I know of no better definition of sovereignty than that given by Nebuchadnezzar: The response this time was the total destruction of Jerusalem and deportation of all the remaining people except for some of the very poorest, who were left behind to work the land. Babylon falls to the Medes. Cyrus of Persia sends the first batch of exiles back from captivity with Zerubabel; the rebuilding of the temple begins.
The Jews' enemies in Persia destroyed. Esther becomes Xerxes' queen. Her cousin Mordecai discovers a plot against the king and saves his life, for which he goes unrewarded. When, later, he refuses to worship an official called Haman, Haman's revenge is a plot to wipe out all the Jews throughout the Persian empire.
Encouraged by Mordecai, Esther resolves to plead for her people with the king. But in the mean time, the king remembers Mordecai and honours him; so that when Esther presents her request, the King grants it and has Haman executed; and the Jews are authorised to fight and kill the enemies who attempt to wipe them out. The altar is rebuilt and sacrifices offered; then the foundation of the new temple is laid before opposition from the new inhabitants of the land inhibits further progress.
But fifteen years later, the new Persian king, Darius, gives his support to the Israelites, and encouraged by the prophecy of Haggai and Zechariah, they finish rebuilding the temple.
1 Kings There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam throughout their days.
Sixty years later, Ezra leads another group of exiles back to Jerusalem. He deals with the problem of intermarriage with the people of the land, and consequent idolatry.
On hearing news of the state of Jerusalem, Nehemiah prays that God will restore it. God hears, and the Persian king Artaxerxes sends Nehemiah back to Jerusalem with instructions to rebuild Jerusalem's walls, which is achieved in just fifty-two days despite the opposition of Sanballat and Tobiah, and the apathy and inconsistency of the Jews.
At the people's request, Ezra reads the law, resulting in a renewal of the covenant. In other words, 'wilt thou at this time bring the 10 tribes back to the land Israel? Christianity does not represent the kingdom of God; it's the national religion of the kingdom of God. After Calvary it was replaced with the New Covenant.
The nation Jesus was speaking of was Israel, the northern tribes. Now they would be removed and given back to the northern kingdom and Judah would be alone.
The Kingdom Divided – Rehoboam vs Jeroboam
God made an oath to David that he would never want for a man to sit on his throne ruling over the house of Israel. After the throne of David was removed back in Jeremiah's day via Nebuchadnezzar's invasion, Benjamin was no longer needed, their purpose had been served. Howbeit I will not rend away all the kingdom; but will give one tribe [Benjamin] to thy son for David my servant's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake which I have chosen.
Benjamin was a kingdom tribe and was given to Judah on a 'temporary loan' basis for David's sake.