Today’s reading is: 1 Kgs. 12:1-15:15; 2 Chr. 10:1-15:19
1st Kings Chapter Twelve
- The installation of Rehoboam was marked by contention (1st Kgs. 12:1-15).
- Jeroboam became the spokesman for the oppressed laborers of Israel (vv.2-5).
- Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served Solomon (vv.6,7).
- Rehoboam consulted the young men who were his peers (vv.8-11).
- Rehoboam rejected the laborers petition with a message of extreme scorn (vv.12-15).
- Rehoboam’s failure to handle contention led to the secession of ten tribes under Jeroboam (1st Kgs. 12:16-20).
- The battle cry of Sheba is resurrected for another rebellion against the house of David (v.16; cf. 2nd Sam. 20:1).
- Rehoboam’s taskmaster was murdered, and the civil war was effectively begun (vv.17-19).
- The ten northern tribes installed Jeroboam as their King (v.20).
- Rehoboam mustered the armies of Judah and Benjamin to go to war against the ten northern tribes, but the war was averted by Shemaiah the man of God (prophet) (1st Kgs. 12:21-24).
- Jeroboam established the northern nation of Israel, reigned as an Ephraimite king, and instituted an alternate worship system to the Temple worship at Jerusalem (1st Kgs. 12:25-33).
1st Kings Chapter Thirteen
- The Lord sent an unnamed prophet (man of God Ish ha’elohiym) to rebuke Jeroboam for his evil (1st Kgs. 13:1-10).
- Ish-ha’elohiym came from Judah to Bethel (1st Kgs. 13:1), indicating a pattern that the Lord’s blessings for all Israel stem from the place where He has chosen for His name to dwell—Jerusalem.
- Ish-ha’elohiym prophesied about the birth of Josiah, and his work of destroying Jeroboam’s priesthood (1st Kgs. 13:2; cp. 2nd Kgs. 23:15-16).
- A short-term prophecy was given along with Ish-ha’elohiym’s long-term prophecy (1st Kgs. 13:3,5).
- A miracle was given along with Ish-ha’elohiym’s prophetic message (1st Kgs. 13:4,6).
- Ish-ha’elohiym refused Jeroboam’s hospitality, as he was under Divine orders to fast during his work-assignment (1st Kgs. 13:7-10).
- Ish-ha’elohiym is betrayed by an unnamed old prophet (1st Kgs. 13:11-32). This prophet is simply called “the old prophet” (vv.11,29) or “the prophet who brought him back” (v.26).
- Jeroboam failed to repent at the message of Ish-ha’elohiym (1st Kgs. 13:33-34).
- Jeroboam’s ways became known as the way of Jeroboam (1st Kgs. 15:26), and the Lord determined to remove the house of Jeroboam from history.
- Baasha will be the Lord’s instrument to bring about the end of the house of Jeroboam (1st Kgs. 15:28-30), but Baasha himself will rule according to the way of Jeroboam (v.34).
- The way of Jeroboam will become the characteristic trait for many (if not all) of Israel’s subsequent kings (1st Kgs. 16:19,26,31; 22:52; called the sins of Jeroboam 2nd Kgs. 3:3; 10:31; 13:2,6,11; 14:24; 15:9,18,24,28; 17:21-23).
1st Kings Chapter Fourteen
- Jeroboam’s son became sick, and Jeroboam sent his wife to inquire of Ahijah the prophet for Divine guidance (1st Kgs. 14:1-3).
- The blind prophet saw quite clearly (1st Kgs. 14:4-6).
- The Lord pronounced Divine judgment upon the house of Jeroboam, promising to lift up a king to destroy them, and promising to disperse Israel beyond the Euphrates (1st Kgs. 14:7-16).
- Abijah dies, as promised (1st Kgs. 14:17-18), and so too does Jeroboam, after a twenty-two year reign (1st Kgs. 14:19-20).
- The reign of Rehoboam in Judah is then detailed (1st Kgs. 14:21-31).
- He will reign for 17 years (1st Kgs. 14:21)—five less than Jeroboam in the north, and less than half the reigns of Solomon, David, & Saul (approximately 40 years each).
- His mother was Naamah, one of Solomon’s Ammonite wives (1st Kgs. 14:21; cf. 11:1).
- The spiritual condition of Judah under Rehoboam was even worse than the final days of Solomon (1st Kgs. 14:22-24).
- Rehoboam suffered humiliation at the hands of Egypt (1st Kgs. 14:25-28).
- Rehoboam experienced continual war with Jeroboam to the north (1st Kgs. 14:30). Rehoboam’s son, Abijam, will continue Rehoboam’s war with Jeroboam (1st Kgs. 15:6).
1st Kings Chapter Fifteen
- Abijam succeeded his father, Rehoboam, to the throne of Judah (1st Kgs. 15:1-7).
- He reigned a meager three years (c. 913-911BC) (1st Kgs. 15:2a).
- His mother was Maacah, a (grand) daughter of Absalom (1st Kgs. 15:2b).
- He followed Rehoboam’s spiritual apostasy (1st Kgs. 15:3-5).
- He continued his father’s war against Jeroboam (1st Kgs. 15:6-7; 2nd Chr. 13:2b-20).
- Asa succeeded his father Abijam to the throne of Judah (1st Kgs. 15:9-24).
- Asa had a 41 year reign (1st Kgs. 15:10a), comparable to the reigns of Saul, David, & Solomon. He reigned during the last two years of Jeroboam’s reign, throughout the reigns of Nadab, Baasha, Elah, Zimri, & Omri, and into the early years of Ahab’s rule.
- His (grand) mother Maacah was a terrible influence early in his reign, and Asa made right decisions in removing her influence from the throne (1st Kgs. 15:10b,13).
- Asa led a national revival, and a return to the worship of the LORD (1st Kgs. 15:11-15; 2nd Chr. 14:2-5).
(Chapter Fifteen continues tomorrow)
2nd Chronicles Chapter Ten
- Chapter 10 begins a 3 chapter passage on the reign of King Rehoboam (2nd Chr. 10-12; 1st Kgs. 12:1-24; 14:21-31).
- Solomon did not secure Rehoboam’s ascension before he died.
- Rehoboam faces a challenge from Jeroboam and the northern Tribes of Israel (2nd Chr. 10:2-15).
- Rehoboam did not seek the LORD, or wisdom from the LORD, but sought wisdom from his peers (2nd Chr. 10:6-11).
- Rehoboam responded to the carnal challenge of Israel with a carnal expression of pride (2nd Chr. 10:12-15).
- The northern Tribes determined that they could enjoy Abrahamic blessings without Davidic blessings, and formed their own Jewish nation (2nd Chr. 10:16-19).
2nd Chronicles Chapter Eleven
- Rehoboam intends to go to war against the northern kingdom, but the Lord does not allow it (2nd Chr. 11:1-4), so Rehoboam then undertook defensive preparations (2nd Chr. 11:5-12).
- The priests and Levites chose to identify with the southern kingdom of Judah, and ministered in the temple that Solomon had built (2nd Chr. 11:13-14a). They were joined by other God-fearing believers from all the northern Tribes (2nd Chr. 11:16-17; 15:9; 30:11).
- In the northern kingdom, Jeroboam established a counterfeit priesthood, and an idolatrous religious system (2nd Chr. 11:14b-15).
- The chapter closes with a description of Rehoboam’s family life (2nd Chr. 11:18-23).
- Like his father Solomon, Rehoboam pursued a polygamous life (v.21), and promoted that for his sons as well (v.23).
- He married two daughters of Davidic heritage, but failed to pursue the Godliness of that Davidic heritage.
2nd Chronicles Chapter Twelve
- Rehoboam’s blessings lasted three years (2nd Chr. 12:1 cf. 11:17), until his rebellion against the Lord brought about Divine discipline (2nd Chr. 12:2-4).
- Shemaiah the prophet delivered a tough message (2nd Chr. 12:5), producing a humble repentance in the heart of Rehoboam and his princes (2nd Chr. 12:6).
- Rehoboam still faced consequences for his rebellion, but the Divine discipline was administered through mercy and the compassion of the Lord’s lovingkindness (2nd Chr. 12:7-12).
- The chapter closes with the summary of Rehoboam’s life (2nd Chr. 12:13-16).
2nd Chronicles Chapter Thirteen
- Chapter 13 describes the short (3 year) reign of Abijah (2nd Chr. 13:1-2a).
- This chapter records a great spiritual victory that is not recorded in the Kings account (1st Kgs. 15:1-8).
- The Divine commentary on Abijam’s wickedness (1st Kgs. 15:3) must be kept in mind when his sermon is examined below.
- Abijah’s reign was dominated by the aggression of Jeroboam against him (2nd Chr. 13:2b-3).
- Abijah delivers a pretty good sermon about the Davidic Covenant, and the Levitical priesthood ministering in Solomon’s temple (2nd Chr. 13:4-12).
- This message reflects Abijah’s genealogical pride.
- This message reflects Abijah’s religious pride.
- Jeroboam perfectly executed a brilliant ambush but failed miserably because the Lord was on the side of the Davidic house in spite of Rehoboam and Abijah’s wicked ways (2nd Chr. 13:13-20).
- The chapter closes with the summary of Abijah’s life (2nd Chr. 13:21-22).
2nd Chronicles Chapter Fourteen
- Chapter 14 begins a 3 chapter passage on the reign of good King Asa (2nd Chr. 14-16; 1st Kgs. 15:9-24).
- God provided Asa with a decade of peace (2nd Chr. 14:1).
- Asa responded to God’s grace by leading a national revival (2nd Chr. 14:2-5).
- Asa redeemed the time by building the national defense during a time of peace and preparing for war (2nd Chr. 14:6-8).
- Asa’s wisdom in war preparation during peacetime paid off as an Ethiopian army invaded Judah (2nd Chr. 14:9-15).
- The battle was a temporal-life conflict.
- The battle was a spiritual-life test.
2nd Chronicles Chapter Fifteen
- Following the great victory, Asa was in need of a warning from the Lord (2nd Chr. 15:1-7).
- Asa was reminded of Judah’s apostasy under Rehoboam and Abijah (vv.3,5-6).
- Asa was reminded of the Lord’s grace when the population of Judah repented (v.4).
- Asa is challenged to make good decisions, and look to the eternal reward for his spiritual fruit (vv.1-2,7).
- The sequence of events thus becomes clear:
- Wicked King Abijah spoke out of pride concerning the Davidic Covenant, and the Levitical Priesthood, and yet his message was factually true.
- The population of Judah looked to the Lord, and the victory was provided.
- The Lord blessed the positive volition of Judah by providing them with a good King—Asa.
- Asa responded to the warning message by intensifying his effort and the zeal with which he cleansed the land of idolatry (2nd Chr. 15:8-19). Take note of the tribal defections from Ephraim, Manasseh and Simeon (v.9).