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Default Day 122. 2 Chronicles 10-12 - 02-08-2008, 07:14 PM

2 Chronicles 10-12

Today we get:
  • Israel breaks off from Judah
  • Rehoboam raises taxes
  • Egypt attacks

2 Chronicles 10

1 And Rehoboam went to Shechem: for to Shechem were all Israel come to make him king.

Rehoboam went to his coronation ceremony in Shechem. While there, the people asked him to lower taxes.

4 Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore ease thou somewhat the grievous servitude of thy father, and his heavy yoke that he put upon us, and we will serve thee.

That yoke was Solomon's 666 talent of gold annual salary. It's odd that during Solomon's lifetime, nobody ever complained about how high taxes were, then after he dies, the people complain about them. Remember, everyone in Israel was probably richer than anybody else anywhere.

Additionally, remember from our last reading that the people of Israel didn't do any manual labor. 2 Chronicles 8:9 But of the children of Israel did Solomon make no servants for his work; but they were men of war, and chief of his captains, and captains of his chariots and horsemen. So these people, if they weren't in the glorious position of being in the army; weren't hard laborers; that was all done by the Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. All the work was done by the minorities (who also had the privilege of being taxed exorbitantly for living there). So, these lazy ass jews decide they are paying too high of taxes.

Rehoboam calls together the elders and they say; maybe you should lower taxes, and the people will love you. Rehoboam considers that; then calls together his drinking buddies.

Over a couple of beers they said.

10 And the young men that were brought up with him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou answer the people that spake unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou it somewhat lighter for us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little finger shall be thicker than my father's loins.

11 For whereas my father put a heavy yoke upon you, I will put more to your yoke: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.

There is no mention of Solomon driving the people with whips in the Bible (KJV1611) that must be in the book of Iddo, or in the lost book of the Chronicles of the kings of Israel.

After three days, Rehoboam calls the people back and he tells them all that he's gone with his drinking buddies decision; and will actually raise taxes.

This decision causes Israel to secede; creating the kingdoms of Israel and Judah.

16 And when all Israel saw that the king would not hearken unto them, the people answered the king, saying, What portion have we in David? and we have none inheritance in the son of Jesse: every man to your tents, O Israel: and now, David, see to thine own house. So all Israel went to their tents.

Apparently the people forgot that they were cousins of David. Additionally they left because they knew they would never become the leaders of the nation. The clergy was solely made up of Levites; and now the kingship is made up solely of Judah (namely Jesse's line).

18 Then king Rehoboam sent Hadoram that was over the tribute; and the children of Israel stoned him with stones, that he died. But king Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem.

When taxes are too high; you can either throw tea overboard; or stone the taxman.

2 Chronicles 11

1 And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he gathered of the house of Judah and Benjamin an hundred and fourscore thousand chosen men, which were warriors, to fight against Israel, that he might bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam.

Rehoboam was gonna show those damn Israelites who the man was. He got the army together and was gonna go out and beat up on those people who left the kingdom!

2 But the word of the LORD came to Shemaiah the man of God, saying,

God said, don't do it.

4 Thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren: return every man to his house: for this thing is done of me. And they obeyed the words of the LORD, and returned from going against Jeroboam.

Judah and Benjamin versus the rest of Israel. God didn't want it to happen.

14 For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the LORD:

Remember Jeroboam was one of the worst kings and he pretty much did away completely with LORD worship; so the Levites (who still wanted to worship the LORD) all left.

21 And Rehoboam loved Maachah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and his concubines: (for he took eighteen wives, and threescore concubines; and begat twenty and eight sons, and threescore daughters.)

The story of Absalom is left out of Chronicles; remember he had the pretty hair and died when Joab killed him while he was hanging from the tree. Apparently he had some kids before then; I'll assume that they were pretty. So Rehoboam was the grandson of David; Absalom was Rehoboam's uncle; Rehoboam married his first cousin.

He also had 18 wives; 60 concubines; 28 sons and 60 daughters.

23 And he dealt wisely, and dispersed of all his children throughout all the countries of Judah and Benjamin, unto every fenced city: and he gave them victual in abundance. And he desired many wives.

But didn't get as many as his father.

2 Chronicles 12

1 And it came to pass, when Rehoboam had established the kingdom, and had strengthened himself, he forsook the law of the LORD, and all Israel with him.

So then the Levites were out of work in Israel AND in Judah.

2 And it came to pass, that in the fifth year of king Rehoboam Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, because they had transgressed against the LORD,

Once again, the LORD uses an entire army for His divine whim. He was mad at Judah; so He used his power and controlled the Egyptians to teach Judah a lesson. Often times the LORD does that. In order to teach YOU a lesson He will have someone or something killed. Remember, the LORD doesn't give you more than you can handle. Hopefully though, you are the one who's being taught the lesson and not the thing being used as the method of teaching. (If God causes your child to be born still born to test your faith; it's better to be the mother/father than to be the baby.)

5 Then came Shemaiah the prophet to Rehoboam, and to the princes of Judah, that were gathered together to Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said unto them, Thus saith the LORD, Ye have forsaken me, and therefore have I also left you in the hand of Shishak.

Shemaiah was the bearer of bad news; how would you like to be the person to get to tell the king that the reason you are being attacked is ONLY because you have not followed the LORD? The Egyptians may have thought that they were attacking to gain land or resources or for some other reason; they probably didn't decide to attack because the people of Jerusalem had turned their backs on God.

6 Whereupon the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, The LORD is righteous.

Isn't it great to know that as True Christians™ we never get threatened with enemy armies because we never turn our back on the LORD. If we did, I'd expect the Michigan Militia to come over the border into Iowa and attempt to wipe out Freehold.

7 And when the LORD saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the LORD came to Shemaiah, saying, They have humbled themselves; therefore I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance; and my wrath shall not be poured out upon Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak.

God decided that He wouldn't have Shishak kill them all; but He would let Shishak take all the valuables out of Jerusalem; and make the people be servants to Egypt. God allowing the people not to be completely destroyed was truly the Shishak Redemption.

14 And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the LORD.

How stupid does someone have to be to first lose a majority of his kingdom, be attacked by an army for turning your back on the LORD, and then turn your back on the LORD AGAIN!!!

15 Now the acts of Rehoboam, first and last, are they not written in the book of Shemaiah the prophet, and of Iddo the seer concerning genealogies? And there were wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually.

So Rehoboam attacked Jeroboam anyway? After Shemaiah already told him that God didn't want them to fight each other. Man, Rehoboam is dumber than any person should be.

Shemaiah wrote a book? It must've been lost when the people went into captivity.

16 And Rehoboam slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David: and Abijah his son reigned in his stead.

Didn't Solomon have any sons who would have made a better king than Rehoboam.

I think the most surprising thing is that Israel/Judah actually managed to have two good kings in a row in David and Solomon. From then on the pattern goes something like bad, bad, worse, worse still, somehow good, really really bad...

So what have we learned today?

1. The people of Israel left because the priesthood was only open to Levites and the kingship was only open to Judah. Taxation without representation is tyranny.

2. Rehoboam sometimes remembered the LORD; but normally it was when he was seconds away from being killed.

3. God uses people and sometimes entire nations as pawns to help people learn a lesson. Remember, God won't give you anything more than you can handle (unless you are the one who dies to help others learn the lesson).


Judges 9:21 And Jotham ran away, and fled, and went to Beer, and dwelt there, for fear of Abimelech his brother.
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