Yesterday, in chapter 8, we read of Solomon's prosperity.
This chapter covered his building activities as well as his religious activities. We also read of the visit of the Queen of Sheba, and of Solomon's death.
Solomon's reign in Jerusalem over all Israel lasted forty years. His annual income amounted to 666 talents of gold, approximately $30,000,000.00. However, despite all his wealth and the goodness of God, Solomon's heart was turned from Jehovah. Chronicles does not record the details, but it would be good for us to refer back to I Kings 11 and read again how the wise man, so greatly blessed of God, turned from Jehovah. The latter part of that chapter shows the anger and chastening of Jehovah.
Chapter 10 records the accession and folly of Rehoboam. Rehoboam was obedient to the Lord for three years. He then fell into sin and apostasy. His punishment was the invasion of Shishak, but his repentance avoided complete destruction.
In chapters 11 and 12 Rehoboam is pressured into leading a war against the ten tribes who had rebelled against the house of David. He gathered 180,000 men of Judah and Benjamin to fight against them and restore them to his kingdom. Shemaiah, the man of God, received a message from the Lord and faithfully delivered it to Rehoboam. He said, "Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren: return every man to his house; for this thing is done of me." Rehoboam and the people obeyed and did not go to war. For a brief season Rehoboam's kingdom was strengthened. But then apostasy set in.
Rehoboam had lived in the indulgence of the flesh. "He forsook the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him." Idolatry in high places was encouraged by Rehoboam. Shortly thereafter, Judah was invaded and the punishment of God fell upon the people. Rehoboam's death is recorded in chapter 12. Since Rehoboam, like most of us, could not learn from history, he learned by experience.
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