Passage: 2 Chronicles 10, 11 (RSV)

2 Chronicles 10

1Rehobo'am went to Shechem, for all Israel had come to Shechem to make him king.
2And when Jerobo'am the son of Nebat heard of it (for he was in Egypt, whither he had fled from King Solomon), then Jerobo'am returned from Egypt.
3And they sent and called him; and Jerobo'am and all Israel came and said to Rehobo'am,
4"Your father made our yoke heavy. Now therefore lighten the hard service of your father and his heavy yoke upon us, and we will serve you."
5He said to them, "Come to me again in three days." So the people went away.
6Then King Rehobo'am took counsel with the old men, who had stood before Solomon his father while he was yet alive, saying, "How do you advise me to answer this people?"
7And they said to him, "If you will be kind to this people and please them, and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants for ever."
8But he forsook the counsel which the old men gave him, and took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him and stood before him.
9And he said to them, "What do you advise that we answer this people who have said to me, `Lighten the yoke that your father put upon us'?"
10And the young men who had grown up with him said to him, "Thus shall you speak to the people who said to you, `Your father made our yoke heavy, but do you lighten it for us'; thus shall you say to them, `My little finger is thicker than my father's loins.
11And now, whereas my father laid upon you a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.'"
12So Jerobo'am and all the people came to Rehobo'am the third day, as the king said, "Come to me again the third day."
13And the king answered them harshly, and forsaking the counsel of the old men,
14King Rehobo'am spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men, saying, "My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to it; my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions."
15So the king did not hearken to the people; for it was a turn of affairs brought about by God that the LORD might fulfil his word, which he spoke by Ahi'jah the Shi'lonite to Jerobo'am the son of Nebat.
16And when all Israel saw that the king did not hearken to them, the people answered the king, "What portion have we in David? We have no inheritance in the son of Jesse. Each of you to your tents, O Israel! Look now to your own house, David." So all Israel departed to their tents.
17But Rehobo'am reigned over the people of Israel who dwelt in the cities of Judah.
18Then King Rehobo'am sent Hador'am, who was taskmaster over the forced labor, and the people of Israel stoned him to death with stones. And King Rehobo'am made haste to mount his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem.
19So Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.

2 Chronicles 11

1When Rehobo'am came to Jerusalem, he assembled the house of Judah, and Benjamin, a hundred and eighty thousand chosen warriors, to fight against Israel, to restore the kingdom to Rehobo'am.
2But the word of the LORD came to Shemai'ah the man of God:
3"Say to Rehobo'am the son of Solomon king of Judah, and to all Israel in Judah and Benjamin,
4`Thus says the LORD, You shall not go up or fight against your brethren. Return every man to his home, for this thing is from me.'" So they hearkened to the word of the LORD, and returned and did not go against Jerobo'am.
5Rehobo'am dwelt in Jerusalem, and he built cities for defense in Judah.
6He built Bethlehem, Etam, Teko'a,
7Beth-zur, Soco, Adullam,
8Gath, Mare'shah, Ziph,
9Adora'im, Lachish, Aze'kah,
10Zorah, Ai'jalon, and Hebron, fortified cities which are in Judah and in Benjamin.
11He made the fortresses strong, and put commanders in them, and stores of food, oil, and wine.
12And he put shields and spears in all the cities, and made them very strong. So he held Judah and Benjamin.
13And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him from all places where they lived.
14For the Levites left their common lands and their holdings and came to Judah and Jerusalem, because Jerobo'am and his sons cast them out from serving as priests of the LORD,
15and he appointed his own priests for the high places, and for the satyrs, and for the calves which he had made.
16And those who had set their hearts to seek the LORD God of Israel came after them from all the tribes of Israel to Jerusalem to sacrifice to the LORD, the God of their fathers.
17They strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and for three years they made Rehobo'am the son of Solomon secure, for they walked for three years in the way of David and Solomon.
18Rehobo'am took as wife Ma'halath the daughter of Jer'imoth the son of David, and of Ab'ihail the daughter of Eli'ab the son of Jesse;
19and she bore him sons, Je'ush, Shemari'ah, and Zaham.
20After her he took Ma'acah the daughter of Ab'salom, who bore him Abi'jah, Attai, Ziza, and Shelo'mith.
21Rehobo'am loved Ma'acah the daughter of Ab'salom above all his wives and concubines (he took eighteen wives and sixty concubines, and had twenty-eight sons and sixty daughters);
22and Rehobo'am appointed Abi'jah the son of Ma'acah as chief prince among his brothers, for he intended to make him king.
23And he dealt wisely, and distributed some of his sons through all the districts of Judah and Benjamin, in all the fortified cities; and he gave them abundant provisions, and procured wives for them.

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