12Rehoboam went to Shechem, where all Israel had gathered to make him king.H7346H3212H7927H3478H935H7927H4427 2When Jeroboam son of Nebat heard of this, he returned from Egypt, for he had fled to Egypt to escape from King Solomon.H3379H1121H5028H4714H8085H1272H6440H4428H8010H3379H3427H4714 3The leaders of Israel summoned him, and Jeroboam and the whole assembly of Israel went to speak with Rehoboam.H7971H7121H3379H6951H3478H935H1696H7346H559 4"Your father was a hard master," they said. "Lighten the harsh labor demands and heavy taxes that your father imposed on us. Then we will be your loyal subjects."H1H7185H5923H7185H7186H5656H1H3515H5923H5414H7043H5647 5Rehoboam replied, "Give me three days to think this over. Then come back for my answer." So the people went away.H559H3212H7969H3117H7725H5971H3212 6Then King Rehoboam discussed the matter with the older men who had counseled his father, Solomon. "What is your advice?" he asked. "How should I answer these people?"H4428H7346H3289H2205H5975H6440H8010H1H2416H559H3289H7725H1697H5971 7The older counselors replied, "If you are willing to be a servant to these people today and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your loyal subjects."H1696H559H5650H5971H3117H5647H6030H1696H2896H1697H5650H3117 8But Rehoboam rejected the advice of the older men and instead asked the opinion of the young men who had grown up with him and were now his advisers.H5800H6098H2205H3289H3289H3206H1431H5975H6440 9"What is your advice?" he asked them. "How should I answer these people who want me to lighten the burdens imposed by my father?"H559H3289H7725H1697H5971H1696H559H7043H5923H1H5414H7043 10The young men replied, "This is what you should tell those complainers who want a lighter burden: 'My little finger is thicker than my father's waist!H3206H1431H1696H559H559H5971H1696H559H1H3513H5923H3513H7043H1696H6995H5666H1H4975 11Yes, my father laid heavy burdens on you, but I'm going to make them even heavier! My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you with scorpions!'"H1H6006H3515H5923H3254H5923H1H3256H7752H3256H6137 12Three days later Jeroboam and all the people returned to hear Rehoboam's decision, just as the king had ordered.H3379H5971H935H7346H7992H3117H4428H1696H559H7725H7992H3117 13But Rehoboam spoke harshly to the people, for he rejected the advice of the older counselorsH4428H6030H5971H7186H5800H2205H6098H3289 14and followed the counsel of his younger advisers. He told the people, "My father laid heavy burdens on you, but I'm going to make them even heavier! My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you with scorpions!"H1696H6098H3206H559H1H3513H5923H3513H3254H5923H1H3256H7752H3256H6137 15So the king paid no attention to the people. This turn of events was the will of the LORD, for it fulfilled the LORD's message to Jeroboam son of Nebat through the prophet Ahijah from Shiloh.H4428H8085H5971H5438H3068H6965H1697H3068H1696H3027H281H7888H3379H1121H5028 16When all Israel realized that the king had refused to listen to them, they responded, "Down with the dynasty of David! We have no interest in the son of Jesse. Back to your homes, O Israel! Look out for your own house, O David!" So the people of Israel returned home.H7725H3478H7200H4428H8085H5971H1697H4428H559H2506H1732H5159H1121H3448H168H3478H7200H1004H1732H3478H3212H168 17But Rehoboam continued to rule over the Israelites who lived in the towns of Judah.H1121H3478H3427H5892H3063H7346H4427 18King Rehoboam sent Adoniram, who was in charge of the labor force, to restore order, but the people of Israel stoned him to death. When this news reached King Rehoboam, he quickly jumped into his chariot and fled to Jerusalem.H4428H7346H7971H151H4522H3478H7275H68H4191H4428H7346H553H5927H4818H5127H3389 19And to this day the northern tribes of Israel have refused to be ruled by a descendant of David.H3478H6586H1004H1732H3117 20When the people of Israel learned of Jeroboam's return from Egypt, they called an assembly and made him king over all Israel. So only the tribe of Judah remained loyal to the family of David.H3478H8085H3379H7725H7971H7121H5712H4427H3478H310H1004H1732H2108H7626H3063 21When Rehoboam arrived at Jerusalem, he mobilized the men of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin - 180,000 select troops - to fight against the men of Israel and to restore the kingdom to himself.H7346H935H3389H6950H1004H3063H7626H1144H3967H8084H505H977H6213H4421H3898H1004H3478H7725H4410H7725H7346H1121H8010 22But God said to Shemaiah, the man of God,H1697H430H8098H376H430H559 23"Say to Rehoboam son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all the people of Judah and Benjamin, and to the rest of the people,H559H7346H1121H8010H4428H3063H1004H3063H1144H3499H5971H559 24'This is what the LORD says: Do not fight against your relatives, the Israelites. Go back home, for what has happened is my doing!'" So they obeyed the message of the LORD and went home, as the LORD had commanded.H559H3068H5927H3898H251H1121H3478H7725H376H1004H1697H1961H8085H1697H3068H7725H3212H1697H3068 25Jeroboam then built up the city of Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and it became his capital. Later he went and built up the town of Peniel.H3379H1129H7927H2022H669H3427H3318H1129H6439 26Jeroboam thought to himself, "Unless I am careful, the kingdom will return to the dynasty of David.H3379H559H3820H4467H7725H1004H1732 27When these people go to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices at the Temple of the LORD, they will again give their allegiance to King Rehoboam of Judah. They will kill me and make him their king instead."H5971H5927H6213H2077H1004H3068H3389H3820H5971H7725H113H7346H4428H3063H2026H7725H7346H4428H3063 28So on the advice of his counselors, the king made two gold calves. He said to the people, "It is too much trouble for you to worship in Jerusalem. Look, Israel, these are the gods who brought you out of Egypt!"H4428H3289H6213H8147H5695H2091H559H7227H5927H3389H430H3478H5927H776H4714 29He placed these calf idols in Bethel and in Dan - at either end of his kingdom.H7760H259H1008H259H5414H1835 30But this became a great sin, for the people worshiped the idols, traveling as far north as Dan to worship the one there.H1697H2403H5971H3212H6440H259H1835 31Jeroboam also erected buildings at the pagan shrines and ordained priests from the common people - those who were not from the priestly tribe of Levi.H6213H1004H1116H6213H3548H7098H5971H1121H3878 32And Jeroboam instituted a religious festival in Bethel, held on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, in imitation of the annual Festival of Shelters in Judah. There at Bethel he himself offered sacrifices to the calves he had made, and he appointed priests for the pagan shrines he had made.H3379H6213H2282H8066H2320H2568H6240H3117H2320H2282H3063H5927H4196H6213H1008H2076H5695H6213H5975H1008H3548H1116H6213 33So on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, a day that he himself had designated, Jeroboam offered sacrifices on the altar at Bethel. He instituted a religious festival for Israel, and he went up to the altar to burn incense.H5927H4196H6213H1008H2568H6240H3117H8066H2320H2320H908H3820H6213H2282H1121H3478H5927H4196H6999
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