Ch. 12 – The Divided Kingdom
We cover First and Second Kings, showing how the united Davidic Kingdom under Solomon split in 930 B.C. when Solomon died. This split in the Kingdom was ultimately God’s punishment due to Solomon’s threefold sin of (1) amassing wealth for himself, (2) acquiring a great number of wives who turned his heart to idolatrous worship, and (3) acquiring many horses for a standing army. These very three transgressions were forbidden in Deuteronomy 17. Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, decided to harshen his father’s rule by making the yoke on his subjects heavier. This poor decision resulted in the northern 10 tribes seceding under the reign of Jeroboam. This Northern Kingdom, bereft of the Davidic throne, is thereafter called by three popular names: Israel, Jacob, and Ephraem in the historical and prophetic books. The Southern Kingdom, now led by Rehoboam, consisted of only two of the original 12 tribes: Judah and Benjamin. It is now called the Kingdom of Judah. Since the Levites did not acquire tribal land and resided in the Levitical cities, both kingdoms contained descendants from the tribe of Levi as well. We also take a look at the ministry of Elijah and Elisha and see how this history foreshadows the ministry of both John the Baptist and Jesus.