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The Revolt Against Rehoboam at Shechem

10 Rehoboam went to Shechem, for all Israel had come to Shechem to make him king. Now it came to pass that when Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard this—for he was in Egypt where he had fled from King Solomon—Jeroboam returned from Egypt. So they sent and summoned him; and Jeroboam and all Israel came to Rehoboam and spoke to Rehoboam saying, “Your father made our yoke grievous but now lighten the harsh labor of your father and his heavy yoke that he put on us—then we will serve you.”

He answered them, “Come back to me in three days.” So the people departed.

Then King Rehoboam consulted with the elders who had served his father Solomon while he was alive, saying, “How do you advise me to answer this people?”

They answered him saying, “If you will be kind to this people and please them and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants forever.”

But he disregarded the counsel that the elders had given him and consulted with the young men who grew up with him and served him. He said to them, “How do you advise me to answer this people who have spoken to me saying, ‘Lighten the yoke that your father put on us?’”

10 The young men that grew up with him answered him saying: “Speak thus to the people who spoke to you saying, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, now you make it lighter for us’. Thus shall you say to them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s loins. 11 Now, whereas my father laid a heavy yoke on you, I will add to your yoke; my father disciplined you with whips, but I will do so with scorpions.’”

12 Then Jeroboam and all the people returned to Rehoboam on the third day as the king had said to them saying, “Come back to me on the third day.” 13 The king answered them harshly. King Rehoboam ignored the counsel of the elders 14 and spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men saying, “I will make your yoke heavy—I will make it even heavier. My father punished you with whips, but I will punish you with scorpions.”

15 So the king did not listen to the people, for this turn of events was from God so that Adonai might establish His word that He had spoken through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

16 When all Israel saw that the king did not listen to them, the people answered the king saying,

“What portion do we have in David?
    We have no inheritance in the son of Jesse!
To your tents, O Israel!
    Now look after your own house, David!”

So all Israel departed to their tents. 17 But Rehoboam continued to reign over Bnei-Yisrael who lived in the cities of Judah. 18 Then King Rehoboam sent Hadoram, who was over the forced labor, but men of Israel pelted him to death with stones. King Rehoboam, however, managed to mount his chariot and to flee to Jerusalem. 19 So Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.