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12 After three years of prosperity and military strength, Rehoboam and all Israel living in the Southern Kingdom rejected the Eternal’s laws. Their unfaithfulness resulted in Shishak, king of Egypt, attacking Jerusalem during King Rehoboam’s fifth year. Shishak’s army included 1,200 chariots, 60,000 horsemen, and countless mercenaries from Libya, Suk, and Ethiopia.[a] He conquered the fortified cities in Judah, and as he approached Jerusalem Shemaiah the prophet brought another message from the True God to Rehoboam and Judah’s governors (who had fled to Jerusalem at the threat of Shishak’s army).

Eternal One (through Shemaiah): Because you have abandoned Me to follow your own gods, I have abandoned you and allowed you to be defeated by Shishak.

Rehoboam and the Governors (humbling themselves): The Eternal’s punishment of us is just.

Eternal One (through Shemaiah): Because you have humbled yourselves, I will not destroy you. I will save Jerusalem from My wrath, to be administered by Shishak. But you will serve him since you no longer serve Me, and you will remember the pain of serving foreign kings and long for the ease of serving Me.

Then Shishak, king of Egypt, attacked Jerusalem and plundered the Eternal’s temple and the palace of the king. He took every treasure, including Solomon’s golden shields.

Shishak, a Libyan general who took over the Egyptian throne, has been interested in Israel’s affairs for some time. First, he harbored Jeroboam when he rebelled against Solomon. Now, Pharaoh is conquering the region. Although God does not allow Shishak to destroy Jerusalem, the Israelites lose a precious part of their heritage and a significant amount of wealth when he raids the palace and temple. This incident is enough to remind Rehoboam and the people of their ancestors’ servitude in Egypt and of God’s love of His people. If they don’t want to return to lives of bondage, they must humble themselves and resume proper worship of God.

10 To replace his father’s golden shields, King Rehoboam cast bronze shields and gave them to the commanders who guarded the palace entrance. 11 The commanders carried those shields whenever they accompanied the king to the Eternal’s temple, then they returned the shields to the guardroom.

12 Because Rehoboam had humbled himself, the Eternal subdued His anger and did not destroy him. Things were good in the Southern Kingdom 13 when 41-year-old King Rehoboam began his strong 17-year reign in Jerusalem (the city the Eternal had chosen from all the tribes of Israel to establish His reputation).

Rehoboam’s mother was Naamah the Ammonitess. 14 During his reign, he abandoned the ways of the Eternal and did evil. 15 The actions of King Rehoboam, from his birth to his death, are recorded in the chronicles of Shemaiah the prophet and in the visions of Iddo the seer (according to the genealogies).

Rehoboam and Jeroboam were constantly fighting one another. 16 After Rehoboam joined his ancestors in death and was laid with his fathers in the city of David, Jerusalem, his son Abijah ruled Israel in his place.


  1. 12:3 Hebrew, Cush

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