Rehoboam’s Reign of Foolishness

10 (A)Then Rehoboam went to Shechem, because all Israel had come to Shechem to make him king. When Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard about it ((B)he was in Egypt where he had fled from the presence of King Solomon), Jeroboam returned from Egypt. So they sent word and summoned him. When Jeroboam and all Israel came, they spoke to Rehoboam, saying, “Your father made our (C)yoke hard; but now, lighten the hard labor imposed by your father and his heavy yoke which he put on us, and we will serve you.” He said to them, “Return to me again in three days.” So the people departed.

And then King Rehoboam (D)consulted with the elders who had [a]served his father Solomon while he was still alive, saying, “How do you advise me to answer this people?” They spoke to him, saying, “If you are kind to this people and please them and (E)speak pleasant words to them, then they will be your servants always.” But he (F)ignored the advice of the elders which they had given him, and consulted with the young men who had grown up with him [b]and served him. He said to them, “What advice do you give, so that we may answer this people, who have spoken to me, saying, ‘Lighten the yoke which your father put on us’?” 10 The young men who had grown up with him spoke to him, saying, “This is what you should say to the people who spoke to you, saying: ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, but you make it lighter for us!’ You should speak this way to them: ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist! 11 Now then, my father loaded you with a heavy yoke; yet I will add to your yoke. My father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with [c]scorpions!’”

12 So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam on the third day, just as the king had [d]directed, saying, “Return to me on the third day.” 13 The king answered them harshly, and King Rehoboam ignored the advice of the elders. 14 He spoke to them according to the advice of the young men, saying, “[e]My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to it; my father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with [f]scorpions.” 15 So the king did not listen to the people, (G)because it was a turn of events from God (H)so that the Lord might establish His word, which He spoke through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

16 When all Israel saw that the king had not listened to them, the people replied to the king, saying,

(I)What share do we have in David?
We have no inheritance in the son of Jesse.
Everyone to your tents, Israel!
Now look after your own house, David!”

(J)So all Israel went away to their tents. 17 But as for the sons of Israel who lived in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them. 18 Then King Rehoboam sent Hadoram, who was in (K)charge of the forced labor, and the sons of Israel stoned him [g]to death. And King Rehoboam hurried to mount his chariot to flee to Jerusalem. 19 So (L)Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.


  1. 2 Chronicles 10:6 Lit stood before
  2. 2 Chronicles 10:8 Lit who stood before
  3. 2 Chronicles 10:11 Prob. a brutal type of whip
  4. 2 Chronicles 10:12 Lit spoken
  5. 2 Chronicles 10:14 Many mss I have made
  6. 2 Chronicles 10:14 Prob. a brutal type of whip
  7. 2 Chronicles 10:18 Lit with stones that he died

Rehoboam Reigns over Judah and Builds Cities

11 (A)Now when Rehoboam had come to Jerusalem, he assembled the house of Judah and Benjamin, 180,000 chosen warriors, to fight against Israel to restore the kingdom to Rehoboam. But the word of the Lord came to (B)Shemaiah the man of God, saying, “Tell Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and all Israel in Judah and Benjamin, saying, ‘This is what the Lord says: “You shall not go up nor fight against (C)your relatives; return, every man, to his house, (D)for this [a]event is from Me.”’” So they listened to the words of the Lord and returned from going against Jeroboam.

Rehoboam lived in Jerusalem and (E)built cities for defense in Judah. He built Bethlehem, Etam, Tekoa, Beth-zur, Soco, Adullam, Gath, Mareshah, Ziph, Adoraim, Lachish, Azekah, 10 Zorah, Aijalon, and Hebron, which are fortified cities in Judah and Benjamin. 11 He also strengthened the fortresses and put officers in them and supplies of food, oil, and wine. 12 He put shields and spears in every city and strengthened them greatly. So he held Judah and Benjamin.

13 Moreover, the priests and the Levites who were in all Israel also stood with him from all their districts.

Jeroboam Appoints False Priests

14 For (F)the Levites left their pasture lands and their property and went to Judah and Jerusalem, because (G)Jeroboam and his sons had excluded them from serving as priests to the Lord. 15 (H)He set up priests of his own for the high places, for the satyrs and the calves which he had made. 16 (I)Those from all the tribes of Israel who set their hearts on seeking the Lord God of Israel [b]followed them to Jerusalem, to sacrifice to the Lord God of their fathers. 17 (J)They strengthened the kingdom of Judah and supported Rehoboam the son of Solomon for three years, for they walked in the way of David and Solomon for three years.

Rehoboam’s Family

18 Then Rehoboam married Mahalath the daughter of Jerimoth the son of David and of Abihail the daughter of (K)Eliab the son of Jesse, 19 and she bore to him sons: Jeush, Shemariah, and Zaham. 20 After her he married (L)Maacah the daughter of [c]Absalom, and she bore to him Abijah, Attai, Ziza, and Shelomith. 21 Rehoboam loved Maacah the daughter of Absalom more than all his other wives and concubines. For (M)he had taken eighteen wives and sixty concubines, and fathered twenty-eight sons and sixty daughters. 22 (N)Rehoboam appointed Abijah the son of Maacah as head and leader among his brothers, for he intended to make him king. 23 He acted wisely and distributed [d]some of his sons through all the territories of Judah and Benjamin to all the fortified cities, and he gave them plenty of provisions. And he sought many wives for them.


  1. 2 Chronicles 11:4 Lit thing
  2. 2 Chronicles 11:16 Lit came after
  3. 2 Chronicles 11:20 In 1 Kin 15:2, Abishalom
  4. 2 Chronicles 11:23 Lit from all

Shishak of Egypt Invades Judah

12 (A)When the kingdom of Rehoboam was established and strong, (B)he and all Israel with him abandoned the Law of the Lord. (C)And it came about in King Rehoboam’s fifth year, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, that (D)Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem with 1,200 chariots and sixty thousand horsemen. And the people who came with him from Egypt were innumerable: (E)the Lubim, the Sukkiim, and the Ethiopians. And he captured (F)the fortified cities of Judah and came as far as Jerusalem. Then (G)Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and the princes of Judah who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and he said to them, “This is what the Lord says: ‘(H)You have abandoned Me, so I also have abandoned you [a]to Shishak.’” So the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, “The (I)Lord is righteous.”

When the Lord saw that they had humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah, saying, “(J)They have humbled themselves, so I will not destroy them; and I will grant them a little deliverance, and (K)My wrath will not be poured out on Jerusalem by means of Shishak. But they will become his slaves, so (L)that they may learn the difference between My service and the service of the kingdoms of the countries.”

Plunder Impoverishes Judah

(M)So Shishak king of Egypt went up against Jerusalem, and he took the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king’s palace. He took everything; (N)he even took the gold shields which Solomon had made. 10 Then King Rehoboam made shields of bronze in their place and committed them to the [b]care of the commanders of the [c]guards who guarded the entrance of the king’s house. 11 As often as the king entered the house of the Lord, the [d]guards came and carried them and then brought them back into the [e]guards’ room. 12 And (O)when he humbled himself, the anger of the Lord turned away from him, so as not to destroy him completely; and conditions (P)were also good in Judah.

13 (Q)So King Rehoboam became powerful in Jerusalem and reigned there. For Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned for seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which the Lord had chosen from all the tribes of Israel, to put His name there. And his mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess. 14 But he did evil (R)because he did not set his heart to seek the Lord.

15 (S)Now the acts of Rehoboam, from the first to the last, are they not written in the [f]records of (T)Shemaiah the prophet and of (U)Iddo the seer, according to genealogical enrollment? And there were wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam continually. 16 And Rehoboam [g]lay down with his fathers and was buried in the city of David; and his son (V)Abijah became king in his place.


  1. 2 Chronicles 12:5 Lit in the hand of
  2. 2 Chronicles 12:10 Lit hands
  3. 2 Chronicles 12:10 Lit runners
  4. 2 Chronicles 12:11 Lit runners
  5. 2 Chronicles 12:11 Lit runners
  6. 2 Chronicles 12:15 Lit words
  7. 2 Chronicles 12:16 I.e., died

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