Lesson #20 - The Division of the Kingdom into Two Parts

121. Did the kings, whom we have just enumerated, reign over the twelve tribes of Israel, as David did?

Answer: Solomon did so; but after his death, as a punishment of his sins, ten tribes revolted from the government of David's house, and set up a king of their own, -- one Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who established a separate Kingdom in the northern part of Palestine, consisting of the ten tribes.

Proof:

So king Solomon was king over all Israel. (1 Kings 4:1).

Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant. Notwithstanding in thy days I will not do it for David thy father's sake: but I will rend it out of the hand of thy son. Howbeit I will not rend away all the kingdom; but will give one tribe to thy son for David my servant's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake which I have chosen. (1 Kings 11:11-13).

1 Kings 12:1-19

122. Of what ten tribes did the new kingdom consist?
Answer: Of the tribes of Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar, Zebulon, Naphtali, Asher, Dan, Gad, Simeon, and Reuben.

Proof:

1 Kings 11:29-35; and various scattered allusions.

123. What was the new kingdom called?
Answer: The Kingdom of Israel. It was also frequently spoken of by the prophets as "Ephraim" from the leading tribe.

Proof:

The books of the Kings.

124. Was the new kingdom ruled by the law of Moses as when David and Solomon reigned?
Answer: No. Jeroboam abandoned the law of Moses and led the ten tribes into idolatry, from which they never departed.

Proof:

And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David: If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah. Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. And this thing became a sin: for the people went to worship before the one, even unto Dan. (1 Kings 12:26-30).

125. How many kings reigned over the kingdom of the ten tribes, and what were their names?
Answer: The kings who reigned after Jeroboam were 18 in number: Nadab, Baasha, Elah, Zimri, Omri, Ahab, Ahaziah, Joram, Jehu, Jehoahaz, Joash, Jeroboam, Zechariah, Shallum, Menahem, Pekahiah, Pekah, Hoshea.

Proof:

The books of the Kings.

126. Of what tribes did the kingdom of David consist after the revolt of the ten tribes?
Answer: Of Benjamin and Judah.

Proof:

And in every several city he put shields and spears, and made them exceeding strong, having Judah and Benjamin on his side. (2 Chron. 11:12).

127. By what name was the kingdom of David's successors known, and how long did it last?
Answer: The Kingdom of David was known as the Kingdom of Judah. It lasted 393 years after the revolt of the ten tribes. It was then overthrown by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, who took the people away into Babylon, where they remained in captivity for seventy years. There was then a restoration under Ezra and Nehemiah, in consequence of a decree of Cyrus, king of Persia, who had overthrown the kingdom of Babylon. But the kingdom of David was never restored. In about 540 years after the return from Babylon, Christ was born. In seventy years after that, the Jewish state was broken up by the Romans, and since then, it has been "trodden down of the Gentiles".

Proof:

The books of Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Matthew and Luke.