Solomon's conclusion When Solomon was rebuilding Fort Millo, he put a very able and hard working man called Jeroboam in charge of the workers.
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Welcome to Livin’ Light’s Bible-In-A-Year challenge of discovering God’s love for us and His purpose for our lives. Here is the format for this great adventure: The daily reading assignment is posted at 5 a.m. After each day’s reading, Leigh An Coplin, the blog host, shares observations and poses questions about difficult passages to Rob Fields, who studied Christian Education at Asbury Seminary and currently teaches Biology in the Orlando area. To start from the beginning, click on 365 Bible Readings and scroll down to Day 1. The reading schedule is taken from The One Year Chronological Bible NLT. 

Today’s Reading
Ecclesiastes 11:7-12:14
1 Kings 12:1-20
2 Chronicles 10
1 Kings 12:21-24
2 Chronicles 11:1-4
1 Kings 12:25-33
2 Chronicles 11:5-17
(937-930 BC) Click here for a timeline of the entire Bible.

Questions & Observations

Q. (Ecclesiastes 11:9): If only all young people would read this and adopt it!  But, he is again saying life without God is meaningless, right?

A. You got it.

Q. (12:8): Why does he call himself the Teacher?

A. The word chosen here can, in addition to teacher, mean leader or head of an assembly.  He referred to himself using that term back in chapter 1.  So it appears to mean something like professor or lecturer, as we would use the terms today.

Q. (12:12-13): Is Solomon saying that you don’t need to know everything there is to know, just know God’s laws and abide by them?  This is a nice conclusion!

A. The last section was written by some unknown person, possibly an editor of the major parts of the text.  But you’ve read the conclusion correctly.

Q. (1 Kings 12:15): What would you say to those people who say this is predestination here?

A. I would say that there are clear elements of both free will (Rehoboam’s poor decision making) and predestination at work in this verse and story.  You can almost always point to elements of both of these views in events such as these: God directs the path, but people still have to make their own choices.  It’s never as cut and dry as, frankly, either side desires it to be.

Q. (1 Kings 12:21): Why did Benjamin join Judah?

A. It appears that Rehoboam’s influence as king went as far north as Bethel, which was the northern boundary of Benjamin’s territory.  Based upon our previous readings (11:31-32), the implication is that many of the tribe of Benjamin were loyal to the Northern Kingdom and the rebel king Jeroboam, but the territorial influence of the Davidic king (Rehoboam) meant that the territory and army of Benjamin stayed loyal to that king.

Q. (2 Chronicles 11:16-17): I think we talked about how people were more nomadic back then.  Here, the Levites who were under Jeroboam moved to Jerusalem so they could worship God under Rehoboam.  Today, if we have a bad leader, we just put up with it until the next election.  Most people wouldn’t take a big step and move.  But, I’m sure we have more to move now than they did back then.

A. Jeroboam was preventing them from fulfilling their God-given task as His priesthood, while anointing other (non-Levite) priests to perform his pagan rituals to these other gods.  It would have been a great affront to these priests, so it is not a surprise to me that they were eager to “get out of Dodge.”

For further study: Short summary of the reason Israel and Judah split,

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Tomorrow’s reading
— 1 Kings 13-14:24
— 2 Chronicles 12:13-14
— 2 Chronicles 11:18-12:12
— 1 Kings 14:25-28
— 2 Chronicles 12:15-16
— 1 Kings 14:29-31-15:5
— 2 Chronicles 13
— 1 Kings 15:6-8
— 2 Chronicles 14:1-8
— 1 Kings 15:9-15
— 1 Kings 14:19-20
— 1 Kings 15:25-34
— 2 Chronicles 14:9-15:19