BIBLE: I Kings Chapter 11 – Headline “Ten Easy Pieces”

Words in italic type have been added for clarity. They are not found in the original Hebrew or Aramaic.

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I Kings

Solomon’s Heart Turns from the Lord

I Kings:1 But King Solomon loved many foreign women, as well as the daughter of Pharaoh: women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites—
I Kings 11:from the nations of whom the Lord had said to the children of Israel, “You shall not intermarry with them, nor they with you. Surely they will turn away your hearts after their gods.” Solomon clung to these in love.
I Kings 11:And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart.
I Kings 11:For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods; and his heart was not loyal to (Lit. at peace with) the Lord his God, as was the heart of his father David.
I Kings 11:For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom (Or Molech) the abomination of the Ammonites.
I Kings 11:Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and did not fully follow the Lord, as did his father David.
I Kings 11:Then Solomon built a high place (A place for pagan worship) for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill that is east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon.
I Kings 11:And he did likewise for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.
I Kings 11:So the Lord became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned from the Lord God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice,
I Kings 11:10 and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods; but he did not keep what the Lord had commanded.
I Kings11:11 Therefore the Lord said to Solomon, “Because you have done this, and have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant.
I Kings 11:12 Nevertheless I will not do it in your days, for the sake of your father David; I will tear it out of the hand of your son.
I Kings 11:13 However I will not tear away the whole kingdom; I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of My servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem which I have chosen.”

Adversaries of Solomon

I Kings 11:14 Now the Lord raised up an adversary against Solomon, Hadad the Edomite; he was a descendant of the king in Edom.
I Kings 11:15 For it happened, when David was in Edom, and Joab the commander of the army had gone up to bury the slain, after he had killed every male in Edom
I Kings 11:16 (because for six months Joab remained there with all Israel, until he had cut down every male in Edom),
I Kings 11:17 that Hadad fled to go to Egypt, he and certain Edomites of his father’s servants with him. Hadad was still a little child.
I Kings 11:18 Then they arose from Midian and came to Paran; and they took men with them from Paran and came to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, who gave him a house, apportioned food for him, and gave him land.
I Kings 11:19 And Hadad found great favor in the sight of Pharaoh, so that he gave him as wife the sister of his own wife, that is, the sister of .
I Kings 11:20 Then the sister of Tahpenes bore him Genubath his son, whom Tahpenes weaned in Pharaoh’s house. And Genubath was in Pharaoh’s household among the sons of Pharaoh.
I Kings 11:21 So when Hadad heard in Egypt that David rested with his fathers (Died and joined his ancestors), and that Joab the commander of the army was dead, Hadad said to Pharaoh, “Let me depart (Lit. Send me away), that I may go to my own country.”
I Kings 11:22 Then Pharaoh said to him, “But what have you lacked with me, that suddenly you seek to go to your own country?”
So he answered, “Nothing, but do let me go anyway.”
I Kings 11:23 And God raised up another adversary against him, Rezon the son of Eliadah, who had fled from his lord, Hadadezer king of Zobah.
I Kings 11:24 So he gathered men to him and became captain over a band of raiders, when David killed those of Zobah. And they went to Damascus and dwelt there, and reigned in Damascus.
I Kings 11:25 He was an adversary of Israel all the days of Solomon (besides the trouble that Hadad caused); and he abhorred Israel, and reigned over Syria.
Hadad the EdomiteRezon son of EliadahJeroboam
He was a child when he ran to Egypt to escape Joab who was killing every male in Edom.Wanted revenge for David’s killing of those in Zobath Chief superintendent of forced laborers
Solomon’s Adversaries

Jeroboam’s Rebellion

I Kings 11:26 Then Solomon’s servant, Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephraimite from Zereda, whose mother’s name was Zeruah, a widow, also rebelled against the king.
I Kings 11:27 And this is what caused him to rebel against the king: Solomon had built the Millo and repaired the damages (Lit. closed up the breaches) to the City of David his father.
I Kings 11:28 The man Jeroboam was a mighty man of valor; and Solomon, seeing that the young man was industrious, made him the officer over all the labor force of the house of Joseph.
  • In 930 BC King Solomon died, being approximately 60 years old, having reigned from 970-930 BC. His son, Rehoboam, age 41, reigned in his place (I Kin 11:42). Rehoboam, Solomon’s son, burdened the people with such intolerable taxes that they rebelled, causing a split in the kingdom. The tribes who rebelled chose as their king Jeroboam I, one who had served King Solomon as his chief superintendent of forced laborers (captives). This became the Northern Kingdom (Israel). Reuben, Levi, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulon, Joseph, (God gave Joseph’s place to his two sons Menasheh and Ephraim). These were the ten tribes which rebelled. Those who did not rebel stayed with Rehoboam to become the Southern Kingdom (Judah). The southern Kingdom of Judah was comprised of the tribes of Judah, Simeon and Benjamin together with the Aaronite kohanim (Levite Priests), Levites and Nethinim (Temple assistants) who lived amongst them. History bears witness to the fulfillment of this prophecy. Israel became a nation of Jews to the north, and Judah, a nation of Jews to the south.
I Kings 11:29 Now it happened at that time, when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met him on the way; and he had clothed himself with a new garment, and the two were alone in the field.
  • An interesting Rabbinic tradition credits Ahijah with having lived a very long life, linking his life-span with that of antediluvian patriarchs. Ahijah is described as extremely aged in Jeroboam’s time (I Kings 14:4)
  • I surmise Ahijah is the prophet of I Kings 13:11.
I Kings 11:30 Then Ahijah took hold of the new garment that was on him, and tore it into twelve pieces.
I Kings 11:31 And he said to Jeroboam, “Take for yourself ten pieces, for thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: ‘Behold, I will tear the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon and will give ten tribes to you
I Kings 11:32 (but he shall have one tribe for the sake of My servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel),
  • Note: One tribe doesn’t necessarily mean the actual number one. Properly, it means “united” as one.
  • The same word for Deuteronomy 6:4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! (One in intent, purpose and character)
I Kings 11:33 because they have (he has) forsaken Me, and worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the people of Ammon, and have not walked in My ways to do what is right in My eyes and keep My statutes and My judgments, as did his father David.
I Kings 11:34 However I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand, because I have made him ruler all the days of his life for the sake of My servant David, whom I chose because he kept My commandments and My statutes.
I Kings 11:35 But I will take the kingdom out of his son’s hand and give it to you—ten tribes.
I Kings 11:36 And to his son I will give one tribe, that My servant David may always have a lamp (Light) before Me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen for Myself, to put My name there.
  • A remnant was left so that the line of King David would continue.
I Kings 11:37 So I will take you, and you shall reign over all your heart desires, and you shall be king over Israel.
I Kings 11:38 Then it shall be, if you heed all that I command you, walk in My ways, and do what is right in My sight, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as My servant David did, then I will be with you and build for you an enduring house, as I built for David, and will give Israel to you.
I Kings 11:39 And I will afflict the descendants of David because of this, but not forever.’ ”
I Kings 11:40 Solomon therefore sought to kill Jeroboam. But Jeroboam arose and fled to Egypt, to Shishak king of Egypt, and was in Egypt until the death of Solomon.
  • 2 Chronicles 12:9 When Shishak king of Egypt attacked Jerusalem 936 BC, he carried off the treasures of the temple of the Lord and the treasures of the royal palace. He took everything, including the gold shields Solomon had made.
  • Both Hadad and Jeroboam had escaped to Egypt.

Death of Solomon

I Kings 11:41 Now the rest of the acts of Solomon, all that he did, and his wisdom, are they not written in the book of the acts of Solomon?
I Kings 11:42 And the period that Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel was forty years.
  • Saul reigned 40 years
  • David reigned 40 years
  • Solomon reigned 40 years
I Kings 11:43 Then Solomon rested with his fathers (Died and joined his ancestors), and was buried in the City of David his father. And Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.
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