12:4 Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make thou the grievous service of thy father, and his heavy yoke which he put upon us, a lighter, and we will serve thee.
(a) Do not oppress us with such high taxes, which
we are not able to pay.
And they spake unto him, saying, If thou wilt be a b
servant unto this people this day, and wilt serve them, and answer them, and
speak good words to them, then they will be thy servants for ever.
(b) They showed him that there was no way to win
the people's hearts but to grant them their just petition.
12:9 And he said unto
them, c What counsel give ye that we may
answer this people, who have spoken to me, saying, Make the yoke which thy
father did put upon us lighter?
(c) There is nothing harder for them that are in
authority than to control their desires and follow good counsel.
12:10 And the young men that were grown up with
him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou speak unto this people that spake
unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou [it] lighter
unto us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little [finger] shall be d
thicker than my father's loins.
(d) I am much more able to keep you in subjection
than my father was.
12:12 So Jeroboam
and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king had e
appointed, saying, Come to me again the third day.
(e) The people declare their obedience in this
that they attempted nothing before the king gave them just opportunity.
So when all Israel saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people
answered the king, saying, What portion have we in f
David? neither [have we] inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O
Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents.
(f) Though their cause was good, yet it was hard
for the people to control their desires, as these vile words declare.
So Israel rebelled against the house g
of David unto this day.
(g) By the just judgment of God for Solomon's
12:21 And when
Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he h
assembled all the house of Judah, with the tribe of Benjamin, an hundred and
fourscore thousand chosen men, which were warriors, to fight against the house
of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam the son of Solomon.
(h) For as yet he did not realize that the Lord
had so appointed it.
12:22 But the word of God came unto Shemaiah
the i man of God, saying,
(i) That is, the Prophet.
12:24 Thus saith
the k LORD, Ye shall not go up, nor
fight against your brethren the children of Israel: return every man to his
house; for this thing is from me. They hearkened therefore to the word of the
LORD, and returned to depart, according to the word of the LORD.
(k) Who of his just judgment will punish the
trespasser, and of his mercy spare the innocent people.
If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD l
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.
(l) He feared least his people should have by
this means been enticed to rebel against him.
12:28 Whereupon the king took counsel, and
made two calves [of] gold, and said unto them, m
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.
(m) So crafty are carnal persuasions of princes,
when they will make a religion serve their appetite.
And he made an n house of high places,
and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of
(n) That is, a temple, where altars were built
12:32 And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the
eighth month, on the o fifteenth day of
the month, like unto the feast that [is] in Judah, and he offered upon the
altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he
placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made.
(o) Because he would bind the people's devotion
to his idolatry even more, he made a new holy day, besides those that the Lord
had appointed in the law.