also known as: Roboam
Meaning: he enlarges the people
Rehoboam was the successor of King Solomon on the throne, and apparently his only son. He was a bad king.
He was 41 years old when he ascended the throne, and he reigned 17 years (B.C. 975-958).
Although he was acknowledged at once as the rightful heir to the throne, yet there was a strongly-felt desire to modify the character of the government. The burden of taxation to which they had been subjected during Solomon's reign was very oppressive, and therefore the people assembled at Shechem and demanded from the king an alleviation of their burdens.
He went to meet them at Shechem, and heard their demands for relief (1 Kings 12:4).
“The king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the Lord” (compare 1 Kings 11:31).
This speedily brought matters to a crisis. The terrible cry was heard (compare 2 Samuel 20:1):
And now at once the kingdom was rent in twain. Rehoboam was appalled, and tried concessions, but it was too late (1 Kings 12:18).
The tribe of Judah, Rehoboam's own tribe, alone remained faithful to him. Benjamin was reckoned along with Judah, and these two tribes formed the southern kingdom, with Jerusalem as its capital; while the northern ten tribes formed themselves into a separate kingdom, choosing Jeroboam as their king.
Rehoboam tried to win back the revolted ten tribes by making war against them, but he was prevented by the prophet Shemaiah (1 Kings 2:21-24; 2 Chronicles 11:1-4) from fulfilling his purpose. (See JEROBOAM.)
A remarkable memorial of this invasion has been discovered at Karnac, in Upper Egypt, in certain sculptures on the walls of a small temple there. These sculptures represent the king, Shishak, holding in his hand a train of prisoners and other figures, with the names of the captured towns of Judah, the towns which Rehoboam had fortified (2 Chronicles 11:5-12).
More turmoil and spiritual decay
- Father: Solomon
- Mother: Naamah
- Wife: Mahalath
- Sons: Abijah (Abijam)—his successor), etc.
- Daughters: not named or numbered in the Bible
- Grandfather: David
- Jeroboam (his competitor)
- Shishak (his conqueror)
- Egypt (his conqueror)
- Lachish—a city that King Rehoboam (Solomon’s successor) made into one of Judah’s strongest fortresses
- What is the Kingdom of Judah (Judea)?
- Who are the Davidic kings?
- About the KINGS in the Bible