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Passage: 1 Kings 12:1-16:28

1 Kings 12:1-16:28 – Rebellion Splits the Nation


Following Solomon's death, the nation split into two kingdoms: Judah in the south, comprised of the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi, and Israel, the ten northern tribes that broke away.


In the overall shaping of 1-2 Kings, the period following the division of the kingdom until the fall of the north in 722 B.C.E. is presented synchronically; that is, the narrative alternates between Israel and Judah. Both are judged according to their faithful obedience. In this regard, Judah, in the south, has periods of exemplary faithfulness, especially under Hezekiah and Josiah, as well as periods of apostasy, though God's promise to David sustains the monarchy even in these dark moments. Israel, in the north, spirals downward from the start in the view of the Deuteronomistic editors, who see all the northern kings walking in the path of Jeroboam.