Proverbs 22:29 Do you see a man skilled in his work he will serve before kings. Solomon could have used Jeroboam as the inspiration for this proverb. He was a leader in his tribe (Ephraim) and led the work in building projects around Jerusalem. Because of Solomon’s change of heart toward God his children lost the rule of all of Israel. In 1 King’s 11:29 a prophet named Ahijah (#281 Strong’s Worshipper (brother) of Jah) delivers the news to Jeroboam that if he does what is right before God he can have an enduring dynasty. In verse 40 Solomon tries to kill him so he runs to Egypt. QUESTIONS:
- Who told Jeroboam or Ahijah? (They were by themselves.)
- Why always to Egypt?
- Did the treaty that Solomon have with Egypt end or is that just how Egypt works?
Shechem is where Rehoboam went to be made king and the first place Jeroboam fortifies. This place shows up a lot in Israel’s history. Jacob bought land there instead of going with his brother (Genesis 34). The “blessings and curses” were read there by Joshua (8:30) and Jesus talked to the woman at the well (John 4) at Shechem.The trip to Egypt (bondage and false religion) was not good for Jeroboam. His first thoughts were against God who had proclaimed his kingship. The two golden calves he made are said to be a goat and calf idol in 2 Chronicles 11:15. These plus the shrines, forcing out Levites and ordaining anyone with the “right amount”, festivals, and altars were just too much and God called for an end of his reign. References to his poor choices are in 2 Chronicles 11:13 – 17 and in 2 Chronicles 13: 4 – 12. The festival was made to take away from the Festival of Booths and was one month after it in the 8th month and 15th day. (See Cleaning Up to Celebrate)
The story in 1 Kings 13 was God’s attempt to bring Jeroboam back from his evil ways but he wanted none of that. He had been given the opportunity to have and do a great work. It had come by a personal word from God and was predicated on his following God the way David had done. From hero to zero the take away is stay away from Egypt and watch who you get advice from.