Speak to Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)1 Kings 12:17 note).
20-24. when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was come again—This verse closes the parenthetical narrative begun at 1Ki 12:2, and 1Ki 12:21-24 resume the history from 1Ki 12:1. Rehoboam determined to assert his authority by leading a large force into the disaffected provinces. But the revolt of the ten tribes was completed when the prophet Shemaiah ordered, in the Lord's name, an abandonment of any hostile measures against the revolutionists. The army, overawed by the divine prohibition, dispersed, and the king was obliged to submit.1 Kings 12:17 and he is only acknowledged king of Judah by the Lord himself:
and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin; which made but one house, as before but one tribe, 1 Kings 11:36.
and to the remnant of the people; of the other tribes that might dwell among them at Jerusalem, and especially Simeon, whose inheritance was within the tribe of Judah, Joshua 19:1.Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying,
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)23. and to the remnant of the people] (R.V. the rest). We see from 1 Kings 12:17 above that there were some people belonging to the ten tribes who were dwelling in the cities of Judah. These would have their ties in the place where they had long lived, and so would cast in their lot with the southern kingdom, rather than, because of the division, remove from their homes and seek new ones in the north. These must be intended by ‘the remnant of the people.’Verse 23. - Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin; and to the remnant of the people ["the children of Israel" mentioned in ver. 17, where see note], saying. 1 Kings 12:23); and the Simeonites especially are included, since they were obliged to remain in the kingdom of Judah from the very situation of their tribe-territory, and might very well be reckoned among the Israelites who dwelt in the cities of Judah, inasmuch as at first the whole of their territory was allotted to the tribe of Judah, from which they afterwards received a portion (Joshua 19:1). The verse cannot possibly mean that "the tribe of Judah declared in favour of their countryman Rehoboam as king" (Ewald, Gesch. iii. p. 399).
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