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Jeroboam
        increase of the people. (1.) The son of Nebat (1 Kings
        11:26-39), "an Ephrathite," the first king of the ten tribes,
        over whom he reigned twenty-two years (B.C. 976-945). He was the
        son of a widow of Zereda, and while still young was promoted by
        Solomon to be chief superintendent of the "burnden", i.e., of
        the bands of forced labourers. Influenced by the words of the
        prophet Ahijah, he began to form conspiracies with the view of
        becoming king of the ten tribes; but these having been
        discovered, he fled to Egypt (1 Kings 11:29-40), where he
        remained for a length of time under the protection of Shishak I.
        On the death of Solomon, the ten tribes, having revolted, sent
        to invite him to become their king. The conduct of Rehoboam
        favoured the designs of Jeroboam, and he was accordingly
        proclaimed "king of Israel" (1 Kings 12: 1-20). He rebuilt and
        fortified Shechem as the capital of his kingdom. He at once
        adopted means to perpetuate the division thus made between the
        two parts of the kingdom, and erected at Dan and Bethel, the two
        extremities of his kingdom, "golden calves," which he set up as
        symbols of Jehovah, enjoining the people not any more to go up
        to worship at Jerusalem, but to bring their offerings to the
        shrines he had erected. Thus he became distinguished as the man
        "who made Israel to sin." This policy was followed by all the
        succeeding kings of Israel.
        While he was engaged in offering incense at Bethel, a prophet
        from Judah appeared before him with a warning message from the
        Lord. Attempting to arrest the prophet for his bold words of
        defiance, his hand was "dried up," and the altar before which he
        stood was rent asunder. At his urgent entreaty his "hand was
        restored him again" (1 Kings 13:1-6, 9; compare 2 Kings 23:15);
        but the miracle made no abiding impression on him. His reign was
        one of constant war with the house of Judah. He died soon after
        his son Abijah (1 Kings 14:1-18).
        (2.) Jeroboam II., the son and successor of Jehoash, and the
        fourteenth king of Israel, over which he ruled for forty-one
        years, B.C. 825-784 (2 Kings 14:23). He followed the example of
        the first Jeroboam in keeping up the worship of the golden
        calves (2 Kings 14:24). His reign was contemporary with those of
        Amaziah (2 Kings 14:23) and Uzziah (15:1), kings of Judah. He
        was victorious over the Syrians (13:4; 14:26, 27), and extended
        Israel to its former limits, from "the entering of Hamath to the
        sea of the plain" (14:25; Amos 6:14). His reign of forty-one
        years was the most prosperous that Israel had ever known as yet.
        With all this outward prosperity, however, iniquity widely
        prevailed in the land (Amos 2:6-8; 4:1; 6:6; Hos. 4:12-14). The
        prophets Hosea (1:1), Joel (3:16; Amos 1:1, 2), Amos (1:1), and
        Jonah (2 Kings 14:25) lived during his reign. He died, and was
        buried with his ancestors (14:29). He was succeeded by his son
        Zachariah (q.v.).
        His name occurs in Scripture only in 2 Kings 13:13; 14:16, 23,
        27, 28, 29; 15:1, 8; 1 Chr. 5:17; Hos. 1:1; Amos 1:1; 7:9, 10,
        11. In all other passages it is Jeroboam the son of Nebat that
        is meant.
Bibliography Information
Easton, Matthew George. M.A., D.D., "Biblical Meaning for 'Jeroboam' Eastons Bible Dictionary".
bible-history.com - Eastons; 1897.

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