Smith's Bible Dictionary


Rehobo'am. (enlarger of the people). Son of Solomon, by the Ammonite princess, Naamah, 1Ki 14:21; 1Ki 14:31, and his successor. 1Ki 11:43. Rehoboam selected Shechem as the place of his coronation, (B.C. 975), probably as an act of concession to the Ephraimites. The people demanded a remission of the severe burdens imposed by Solomon, and Rehoboam, rejecting the advice of his father's counsellors, followed that of his young courtiers, and returned an insulting answer, which led to an open rebellion among the tribes, and he was compelled to fly to Jerusalem, Judah and Benjamin alone remaining true to him.

Jeroboam was made king of the northern tribes. See Jeroboam. An expedition to reconquer Israel was forbidden by the prophet, Shemaiah, 1Ki 12:21, still, during Rehoboam's lifetime, peaceful relations between Israel and Judah were never restored. 2Ch 12:15; 1Ki 14:30. In the fifth year of Rehoboam's reign, the country was invaded by a host of Egyptians, and other African nations, under Shishak. Jerusalem itself was taken and Rehoboam had to purchase an ignominious peace, by delivering up the treasures, with which Solomon had adorned the Temple and palace.

The rest of Rehoboam's life was unmarked by any events of importance. He died B.C. 958, after a reign of 17 years, having ascended the throne B.C. 975, at the age of 4. 1Ki 14:21; 2Ch 12:13. He had 18 wives, 60 concubines, 28 sons and 60 daughters.


Taken from: Smith's Bible Dictionary by Dr. William Smith (1884)