The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and the Wickedness of Mankind
עץ הדאת טוב ורע והרעת בני האדם
The Torah, the Prophets, and Israel
התורה והנבאים וישראל
HASHEM looked upon His people Israel, and He honored their request. He allowed them to have a king. A righteous king would cause Israel to walk in the ways of the Torah תורה, and keep His statutes and His precepts. A righteous king would help to keep the children of Israel from backsliding and being defiled by the pollutions of the nations.
For Israel slides back, as a backsliding heifer; now the LORD will feed them as a lamb in a large place.
כִּי כְּפָרָה סֹרֵרָה, סָרַר יִשְׂרָאֵל; עַתָּה יִרְעֵם יְהוָה, כְּכֶבֶשׂ בַּמֶּרְחָב
Hosea 4:16 הושע ד:טו
Under the leadership of a righteous king who feared HASHEM, Israel would resist the seductions of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Israel would walk in the beauty of holiness and worship HASHEM. HASHEM could fulfil His plan for His nation. His people could walk in righteousness and uprightness, fearing Him, and clothed with His majesty. HASHEM could then use Israel to reveal His glory to the nations of the earth, and free them from idolatry. The knowledge of HASHEM would cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.
For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.
כִּי תִּמָּלֵא הָאָרֶץ לָדַעַת אֶת-כְּבוֹד יְהוָה, כַּמַּיִם יְכַסּוּ עַל-יָם
Habakkuk 2:14 חבקוק ב:יד
The Epoch of the Kings
HASHEM chose the first king of Israel from the tribe of Benjamin. The tribe of Benjamin had almost been destroyed because of sin. HASHEM chose a young man named Saul the son of Kish שאול בן קיש. One day Saul went to see Samuel because he was trying to find his father’s donkeys. HASHEM told Samuel שמואל that Saul would be coming to see him a day before Saul arrived. When Saul arrived the next day, HASHEM told Samuel to anoint him because He had chosen him to be king over Israel. When Saul inquired about the donkeys, Samuel gave him information. But when he looked upon Saul, he said:
“On whom is all the desire of Israel? Is it not on you, and on all of your father’s house?”
וּלְמִי כָּל-חֶמְדַּת יִשְׂרָאֵל–הֲלוֹא לְךָ, וּלְכֹל בֵּית אָבִיךָ
Saul answered Samuel:
“And Saul answered and said: Am not I a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel? And my family is the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? Why are you speaking to me in this manner?”
וַיַּעַן שָׁאוּל וַיֹּאמֶר, הֲלוֹא בֶן-יְמִינִי אָנֹכִי מִקַּטַנֵּי שִׁבְטֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, וּמִשְׁפַּחְתִּי הַצְּעִרָה, מִכָּל-מִשְׁפְּחוֹת שִׁבְטֵי בִנְיָמִן
וְלָמָּה דִּבַּרְתָּ אֵלַי כַּדָּבָר הַזֶּה
I Samuel 9:20-21 שמואל א ט:כ-כא
Saul was a fearful and diffident young man. He was insecure and timid. Samuel took him aside and communed with him for a while. Then Samuel anointed Saul according to the commandment of HASHEM.
Then Samuel took the vial of oil, and poured it upon his head, and kissed him, and said: “Has not the LORD anointed you to be prince over His inheritance?”
וַיִּקַּח שְׁמוּאֵל אֶת-פַּךְ הַשֶּׁמֶן, וַיִּצֹק עַל-רֹאשׁוֹ—וַיִּשָּׁקֵהוּ
וַיֹּאמֶר–הֲלוֹא כִּי-מְשָׁחֲךָ יְהוָה עַל-נַחֲלָתוֹ לְנָגִיד
I Samuel 10:1 שמואל א י:א
Samuel told Saul that he would meet a group of prophets from his school. The Spirit of HASHEM would come upon Saul and he would prophesy with them. Then he would be changed to a different man.
After that you shall come to the hill of God, where is the garrison of the Philistines; and it shall come to pass, when you are come from there to the city, you shall meet a band of prophets coming down from the high place with a psaltery, and a timbrel, and a pipe, and a harp, playing music; and they will be prophesying.
And the Spirit of the LORD will come mightily upon you, and you shall prophesy with them, and you shall be turned into another man.
אַחַר כֵּן, תָּבוֹא גִּבְעַת הָאֱלֹהִים, אֲשֶׁר-שָׁם נְצִבֵי פְלִשְׁתִּים; וִיהִי כְבֹאֲךָ שָׁם הָעִיר, וּפָגַעְתָּ חֶבֶל נְבִאִים יֹרְדִים מֵהַבָּמָה, וְלִפְנֵיהֶם נֵבֶל וְתֹף וְחָלִיל וְכִנּוֹר, וְהֵמָּה מִתְנַבְּאִים
וְצָלְחָה עָלֶיךָ רוּחַ יְהוָה, וְהִתְנַבִּיתָ עִמָּם; וְנֶהְפַּכְתָּ לְאִישׁ אַחֵר
I Samuel 10:5-6 שמואל א י:ה-ו
After Samuel finished instructing Saul, all the words of Samuel came to pass.
It was so, that when Saul had turned his shoulder to go from Samuel, God gave him another heart; and all those signs came to pass that day.
When they came to the hill, behold, a band of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came mightily upon him, and he prophesied among them.
It came to pass, when all that knew him before saw that, behold, he prophesied with the prophets, then the people said one to another: “What is this that is come to the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?”
And one of the same place answered and said: “And who is their father?” Therefore it became a proverb: ‘Is Saul also among the prophets?’
And when Saul had made an end of prophesying, he came to the high place.
וְהָיָה כְּהַפְנֹתוֹ שִׁכְמוֹ לָלֶכֶת מֵעִם שְׁמוּאֵל
וַיַּהֲפָךְ-לוֹ אֱלֹהִים לֵב אַחֵר
וַיָּבֹאוּ כָּל-הָאֹתוֹת הָאֵלֶּה בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא
וַיָּבֹאוּ שָׁם הַגִּבְעָתָה, וְהִנֵּה חֶבֶל-נְבִאִים לִקְרָאתוֹ; וַתִּצְלַח עָלָיו רוּחַ אֱלֹהִים, וַיִּתְנַבֵּא בְּתוֹכָם
וַיְהִי, כָּל-יוֹדְעוֹ מֵאִתְּמוֹל שִׁלְשֹׁם, וַיִּרְאוּ, וְהִנֵּה עִם-נְבִאִים נִבָּא: וַיֹּאמֶר הָעָם אִישׁ אֶל-רֵעֵהוּ, מַה-זֶּה הָיָה לְבֶן-קִישׁ–הֲגַם שָׁאוּל, בַּנְּבִיאִים
וַיַּעַן אִישׁ מִשָּׁם וַיֹּאמֶר, וּמִי אֲבִיהֶם; עַל-כֵּן הָיְתָה לְמָשָׁל, הֲגַם שָׁאוּל בַּנְּבִאִים
וַיְכַל מֵהִתְנַבּוֹת, וַיָּבֹא הַבָּמָה
I Samuel 10:9-13 שמואל א י:ט-יג
After all these events had occurred, it came to pass that Nahash נחש the king of the Ammonites came against Jabesh-gilead with his army. The Spirit of HASHEM רוח הי came upon Saul and he led the army of Israel against Nahash. HASHEM fought for Israel, and Israel destroyed the army of Nahash. In the exhilaration of this great victory, all Israel crowned Saul king over all Israel in Gilgal.
During Saul’s tenure as king, he fought battles against the Philistines.
But HASHEM removed Saul from being king because Saul disobeyed HASHEM. He did not destroy Amalek as HASHEM had commanded.
Then HASHEM told Samuel to anoint another king. This time HASHEM chose a shepherd boy from the tribe of Judah. His name was David the son of Jesse דוד בן ישי. Jesse had eight sons who were all handsome and strong. But David was the youngest son, and he was not highly esteemed. He spent his time in the field with the sheep. HASHEM sent Samuel to the house of Jesse in Bethlehem. Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. Samuel wondered which one HASHEM would tell him to anoint. This time HASHEM was looking at the heart. When HASHEM did not choose any of the seven sons, Jesse called his eighth son into the house from the field.
And Samuel said to Jesse: “Are all your children here?” And he said: “There remains yet the youngest, and, behold, he keeps the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse: “Send and bring him here; for we will not sit down until he comes here.”
And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and he had beautiful eyes, and he was handsome to look upon.
And the LORD said: “Arise, anoint him; for this is he.”
Then Samuel took the horn of oil,
and anointed him in the midst of his brethren;
and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.
וַיֹּאמֶר שְׁמוּאֵל אֶל-יִשַׁי, הֲתַמּוּ הַנְּעָרִים, וַיֹּאמֶר עוֹד שָׁאַר הַקָּטָן, וְהִנֵּה רֹעֶה בַּצֹּאן; וַיֹּאמֶר שְׁמוּאֵל אֶל-יִשַׁי שִׁלְחָה וְקָחֶנּוּ, כִּי לֹא-נָסֹב עַד-בֹּאוֹ פֹה
וַיִּשְׁלַח וַיְבִיאֵהוּ וְהוּא אַדְמוֹנִי, עִם-יְפֵה עֵינַיִם וְטוֹב רֹאִי
וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה קוּם מְשָׁחֵהוּ, כִּי-זֶה הוּא
וַיִּקַּח שְׁמוּאֵל אֶת-קֶרֶן הַשֶּׁמֶן
וַיִּמְשַׁח אֹתוֹ בְּקֶרֶב אֶחָיו
וַתִּצְלַח רוּחַ-יְהוָה אֶל-דָּוִד מֵהַיּוֹם הַהוּא וָמָעְלָה
וַיָּקָם שְׁמוּאֵל, וַיֵּלֶךְ הָרָמָתָה
I Samuel 16:11-13 שמואל א טז:יא-יג
When Saul the king of Israel discovered that David had been anointed, he chased David all over the mountains of Judah in an attempt to kill him. But HASHEM was with David where ever he went, and He delivered him from the hand of Saul. After Saul and Jonathan his son were killed in a battle with the Philistines, the tribe of Judah crowned David king in Hebron. After Saul’s death, David fought wars with the house of Saul for seven and one half years. After the wars were finished, all the tribes of Israel came to Hebron and anointed David king over all Israel.
Once he was king, David proceeded to take the stronghold of Zion from the Jebusites in Jerusalem. He decided to move his capital to Jerusalem.
David moved the Ark of G-d ארון האלוקים to Mount Zion, and set up a tent אוהל for the Ark on Mount Zion. David appointed and established the Levites and the sons of Aaron to sing praises to HASHEM and to offer the sacrifices that HASHEM had ordained through Moses. The priests and the Levites sang songs to HASHEM. They formed a great orchestra with trumpets and flutes, harps and lyres, stringed instruments and organs, tambourines and cymbals. The hills of Judea surrounding Mount Zion resonated and echoed the music and the praise to HASHEM, like a great amphitheater and a music hall, resounding with the glory of HASHEM. David the king and the Levites played melodies of praise and worship to HASHEM. Many of these songs are recorded in the book of the Psalms of Israel. This praise and worship continued seven days a week, and was especially pronounced on the Shabbat השבת. These songs of praise were accompanied by the music of the instruments of the orchestra. The people worshipped HASHEM in the beauty of holiness. Their praise and worship ascended up before the throne of HASHEM who sits on His throne in heaven.
The Spirit of HASHEM הריח הי fell upon the priests and the Levites as they sang His praises, and they prophesied. Everything was filled with the glory of HASHEM. The very hills and mountains around Jerusalem were imbued with His power.
HASHEM was delighted and pleased with the praises that went forth to Him from Mount Zion.
He loved Jerusalem.
HASHEM chose to place HIS NAME in Jerusalem.
For the LORD has chosen Zion; He has desired it for His habitation:
This is My rest forever; herein will I dwell; for I have desired it.
כִּי-בָחַר יְהוָה בְּצִיּוֹן; אִוָּהּ לְמוֹשָׁב לוֹ
זֹאת-מְנוּחָתִי עֲדֵי-עַד: פֹּה-אֵשֵׁב כִּי אִוִּתִיהָ
Psalms 132:13-14 תהלים קלב:יג-יד
David fought the wars of HASHEM against His enemies. HASHEM was with David and gave the armies of Israel victory in ALL the battles that they fought against their enemies and against all the foreign nations. David made Israel secure, and greatly expanded the borders of Israel. The territory of the nation was expanded toward the borders that HASHEM had given to Abraham אברהם in His promise to him.
HASHEM was pleased with David.
I have found in David the son of Jesse
A man after my own heart,
Who will do all my will.
מצאתי בדךוד בן ישי
איש אחר לבי
העושה לכל רצוני
David loved HASHEM. He wanted to build a house for Him. When HASHEM saw David’s heart, He sent Nathan His prophet to David. In His overwhelming love, HASHEM told David that out of David’s seed would come the Messiah המשיח. The Messiah המשיח, the son of David, would sit on the throne of David forever. Through the Messiah המשיח, HASHEM would establish the throne of David over Israel forever.
And it came to pass on the same night the Word of God came to Nathan saying:
Go and say to My servant, to David; so says the Lord: Shall you build Me a house for My dwelling? For I have not dwelt in a house from the day that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle.
In all [the places] wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel, did I speak a word with any of the rulers of Israel whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying: Why do you not build for me a house of cedar?
And now, so shall you say to My servant, to David; Thus says the Lord of Hosts. I took you from the sheep cote, from following the sheep, to be a leader over My people Israel.
And I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you, and have made for you a great name, like the name of the great ones that are in the earth.
And I will appoint a place for My people, for Israel, and I will plant them, and they will dwell in their own place, and be disturbed no more; and the wicked people shall not continue to afflict them as formerly.
And even from the day that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies.
And the Lord has told you that the Lord will make for you a house.
When your days are finished and you shall lie with your forefathers, then I will raise up your seed that shall proceed from your body after you, and I will establish his kingdom.
He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.
I will be to him a father, and he shall be to Me a son; so that when he goes astray I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the sons of Adam.
But My mercy shall not depart from him as I withdrew it from Saul, whom I removed from before you.
And your house and your kingdom shall be confirmed forever before you; your throne shall be established forever.
According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak to David.
וַיְהִ֖י בַּלַּ֣יְלָה הַה֑וּא וַֽיְהִי֙ דְּבַר־יְהֹוָ֔ה אֶל־נָתָ֖ן לֵאמֹֽר:
לֵ֚ךְ וְאָֽמַרְתָּ֙ אֶל־עַבְדִּ֣י אֶל־דָּוִ֔ד כֹּ֖ה אָמַ֣ר יְהֹוָ֑ה הַאַתָּ֛ה תִּבְנֶה־לִּ֥י בַ֖יִת לְשִׁבְתִּֽי
כִּ֣י לֹ֚א יָשַׁ֙בְתִּי֙ בְּבַ֔יִת לְ֠מִיּוֹם הַעֲלֹתִ֞י אֶת־בְּנֵ֚י יִשְׂרָאֵל֙ מִמִּצְרַ֔יִם וְעַ֖ד הַיּ֣וֹם הַזֶּ֑ה וָאֶֽהְיֶה֙ מִתְהַלֵּ֔ךְ בְּאֹ֖הֶל וּבְמִשְׁכָּֽן
בְּכֹ֥ל אֲשֶֽׁר־הִתְהַלַּכְתִּי֘ בְּכָל־בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵל֒ הֲדָבָ֣ר דִּבַּ֗רְתִּי אֶת־אַחַד֙ שִׁבְטֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל אֲשֶׁ֣ר צִוִּ֗יתִי לִרְע֛וֹת אֶת־עַמִּ֥י אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל לֵאמֹ֑ר לָ֛מָּה לֹֽא־בְנִיתֶ֥ם לִ֖י בֵּ֥ית אֲרָזִֽים
וְ֠עַתָּה כֹּֽה־תֹאמַ֞ר לְעַבְדִּ֣י לְדָוִ֗ד כֹּ֚ה אָמַר֙ יְהֹוָ֣ה צְבָא֔וֹת אֲנִ֚י לְקַחְתִּ֙יךָ֙ מִן־הַנָּוֶ֔ה מֵאַחַ֖ר הַצֹּ֑אן לִֽהְי֣וֹת נָגִ֔יד עַל־עַמִּ֖י עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵֽל
וָאֶהְיֶ֣ה עִמְּךָ֗ בְּכֹל֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר הָלַ֔כְתָּ וָאַכְרִ֥תָה אֶת־כָּל־אֹיְבֶ֖יךָ מִפָּנֶ֑יךָ וְעָשִֹ֚תִֽי לְךָ֙ שֵׁ֣ם גָּד֔וֹל כְּשֵׁ֥ם הַגְּדֹלִ֖ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר בָּאָֽרֶץ
וְשַׂמְתִּ֣י מָ֠קוֹם לְעַמִּ֨י לְיִשְׂרָאֵ֚ל וּנְטַעְתִּיו֙ וְשָׁכַ֣ן תַּחְתָּ֔יו וְלֹ֥א יִרְגַּ֖ז ע֑וֹד וְלֹֽא־יֹסִ֚יפוּ בְנֵֽי־עַוְלָה֙ לְעַנּוֹת֔וֹ כַּאֲשֶׁ֖ר בָּרִאשׁוֹנָֽה
וּלְמִן־הַיּ֗וֹם אֲשֶׁ֨ר צִוִּ֚יתִי שֹֽׁפְטִים֙ עַל־עַמִּ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וַהֲנִיחֹ֥תִי לְךָ֖ מִכָּל־אֹיְבֶ֑יךָ
וְהִגִּ֚יד לְךָ֙ יְהֹוָ֔ה כִּי־בַ֖יִת יַעֲשֶׂה־לְּךָ֥ יְהֹוָֽה
יִמְלְא֣וּ יָמֶ֗יךָ וְשָֽׁכַבְתָּ֙ אֶת־אֲבֹתֶ֔יךָ
וַהֲקִימֹתִ֚י אֶֽת־זַרְעֲךָ֙ אַחֲרֶ֔יךָ אֲשֶׁ֥ר יֵצֵ֖א מִמֵּעֶ֑יךָ
ה֥וּא יִבְנֶה־בַּ֖יִת לִשְׁמִ֑י
וְכֹנַנְתִּ֛י אֶת־כִּסֵּ֥א מַמְלַכְתּ֖וֹ עַד־עוֹלָֽם
אֲנִי֙ אֶהְיֶה־לּ֣וֹ לְאָ֔ב וְה֖וּא יִהְיֶה־לִּ֣י לְבֵ֑ן
אֲשֶׁר֙ בְּהַ֣עֲוֹת֔וֹ וְהֹֽכַחְתִּיו֙ בְּשֵׁ֣בֶט אֲנָשִׁ֔ים וּבְנִגְעֵ֖י בְּנֵ֥י אָדָֽם
וְחַסְדִּ֖י לֹא־יָס֣וּר מִמֶּ֑נּוּ כַּאֲשֶׁ֚ר הֲסִרֹ֙תִי֙ מֵעִ֣ם שָׁא֔וּל אֲשֶׁ֥ר הֲסִרֹ֖תִי מִלְּפָנֶֽיךָ
וְנֶאְמַ֨ן בֵּיתְךָ֧ וּמַֽמְלַכְתְּךָ֛ עַד־עוֹלָ֖ם לְפָנֶ֑יךָ
כִּֽסְאֲךָ֔ יִהְיֶ֥ה נָכ֖וֹן עַד־עוֹלָֽם
כְּכֹל֙ הַדְּבָרִ֣ים הָאֵ֔לֶּה וּכְכֹ֖ל הַחִזָּי֣וֹן הַזֶּ֑ה כֵּ֛ן דִּבֶּ֥ר נָתָ֖ן אֶל־דָּוִֽד
Ii Samuel 7:4-17 שמואל ב ז:ד-יז
HASHEM made the promise immutable by confirming it with an oath.
The LORD swore to David in truth; He will not turn back from it:
Of the fruit of your body will I set upon your throne.
נִשְׁבַּע-יְהוָה לְדָוִד אֱמֶת— לֹא-יָשׁוּב מִמֶּנָּה
מִפְּרִי בִטְנְךָ– אָשִׁית לְכִסֵּא-לָךְ
Psalms 132:11 תהלים קלב:יא
I have made a covenant with My chosen,
I have sworn to David My servant:
“Forever will I establish your seed,
and build up your throne to all generations.” Selah
כָּרַתִּי בְרִית, לִבְחִירִי
נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי לְדָוִד עַבְדִּי
עַד-עוֹלָם, אָכִין זַרְעֶךָ
וּבָנִיתִי לְדֹר-וָדוֹר כִּסְאֲךָ סֶלָה
Psalms 89:4-5 תהלים פט:ד-ה
After HASHEM had spoken to him, David sought for a place to build a house for HASHEM.
But when David sinned by commanding Joab to number Israel, HASHEM smote Israel. David saw the destroying angel standing on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite which was on Mount Moriah in Jerusalem. Then the Prophet Gad by the word of HASHEM told David to build an altar to HASHEM on the threshing floor and offer sacrifices on the altar to HASHEM. When HASHEM consumed the sacrifices with fire from heaven, David determined that this was the place that the Holy Temple בית המקדש should be built.
And the angel of the LORD was standing by the threshing-floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD standing between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.
And David said to God: “Is it not I that commanded the people to be numbered? Even I it is that have sinned and done very wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? Let Your hand, I pray You, O LORD my God, be against me, and against my father’s house; but not against Your people, that they should be plagued.”
Then the angel of the LORD commanded Gad to say to David, “Tell David to go up, and build an altar to the LORD in the threshing-floor of Ornan the Jebusite.”
And David went up at the saying of Gad, which he spoke in the name of the LORD…
So David gave to Ornan six hundred shekels of gold by weight and David bought the threshingfloor.
And David built there an altar to the LORD, and offered burnt-offerings and peace-offerings, and called upon the LORD; and He answered him from heaven by fire upon the altar of burnt-offering.
And the LORD commanded the destroying angel; and he put up his sword back into his sheath.
At that time, when David saw that the LORD had answered him in the threshing-floor of Ornan the Jebusite, then he sacrificed there.
For the tabernacle of the LORD, which Moses made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt-offering, were at that time in the high place at Gibeon.
But David could not go before it to inquire of God; for he was terrified because of the sword of the angel of the LORD.
Then David said: “This is the house of the LORD God, and this is the altar of burnt-offering for Israel.”
וּמַלְאַךְ יְהוָה עֹמֵד עִם-גֹּרֶן אָרְנָן הַיְבוּסִי
וַיִּשָּׂא דָוִיד אֶת-עֵינָיו, וַיַּרְא אֶת-מַלְאַךְ יְהוָה עֹמֵד בֵּין הָאָרֶץ וּבֵין הַשָּׁמַיִם, וְחַרְבּוֹ שְׁלוּפָה בְּיָדוֹ, נְטוּיָה עַל-יְרוּשָׁלִָם; וַיִּפֹּל דָּוִיד וְהַזְּקֵנִים מְכֻסִּים בַּשַּׂקִּים, עַל-פְּנֵיהֶם
וַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִיד אֶל-הָאֱלֹהִים הֲלֹא אֲנִי אָמַרְתִּי לִמְנוֹת בָּעָם, וַאֲנִי-הוּא אֲשֶׁר-חָטָאתִי וְהָרֵעַ הֲרֵעוֹתִי, וְאֵלֶּה הַצֹּאן, מֶה עָשׂוּ
יְהוָה אֱלֹהַי, תְּהִי נָא יָדְךָ בִּי וּבְבֵית אָבִי, וּבְעַמְּךָ לֹא לְמַגֵּפָה
וּמַלְאַךְ יְהוָה אָמַר אֶל-גָּד, לֵאמֹר לְדָוִיד: כִּי יַעֲלֶה דָוִיד, לְהָקִים מִזְבֵּחַ לַיהוָה בְּגֹרֶן אָרְנָן הַיְבֻסִי
וַיַּעַל דָּוִיד בִּדְבַר-גָּד, אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר בְּשֵׁם יְהוָה
וַיִּתֵּן דָּוִיד לְאָרְנָן, בַּמָּקוֹם, שִׁקְלֵי זָהָב, מִשְׁקָל שֵׁשׁ מֵאוֹת
וַיִּבֶן שָׁם דָּוִיד מִזְבֵּחַ לַיהוָה, וַיַּעַל עֹלוֹת וּשְׁלָמִים; וַיִּקְרָא אֶל-יְהוָה וַיַּעֲנֵהוּ בָאֵשׁ מִן-הַשָּׁמַיִם עַל מִזְבַּח הָעֹלָה
וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה לַמַּלְאָךְ, וַיָּשֶׁב חַרְבּוֹ אֶל-נְדָנָהּ
בָּעֵת הַהִיא–בִּרְאוֹת דָּוִיד כִּי-עָנָהוּ יְהוָה בְּגֹרֶן אָרְנָן הַיְבוּסִי
וּמִשְׁכַּן יְהוָה אֲשֶׁר-עָשָׂה מֹשֶׁה בַמִּדְבָּר, וּמִזְבַּח הָעוֹלָה–בָּעֵת הַהִיא: בַּבָּמָה, בְּגִבְעוֹןוְלֹא-יָכֹל דָּוִיד לָלֶכֶת לְפָנָיו לִדְרֹשׁ אֱלֹהִים
כִּי נִבְעַת–מִפְּנֵי חֶרֶב מַלְאַךְ יְהוָה
וַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִיד–זֶה הוּא בֵּית יְהוָה הָאֱלֹהִים
וְזֶה-מִּזְבֵּחַ לְעֹלָה, לְיִשְׂרָאֵל
I Chronicles 21:15-19;25-30 I Chronicles 22:1 דברי הימים א כא:טו-יט,כה-ל דברי הימים א כב:א
HASHEM showed David the pattern for the House of HASHEM. But HASHEM would not allow David to build the House because David had shed much blood in many wars.
HASHEM chose Solomon שלמה, David’s son, to build the House. Solomon’s mother was Bathsheba בת-שבע.
David gathered together immense treasures, and put them into storehouses for the building of the Temple.
Before David died he made Solomon king over Israel. He called Solomon before him and exhorted him concerning his reign over Israel.
Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged Solomon his son, saying:
I go the way of all the earth; be strong therefore, and show yourself to be a man;
and keep the charge of the LORD your God, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, and His commandments, and His ordinances, and His testimonies, according to what is written in the law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do, and in whatever direction you turn;
וַיִּקְרְבוּ יְמֵי-דָוִד לָמוּת; וַיְצַו אֶת-שְׁלֹמֹה בְנוֹ, לֵאמֹר
אָנֹכִי הֹלֵךְ בְּדֶרֶךְ כָּל-הָאָרֶץ; וְחָזַקְתָּ, וְהָיִיתָ לְאִישׁ
וְשָׁמַרְתָּ אֶת-מִשְׁמֶרֶת יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, לָלֶכֶת בִּדְרָכָיו לִשְׁמֹר חֻקֹּתָיו מִצְוֺתָיו וּמִשְׁפָּטָיו וְעֵדְוֺתָיו, כַּכָּתוּב בְּתוֹרַת מֹשֶׁה–לְמַעַן תַּשְׂכִּיל אֵת כָּל-אֲשֶׁר תַּעֲשֶׂה, וְאֵת כָּל-אֲשֶׁר תִּפְנֶה שָׁם
I Kings 2:1-3 מלכים א ב:א-ג
After David’s death, Solomon שלמה established the kingdom according to the instructions given to him by his father.
Then Solomon proceeded to build the Temple בית המקדש on Mount Moriah according to the pattern that HASHEM had showed to David his father.
Then Solomon began to build the House of the LORD at Jerusalem
in Mount Moriah, where [the LORD] appeared to David his father;
for which provision had been made in the place of David,
in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
וַיָּחֶל שְׁלֹמֹה לִבְנוֹת אֶת-בֵּית-יְהוָה בִּירוּשָׁלִַם
בְּהַר הַמּוֹרִיָּה, אֲשֶׁר נִרְאָה לְדָוִיד אָבִיהוּ
אֲשֶׁר הֵכִין בִּמְקוֹם דָּוִיד
בְּגֹרֶן אָרְנָן הַיְבוּסִי
II Chronicles 3:1 דברי הימים ב ג:א
First Solomon שלמה asked HASHEM for wisdom to be able to govern the people of HASHEM, the great people of Israel. HASHEM was pleased and gave Solomon vast wisdom and understanding.
And the speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing.
And God said to him, “Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked for yourself long life; neither have you asked riches for yourself, nor have you asked the life of your enemies; but have asked for yourself understanding to discern judgment.
Behold, I have done according to your word; behold, I have given you a wise and understanding heart; so that there was none like you before you, nor after you shall any arise like you.
And I have also given you that which you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that there shall not be any among the kings like you all your days.
And if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David did walk, then I will lengthen your days.”
וַיִּיטַב הַדָּבָר בְּעֵינֵי אֲדֹנָי כִּי שָׁאַל שְׁלֹמֹה אֶת־הַדָּבָר הַזֶּֽה
וַיּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים אֵלָיו יַעַן אֲשֶׁר שָׁאַלְתָּ אֶת־הַדָּבָר הַזֶּה וְלֹֽא־שָׁאַלְתָּ לְּךָ יָמִים רַבִּים וְלֹֽא־שָׁאַלְתָּ לְּךָ עשֶׁר וְלֹא שָׁאַלְתָּ נֶפֶשׁ אֹיְבֶיךָ וְשָׁאַלְתָּ לְּךָ הָבִין לִשְׁמֹעַ מִשְׁפָּֽט
הִנֵּה עָשִיתִי כִּדְבָרֶיךָ הִנֵּה | נָתַתִּי לְךָ לֵב חָכָם וְנָבוֹן אֲשֶׁר כָּמוֹךָ לֹא־הָיָה לְפָנֶיךָ וְאַחֲרֶיךָ לֹא־יָקוּם כָּמֽוֹךָ
וְגַם אֲשֶׁר לֹֽא־שָׁאַלְתָּ נָתַתִּי לָךְ גַּם־עשֶׁר גַּם־כָּבוֹד אֲשֶׁר לֹא־הָיָה כָמוֹךָ אִישׁ בַּמְּלָכִים כָּל־יָמֶֽיךָ
וְאִם | תֵּלֵךְ בִּדְרָכַי לִשְׁמר חֻקַּי וּמִצְוֹתַי כַּאֲשֶׁר הָלַךְ דָּוִיד אָבִיךָ וְהַאֲרַכְתִּי אֶת־יָמֶֽיךָ
I Kings 3:10-13 מלכים א ג:י-יג
Solomon built the House of HASHEM בית המקדש and finished it according to all the instructions, the blueprint, and the patterns that were given to him. He adorned the Temple with gold, silver, and precious stones.
Then Solomon commanded the Levites to move
the Ark of the Covenant of HASHEM ארון ברית הי from its tent on Mount Zion, and they placed it in the Holy of Holies קודש הקדשים in the Temple. When the Ark rested under the wings of the Cherubim, the cloud of the glory of HASHEM filled the Temple.
And the priests brought in the Ark of the Covenant of the LORD to its place, into the Sanctuary of the house, to the Most Holy Place, even under the wings of the cherubim.
For the cherubim spread forth their wings over the place of the Ark, and the cherubim covered the Ark and the staves of it from above…
And it came to pass, when the priests had come out of the Holy Place—for all the priests that were present had sanctified themselves, and did not keep their courses;
also the Levites who were the singers, all of them, even Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and their sons and their brethren, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them a hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets—
It came even to pass, when the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD: “for He is good, for His mercy endures forever”; then the House was filled with a cloud, even the House of the LORD,
so that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud; for the glory of the LORD filled the House of God.
וַיָּבִיאוּ הַכֹּהֲנִים אֶת-אֲרוֹן בְּרִית-יְהוָה אֶל-מְקוֹמוֹ, אֶל-דְּבִיר הַבַּיִת אֶל-קֹדֶשׁ הַקֳּדָשִׁים: אֶל-תַּחַת כַּנְפֵי הַכְּרוּבִים
וַיִּהְיוּ הַכְּרוּבִים פֹּרְשִׂים כְּנָפַיִם, עַל-מְקוֹם הָאָרוֹן; וַיְכַסּוּ הַכְּרוּבִים עַל-הָאָרוֹן וְעַל-בַּדָּיו מִלְמָעְלָה
וַיְהִי, בְּצֵאת הַכֹּהֲנִים מִן-הַקֹּדֶשׁ: כִּי כָּל-הַכֹּהֲנִים הַנִּמְצְאִים הִתְקַדָּשׁוּ—אֵין לִשְׁמוֹר לְמַחְלְקוֹת
וְהַלְוִיִּם הַמְשֹׁרְרִים לְכֻלָּם לְאָסָף לְהֵימָן לִידֻתוּן וְלִבְנֵיהֶם וְלַאֲחֵיהֶם מְלֻבָּשִׁים בּוּץ, בִּמְצִלְתַּיִם וּבִנְבָלִים וְכִנֹּרוֹת, עֹמְדִים מִזְרָח לַמִּזְבֵּחַ וְעִמָּהֶם כֹּהֲנִים לְמֵאָה וְעֶשְׂרִים, מחצררים (מַחְצְרִים) בַּחֲצֹצְרוֹת
וַיְהִי כְאֶחָד למחצצרים (לַמְחַצְּרִים וְלַמְשֹׁרְרִים לְהַשְׁמִיעַ קוֹל-אֶחָד לְהַלֵּל וּלְהֹדוֹת לַיהוָה, וּכְהָרִים קוֹל בַּחֲצֹצְרוֹת וּבִמְצִלְתַּיִם וּבִכְלֵי הַשִּׁיר וּבְהַלֵּל לַיהוָה כִּי טוֹב, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ
וְהַבַּיִת מָלֵא עָנָן, בֵּית יְהוָה
וְלֹא-יָכְלוּ הַכֹּהֲנִים לַעֲמוֹד לְשָׁרֵת, מִפְּנֵי הֶעָנָן
כִּי-מָלֵא כְבוֹד-יְהוָה אֶת-בֵּית הָאֱלֹהִים
II Chronicles 5:7-8,11-14 דברי הימים ב ה:ז-ח,יא-יד
Solomon also had the Levites bring up the Tabernacle of the Congregationאוהל מועד and all the vessels that were in it and they were placed in the Temple.
And they brought up the Ark, and the Tabernacle of Meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the Tabernacle; these did the priests and the Levites bring up.
וַיַּעֲלוּ אֶת-הָאָרוֹן וְאֶת-אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד, וְאֶת-כָּל-כְּלֵי הַקֹּדֶשׁ אֲשֶׁר בָּאֹהֶל: הֶעֱלוּ אֹתָם הַכֹּהֲנִים הַלְוִיִּם
II Chronicles 5:5 דברי הימים ב ה:ה
Solomon kneeled and then stood at the altar before all the congregation of Israel. He offered a prayer of dedication and supplication to HASHEM for the altar and the Temple. HASHEM answered with fire from heaven.
“Now, O my God, let, I implore You, Your eyes be open, and let Your ears be attentive to the prayer that is made in this place.
Now therefore arise, O LORD God, into Your resting-place, You, and the Ark of Your Strength; let Your priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let Your merciful ones rejoice in good.
O LORD God, turn not away the face of Your anointed; remember the sure mercies of David Your servant.”
עַתָּה אֱלֹהַי, יִהְיוּ-נָא עֵינֶיךָ פְּתֻחוֹת, וְאָזְנֶיךָ קַשֻּׁבוֹת–לִתְפִלַּת הַמָּקוֹם הַזֶּה
וְעַתָּה, קוּמָה יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים לְנוּחֶךָ–אַתָּה, וַאֲרוֹן עֻזֶּךָ; כֹּהֲנֶיךָ יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים יִלְבְּשׁוּ תְשׁוּעָה, וַחֲסִידֶיךָ יִשְׂמְחוּ בַטּוֹב
יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים, אַל-תָּשֵׁב פְּנֵי מְשִׁיחֶךָ: זָכְרָה לְחַסְדֵי דָּוִיד עַבְדֶּךָ
II Chronicles 6:40-42 דברי הימים ב ו:מ-מב
And it was so, that when Solomon had made an end of praying all this prayer and supplication to the LORD, he arose from before the altar of the LORD, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread forth toward heaven.
וַיְהִי כְּכַלּוֹת שְׁלֹמֹה לְהִתְפַּלֵּל אֶל-יְהוָה אֵת כָּל-הַתְּפִלָּה וְהַתְּחִנָּה הַזֹּאת; קָם מִלִּפְנֵי מִזְבַּח יְהוָה, מִכְּרֹעַ עַל-בִּרְכָּיו וְכַפָּיו פְּרֻשׂוֹת הַשָּׁמָיִם
I Kings 8:54 מלכים א ח:נד
When Solomon had made an end of praying,
the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt-offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house.
And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD filled the LORD’S house.
And all the children of Israel looked on, when the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD was upon the house; and they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and prostrated themselves, and gave thanks unto the LORD; “for He is good, for His mercy endures forever.”
וּכְכַלּוֹת שְׁלֹמֹה לְהִתְפַּלֵּל
וְהָאֵשׁ יָרְדָה מֵהַשָּׁמַיִם, וַתֹּאכַל הָעֹלָה וְהַזְּבָחִים
וּכְבוֹד יְהוָה מָלֵא אֶת-הַבָּיִת
וְלֹא יָכְלוּ הַכֹּהֲנִים לָבוֹא אֶל-בֵּית יְהוָה:
כִּי-מָלֵא כְבוֹד-יְהוָה אֶת-בֵּית יְהוָה
וְכֹל בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל
רֹאִים בְּרֶדֶת הָאֵשׁ, וּכְבוֹד יְהוָה עַל-הַבָּיִת
וַיִּכְרְעוּ אַפַּיִם אַרְצָה עַל-הָרִצְפָה
וַיִּשְׁתַּחֲווּ, וְהֹדוֹת לַיהוָה כִּי טוֹב, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ
II Chronicles 7:1-3 דברי הימים ב ז:א-ג
During the reign of Solomon, the borders of the nation of Israel reached their maximum extent.
The wealth of the kingdom was spectacular. There were not wars, and the children of Israel dwelt securely. The wisdom of Solomon was phenomenal. The kings of the earth came to Jerusalem to hear the wisdom of Solomon.
Judah and Israel were many, as the sand which is by the sea in multitude, eating and drinking and making merry.
And Solomon ruled over all the kingdoms from the River to the land of the Philistines, and to the border of Egypt; they brought presents, and served Solomon all the days of his life.
And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beer-sheba, all the days of Solomon.
יְהוּדָה וְיִשְׂרָאֵל רַבִּים, כַּחוֹל אֲשֶׁר-עַל-הַיָּם לָרֹב, אֹכְלִים וְשֹׁתִים, וּשְׂמֵחִים
וּשְׁלֹמֹה הָיָה מוֹשֵׁל בְּכָל-הַמַּמְלָכוֹת–מִן-הַנָּהָר אֶרֶץ פְּלִשְׁתִּים, וְעַד גְּבוּל מִצְרָיִם: מַגִּשִׁים מִנְחָה וְעֹבְדִים אֶת-שְׁלֹמֹה, כָּל-יְמֵי חַיָּיו
וַיֵּשֶׁב יְהוּדָה וְיִשְׂרָאֵל לָבֶטַח, אִישׁ תַּחַת גַּפְנוֹ וְתַחַת תְּאֵנָתוֹ
מִדָּן וְעַד-בְּאֵר שָׁבַע–כֹּל יְמֵי שְׁלֹמֹה
I Kings 4:20-21,25 מלכים א ד:כ-כא,כה
And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding in exceeding amounts, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea-shore.
And Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east, and all the wisdom of Egypt.
For he was wiser than all men: than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, and Calcol, and Darda, the son of Mahol; and his fame was in all the nations round about.
And he spoke three thousand proverbs; and his songs were a thousand and five.
And he spoke of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon even to the hyssop that springs out of the wall; he spoke also of beasts, and of fowl, and of creeping things, and of fishes.
And there came of all peoples to hear the wisdom of Solomon, from all kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom.
וַיִּתֵּן אֱלֹהִים חָכְמָה לִשְׁלֹמֹה וּתְבוּנָה, הַרְבֵּה מְאֹד
וְרֹחַב לֵב–כַּחוֹל, אֲשֶׁר עַל-שְׂפַת הַיָּם
וַתֵּרֶב חָכְמַת שְׁלֹמֹה, מֵחָכְמַת כָּל-בְּנֵי-קֶדֶם, וּמִכֹּל חָכְמַת מִצְרָיִם
וַיֶּחְכַּם מִכָּל-הָאָדָם, מֵאֵיתָן הָאֶזְרָחִי וְהֵימָן וְכַלְכֹּל וְדַרְדַּע, בְּנֵי מָחוֹל; וַיְהִי-שְׁמוֹ בְכָל-הַגּוֹיִם סָבִיב
וַיְדַבֵּר שְׁלֹשֶׁת אֲלָפִים מָשָׁל; וַיְהִי שִׁירוֹ חֲמִשָּׁה וָאָלֶף
וַיְדַבֵּר עַל-הָעֵצִים, מִן-הָאֶרֶז אֲשֶׁר בַּלְּבָנוֹן, וְעַד הָאֵזוֹב אֲשֶׁר יֹצֵא בַּקִּיר; וַיְדַבֵּר עַל-הַבְּהֵמָה וְעַל-הָעוֹף, וְעַל-הָרֶמֶשׂ וְעַל-הַדָּגִים
וַיָּבֹאוּ מִכָּל-הָעַמִּים, לִשְׁמֹעַ אֵת חָכְמַת שְׁלֹמֹה–מֵאֵת כָּל-מַלְכֵי הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר שָׁמְעוּ אֶת-חָכְמָתוֹ
I Kings 4:29-34 מלכים א ד:כט-לד
But Solomon, unlike his father David, did not continue to walk in the fear of HASHEM. He married foreign wives contrary to the commands of the Torah תורה. He also multiplied horses. He became corrupted by the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Take heed to yourself, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land where you are going, lest they become a snare in the midst of you…
Do not take their daughters to be wives for your sons, and their daughters go whoring after their gods, and make your sons go whoring after their gods.
הִשָּׁמֶר לְךָ, פֶּן-תִּכְרֹת בְּרִית לְיוֹשֵׁב הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה בָּא עָלֶיהָ
פֶּן-יִהְיֶה לְמוֹקֵשׁ בְּקִרְבֶּךָ
וְלָקַחְתָּ מִבְּנֹתָיו לְבָנֶיךָ
וְזָנוּ בְנֹתָיו אַחֲרֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶן
וְהִזְנוּ אֶת-בָּנֶיךָ אַחֲרֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶן
Exodus 34:12,16 שמות לד:יב,טו
Now king Solomon loved many foreign women, besides the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites;
of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel: “You shall not go among them, neither shall they come among you; for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.”
Solomon did cleave to all these in love.
וְהַמֶּלֶךְ שְׁלֹמֹה אָהַב נָשִׁים נָכְרִיּוֹת רַבּוֹת–וְאֶת-בַּת-פַּרְעֹה: מוֹאֲבִיּוֹת עַמֳּנִיּוֹת אֲדֹמִיֹּת, צֵדְנִיֹּת חִתִּיֹּת
מִן-הַגּוֹיִם, אֲשֶׁר אָמַר-יְהוָה אֶל-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא-תָבֹאוּ בָהֶם
וְהֵם לֹא-יָבֹאוּ בָכֶם, אָכֵן יַטּוּ אֶת-לְבַבְכֶם אַחֲרֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶם–בָּהֶם דָּבַק שְׁלֹמֹה לְאַהֲבָה
I Kings 11:1-2 מלכים א יא:א-ב
In Solomon’s old age, his foreign wives turned his heart against HASHEM. He began to worship the gods of these wives. He filled Jerusalem with their idols. Jerusalem became full of uncleanness. HASHEM was angry with Solomon. He told Solomon that He would tear the kingdom apart in the days of his son.
The Epoch of the Kings lasted about 450 years.
After Solomon’s death, Rehoboam רחבעם his son reigned in his stead. Rehoboam’s mother was an Ammonite woman.
HASHEM tore the kingdom into two parts. The northern part consisted of most the tribes of Israel. The southern part contained Jerusalem and the Temple on Mount Moriah. It consisted of Judah, Benjamin, Simeon, and most of the tribe of Levi. But the other tribes of Israel that dwelt in the cities of Judah were under the authority of Judah.
But as for the children of Israel that dwelt in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them
וּבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, הַיֹּשְׁבִים בְּעָרֵי יְהוּדָה–וַיִּמְלֹךְ עֲלֵיהֶם, רְחַבְעָם
I Kings 12:17 מלכים א יב”יז
The northern part, or the northern kingdom, had 19 kings in succession.
The southern part, or the southern kingdom, had 19 kings in succession.
All of the kings of the northern part were wicked, and they did evil in the sight of HASHEM.
8 of the kings of the southern part were righteous and they walked in the fear of HASHEM. They did what was right in the sight of HASHEM, observing the precepts of the Torah.
11 of the kings of the southern part were wicked. They were corrupted by the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and they did evil in the sight of HASHEM.
During the reigns of these kings the school of the prophets that had been established by Samuel the Prophet thrived and flourished in Gilgal, and also in Jericho. It was somewhat outside of the jurisdiction and ravages of renegade kings. Great prophets came out of this school, and HASHEM used them to prophesy to the kings.
The northern kingdom first came under the rule of Jeroboam the son of Nebat ירבעם בן נבט. He was a mighty man from the tribe of Ephraim. He was politically minded, and he did not want the tribes that were under his rule going to Jerusalem to worship HASHEM in Jerusalem which was in the southern kingdom. He operated in the subtlety of his own mind from a position in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He did not walk in the fear of HASHEM, knowing that HASHEM had placed His name in Jerusalem. He had his own political ambitions. He was only concerned about his position, and his power. He did not want the people to go out of the realm of his jurisdiction to Jerusalem to worship. They might change their loyalty from him to the southern kingdom. He erected two new altars, one in Bethel in the territory of Ephraim, and the other in the territory of the tribe of Dan in the north part of Israel. He told the tribes under his jurisdiction to go to these two altars instead of the Temple in Jerusalem to worship and make sacrifices. He set up priests for the altars. This way he thought he could maintain the allegiance of the tribes under his rule.
This was a great evil in the sight of HASHEM. It became a snare מוקש
and a stumbling block מכשול to the people. It was an iniquity and a provocation to HASHEM.
HASHEM sent prophets to Jeroboam to warn him to repent, and to fear HASHEM, and to walk in His commandments. But Jeroboam did not listen to these prophets. Instead he stubbornly determined to walk according to the thoughts and convictions of his natural mind.
The sin of Jeroboam the son of Nebat caused the tribes in the northern kingdom to go into abominable idolatry. They made groves and high places and set up images. They worshipped Baal and Ashtoreth, and the strange gods of foreign nations.
They forsook all the commandments of the LORD their God, and made themselves molten images, even two calves, and made an Asherah, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal;
and they caused their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire, and used divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him.
וַיַּעַזְבוּ אֶת-כָּל-מִצְוֺת יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיהֶם, וַיַּעֲשׂוּ לָהֶם מַסֵּכָה, שנים (שְׁנֵי) עֲגָלִים; וַיַּעֲשׂוּ אֲשֵׁירָה, וַיִּשְׁתַּחֲווּ לְכָל-צְבָא הַשָּׁמַיִם
וַיַּעֲבִירוּ אֶת-בְּנֵיהֶם וְאֶת-בְּנוֹתֵיהֶם, בָּאֵשׁ, וַיִּקְסְמוּ קְסָמִים, וַיְנַחֵשׁוּ וַיִּתְמַכְּרוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה—לְהַכְעִיסוֹ
II Kings 17:16-17 מלכים ב יז:טז-יז
All of the kings that followed Jeroboam continued in his footsteps, ensconced in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and causing the people to sin.
HASHEM sent prophets to these kings to warn theses kings to repent, but they refused to listen to His prophets. Instead they persecuted the prophets, and killed some of them.
Finally HASHEM sent the king of Assyria against the northern kingdom of Israel. The Assyrians took the people out of their own land, and placed them into captivity in foreign lands.
Even the tribes to whom HASHEM had given territory east of the Jordan River were taken captive.
The sons of Reuben, and the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh,
And they transgressed against the God of their fathers, and went whoring after the gods of the peoples of the land, whom God destroyed before them.
And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, and the spirit of Tillegath-pilneser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river of Gozan, unto this day.
בְּנֵי-רְאוּבֵן וְגָדִי וַחֲצִי שֵׁבֶט-מְנַשֶּׁה
וַיִּמְעֲלוּ בֵּאלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵיהֶם; וַיִּזְנוּ אַחֲרֵי אֱלֹהֵי עַמֵּי-הָאָרֶץ
אֲשֶׁר-הִשְׁמִיד אֱלֹהִים מִפְּנֵיהֶם
וַיָּעַר אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶת-רוּחַ פּוּל מֶלֶךְ-אַשּׁוּר, וְאֶת-רוּחַ תִּלְּגַת פִּלְנֶסֶר מֶלֶךְ אַשּׁוּר, וַיַּגְלֵם לָראוּבֵנִי וְלַגָּדִי, וְלַחֲצִי שֵׁבֶט מְנַשֶּׁה; וַיְבִיאֵם לַחְלַח וְחָבוֹר וְהָרָא, וּנְהַר גּוֹזָן, עַד הַיּוֹם
I Chronicles 5:25-26 דברי הימים א ה:כה-כו
The southern kingdom, which became known as the kingdom of Judea, was also in conflict.
The kings that ruled the kingdom were the sons of David. The people continued to worship HASHEM and to make sacrifices according to the Law of Moses at the Temple בית המקדש in Jerusalem.
8 of these kings feared HASHEM, and walked according to the precepts of the Torah תורה. Most of the time they listened to the prophets, and they did not walk according to the thoughts of their own minds. They listened to the voice of HASHEM. They did what was right in the sight of HASHEM, and He prospered them in their kingdom during their reign, and He was with them in their endeavors.
11 of these kings did not fear HASHEM, being led by their own desires, and ignoring the Voice and the commandments of HASHEM. HASHEM sent prophets to them to admonish them to repent. But they did not listen to the prophets. They walked in the counsels of their own hearts, and they became corrupted by the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They turned to strange gods and worshiped idols. HASHEM destroyed the works of their hands, but still they did not repent.
One of the last prophets that HASHEM sent to these kings was Jeremiah ירמיה. Jeremiah was the son of Hilkiah חלקיהו one of the Cohenim כהנים who were in Anathoth ענתות in the land of the tribe of Benjamin.
The last 4 kings in the succession of the kings of the sons of David were wicked and did evil in the sight of HASHEM.
When they heard the prophesies of Jeremiah warning them of the impending invasion of their kingdom, they did not repent. They thought HASHEM would deliver them from Babylon the way that He delivered Hezekiah חזקיהו from the hand of the Assyrians when Isaiah ישעיהthe Prophet prophesied to him. But they did not consider that Hezekiah was righteous and walked in the fear of HASHEM. They were wicked and walked in the counsels of their own hearts. Therefore they stiffened their necks and did not repent.
One king went so far as to cut up the scroll of the prophesy of Jeremiah with a scribe’s razor knife, and threw it into the fire. As a result of his defiance toward the Word of HASHEM, HASHEM told him that none of his seed would sit on the throne of David.
And the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah after the king had burnt the roll and the words that Baruch had written from Jeremiah’s mouth, saying:
Take for yourself again another scroll and write upon it all the original words that were on the first scroll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah burned.
And concerning Jehoiakim the king of Judah you shall say, Thus says the Lord: You have burnt this scroll, saying: Why have you written upon it, saying, The king of Babylon shall surely come and destroy this land and cause man and beast to cease from it?
Therefore, Thus says the Lord concerning Jehoiakim the king of Judah;
He shall have none to sit on the throne of David,
and his corpse shall be cast to the heat by day and to the frost at night.
And I will visit upon him and upon his seed and upon his servants [the punishment for] their iniquity, and I will bring upon them and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem and upon the men of Judah all the evil that I spoke to them which they refused to hear..
וַיְהִי דְבַר-יְהוָה, אֶל-יִרְמְיָהוּ–אַחֲרֵי שְׂרֹף הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶת-הַמְּגִלָּה
וְאֶת-הַדְּבָרִים אֲשֶׁר כָּתַב בָּרוּךְ מִפִּי יִרְמְיָהוּ, לֵאמֹר
שׁוּב קַח-לְךָ מְגִלָּה אַחֶרֶת; וּכְתֹב עָלֶיהָ אֵת כָּל-הַדְּבָרִים הָרִאשֹׁנִים אֲשֶׁר הָיוּ עַל-הַמְּגִלָּה הָרִאשֹׁנָה, אֲשֶׁר שָׂרַף יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ-יְהוּדָה
וְעַל-יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ-יְהוּדָה תֹאמַר, כֹּה אָמַר יְהוָה: אַתָּה שָׂרַפְתָּ
אֶת-הַמְּגִלָּה הַזֹּאת, לֵאמֹר, מַדּוּעַ כָּתַבְתָּ עָלֶיהָ לֵאמֹר בֹּא-יָבוֹא מֶלֶךְ בָּבֶל וְהִשְׁחִית אֶת-הָאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת, וְהִשְׁבִּית מִמֶּנָּה אָדָם וּבְהֵמָה
לָכֵן כֹּה-אָמַר יְהוָה עַל-יְהוֹיָקִים מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה
לֹא-יִהְיֶה-לּוֹ יוֹשֵׁב עַל-כִּסֵּא דָוִד
וְנִבְלָתוֹ תִּהְיֶה מֻשְׁלֶכֶת, לַחֹרֶב בַּיּוֹם וְלַקֶּרַח בַּלָּיְלָה
וּפָקַדְתִּי עָלָיו וְעַל-זַרְעוֹ וְעַל-עֲבָדָיו אֶת-עֲוֺנָם; וְהֵבֵאתִי עֲלֵיהֶם
וְעַל-יֹשְׁבֵי יְרוּשָׁלִַם וְאֶל-אִישׁ יְהוּדָה
אֵת כָּל-הָרָעָה אֲשֶׁר-דִּבַּרְתִּי אֲלֵיהֶם–וְלֹא שָׁמֵעוּ.
Jeremiah 36:27-31 ירמיה לו:כז-לא
HASHEM sent Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylonנבוכדנאצר מלך בבל and his army against Jerusalem. They broke down the walls of the city, and they wasted the countryside. They destroyed the Temple and took possession of its treasures. The remnant of the people of Jerusalem, Judea, and Israel, the Chaldeans הכשדים took captive, and carried them away to Babylon.
This ended the Epoch of the Kings.