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Israelite Monarchy - The United Kingdom

After the founding of the Israelite monarchy (see Israelite Monarchy - The Origin) and then the Israelite civil war (see Israelite Monarchy - The Civil War), all of the Israelite tribes were united in a single kingdom under King David:

"Then came all the tribes of Israel to David unto Hebron, and spake, saying, Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh. Also in time past, when Saul was king over us, thou wast he that leddest out and broughtest in Israel: and The Lord said to thee, Thou shalt feed my people Israel, and thou shalt be a captain over Israel. So all the elders of Israel came to the king to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before The Lord: and they anointed David king over Israel.

David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months: and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty and three years over all Israel and Judah." (2 Samuel 5:1-5 KJV)

"Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom"

With Israel united under his command, King David then set about making peace, by annihilating many of Israel's enemies - and "The Lord gave victory to David wherever he went" (a principle that Jesus Christ Himself will employ; see Christ the Conqueror For Peace):

Solomon's Temple

"After this David defeated the Philistines and subdued them, and David took Methegammah out of the hand of the Philistines.

And he defeated Moab, and measured them with a line, making them lie down on the ground; two lines he measured to be put to death, and one full line to be spared. And the Moabites became servants to David and brought tribute.

David also defeated Hadadezer the son of Rehob, king of Zobah, as he went to restore his power at the river Euphrates [see Solomon's Kingdom to understand how far David made "peace" with his enemies beyond the Jordan]. And David took from him a thousand and seven hundred horsemen, and twenty thousand foot soldiers; and David hamstrung all the chariot horses, but left enough for a hundred chariots.

And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadadezer king of Zobah, David slew twenty-two thousand men of the Syrians. Then David put garrisons in Aram of Damascus; and the Syrians became servants to David and brought tribute. And The Lord gave victory to David wherever he went." (2 Samuel 8:1-6 RSV)

Although the united kingdom was never without threats and difficulties, sometimes from within David's own family (e.g. David's son Absalom attempted a deadly coup against his own father, but in the end it was Absalom who lost his life), the kingdom remained intact for the rest of David's life. When David died, he was succeeded by his son Solomon who greatly capitalized on the peace and political power that his father David had brought about.

"Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. And the whole earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put into his mind. Every one of them brought his present, articles of silver and gold, garments, myrrh, spices, horses, and mules, so much year by year." (1 Kings 10:23-25 RSV)

Fact Finder: What did Solomon do in his later years that caused the united kingdom of Israel to end? What was the name of Solomon's son through whom the division occurred?
See Rehoboam

Studies in this series:
1. Israelite Monarchy - The Origin
2. Israelite Monarchy - The Civil War
3. Israelite Monarchy - The United Kingdom
4. Israelite Monarchy - The Division Of Israel
5. Israelite Monarchy - The Northern Kingdom
6. Israelite Monarchy - The Southern Kingdom
7. Israelite Monarchy - The Messiah

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