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Sunday, March 11 2018

Jeroboam's New Religion

"Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David: If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem ... the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the LORD"

Hosea was a prophet of the LORD primarily to the Kingdom of Israel (see Gomer's Children) after the united Kingdom of Israel of David and Solomon (see How Many Kings Reigned In The United Kingdom?) was divided into the Kingdom of "Israel" and the Kingdom of "Judah" (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel and Judah and A History Of Israel's United And Divided Kingdoms).

The Kingdom of Israel, beginning with Jeroboam, its first king, became corrupt almost from the beginning of their independent existence, while the Kingdom of Judah, remained faithful to the LORD for much longer - the reason that the Kingdom of Israel fell in 721 BC, while the Kingdom of Judah lasted until 586 BC.

The political and religious conditions in the Kingdom of Israel, in which Hosea was sent to prophesy, are recorded in detail in the historic account of the Holy Scriptures. The reason for their self-destruction was their own defiantly-corrupt behavior - politically and religiously.

Jeroboam's political reason for the Kingdom of Israel's abandonment of the LORD's Way was that he didn't want "his" people crossing into a foreign country for their religion i.e. "If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord."

Israel and Judah

"12:25 Then Jeroboam built Shechem in mount Ephraim, and dwelt therein; and went out from thence, and built Penuel.

12:26 And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David: 12:27 If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah.

12:28 Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. 12:29 And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. 12:30 And this thing became a sin: for the people went to worship before the one, even unto Dan.

12:31 And he made an house of high places, and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi. 12:32 And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. 12:33 So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense." (1 Kings 12:25-33 KJV)

Another result, that further hastened Israel's corruption is that Jeroboam drove out the Levites (who moved to the Kingdom of Judah; see No Levites In The Lost Ten Tribes?) and created a priesthood from anyone who would obey him, rather than the LORD (see The Identity Of The LORD God and The LORD God Our Saviour).

"11:13 And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him out of all their coasts.

11:14 For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the LORD: 11:15 And he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which he had made.

11:16 And after them out of all the tribes of Israel such as set their hearts to seek the LORD God of Israel came to Jerusalem, to sacrifice unto the LORD God of their fathers." (2 Chronicles 11:13-16 KJV)

The result was that by the time of Hosea's prophetic ministry to them, the Kingdom of Israel had made its pathological-minded political and religious independence into a self-destructive toxin for themselves: "They have spoken words, swearing falsely in making a covenant: thus judgment springeth up as hemlock in the furrows of the field."

"10:1 Israel is an empty vine, he bringeth forth fruit unto himself: according to the multitude of his fruit he hath increased the altars; according to the goodness of his land they have made goodly images. 10:2 Their heart is divided; now shall they be found faulty: he shall break down their altars, he shall spoil their images.

10:3 For now they shall say, We have no king, because we feared not the LORD; what then should a king do to us?

10:4 They have spoken words, swearing falsely in making a covenant: thus judgment springeth up as hemlock in the furrows of the field.

10:5 The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Bethaven: for the people thereof shall mourn over it, and the priests thereof that rejoiced on it, for the glory thereof, because it is departed from it. 10:6 It shall be also carried unto Assyria for a present to king Jareb: Ephraim shall receive shame, and Israel shall be ashamed of his own counsel. 10:7 As for Samaria, her king is cut off as the foam upon the water. 10:8 The high places also of Aven, the sin of Israel, shall be destroyed: the thorn and the thistle shall come up on their altars; and they shall say to the mountains, Cover us; and to the hills, Fall on us.

10:9 O Israel, thou hast sinned from the days of Gibeah: there they stood: the battle in Gibeah against the children of iniquity did not overtake them. 10:10 It is in my desire that I should chastise them; and the people shall be gathered against them, when they shall bind themselves in their two furrows. 10:11 And Ephraim is as an heifer that is taught, and loveth to tread out the corn; but I passed over upon her fair neck: I will make Ephraim to ride; Judah shall plow, and Jacob shall break his clods.

10:12 Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you. 10:13 Ye have plowed wickedness, ye have reaped iniquity; ye have eaten the fruit of lies: because thou didst trust in thy way, in the multitude of thy mighty men.

10:14 Therefore shall a tumult arise among thy people, and all thy fortresses shall be spoiled, as Shalman spoiled Betharbel in the day of battle: the mother was dashed in pieces upon her children. 10:15 So shall Bethel do unto you because of your great wickedness: in a morning shall the king of Israel utterly be cut off." (Hosea 10:1-15 KJV)

Fact Finder: What was the Messianic result of the politics and religion of the Kingdom of Israel?
See How Did Israel Separate Itself From The Messianic King?

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This Day In History, March 11

222: Roman Emperor Elagabalus was assassinated, along with his mother, Julia Soaemias, by the Praetorian Guard (their palace guards) during a revolt. Their mutilated bodies are dragged through the streets of Rome before being thrown into the Tiber River (see also Whatever Happened To Those Romans?).

537: The Goths besieged Rome. The Goths were one of the tribes of Teutonic/Germanic people who invaded the Roman Empire in the 3rd to 5th centuries, eventually conquering and succeeding it. Thereafter, the Roman Empire became officially known as Sacrum Romanum Imperium Nationis Germanica i.e. the "Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).

German Empire
1702: The first British daily newspaper, The Daily Courant, began publication.

1708: Queen Anne withheld Royal Assent from the Scottish Militia Bill, the last time a British monarch vetoed legislation.

1810: Napoleon was married by proxy to Archduchess Marie Louise.

1812: An edict emancipated the Jews in Prussia (not to be confused with Russia; Prussia is in Germany). In reality however, the edict was evaded e.g. Jews could study law but not practice it (see also Jews - Three Tribes and Three Meanings).

1824: Amidst the ongoing genocide (Legal Definition: "The systematic killing of people on the basis of ethnicity, religion, political opinion, social status") and homeland seizure of the Native Americans (the genocide became a children's game known as "Cowboys and Indians"), the United States Department of War created the Bureau of Indian Affairs (see also The First Chinese American War).

1900: British Prime Minister Lord Salisbury rejected the peace overtures offered from Boer leader Paul Kruger.

1917: General Maude with 50,000 British and Indian troops marched into Baghdad, capturing 9,000 Ottoman/Turkish prisoners (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).

1931: The communist Soviet Union banned the sale or importation of The Holy Bible.

1935: Adolf Hitler's Nazi air force leader Hermann Goering (who was a German fighter pilot during the First World War, 1914-1918) established the German Air Force, the Luftwaffe. Goering, along with a few other Nazi leaders, were sentenced to death by war crimes trials after the Second World War (1939-1945), but like Hitler, Goering committed suicide before he could be executed (Goering is shown in the photograph below, at left, with his arm on the railing).

Other Nazis were more fortunate. Adolf Hitler's Nazi regime used military rockets in their bombardment of Europe and Britain. A key developer of Hitler's rockets was the Nazi scientist Wernher von Braun. Immediately after the war ended in 1945, rocket-specialist von Braun was hustled out of Germany, where he may have faced a war crimes trial along with the others, and declared to a "reformed Nazi" - although many at NASA, where von Braun worked on U.S. rockets, preferred the term "the NASA Nazi" for him - as did Jews who survived the Holocaust.

Wernher von Braun

1949: Israel's application for membership in the United Nations was approved by the Security Council (membership itself came the following May). Present-day Israel is actually the restoration of the Kingdom of Judah (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah and When Will The United Kingdom Be Restored?)

1953: A U.S. B-52 bomber accidentally dropped a nuclear bomb on South Carolina, however the weapon of mass destruction did not explode because the detonation device within the bomb was destroyed upon impact with the ground - the detonation altitude setting was incorrect for the location where the bomb was dropped (nuclear weapons are designed to explode while still in the air) (see also Who Would Throw A Nuclear Boomerang? and The Rockets' Red Glare).

1985: Mikhail Gorbachev became head of the Soviet Union following the death of Konstantin Chernenko. At 54, he was the youngest member of the ruling Politburo.

1990: The Lithuanian Parliament proclaimed the restoration of the Baltic Republic's pre-World War Two independence from the Soviet Union. Lithuania was the first Soviet Republic to break away from Communist control.

2011: A magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck 130 kilometers east of Sendai, Japan, triggering a tsunami that killed thousands of people. The event also caused the second-worst nuclear power plant disaster in history.


Copyright © Wayne Blank