11 1AND WHEN Rehoboam came to Jerusalem, he assembled of the house of Judah and Benjamin 180,000 chosen warriors to fight against [the ten rebellious tribes of] Israel to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam. 2But the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah the man of God, saying, 3Say to Rehoboam son of Solomon king of Judah and to all Israel in Judah and Benjamin, 4Thus says the Lord: You shall not go up or fight against your brethren. Return every man to his house, for this thing is from Me. And they obeyed the Lord and returned from going against Jeroboam. 5Rehoboam dwelt in Jerusalem and built cities for defense in Judah. 6He built Bethlehem, Etam, Tekoa, 7Beth-zur, Soco, Adullam, 8Gath, Mareshah, Ziph, 9Adoraim, Lachish, Azekah, 10Zorah, Aijalon, and Hebron, which are fortified cities in Judah and Benjamin. 11He fortified the strongholds and put captains in them, with stores of food, oil, and vintage fruits. 12And in each city he put shields and spears, and made them very strong. So he held Judah and Benjamin. 13And the priests and the Levites who were in all Israel came over to Rehoboam from wherever they lived. 14For the Levites left their suburbs and their possessions and came to Judah and Jerusalem, for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them out from executing the priest’s office to the Lord. 15And he appointed his own priests for the high places and for the [idols of demon] he-goats, and calves he had made. 16And after them out of all the tribes of Israel there came to Jerusalem those who set their hearts to seek and inquire of the Lord, the God of Israel, to sacrifice to the Lord, the God of their fathers. 17So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah and upheld Rehoboam son of Solomon for three years; for they walked in the ways of David and Solomon for three years. 18Rehoboam took as wife Mahalath, whose father was Jerimoth son of David; her mother was Abihail daughter of Eliab son of Jesse. 19She bore him sons: Jeush, Shamariah, and Zaham. 20And after her he took Maacah daughter [granddaughter] of Absalom, who bore him Abijah, Attai, Ziza, and Shelomith. 21And Rehoboam loved Maacah daughter [granddaughter] of Absalom more than all his wives and concubines--for he took eighteen wives and sixty concubines, and he had twenty-eight sons and sixty daughters. 22And Rehoboam made Abijah son of Maacah the chief prince among his brethren, for he intended to make him king. 23And he dealt understandingly and dispersed his children throughout all Judah and Benjamin to every fortified city. He gave them abundant supplies, and he sought many wives for them.
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