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Lust, to such a Degree as to tempt him to take away another mans wife from her huf- 2 Sam.xi, band; and then, contrive to have him mur- +• lSderd, that he might enjoy her without Interruption.
Solomon, his Son, though a Prince of great personal Endowments, and highly favour'd by God, no sooner succeeded to the Throne, but we are told that in Opposition to God's express Command in the Law, he married a Jirange woman, the i Kings Daughter of Pharaoh King of Egypt; and, m" by Virtue of this Alliance, had great Numbers of horses brought from Egypt; and not —x. 28. only soj but that he loved many strange—xi.i, women; women of the Moabites, Ammo-&c" nites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; nations, concerning which, the Lord had said unto the children of Israel, Te Jhall not go in unto them, neither Jhall they come in unto you; for they will surely turn away your heart after their gods. Tet Solomon clave unto them in love: and had seven hundred wives, princesses; and three hundred concubines: And Ms wives turned away his heart after other gods.\ . . ■:■ .1 ■ ■ j
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For all which Provocations, it is said, the Lord was angry with him. Whenfore the Lord said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou, haft not kept my covenant\ and my statutes, wbict 1 have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it tt thy servant. Accordingly, though his Son Rehoboam succeeded him in Benjamin, Judah, and "Jerusalem-, yet the other ten Tribes adher'd to Jeroboam, who erected another Kingdom, call'd thenceforward, Israel, by way of Distinction from Judab.
But the Kings of Israel, being generally wicked, and forsaking the Lord, from Jeroboam, the first, to Hoshea, the nineteenth; being about the Space of two hundred and thirty one Years: In the Reign of the latter, that Kingdom was utterly destroy'd, and the whole People carried away into Captivity, from whence they never return'd, by .Sbalmanefer King of Assyria,■'as has been already noted. - The Kings of Judah were, for the Generality of them,, but little better; so that, after the Lord had born with their Iniquities, to the utmost Extent of his 4 divine
divine Mercy, he permitted Nebuchadnezzar King of Babylon, to prevail over them, to destroy their Temple, City and Nation; and to carry them away Captives to Baby~ lon, for seventy Years. They were in all, from Rehoboam, the Jirji, to Zedekiah the last, twenty: making up, in the Number of Years which they reigned, three hundred and seventy five.
As to the Manner of Succession, in both these Kingdoms, as, whether it were elective or hereditary, it is not very material to go about to enquire. For, even hereditary Succession, is really and truly, at bottom, but elective, since it never can, nor doth, take Place, without the Concurrence of a Majority of the People. It is therefore a Part of the Constitution, in all wife Establishments, that the Son, without feme notable Impediment, shall succeed the Father, to avoid the Hazards and Mischiefs to which formal Elections of this kind must be liable; when the contending Interests of the Competitors would be apt to bring civil Wars and Desolation upon the Court-*
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Agreeable to which, the Crown of Judah descended from Father to Son, in the House of 'David, from his Time, OjUire to the Captivity: But not without the solemn Consent and Allowance of the People; as we may perceive by the following Instances.
r Kings We are told that, Rehoboam ivent to Shcxii. i,&c. cjjCm. f0r all Israel were come /oShechem to make him king. And, all the congregation of Israel, (by the Mouth of feroboarn) came, and spake unto Rehoboam, saying. Thy father made our yoke grievous: Now, therefore, Make thou the grievous service of thy father, and bis heavy yoke which be put upon us, lighter, and we will serve thee. He desir'd Time to consider of it 5 and after some Time spent in Consultation^ being misled by the Advice of an ignorant wicked Ministry, and refusing to comply with the reasonable Expectations of his People, ten of the twelve Tribes immediately revolted from him, and chose themselves another King.
So, when Jehoram died, we read, that 2 Chron. the Inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah, XXU" '* his youngest son, king in bis stead. So,
the people, at the Instigation of Jehoiada — xxiii. the High-Driest, depos'd Athaliah, a wick- '1 ed Woman who had usurp'd the Crown, and brought out Joash the king's son, from His Concealment in the Temple, and put upon him the crown, and gave him the testimony, and made him king: and Jehoiada and his sons anointed him, and said, God save the king. Which, we may therefore conclude, was the Manner observ'd at all their Coronations. And so, it is said, All — xxvi, the people os Judah, took Uzziah, who was1' sixteen years old, and made him king, in the room of his father Amaziah. Of the Succession of the Kings of Israel we mail take no Notice at all, upon this Occasion; as being much more broken and irregular.
After their Return from the Captivity, they were govern'd sometimes by their High-Priests, as appears from the Apocryphal Writings; one while by Princes, of the Family of the Maccabees, who after-* wards took the Title of Kings; and finally, by Governours sent from Rome, of whom we read* in the Gospels.
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