Rehoboam: His Mistakes?

REHOBOAM: His Mistakes?

Rehoboam, son of Solomon, king of Israel represented what a leader of a nation ought not be or do. His motto was, “My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist” (II Chr.10: 10).

Solomon was an expensive king. The people begged his son Rehoboam to lessen their burdens. His father’s counselors advised kindness and leniency and his own adviser the opposite. Ten Tribes separated from the tribe of Judah and formed their own nation. He was about to make the second mistake by going to war against the new nation of Israel. A prophet by the name of Shemaiah was able to halt him from causing more harm to his already overburdened people (II Chr.11: 1-4).

Many, far too many leaders, like Rehoboam have tried to outdo their predecessors. That is how the king of England lost the colonies. He wanted more taxes to lavish his life style. Far too often leaders have ideas that are beyond the people’s ability to enact. Especially when the predecessor led a costly war, the new leader might want to have a time of healing and recovery rather than new programs where a finger becomes as thick as a waistline. Sixteen years ago the new president had similar lofty ideas, only the people could not carry the load. Even the best ideas, if the means are not available, shall not mature.

Rehoboam’s inability to unite the people is another relevant example. It was not entirely his fault that the nation fell apart. He depended too much on naïve counselors. The people did not trust them. They had not studied what the people were able to do. They lived in a dream world and the king obeyed them blindly. I have lived in five countries where Rehoboam’s mistakes were and still are being repeated. Our last President, with the approval of both houses, went to war with an army to fight a handful of terrorists. The present President continues a Muslim war with American sacrifices. Let the Muslims fight their own war and let the world police itself. You promised to bring home our boys and girls. And please, stop borrowing money so you can restructure our country in your image. Let us built our own nests. We have been rather good with it in the past.