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The Bible
History of the Middle East
Palestinian Territories

Why was Palestine divided in Biblical days into Israel and Judah?


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November 16, 2016 3:13AM

The biblical answer is that the Israelite king, Solomon had unwisely imposed swingeing taxes on the people. When his son Rehoboam refused to reduce the taxes, the Israelites rebelled under Jeroboam, broke away and formed their own kingdom, which managed to appropriate the name 'Israel' for their kingdom, leaving Rehoboam to choose the name 'Judah' for his kingdom.

Historians, supported by many archaeologists, say there never was a United Monarchy of Israel. They say that the northern kingdom had a different culture, different pottery and a different dialect of the Hebrew language, compared to Judah. Israel and Judah were different kingdoms because they had always been different.

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June 26, 2008 11:00PM

The kingdom was divided mainly because of Solomon's loss of favor with God. Specifically, Solomon's son Rehoboam was to be king after Solomon died, but a fellow named Jeroboam, with the backing of a great many Israelites, asked him what kind of king he would be (Solomon was known to have been somewhat oppressive). When Rehoboam indicated that he would be worse than Solomon, the kingdom was split between those who followed Jeroboam and those who remained loyal to Rehoboam.