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Jeroboam I led the ten northern tribes to rebel against King Rehoboam, the son of Solomon. And the nation of Israel was divided in 975 B.C. The Northern Kingdom was called Israel with its capital located in Samaria. All of the kings who reigned over the Northern Kingdom were wicked men who lived in open rebellion against God.
Because of their disobedience, the Northern Kingdom lost God’s protection over them and they were conquered by Assyria in 721 B.C. Most of the inhabitant of Israel were taken into captivity. Israel as a full nation never again came into existence.
The Southern Kingdom was called Judah. It consisted of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. Jerusalem, where the temple was located, was the capital of Judah. Although most of its rulers were wicked, a few were obedient to God. But with time even Judah became rebellious and lost its favor and protection of God. And they too were conquered by Babylon in 606 B.C.
Some of the royal princes, including Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, were taken to Babylon during this period. And when Judah rebelled against Babylon in 596 B.C. others, including Ezekiel, were taken as captives to Babylon.
Finally, in 586 B.C. the army of Babylon destroyed the city of Jerusalem. And the temple of Solomon laid in ruins. Most of those that remained were also taken to Babylon.
During Judah’s last days, Jeremiah served as God’s prophet delivering His messages of warning. The prophet asked them to repent of their sins to avoid the judgments of God. For God had forsaken them and was now ready to take them out of the land at the hands of a pagan king whom He called “My servant” (Jeremiah 26:7). Jeremiah preached for 40 years but the people refused to change their hearts and minds and turn away from idolatry.
In His service,