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. my little finger fhall be thicker than my Fa"ther's loins; my Father chaftifed

you with whips, I will chaftife you with fcorpions" (lafhes ended with iron)-upon which ten tribes out of the twelve, inftantly revolted from Rehoboam. The Prince forely alarmed haftily fled to his chariot for fafety, and drove off full fpeed to the Capital.

The ten revolting Tribes, blew the trumpets and inftantly proclaimed Jeroboam, King of Ifrael.

Ever afterwards the Kingdom remained thus divided. Rehoboam was crowned at Jerufalem, and he affumed the title of King of Judah.

The two Tribes of Benjamin and Judah were henceforward united.

The pofterity of David, in this last divifion, reigned three hundred and feventy-two years, during which period, nineteen Kings fucceeded one another, with only one interruption, which lafted fix years, Athaliah Queen Dowager and Mother of Ahaziah, having at that time ufurped the Throne of Judah.

The Kingdom of Ifrael continued only two hundred and thirty-feven years, and their Kings were all Idolaters, which occafioned that ftriking Prophely refpecting them,

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They fhould be as reeds fhaken in the water." The Hiftory of Judah, and Ifrael, during the fpace of one hundred and eighteen years

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corded in the first Book, it gives the reigns of the four firft Kings of Judah, ending with the death of Jehofophat, and alfo the reigns of the eight firft Kings of Ifrael. This Book alfo relates the awful, interefting, and inftructive lives, and characters, of the Prophet Elijah and Elifha.

The fecond book of the Kings, contains the remaining History of the Reigns in Judah and Ifrael, to the Captivity and deftruction of both Kingdoms; that of Ifrael is continued, from the rebellion of Moab, in the reign of Ahaziah, to the Captivity and final difperfion of Ifrael, among the Cities of the Medes, and the defolate and uninhabited Countries of Halah and Habor, in the Reign of Hofhea, the last King of Ifrael; a period of only one hundred and fifty-nine years, as the Kingdom of Judah remained alone a hundred and thirty five years after Ifrael.

The Hiftory of Judah, is here continued from the death of Jehofophat, to the Captivity in Babylon, under the reign of Zedekiah, a space of two hundred and forty-four years.

The laft chapter relates the fiege and fore Famine occafioned thereby, thofe, who were flain by the fword, were happier far, than those who pined to death with hunger. On the ninth day, of the fourth month, after a blockade of more than two years, this ftrong Hold of Zion, an almoft

almoft impregnable Fort was taken by ftorm, and while a breach was made at one end of the City, and the Chaldeans kept pouring in their chariots and their men through a private gate at a diftance, which led to the King's garden, many of the inhabitants, and the Army efcaped by flight; and at the dead of night, Zedekiah himself, with a few of his Nobles, and his Body-Guard, ftole out by fome very private road and reached the plains of Jericho, the Chaldees, ever on the watch, fpied them out, and dispatched a party to feize them, they were foon brought to the Camp, and fent under a guard to Riblah, the headquarters of Nebuchadnezer, and ufhered in to the royal Prefence, the King fummoned a Council, Zedekiah was brought before them, and convicted of treachery and rebellion. Immediately after, they called in all his children, one by one, and executed them in his prefence, they then ftruck out both the eyes of the Father, that no one object whatever might efface the bloody scene, or the fad idea and remembrance of it for ever. Zedekiah blind, and bound in fetters of brafs, was then led away a State Prisoner to Babylon, to grace the triumph of this merciless Tyrant, and pine out a miserable existence in a dungeon.

In the fifth month after, a Chaldee Officer, Nebuzar-adan, arrived from Babylon, and was commiffioned to burn to afhes the royal Palace, VOL. I Eeee


and the houfes of the Nobles, after plundering them of all that could be fent off, and he burnt the whole City, and this fuperb and magnificent Temple, the ornament and glory of the world, after they had firft ftripped and plundered it of all its treasures, cut off from their stands the golden veffels, pulled down the brazen pillars, cut to pieces the brazen fea, and forwarded all the fpoil to Babylon. All Judah were now carried. away into Captivity, a few of the poor only were left, to drefs the vines and cultivate the land.

Gedaliah, a friend of the Prophet Jeremiah, obtained the appointment of Judæa, and the new Governor kept his Court at Mizpah. The Prophet was here fupplied, by him, with all neceffaries, and many of the Jewish Chiefs and Princes, who had fled during the fiege, came alfo to Gedaliah, and he fware to them, and fpoke kindly, fear not ye, dwell peaceably in the land, ferve the King of Babylon, and it shall be well with you. Amongst others, Ifhmael a Prince. of the blood royal, and ten of his refolute companions, were all of a party and on a visit at the Governor's houfe; while they were hofpitably received as guests, and entertained at a feaft he had made for them, they bafely murdered Gedaliah, and all the brave Chaldæans of his Court.



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On this treacherous affaffination, the Jews who had placed themselves under his friendly protection, now fled away to Egypt, and the Prophet Jeremiah was amongst the number.

After this time the land is faid to have lain defolate, the Sabbatic year had been much neglected, but throughout Judæa the land now kept a very long and perpetual Sabbath.



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