Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Kings 12:15

So the king did not listen to the people; for it was a turn of events from the Lord , that He might establish His word, which the Lord spoke through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Counsel;   Government;   Jeroboam;   Petition;   Predestination;   Rashness;   Rehoboam;   Revolt;   Shilonite;   Young Men;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Kings;   Prophets;   Tribute;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Rehoboam;   Shechem;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Ahijah;   Jeroboam;   Jerusalem;   Rehoboam;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Kings, First and Second, Theology of;   Wages;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Israel, Kingdom of;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Kings, the Books of;   Shiloh (2);   Holman Bible Dictionary - Ahiah;   Kings, 1 and 2;   Nebat;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Ahijah;   Israel;   Rehoboam,;   Solomon;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Rehoboam ;   Shilonite ;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Ne'bat;   Shi'lonite, the,;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Government of the Hebrews;   Jeroboam;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Revolt;   Kingdom of Israel;   Kingdom of Judah;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Ahijah;   Calf, Golden;   Cause;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Kings, Books of;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

The cause was from the Lord - God left him to himself, and did not incline his heart to follow the counsel of the wise men. This is making the best of our present version; but if we come to inquire into the meaning of the Cause of all this confusion and anarchy, we shall find it was Rehoboam's folly, cruelty, and despotic tyranny: and was this from the Lord? But does the text speak this bad doctrine? No: it says סבה sibbah, the Revolution, was from the Lord. This is consistent with all the declarations which went before. God stirred up the people to revolt from a man who had neither skill nor humanity to govern them. We had such a סבה revolution in these nations in 1688; and, thank God, we have never since needed another. None of our ancient translations understood the word as our present version does: they have it either the Turning Away was from the Lord, or it was the Lord's Ordinance; viz., that they should turn away from this foolish king.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/1-kings-12.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The cause was from the Lord - i. e., “the turn of events was from the Lord.” Human passions, anger, pride, and insolence, worked out the accomplishment of the divine designs. Without interfering with man‘s free will, God guides the course of events, and accomplishes His purposes.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-kings-12.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people,.... To lessen their taxes, and ease them of their burdens, as they desired:

for the cause was from the Lord; it was according to his will and appointment; the defection of the people was willed by the Lord, and various things in Providence turned up to alienate their minds from Rehoboam, and dispose them to a revolt from him in favour of Jeroboam; and the Lord suffered the counsellors of Rehoboam to give him the advice they did, and gave him up to the folly of his own heart to take it:

that he might perform his saying, which the Lord spake to Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat; see 1 Kings 11:29.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-kings-12.html. 1999.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

From the Lord — Who gave up Rehoboam to so foolish and fatal a mistake, and alienated the peoples affections from him; and ordered all circumstances by his wise providence to that end.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/1-kings-12.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Kings 12:15 Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

Ver. 15. For the cause.] Heb., Circuit or turning about; for here was a "wheel within a wheel," as Ezekiel 1:16.

Was from the Lord.] Who useth to order the disorders of the world to his own purposes: as having an overruling providence, and a powerful hand in all occurrents.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-kings-12.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

The cause was from the Lord; who gave up Rehoboam to so foolish and fatal a mistake, and alienated the people’s affections from him, and ordered all circumstances by his wise providence to that end.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-kings-12.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

15.The cause was from the Lord — Better, for it was a change from Jehovah. סבה — Septuagint, μεταστροφη a change or turn in the course of events. The meaning is, this great change or revolution in the Hebrew state was brought about in the providence of God as a judgment on the nation for the sins of Solomon. He decreed it, and foretold it by the prophet Ahijah. 1 Kings 11:30-33. But neither Solomon’s sins nor Rehoboam’s blind folly and rash imprudence were from the Lord. For them their human authors were solely responsible. But He, whose omniscience takes in all future events as foreseen certainties, (not as decreed necessities,) may well, in respect to events affected by human agency, determine and decree his own future judgments or mercies according to what he foresees men will freely do. So, too, in infinite holiness his determinate counsel and foreknowledge even delivers up Jesus of Nazareth to death, but this decree influences not causatively the action of those wicked hands that crucify and slay him. See Acts 2:23, and note there.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-kings-12.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Turned. Hebrew, "for the cause (revolution) was from the Lord, (Calmet) that he might verify his word." (Haydock) --- God permitted the king to act impudently, and disposed things in such a manner, that the prediction took effect. (Calmet) --- Indeed, the prophet had only spoken, because things would happen. (Haydock) --- "There are two sorts of persecutors, those who blame, and those who flatter: the tongue of the flatterers persecutes more than the hand of him who kills." (St. Augustine in Psalm lxix.) (Du Hamel) --- Roboam fell a prey to his evil counsellors. (Haydock) --- That, (ver. 16.) denotes the sequel, not the final cause, as chap. xiv. 9. (Worthington)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/1-kings-12.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

the cause = the turning (of events), or overruling.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-kings-12.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

The cause was from the Lord. That was the overruling cause. Rehoboam's weakness (Ecclesiastes 2:18-19) and inexperience in public affairs has given rise to the probable conjecture, that like many other princes in the East, he had been kept secluded in the harem until the period of his accession (Ecclesiastes 4:14), his father being either afraid of his aspiring to the sovereignty, like the two sons David or, which is more probable, afraid of prematurely exposing his imbecility. The king's haughty and violent answer to "the people" (1 Kings 12:13) -

i.e, the representatives of the people-a people already filled with a spirit of discontent and exasperation-indicated so great an incapacity to appreciate the gravity of the crisis, so utter a want of common-sense, as to create a belief that he was struck with judicial blindness. It was received with mingled scorn and derision. The prospective connection between the tribes of Israel and their youthful monarch ended before it had well been formed. The revolt was accomplished, and yet so quietly, that Rehoboam remained in Shechem, fancying himself the sovereign of a united kingdom, until his chief taxgatherer, who had been most imprudently sent to treat with the people, had been stoned to death. This opened has eyes, and he fled for security to Jerusalem. In such a fearful commotion of the political elements, it required a mind of no common prudence and energy to steer the helm on the agitated billows, and Rehoboam was not the pilot to weather the storm.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-kings-12.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(15) For the cause was from the Lord.—The very idea of the Scriptural history, referring all things to God, necessarily brings us continually face to face with the great mystery of life—the reconcilement of God’s all-foreseeing and all-ordaining Providence with the freedom, and, in consequence, with the folly and sin of man. As a rule, Holy Scripture—on this point confirming natural reason—simply recognises both powers as real, without any attempt, even by suggestion, to harmonise them together. It, of course, refers all to God’s will, fulfilling or avenging itself in many ways, inspiring and guiding the good, and overruling the evil, in man. But it as invariably implies human freedom and responsibility. Rehoboam’s folly and arrogance worked out the ordained judgment of God; but they were folly and arrogance still.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-kings-12.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
the cause
The cause of all this confusion and anarchy was Rehoboam's folly, cruelty, and despotic tyranny, and this was certainly not "from the Lord," nor does the original text speak this doctrine. See an elucidation of a similar passage at 2 Sa 24:1. It says, sibbah, (from savav, to turn, change,) "the change or Revolution was from the Lord;" which is consistent with all the preceding declarations. God stirred up the people to revolt from a man who had neither skill nor humanity to govern them. God serves his own wise and righteous purpose by the imprudences and iniquities of men, and snares sinners in the work of their own hands. "He maketh the wrath of man to praise him."
24; 22:23; Deuteronomy 2:30; Judges 14:4; 2 Chronicles 10:15; 22:7; 25:16,20; Psalms 5:10; Amos 3:6; Acts 2:23; 4:28
that he might
11:11,29-38; 1 Samuel 15:29; 2 Samuel 17:14; 2 Kings 9:36; 10:10; Isaiah 14:13-17; Isaiah 46:10,11; Daniel 4:35; John 19:23,24,28,29,32-37; Acts 3:17; Acts 13:27-29
Reciprocal: Joshua 11:20 - it was;  Judges 9:23 - God;  1 Kings 11:14 - the Lord;  1 Kings 11:35 - will give;  Job 1:21 - taken away;  Hosea 13:11 - General

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Kings 12:15". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-kings-12.html.