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[209] NOW when Solomon was dead, and his son Rehoboam (who was born of an Amntonite wife; whose name was Naamah) had succeeded him in the kingdom, the rulers of the multitude sent immediately into Egypt, and called back Jeroboam; and when he was come to them, to the city Shethem, Rehoboam came to it also, for he had resolved to declare himself king to the Israelites while they were there gathered together. So the rulers of the people, as well as Jeroboam, came to him, and besought him, and said that he ought to relax, and to be gentler than his father, in the servitude he had imposed on them, because they had borne a heavy yoke, and that then they should be better affected to him, and be well contented to serve him under his moderate government, and should do it more out of love than fear. But Rehoboam told them they should come to him again in three days' time, when he would give an answer to their request. This delay gave occasion to a present suspicion, since he had not given them a favorable answer to their mind immediately; for they thought that he should have given them a humane answer off-hand, especially since he was but young. However, they thought that this consultation about it, and that he did not presently give them a denial, afforded them some good hope of success.

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