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from the house of Obed-Edom, (near Kirjath-Jearim,) and deposited here with the most impressive ceremonies, and the city then became the religious centre and political capital of the country.

Previous to this the seat of government had been wherever the judges or rulers had their residence; their place of residence and the ark constituting the capital and religious centre for the time being. These transient capitals were successively Gilgal, Shiloh, Shechem, Nob, and Gibeon. (Joshua, iv. 18, 19).

David was succeeded by his son Solomon 1016 B. C., whose great works were the Temple with its east wall and cloister, the house of the forest of Lebanon, the walls of Jerusalem, with large towers thereon, the great cisterns or sea under the temple area, the throne, a palace for his Egyptian wife, 40,000 stalls for his horses, the garden, Baalath, Beth-horon, Gezer, Hazor, Megiddo, and Tadmor. The crowning glory of his reign and adornment of the holy city was the Temple or House of Jehovah. The magnificence and marvelous beauty of this edifice did not arise so much from its size as from the whiteness of its walls, the style and finish of its many columns and pillars, and lavish use within and without of the gold of Ophir and Parvaim. (See page 499) Through the whole time that this Temple was in building the tranquillity of the city was not broken by the sound of the workman's ax or hammer, and the only dark shade to the picture is the fact of the practical reduction to bondage of the strangers in the land, the remnant of the Canaanite races; one hundred and fifty-three thousand of whom were sent off to the forests of Lebanon and the quarries. Even

the Israelites were compelled to take place by rota tion at the same labor.

The addition of the splendid Temple, Palaces Walls, and Towers, together with other great improvements made in the City by King Solomon, rendered it at the close of his reign the most beautiful capital of the age. Its population at this time was about 150,000.

Rehoboam, son and successor of King Solomon, ascended the throne 976 B.C., and reigned 17 years. Under his reign the ten tribes revolted and formed the Kingdom of Israel, under Jeroboam, with their capital at Shechem, Jerusalem remaining the capital of the Kingdom of Judah.

Rehoboam was succeeded by his son Abijam, who reigned 3 years, and was succeeded by Asa his son, who ascended the throne 951 B.C., and reigned 41 years. In the eleventh year of his reign God gave him the victory over the vast army of the Cushite King Zerah.

Asa was succeeded by his son Jehoshaphat 914 B.C. His reign was distinguished by the cleansing of the land from idolatry, the restoration of the divine ordinances, and provision for the religious instruction of the people. The great error of his life was an entangling alliance with Ahab, whose infamous daughter Athalia early began to afflict the kingdom of Judah, of which she was afterwards queen. Jehoshaphat united with Ahaziah in a commercial enterprise, which proving to be a failure, he declined a second trial: he, however, united with Joram in a war with Moab, in which he was assailed by a vast army of

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Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, and Syrians, but through his faith in God he was victorious. After a highly prosperous reign of 25 years, he died at the age of 60.

Joram succeeded his father, after reigning with him four years, then reigned four years alone; in all 8 years. Unfortunately he was married to Athalia, daughter of Ahab and Jezebel, whose evil influence did much to render his reign a curse to the kingdom. He slew his brothers, five in number, and seized their possessions. He also introduced Phoenician idols and idolatry into Judea, by which he incurred the divine displeasure, which was shown by leaving him unaided under a revolt of the Edomites, which was successful. His kingdom was invaded by the Philistines and Arabians, who ravaged the country, the city, and even his own house. His reign ended 885 B.C., when he was succeeded by Ahaziah his son, who reigned but a short time-meeting his death at the hand of Jehu while in company with Joram, son of Ahab. After the premature death of Ahaziah, his mother Athalia ascended the throne and sought to secure herself on it by the murder of all the seed royal. Joash, her grandson, then an infant one year old, was the only one who escaped-being concealed by his Aunt Jehosheba. Six years afterwards the faithful and fearless high-priest Jehoiada caused the blood-stained Athalia to be put to death, and crowned Joash king. The reign of Joash began 877 B.C. Through the faithful care of Jehoiada, Joash served God and prospered; but after the death of his venerable friend and adviser he followed less wholesome counsels, idolatry revived.

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