The Division between Judah and Israel

Text: 1 Kings 12:21-33

Reflection and Question: The seriousness of this split between the tribe of Judah, who worshiped in Jerusalem, and the people of Israel, who worshiped in Bethel and Dan, reaches back to Exodus where the people sinned by worshiping the Golden Calf. Jeroboam, king of Israel, has two calves made of gold and authorizes festivals where sacrifices were made to them in Bethel and Dan. By Jesus’ time, the region ruled by Jeroboam was known as Samaria and the division from Judah was so great that, even though they all worshipped the same God, they each considered the other to be an abomination. Where do we see this same kind of severe division between people of faith today?

Prayer: Eternal God, You watched as the kingdom of David and Solomon split into two, Judah worshiping You on Mt. Zion and Israel worshiping You on Mt. Gerizim. Heal these kinds of divisions among us by giving us Your perspective. Amen.

This meditation is based on the Daily Lectionary Year 1 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).