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The History of Israel

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Era of Theocracy - God Rules!

Theocracy means "God Rules." In the beginning of its existance, there was no king over Israel, only laws and priests. This system did not end well.

Era of the Kings - King Rules!

After 300 years of failed attempts at theocracy, the 12 tribes of Israel adopted the Canaanite system and were united under one king. The first three kings--Saul, David, and Solomon-- ruled over this united kingdom and brought the nation to a place of great power. Then civil war broke out and divided the nation into two kingdoms: 10 tribes gathered under the kingdom of Israel to the north, and the remaining two tribes gathered under the kingdom of Judah in the south.

Era of Restoration - Book Rules!

The era of kings ended in devastation. Israel was obliterated by the Assyrian Empire, never to return. Judah was carried away into captivity for 70 years by the Babylonians. When the Persian empire conquered the Babylonians, it allowed some of the Israelites to return to Jerusalem and restore the temple. This restoration happened under the leadership of Nehemiah, Zerubbabel, and Ezra.

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