2 Chronicles 26 – “Uzziah”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Uzziah defeats his enemies, builds cities, and fortifies the country. He grows haughty, offers incense in the temple, and is struck with leprosy. His son Jotham rules until he dies.

II. Photo
Uzziah arms his men: “Uzziah provided them — the whole army — with shields and spears, and helmets and mail, and bows and slingstones.” (v. 14)

III. Select Verses    
5: He applied himself to the worship of God during the time of Zechariah, instructor in the visions of God; during the time he worshiped the LORD, God made him prosper.

15b: His fame spread far, for he was helped wonderfully, and he became strong.
16-21: When he was strong, he grew so arrogant he acted corruptly: he trespassed against his God by entering the Temple of the LORD to offer incense on the incense altar.  The priest Azariah, with eighty other brave priests of the LORD, followed him in and, confronting King Uzziah, said to him, “It is not for you, Uzziah, to offer incense to the LORD, but for the Aaronite priests, who have been consecrated, to offer incense. Get out of the Sanctuary, for you have trespassed; there will be no glory in it for you from the LORD God.”  Uzziah, holding the censer and ready to burn incense, got angry; but as he got angry with the priests, leprosy broke out on his forehead in front of the priests in the House of the LORD beside the incense altar.  When the chief priest Azariah and all the other priests looked at him, his forehead was leprous, so they rushed him out of there; he too made haste to get out, for the LORD had struck him with a plague.  King Uzziah was a leper until the day of his death. He lived in isolated quarters as a leper, for he was cut off from the House of the LORD — while Jotham his son was in charge of the king’s house and governed the people of the land.

IV. Outline
1. Uzziah becomes king
2. Rebuilding Elath
3. Introductory statement
4-5. Uzziah’s righteousness
6-8. Military victories; building towns
9-10a. Towers in Jerusalem and the wilderness
10b. Cisterns for cattle and farmers
11-13. Uzziah’s army
14. Provisions
15a. Military innovations in Jerusalem
15b. Fame
16-21a. Uzziah’s sin in the temple; Leprosy as punishment
21b. Jotham rules instead of Uzziah
22-23. Summary statement; Death

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
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2 Chronicles 25 – “Amaziah”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Amaziah avenges his father’s death, experiences success in battle, and grows haughty. His army is defeated by the Northern kingdom and he is killed by his subordinates.

II. Photo
Amaziah is in trouble: “A conspiracy was formed against him in Jerusalem, and he fled to Lachish; but they sent men after him to Lachish and they put him to death there.” (v. 27b)

III. Select Verses    
3-4: Once he had the kingdom firmly under control, he executed the courtiers who had assassinated his father the king.  But he did not put their children to death for [he acted] in accordance with what is written in the Teaching, in the Book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, “Parents shall not die for children, nor shall children die for parents, but every person shall die only for his own crime.”
7-9: Then a man of God came to him and said, “O king! Do not let the army of Israel go with you, for the LORD is not with Israel — all these Ephraimites.  But go by yourself and do it; take courage for battle, [else] God will make you fall before the enemy. For in God there is power to help one or make one fall!”  Amaziah said to the man of God, “And what am I to do about the 100 talents I gave for the Israelite force?” The man of God replied, “The LORD has the means to give you much more than that.”
11-12: Amaziah took courage and, leading his army, he marched to the Valley of Salt. He slew 10,000 men of Seir;  another 10,000 the men of Judah captured alive and brought to the top of Sela. They threw them down from the top of Sela and every one of them was burst open
22-23: The men of Judah were routed by Israel, and they all fled to their homes.  King Joash of Israel captured Amaziah son of Joash son of Jehoahaz, king of Judah, in Beth-shemesh. He brought him to Jerusalem and made a breach of 400 cubits in the wall of Jerusalem, from the Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate.
27-28: From the time that Amaziah turned from following the LORD, a conspiracy was formed against him in Jerusalem, and he fled to Lachish; but they sent men after him to Lachish and they put him to death there. They brought his body back on horses and buried him with his fathers in the city of Judah.

IV. Outline
1. Introduction
2. Partial righteousness
3. Avenging his father’s death
4. Note about retribution
5-6. Amaziah rallies his troops
7-10. Amaziah listens to the prophet and disbands the Ephraimites
11-12. Amaziah is succesful in battle
13. The Ephraimites raid Judah
14. Amaziah worships the gods of Seir
15-16. Amaziah ignores God’s prophet
17-21. Amaziah confronts Joash king of Israel
22. Judah is defeated
23-24. Amaziah is captured; Jerusalem is marred and plundered
25-26. Summary statement
27-28. Conspiracy, coup at Lachish, and royal burial

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Photo copied from
http://www.rootsforhope.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/whisper.jpg

2 Chronicles 24 – “Joash and Jehoiada”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Under the influence of Jehoiada, Joash does what is right in the eyes of the Lord. When Jehoiada dies, Joash follows the advice of wicked counselors, is wounded by the Arameans, and is overthrown by his subordinates.

II. Photo
Money is collected for the temple: “The king ordered that a chest be made and placed on the outside of the gate of the House of the Lord.” (v. 8)

III. Select Verses    
2-5a: Afterward, Joash decided to renovate the House of the LORD. He assembled the priests and the Levites and charged them as follows: “Go out to the towns of Judah and collect money from all Israel for the annual repair of the House of your God. Do it quickly.”
8-10: The king ordered that a chest be made and placed on the outside of the gate of the House of the LORD.  A proclamation was issued in Judah and Jerusalem to bring the tax imposed on Israel in the wilderness by Moses, the servant of God.  All the officers and all the people gladly brought it and threw it into the chest till it was full.
14b-16: Burnt offerings were offered up regularly in the House of the LORD all the days of Jehoiada.  Jehoiada reached a ripe old age and died; he was one hundred and thirty years old at his death.  They buried him in the City of David together with the kings, because he had done good in Israel, and on behalf of God and His House.
17-18: But after the death of Jehoiada, the officers of Judah came, bowing low to the king; and the king listened to them.  They forsook the House of the LORD God of their fathers to serve the sacred posts and idols; and there was wrath upon Judah and Jerusalem because of this guilt of theirs.
22: King Joash disregarded the loyalty that his father Jehoiada had shown to him, and killed his son. As he was dying, he said, “May the LORD see and requite it.”
25: When they withdrew, having left him with many wounds, his courtiers plotted against him because of the murder of the sons of Jehoiada the priest, and they killed him in bed. He died and was buried in the City of David; he was not buried in the tombs of the kings.

IV. Outline

1-27. Joash king of Judah
    1-16. With Jehoiada
        1. Introduction
        2. Righteousness
        3. Wives and children
        4-11. Money is collected for the temple
        12-13. The temple work
        14a. Surplus utensils
        14b. Temple service
        15-16. Jehoiada’s death; Royal burial
    17-27. Without Jehoiada
        17-18a. Wicked counsel and actions
        18b. Divine response
        19. Prophetic warnings
        20-21. Zechariah is harassed
        22. Joash kills Jehoiada’s son
        23-24. Arameans raid the temple and wound Joash
        25. The coup against Joash; Burial
        26. The conspirators
        27. Summary statement

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
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2 Chronicles 23 – “Jehoiada and Joash”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Jehoiada organizes the temple workers, Joash is anointed king, Athaliah is put to death, and the people rejoice.

II. Photo
Athaliah is shocked: “Athaliah rent her garments and cried out, ‘Treason, treason!’”

III. Select Verses    
3: and the entire assembly made a covenant with the king in the House of God. He said to them, “The son of the king shall be king according to the promise the LORD made concerning the sons of David.
9-11: Jehoiada the priest gave the chiefs of the hundreds King David’s spears and shields and quivers that were kept in the House of God. He stationed the entire force, each man with his weapons at the ready, from the south end of the House to the north end of the House, at the altar and the House, to guard the king on every side. Then they brought out the king’s son, and placed upon him the crown and the insignia. They proclaimed him king, and Jehoiada and his sons anointed him and shouted, “Long live the king!”
12-13: When Athaliah heard the shouting of the people and the guards and the acclamation of the king, she came out to the people, to the House of the LORD. She looked about and saw the king standing by his pillar at the entrance, the chiefs with their trumpets beside the king, and all the people of the land rejoicing and blowing trumpets, and the singers with musical instruments leading the hymns. Athaliah rent her garments and cried out, “Treason, treason!”
14-15: Then the priest Jehoiada ordered out the army officers, the chiefs of hundreds, and said to them, “Take her out between the ranks, and if anyone follows her, put him to the sword.” For the priest thought, “Let her not be put to death in the House of the LORD.” They cleared a passage for her and she came to the entrance of the Horse Gate to the royal palace; there she was put to death.
16-17: Then Jehoiada solemnized a covenant between himself and the people and the king that they should be the people of the LORD.  All the people then went to the temple of Baal; they tore it down and smashed its altars and images to bits, and they slew Mattan, the priest of Baal, in front of the altars.
20: He took the chiefs of hundreds, the nobles, and the rulers of the people and all the people of the land, and they escorted the king down from the House of the LORD into the royal palace by the upper gate, and seated the king on the royal throne.

IV. Outline
1-7. Jehoiada conspires with the king, Levites, and priests
8-11. The Levites and the priests publicly anoint the king
12-13. Athaliah’s response
14-15. Athaliah is killed
16. Covenant renewal
17. Destroying the temple of Baal
18-19. Jehoiada organizes the temple
20. The king is brought to his palace
21a. Joy in the land
21b. Summary: Athaliah was killed

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
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2 Chronicles 22 – “Ahaziah; Athaliah and Joash”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Ahaziah rules Judah for one year until he is killed. Athaliah replaces him and attempts to wipe out the legitimate heirs to her throne. She is unaware that Joash is saved by Jehoshabeath.

II. Photo
Jehoshabeath saves Joash: “[She] kept him hidden from Athaliah so that he was not put to death.” (v. 11b)

III. Select Verses    
7-9: The LORD caused the downfall of Ahaziah because he visited Joram. During his visit he went out with Jehoram to Jehu son of Nimshi, whom the LORD had anointed to cut off the house of Ahab. In the course of bringing the house of Ahab to judgment, Jehu came upon the officers of Judah and the nephews of Ahaziah, ministers of Ahaziah, and killed them. He sent in search of Ahaziah, who was caught hiding in Samaria, was brought to Jehu, and put to death. He was given a burial, because it was said, “He is the son of Jehoshaphat who worshiped the LORD wholeheartedly.” So the house of Ahaziah could not muster the strength to rule.
10: When Athaliah, Ahaziah’s mother, learned that her son was dead, she promptly did away with all who were of the royal stock of the house of Judah.
11-12: But Jehoshabeath, daughter of the king, spirited away Ahaziah’s son Joash from among the princes who were being slain, and put him and his nurse in a bedroom. Jehoshabeath, daughter of King Jehoram, wife of the priest Jehoiada — she was the sister of Ahaziah — kept him hidden from Athaliah so that he was not put to death.  He stayed with them for six years, hidden in the House of God, while Athaliah reigned over the land.

IV. Outline

1-9. Ahaziah, king of Judah
    1a. Coronation
    1b. Rationale
    2. Reign
    2-6. Conviction: following in Ahab’s ways, helping Jehoram
    7-9a. Ahaziah’s punishment
    9b. Burial
    9c. Summary statement
10-12. Athaliah, ruler of Judah
    10. Athaliah attempts to kill the royal heirs
    11-12. Jehoshabeath saves Joash and protects him for six years

V. Comment
In v. 10, Athaliah, the new ruler of Judah, attempts to wipe out the Davidic heirs to her throne. It has been suggested that Athaliah, who was the daughter of a king of Israel and not from the Davidic line (see 2 Kgs 8:18 = 2 Chr 21:6), was employing a tactic of legitimation common to the usurpers of the North. For three examples of this practice, see:

  • 1 Kings 15:29 – As soon as he became king, he struck down all the House of Jeroboam; he did not spare a single soul belonging to Jeroboam until he destroyed it — in accordance with the word that the LORD had spoken through His servant, the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite.
  • 1 Kings 16:11 –  No sooner had he become king and ascended the throne than he struck down all the House of Baasha; he did not leave a single male of his, nor any kinsman or friend.
  • 2 Kings 10:17 – Arriving in Samaria, [Jehu] struck down all the survivors of [the House of] Ahab in Samaria, until he wiped it out, fulfilling the word that the LORD had spoken to Elijah.

VI. Works Used
Thiel, W. “Athaliah (Person),” ABD 1:511-512.
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2 Chronicles 21 – “Jehoram’s Unfavorable Reign”

DualBladeSwordHebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Jehoshaphat dies and is replaced by his eldest son Jehoram. Elijah scolds the new king for killing his own siblings and for worshipping idolatry. Jehoram’s enemies conquer Jerusalem and God punishes him with a fatal bowel disease.

II. Photo
Jehoram rules violently: “Jehoram proceeded to take firm hold of his father’s kingdom and put to the sword all his brothers, as well as some of the officers of Israel.” (v. 4)

III. Important Verses
v. 4: Jehoram proceeded to take firm hold of his father’s kingdom and put to the sword all his brothers, as well as some of the officers of Israel.
vv. 6-7: He followed the practices of the kings of Israel doing what the House of Ahab had done, for he married a daughter of Ahab; he did what was displeasing to the LORD. However, the LORD refrained from destroying the House of David for the sake of the covenant he had made with David, and in accordance with his promise to maintain a lamp for him and his descendants for all time.
v. 8: During his reign, the Edomites rebelled against Judah’s rule and set up a king of their own.
v. 11: Moreover, [Jehoram] built shrines in the hill country of Judah; he led astray the inhabitants of Jerusalem and made Judah wayward.
vv. 16-17: The LORD stirred up the spirit of the Philistines and the Arabs who were neighbors of the Cushites against Jehoram. They marched against Judah, breached its defenses, and carried off all the property that was found in the king’s palace, as well as his sons and his wives. The only son who remained was Jehoahaz, his youngest.
vv. 18-19: After this, the LORD afflicted him with an incurable disease of the bowels. Some years later, when a period of two years had elapsed, his bowels dropped out because of his disease, and he died a gruesome death. His people did not make a fire for him like the fire for his fathers.

IV. Outline
1. Jehoshaphat dies; Jehoram becomes king
2-3. Jehoshaphat’s other children are given wealth and cities to govern
4-6. Jehoram kills his kin, marries a daughter of Ahab, and angers God
7. God chooses not to destroy Jehoram’s kingdom
8-10. The Edomites rebel
11. Jehoram practices idolatry
12-15. Elijah’s rebuke and prophecy
16-17. Philistines and Arabs loot Jerusalem
18-19a. God afflicts Jehoram with a bowel disease and he dies
19b-20. Regnal resume; Disgraceful death

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
De Vries, Simon J. “1 and 2 Chronicles,” The Forms of Old Testament Literature vol. 11 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1989).
Photo taken from http://starwarsrpg.pettycomp.net/Images/DualBladeSword.jpg

2 Chronicles 20 – “God Protects Judea”

child-holding-handHebrew-English Text
I. Summary
When the Moabites, Ammonites, and Ammonim prepare to attack Judea, the people pray at the temple and fast. God has the enemy attack itself, and Jehoshaphat’s army enjoys the spoils of war. Although Jehoshaphat’s reign is virtuous, he is scolded for helping king Ahaziah build ships.

II. Photo
Every person came to the temple: “All Judah stood before the LORD with their little ones, their womenfolk, and their children.” (v. 13)

III. Important Verses
vv. 3-4: Jehoshaphat was afraid; he decided to resort to the LORD and proclaimed a fast for all Judah. Judah assembled to beseech the LORD. They also came from all the towns of Judah to seek the LORD.
v. 13: All Judah stood before the LORD with their little ones, their womenfolk, and their children.
vv. 18-19: Jehoshaphat bowed low with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem threw themselves down before the LORD to worship the LORD. Levites of the sons of Kohath and of the sons of Korah got up to extol the LORD God of Israel at the top of their voices.
vv. 20-24: Early the next morning they arose and went forth to the wilderness of Tekoa. As they went forth, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, O Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem: Trust firmly in the LORD your God and you will stand firm; trust firmly in His prophets and you will succeed.” After taking counsel with the people, he stationed singers to the LORD extolling the One majestic in holiness as they went forth ahead of the vanguard, saying, “Praise the LORD, for His steadfast love is eternal.” As they began their joyous shouts and hymns, the LORD set ambushes for the men of Amon, Moab, and the hill country of Seir, who were marching against Judah, and they were routed. The Ammonites and Moabites turned against the men of the hill country of Seir to exterminate and annihilate them. When they had made an end of the men of Seir, each helped to destroy his fellow. When Judah reached the lookout in the wilderness and looked for the multitude, they saw them lying on the ground as corpses; not one had survived.
v. 37: Eliezer son of Dodavahu of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, “As you have made a partnership with Ahaziah, the LORD will break up your work.” The ships were wrecked and were unable to go to Tarshish.

IV. Outline
1-2. Moabites, Ammonites, and Ammonim prepare to attack
3-4. The people of Judah fast
5-12. Jehoshaphat’s prayer
13. Description of families
14-17. Jahaziel’s prophetic speech
18-19. The congregation responds
20-21. The Israelites prepare for God’s intervention
22-23. The enemy self destructs
24-25. Jehoshaphat’s men take the booty
26. The soldiers bless God
27-28. The army’s joyous return
29-30. Jehoshaphat’s prosperity
31-34. Jehoshaphat’s regnal resume
35-36. Jehoshaphat befriends king Ahaziah
37a. Eliezer’s admonition
37b. God punishes Jehoshaphat

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
De Vries, Simon J. “1 and 2 Chronicles,” The Forms of Old Testament Literature vol. 11 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1989).
Photo taken from http://www.turnbacktogod.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/child-holding-hand.jpg

2 Chronicles 19 – “Jehu’s Admonishment; Jehoshphat Appoints Judges”

gavel 3Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Jehu admonishes Jehoshaphat for helping king Ahab. Jehoshaphat appoints judges in every town and exhorts them to judge righteously.

II. Photo
Jehoshaphat appoints judges: “He appointed judges in the land in all the fortified towns of Judah, in each and every town.” (v. 5)

III. Important Verses
vv. 2-3: Jehu son of Hanani the seer went out to meet King Jehoshaphat and said to him, “Should one give aid to the wicked and befriend those who hate the LORD? For this, wrath is upon you from the LORD. However, there is some good in you, for you have purged the land of the sacred posts and have dedicated yourself to worship God.”
vv. 6-7: He charged the judges: “Consider what you are doing, for you judge not on behalf of man, but on behalf of the LORD, and He is with you when you pass judgment. Now let the dread of the LORD be upon you; act with care, for there is no injustice or favoritism or bribe-taking with the LORD our God.”
vv. 9-10: He charged them, “This is how you shall act: in fear of the LORD, with fidelity, and with whole heart. When a dispute comes before you from your brothers living in their towns, whether about homicide, or about ritual, or laws or rules, you must instruct them so that they do not incur guilt before the LORD and wrath be upon you and your brothers. Act so and you will not incur guilt.
v. 11: See, Amariah the chief priest is over you in all cases concerning the LORD, and Zebadiah son of Ishmael is the commander of the house of Judah in all cases concerning the king; the Levitical officials are at your disposal; act with resolve and the LORD be with the good.

IV. Outline
1. Jehoshaphat returns to Jerusalem
2-3. Jehu admonishes Jehoshaphat for helping Ahab
4. Jehoshaphat brings people close to God
5. Appointment of judges
6-7. Jehoshaphat’s exhortation to the judges
8. Appointment of more judges
9-10. Exhortation
11. Judicial hierarchy

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
De Vries, Simon J. “1 and 2 Chronicles,” The Forms of Old Testament Literature vol. 11 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1989).
Photo taken from http://www.dwaynehicks.com/images/gavel%203.jpg

2 Chronicles 18 – “War with the Arameans”

arrows-highres-webHebrew-English Text
I. Summary
King Jehoshaphat becomes allies with king Ahab. While Ahab’s prophets favor war with the Arameans, Micaiah the prophet discourages it. The two kings ignore Micaiah’s warning, and Ahab is killed in battle.

II. Photo
Ahab is killed in battle: “Then a man drew his bow at random and hit the king of Israel between the plates of the armor…” (v. 33)

III. Important Verses
v. 1: So Jehoshaphat had wealth and honor in abundance, and he allied himself by marriage to Ahab.
vv. 3-4: King Ahab of Israel said to King Jehoshaphat of Judah, “Will you accompany me to Ramoth-gilead?” He answered him, “I will do what you do; my troops shall be your troops and shall accompany you in battle.” Jehoshaphat then said to the king of Israel, “But first inquire of the LORD.”
vv. 14-16: When he came before the king, the king said to him, “Micah, shall we march against Ramoth-gilead for battle or shall we not?” He answered him, “March and be victorious! They will be delivered into your hands.” The king said to him, “How many times must I adjure you to tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the LORD?” Then he said, “I saw all Israel scattered over the hills like sheep without a shepherd; and the LORD said, ‘These have no master; let everyone return to his home in safety.’”
vv. 33-34: Then a man drew his bow at random and hit the king of Israel between the plates of the armor and he said to his charioteer, “Turn around and get me behind the lines; I am wounded.” The battle raged all day long, and the king remained propped up in the chariot facing Aram until dusk; he died as the sun was setting.

IV. Outline
1. Jehoshaphat and Ahab are allied by marriage
2-4. Jehoshaphat agrees to help Ahab, but only if God agrees
5. Four hundred prophets support the war
6-22. Micaiah prophesies against the war
23-27. Micaiah is beaten and imprisoned
28-32. Jehoshaphat is saved in battle
33-34. Ahab is killed in battle

V. Comment
Chapter 18 recounts how Jehoshaphat and Ahab go to war with the Arameans in spite of Micaiah’s ominous prediction. Keeping in line with the Chronicler’s “theology of divine retribution,” the righteous Jehoshaphat is saved but the wicked Ahab is killed. While the book of Chronicles contains a longer narrative about Jehoshaphat than the book of Kings, Dillard points out that the Chronicler was basing himself upon the book of Kings. Dillard writes: “Though the Chronicler has devoted much more space to this king than did the [the book of Kings], one should not overstate the contrast. Most of the account in Kings is cited nearly verbatim by the Chronicler (1 Kgs 22:1–35// 2 Chr 18:2–34; 1 Kgs 22:41–46, 49// 2 Chr 20:31–36). Of those portions unique to Chronicles, many contain elaborations on themes alluded to in the Kings account, suggesting a greater influence for the author’s Kings Vorlage than might be apparent simply from noting verbatim parallels. The following issues mentioned in Kings may have precipitated the Chronicler’s elaboration: the issue of the high places (1 Kgs 22:43; cf. 2 Chr 17:3–6), the comparison with Asa (1 Kgs 22:43; 2 Chr 17:3; 20:32), peace with Israel (1 Kgs 22:44; cf. 2 Chr 17:1; 18:1), his military exploits (1 Kgs 22:45), particularly with reference to Edom (1 Kgs 22:47; 2 Chr 20).” (130)

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Dillard, Raymond B. “2 Chronicles” (Waco Texas: Word Books, 1988).
Photo taken from http://www.dimitri-varias.com/images/various/arrows-highres-web.jpg

2 Chronicles 17 – “Jehoshophat’s Righteous Rule”

hebrew_bibleHebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Jehoshophat becomes king, uproots idolatry from the land, and sends messengers to teach the word of God to the people. He also develops a large army, fortifies Judah, and receives tribute from his neighbors.

II. Photo
Jehoshophat sends messengers to teach the people: “They offered instruction throughout Judah, having with them the Book of the Teaching of the LORD. They made the rounds of all the cities of the LORD and instructed the people.”

III. Important Verses
vv. 3-4: The LORD was with Jehoshaphat because he followed the earlier ways of his father David, and did not worship the Baalim, but worshiped the God of his father and followed His commandments — unlike the behavior of Israel.
v. 6: His mind was elevated in the ways of the LORD. Moreover, he abolished the shrines and the sacred posts from Judah.
vv. 7-9: In the third year of his reign he sent his officers… They offered instruction throughout Judah, having with them the Book of the Teaching of the LORD. They made the rounds of all the cities of the LORD and instructed the people.
v. 10: A terror of the LORD seized all the kingdoms of the lands around Judah, and they did not go to war with Jehoshaphat.

IV. Outline
1. Jehoshaphat is anointed
2. Fortifying Judah
3-5. Jehoshophat is favored by God
6-9. Religious reform: uprooting idolatry and teaching the law
10-11. Foreigners pay tribute
12-13a. Fortifying Judah
13b-19. Military roster

V. Comment
Chapter 17 describes Jehoshophat’s religious reforms and successes as a ruler. It has been shown in the previous chapter that the book of Chronicles evinces a “theology of immediate retribution,” i.e. the belief that one is immediately rewarded or punished for ones deeds. This chapter is a prime example of this type of theology. After describing Jehoshophat’s righteous reign, the Chronicler writes: “A terror of the LORD seized all the kingdoms of the lands around Judah, and they did not go to war with Jehoshaphat. From Philistia a load of silver was brought to Jehoshaphat as tribute. The Arabs, too, brought him flocks: 7,700 rams and 7,700 he-goats. Jehoshaphat grew greater and greater…” (vv. 10-12)

The descriptions of Asa and Jehoshophat are given much more detail in the book of Chronicles than in the book of Kings. Besides for this point, Dillard notes that the description of Jehoshophat mirrors that of Asa in 6 other ways. He writes (129-130):

  1. Both accounts concern pious kings whose reigns could be outlined as follows: (a) reform, building programs, and large armies (14:2–8; 17:1–19); (b) battle report (14:9–15; 18:1–19:3); (c) reform (15:1–19; 19:4–11); (d) battle report (16:1–9; 20:1–30); (e) transgression and death (16:10–14; 20:31–21:1).
  2. The reform accounts in both reigns are thought by many scholars to be duplicates of the same event: Asa’s suppression of heterodox worship (14:2–6) may have been one aspect of the reforms endorsed by Azariah the prophet (15:1–19…); Jehoshaphat’s teaching mission (17:7–9) may have been the reflex of a larger judicial reform (19:4–11).
  3. Both kings are said to have suppressed the high places (14:2–5; 17:6) and not to have done so (15:17; 20:33)…
  4. Both enjoy the rewards of their piety in building programs (14:7; 17:2, 12), peace (14:1; 17:10), large armies (14:8; 17:12–19). God was with both (15:9; 17:3), and the fear of [the Lord] was on the nations (14:14; 17:10; 20:29) during their reigns.
  5. Prophets indict both for their entangling foreign alliances (16:7–9; 19:1–3; cf. 20:35–37). Two prophets minister during the reigns of each: Azariah and Hanani for Asa; Jehu and Eliezer for Jehoshaphat. Like Asa and Jehoshaphat the relationship between two of the prophets is father-son; Hanani (16:7) was the father of Jehu (19:2; 20:34).
  6. The Chronicler may be using a paronomasia on the name of both kings. A. Shinan and Y. Zakowitch (“Midrash on Scripture and Midrash within Scripture,” Scripta Hieroslymitana 31 [1986] 272) suggest that the Chronicler is using a word play on Asa’s name. [’asa’] n Aramaic is a term for physician (16:11–14). Jehoshaphat, whose name means “[the Lord] judges,” is the one who appoints judges for Judah (19:4–11).

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Dillard, Raymond B. “2 Chronicles” (Waco Texas: Word Books, 1988).
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