« PreviousContinue »
of the Lord, and walked in the ways of David it, to buy hewn stone, and timber for couplings, and his father, and declined neithepl to the right hand to "floor the houses which the kings of Judah had nor to the left.
destroyed. 3 For in the eighth year of his reign, while he 12 And the men did the work "faithfully: and the was yet young, he began to seek after the God overseers of them were Jahath and Obadiah, the of David' his father: and in the twelfth year he Levites, of the sons of Merari; and Zechariah and began to dpurge Judah and Jerusalem from the Meshullai, of the sons of the Kohathites, to set it high places, and the groves, and the carved forward: and other of the Levites, all that could images, and the molten images.
skill of instruments of music. 4 And they brake down the altars of Baalim, 13 Also they were over the bearers 'of burdens, in his presence: and the *images that were on high and were overseers of all that wrought the work in above them he cut down ; and the groves, and the any manner of service; and "of the Levites, there carved images and the molten images, he brake in were scribes, and officers, and porters. pieces, and made dust of them, and strowed it 14 And when they brought out the money that upon the graves of them that had sacrificed unto was brought into the house of the Lord, Hilkiah them.
the priest found a book" of the law of the LORD 5 And he burnt "the bones of the priests upon given "by Moses. their altars, and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. 15 And Hilkiah answered and said to Shaphan
6 And so did he in the cities of Manasseh, and the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the Ephraim, and Simeon, even unto Naphtali, with house of the LORD. And Hilkiah delivered the their imattocks round about.
book to Shaphan. 7 And when he had broken down the altars and 16 And Shaphan carried the book to the king, the groves, and had beaten the graven images Sinto and brought the king word back again, saying, All powder, and cut down all the idols throughout all that was committed to **thy servants, they do it. the land of Israel, he returned to Jerusalem.
17 And they have gathered together the money 8 Now in the eighteenth year of his reign, when that was found in the house of the Lord, and have he had purged the land, and the house, he sent delivered it into the hand of the overseers, and to Shaphan the son of Azaljah, and Maasejah the the hand of the workmen. governor of the city, and Joah the son of Joabaz 18 Then Shaphan the scribe told the king, say, the recorder, to repair the house of the Lord his ing, Hilkiah the priest hath given me a book. And God.
Shaphan read it before the king: 9 And when they came to Hilkiah the high priest, 19 And it came to pass, when the king had they delivered ithe money that was brought into heard Pthe words of the law, that he rent his clothes. the house of God, which the Levites that kept the 20 And the king commanded Hilkiah, and Ahidoors had gathered of the hand of Manasseh and kam the son of Shaphan, and Abdonss the son of Ephraim, and of all the remnant of Israel, and of Micah, and Shaphan the scribe, and Asaiah a serall Judah and Benjamin; and they returned to vant of the king's, saying, Jerusalem.
21 Go, inquire cof the Lord for me, and for them 10 And they put it in the hand of the workmen that are left in Israel and in Judah, concerning the that had the oversight of the house of the LORD, words of the book that is found : fór great sis the and they gave it to the workmen that wrought in wrath of the LORD that is poured out upon us, bethe house of the LORD, to repair and amend the cause our fathers have not kept the word of the house;
LORD, to do after all that is written in this book. 11 Éven to the artificers and builders gave they 22 And Hilkiah, and they that the king had
Deut. 5 32. 17. 11, 20. 28. 14. Josh. 1. 7. c Prov. 9. 17. Ec. 12. 1. d Lev. 26. 30. ec. 33. 17, 22. or, sun images, e. 14. 5. S 2 Kings 23. 4. t face of the graves. $ 1 Kings 13. 2 * or, nauls.
to make powder.
k Deut. 9. 21. i 2 King12. 4.
1 or, rafter. k c. 31. 12. Neh. 7. 2. 1 Cor. 4.2. I c. 2. 18. Neb. 4. 10.
m 1 Chr. 23. 1,5. * Deut. 17. 18, 19. Josh. 1. 8. I by the hand of o Ser. 36. 20, 21. ** !o the hand of. 17 poured out, or, melted. 11 in it. p Rom, 7.7, 9. $$ or, Achbor, 2 Kwigs 22. 12. q Jer. 21.2. Ez. 14. 1. c. 20.1, rls. 37. 4. • Lev. 26. 14, &c. Deut. 29. 15, &c. 29. 18-28. 30. 17–19. 31. 16-22. 32. 15—25. Rom. 1. 18. 2 8-12.
2. That he reigned well, (v. 2,) approved himself to God, It is observed that the workmen were industrious and honest, trod in the steps of David, and did not decline either to the right they did the work faithfully, (v. 12:) and workmen are not hand or to the left; for there are errors on both hands.
completely faithful if they are not both careful and diligent, for 3. That while he was young, about sixteen years old, he began a confidence is reposed in them that they will be so. It is also to seek after God, v. 3. We have reason to think that he had not intimaled that the overseers were ingenious; for it is said that so good an education as Manasseh had ; it is well if those about all those who were employed to inspect this work, who could bim did not endeavour to corrupt and debauch him; yet he thus skill of instruments of music; not that their skill in music could sought God when he was young. It is the duty and interest of be of any use in architecture, but it was an evidence that they young people, and will particularly be the honour of young gen were men of sense and ingenuity, and particularly that their ilemen as soon as they come ti years of understanding, to begin genius lay toward the mathematics, which qualified them very to seek God; for they that seek him early, shall find him. much for this trust. Witty men are then wise men, when they
4. That in his twelfth year, when, it is probable, he took the employ their wit in doing good, in helping their friends, and, as administration of the government entirely into his own hands, he they have opportunity, in serving the public. Observe, in this began to purge his kingdom from the remains of idolatry; he work, how God dispenses his gifts variously; here were some destroyed the high places, groves, images, altars, all the uten that were bearers of burdens, cut out for bodily labour, and fit sils of idolatry, v. 3, 4. He not only cast them out as Ma to work. Here were others (made meliori luto-of finer matenasseh did, but brake them to pieces, and made dust of them. rials) that had skill in music, and they were overseers of them This destruction of idolatry is here said to be in his twelfth that laboured, and scribes and officers; the former were the year, but it was said, 2 Kings 23. 23, to be in bis eighteenth hands, these were the heads; they had need of one another, and yearsomething was done toward it now in his twelfth year ; the work needed both. Let not the overseers of the work dethen he began to purge out idolatry, but, probably, that good spise the bearers of burdens, nor let them that work in the ser: work met with opposition, so that it was not thoroughly done vice, grudge at those whose office is to direct; but let each till they had found the book of the law six years after; but here esteem and serve the other in love, and God have the glory, the whole work is laid together briefly, which was much more and the church the benefit, of the different gifts and dispositions largely and particularly related in the Kings. His zeal carried of both. him out to do this, not only in Judah and Jerusalem, but in the V. 14–28. This whole paragraph we had just as it is here cities of Israel too, as far as he had
any influence upon them. related, 2 Kings 22. 8-20, and have nothing to add here to V. 8–13. Here, 1. Orders are given by the king for the what was there observed. repair of the temple, y. 8. When he had purged the house of But, 1. We may hence take occasion to bless God that we the corruptions of it, he began to fit it up for the services that have plenty of bibles, and that they are, or may be, in all hands ; were to be performed in it. Thus we must do by the spiritual that the book of the law and Gospel is not lost, is not scarce; temple of the heart: get it cleansed from the pollutions of sin, thai, in this sense, the word of the Lord is not precious. Bibles and then renewed, so as to be transformed into the image of are jewels, but, thanks be to God, they are not rarities. The God. Josiah, in this order, calls God the Lord his God; they fountain of the waters of life is not a spring shut up, or a founthat truly love God, will love the habitation of his house.
ta in sealed, but the streams of it, in all places, make glad the 2. Care is taken about it, effectual care ; the Levites went city of our God: Usus communis aquarum-These waters flow about the country, and gathered money towards it, which was for general use. What a great deal shall we have to answer returned to the three trustees mentioned, v. 8. They brought for, if the great things of God's law, being thus made common, it to Hilkiah the high priest, (v. 9,) and he and they put it into should
be accounted hy us as strange things! the hands of workmen, both overseers and labourers, who under 2. We may hence learn, whenever we read or hear the word took to do it by the great, as we say, or in the gross, v. 10, 11. ' of God, to affect our hearts with it, and to get them possessed
appointed, went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife 29 Then the king sent and gathered together 01" "Shallum the son of Tikvath, the son of *Haz- all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. rah, keeper of the wardrobe ;t (now she dwelt in 30 And the king went up into the house of the Jerusalem in the fcollege ;) and they spake to her Lord, and all the men of Judah, and the inhabitants to that effect.
of Jerusalem, and the priests, and the Levites, and 23 And she answered them, Thus saith the all the people, great and small; and he read in LORD God of Israel, Tell ye the man that sent you their ears all the words of the book of the covenant to me,
that was found in the house of the LORD. 24 Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I 'will bring 31 And the king stood in his place, and made evil upon this place, and upon the inhabitants a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the thereof, even all the curses that are written in the LORD, and to keep his commandments, and his tesbook which they have read before the king of timonies, and his statutes, with all his heart, and Judah:
with all his soul, to perform the words of the cove25 Because they have forsaken me, and have nant which are written in this book. burned incense unto other gods, that they might 32 And he caused all that were present in Jeprovoke me to anger with all the works of their rusalem and Benjamin to stand to it. And the inhands; therefore my wrath shall be poured out habitants of Jerusalem did according to the cove"upon this place, and shall not be quenched. nant of God, the God of their fathers.
26 And as for the king of Judah, who sent you 33 And Josiah took away all the abominations to inquire of the Lord, so shall ye say unto him, out of all the countries that pertained to the chilThus saith the Lord God of Israel, concerning the dren of ael, and made all that were present in words which thou hast heard ;
Israel to serve, even to serve the Lord iheir God. 27 Because thine heart was "tender, and thou And all his days they departed not from "following didst humble wthyself before God, when thou the LORD, the God of their fathers. heardest his words against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, and humbledst thyself be
CHAPTER XXXV. fore me, and didst rend thy clothes, and weep beforê me; I have even heard thee salso, saith the Worare here to attend Josiah). To the temple, where we are his religious care LORD.
v. l-19. 11. To the field of ballie, where we ece bia rashoees, la engaging with
the king of Egypt, and how dear it wat bum, v. 20—23. III. To the erare, 28 Behold, I will gather thee to thy fathers, and where we see him bitterly lamented, s, 24-27. And so we must take our leave thou shalt be gathered to thy grave in peace, neither yshall thine eyes see all the evil that I will bring upon OREOVER, a Josiah kept a passover unto the this place, and upon the inhabitants of the same. So they brought the king word again.
over on the fourteenth day 'of the first month. for,,school, or, second pari: y 1 Kings 21, 29. 3 Kinga 20. 19.9
2 Kings 11, 14. c. 6. 13.
. or, Farhrs, 2 Kings 22. 14. 1 garments.
32 Kings 23. 1, &c. from presteren to small.
Jer 50, 5. c Pe. 119. 111, 112, 119. 106. 11 found. el Kings 11.5. Jer. 3. 10. Hos. 6. 4.
2 Kings 23. 21, &c. b Ex. 12. 6. Ezra 6. 19.
with a holy fear of that wrath of God, which is there revealed his place covenanted to keep God's commandments with all his against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, as Josiah's heart and soul, according to what was written in the book, (v.31,) tender heart was. When he heard the words of the law, he and urged the people to declare their consent likewise to this rent his clothes, (v. 19;) and God was well pleased with his covenant, and solemnly 10 promise that they would faithfully doing so, v. 27. Were the things contained in the scripture perform, fulfil, and keep, all and every thing that was on their new to us, as they were here to Josiah, surely they would make part to be done, according to this covenant : this they did ; they deeper impressions upon us than commonly they do; but they could not for shame do otherwise. He caused all that were are never the less weighty, and therefore should not be the less present to stand to it, (v. 32,) and made them all to serve, even considered by us, for their being well known. Rend the heart to serve the Lord their God, (v. 33,) to do it, and to make a busitherefore, not the garments.
ness of it; he did all he could to bring them to it; to serve, even 3. We are here directed, when we are under convictions of to serve; the repetition denotes that that was the only thing sin, and apprehensions of divine wrath, to inquire of the Lord; his heart was set on; he aimed at nothing else in what he did, so Josiah did, v. 21. It concerns us to ask, as they did, Acts but to engage them to God and their duty. 2.37, Men and brethren, what shall we do? And more particu 3. That they were well tended; were honest with good looklarly, as the jailer, saying, What must I do to be saved? Acts ing to. All his days, they departed nol from following the Lord; 16. 30. If ye will thus inquire, inquire ye, (Is. 21. 12 ;) and, he kept them, with much ado, from running into idolatry again. blessed be God, we have the lively oracles to which to apply All his days were days of restraint upon them; but this intiourselves with these inquiries.
mated that there was in them a bent to backslide, a strong incli4. We are here warned of the ruin that sin brings upon nations nation to idolatry; many of them wanted nothing but to have and kingdoms. They that forsake God, bring evil upon them- him out of the way, and then they would have their high places selves, (v. 24, 25,) and kindle a fire which shall not be quenched; and their images up again. And therefore we find that in the such will the fire of God's wrath be, when the decree is gone days of Josiah, (Jer. 3. 6,) God charged it upon treacherous forth against those that obstinately and impenitently persist in Judah, that she had not returned to him with all her heart, bul their wicked ways.
feignedly, (v. 10,) nay, had played the harlot, (v. 8,) and there5. We are here encouraged to humble ourselves before God, by had even justified backsliding Israel, v. 11. In the 23d year and seek unto him, as Josiah did: if we cannot prevail thereby of this reign, four or five years after this, they had gone on lo to turn away God's wrath from our land, yet we shall deliver provoke God to anger with the works of their hands, Jer. 25. our own souls, v. 27, 28. And good people are here taught to 3—7. And, which is very observable, it is from the beginning be so far from fearing death, as to welcome it rather when it of Josiah's reformation, his 121h or 13th year, that the iniquity of takes them away from the evil to come. See how the property the house of Judah, wbich brought run upon them, and which the of it is altered by making it the matter of a promise: Thou prophet was to bear lying on his right side, was dated, Ez. 4.6. shalt be gathered to thy grave in peace; housed in that ark, as For from thence to the destruction of Jerusalem was just forty Noah, when a deluge is coming.
years. Josiah was sincere in what he did, but the generality V. 29–33. We have here an account of the further advances of the people were averse to it, and hankered after their idols which Josiah made toward the reformation of his kingdom, still; so that the reformation, though well designed, and well upon the hearing of the law read, and the receipt of the message prosecuted, by the prince, had little or no effect upon the peoGod sent him by the prophetess. Happy the people that had ple. It was with reluctancy that they parted with their idols; such a king: for here we find,
still they were in heart joined to them, and wished for them 1. That they were well taught. He did not go about to again. This God saw, and therefore, from that time, when force them to their duty, till he had first instructed them in it. one would have thought the foundations had been laid for a perHe called all the people together, great and small, young and petual security and peace, from that very time, did the decree old, rich and poor, high and low; He that hath ears to hear, let go forth for their destruction. Nothing hastens the ruin of him hear the words of the book of the covenant ; for they are all people, nor ripens them for it more, than the baffling of hopeful concerned in those words. To put an honour upon the service, attempts for reformation, and a hypocritical return to God. and to engage attention the more, though there were priests Be not deceived, God is not mocked. and Levites present, the king himself read the book to the people, (v. 30,) and he read it, no doubt, in such a manner as to show that he was himself affected with it, which would be a V.1–19. The destruction which Josiah made of idols and means of affecting the hearers.
idolatry, was more largely related in the Kings, and but just 2. That they were well fixed. The articles of agreement mentioned here in the foregoing chapter, v. 33. But his son between God and Israel being read, that they might intelligent-lemnizing of the passover, which was but touched upon there, ly covenant with God, both king and people here, with great 2 Kings 23. 21, is very particularly related here. Many were solemnity, do as it were subscribe the articles. The king in the feasts of the Lord, appointed by the ceremonial law but the
NOTES TO CHAPTER XXXV.
1 Ezra 6. 18.
m c. 29. 22, 34,
n Lev. 3. 3. o Ex. 12.
ce. 23. 18. d Deut. 33. 10. c. 30. 22. Mal. 2. 7. 25.
2 And he set the priests in their charges, and 10 So the service was prepared, and the priests encouraged them to the service of the house of the stood in their place, and the Levites in their courses, LORD,
according to the king's commandment. 3 And said unto the Levites that taught all dis 11 And mthey killed the passover, and the priests rael, which were holy unto the LORD, Put the holy sprinkled the blood from their hands, and the Leark in the house which Solomon the son of David vites flayed them. king of Israel did build; it «shall not be a burden 12 And they removed the burnt-offerings, that upon your shoulders: serve now the LORD your they might give according to the divisions of the God, and his people Israel,
families of the people, to offer unto the Lord, as it 4 And prepare yourselves by the houses of your is written rin the book of Moses : and so did they fathers, after your courses, according to the writing with the oxen. of David Sking of Israel, and according to the writ 13 And they roasted "the passover with fire, ing of Solomon his son;
according to the ordinance : but the other holy of5. And stand in the holy place, according to the ferings sod Pthey in pots, and in caldrons, and in divisions of the *families of the fathers of your bre- pans, and "divided them speedily among all the peothren the people, and after the division of the fami-ple. lies of the Levites :
14 And afterward they made ready for them6 So kill the passover, and sanctifyi yourselves, selves, and for the priests: because the priests the and prepare your brethren, that they may do ac sons of Aaron were busied in offering of burnt-offercording to the word of the LORD by the hand of ings and the fat until night; therefore the Levites Moses.
prepared for themselves, and for the priests the sons 7 And Josiah #gave to kthe people, of the flock, of Aaron. lambs and kids, all for the passover-offerings, for 15 And the singers the sons of Asaph were in all that were present, to the number of thirty thou- their. **place, according to the commandment of sand, and three thousand bullocks : these were of David,? and Asaph, and Heman, and Jeduthun the the king's substance.
king's seer : and the porters "waited at every gate; 8 And his princes sgave willingly unto the peo- they might not depart from their service; for their ple, to the priests, and to the Levites: Hilkiah and brethren the Levites prepared for them. Zechariah and Jehiel, rulers of the house of God, 16 So all the service of the LORD was prepared gave unto the priests for the passover-offerings two the same day, to keep the passover, and to offer thousand and six hundred small cattle, and three burnt-offerings upon the altar of the LORD, accordhundred oxen.
ing to the commandment of king Josiah. 9 Conaniah also, and Shemaiah and Nethaneel 17 And the children of Israel that were present his brethren, and Hashabiah, and Jeiel, and Joza- kept the passover at that time, and the feast of unbad, chief of the Levites, igave unto the Levites, leavened bread seven days. for passover-offerings, five thousand small cattle, 18 And there was no passover like to that kept and five hundred oxen.
in Israel, from the days of Samuel the prophet;
el Chr. 2. 26. si Chr. 23. offered. I offered. 7 , 8, 14. A P. 134, 1.
I sone of the people. ic. 30. 3, 15. 8, 9. Deut. 16. 7. p 1 Sam. 2. 13— 15. I made them run. "station, 91 Chr. Ezra 6. 20. I offered. k c. 7.8–10. 30. 24.
25. 1, &c. I Chr. 9. 17. 11 found. passaver was the chief; it began them all in the night wherein were discharged from this burden of the ark, they must be careIsrael came out of Egypt. It concluded them all in the nightful in other services about it. wherein Christ was betrayed; and in the celebration of it 3. He charged them to serve God, and his people Israel, v. 3. Hezekiah and Josiah, those two great reformers, revived reli- Ministers must look upon themselves as servants both to Christ, gion in their day. The ordinance of the Lord's supper resem and to his church for his sake, 2 Cor. 4. 5. They must take bles the passover more than it does any of the Jewish festivals ; care, and take pains, and lay out themselves to the utmost, (1.) and the due observance of that ordinance, according to the rule, For the glory and honour of God, and to advance the interests is an instance and means both of the growing purity and beauty of his kingdom among men. Paul, a servant of God, Tit. 1.1. of churches, and of the growing piety and devotion of particular (2.) For the welfare and benefit of his people, not as having doChristians. Religion cannot flourish where that passover is minion over their faith, but as servants of their holiness and either wholly neglected, or not duly observed ; return to that, joy; and there will be no difficulty, in the strength of God, revive that, make a solemn business of that affecting binding honestly to serve these two masters. ordinance, and then, it is to be hoped, there will be a reforma 4. He charged them to sanctify themselves, and prepare their tion in other instances also.
brethren, v. 6. Ministers' work must begin at home, and they In the account we had of Hezekiah's passover, the great zeal must sanctify themselves in the first place, purify themselves of the people was observable, and the transport of devout affec- from sin, sequester themselves from the world, and devote tion that they were in ; but little of that appears here. It was themselves to God; but it must not end there, they must do more in compliance with the king that they all kept the pass- what they can to prepare their brethren by admonishing, inover, (v. 17, 18,) than from any great inclination they had to it structing, exhorting, quickening, and comforting them The themselves. Some pride they took in this form of godliness, preparation of the heart is indeed from the Lord, but ministers but little pleasure in the power of it. But whatever defect there must be instruments in his hand. was among the people in the inside of the duty, both the magis. 5. He encouraged them to the service, v. 2. He spake comtrates and the ministers did their part, and took care that the ex-fortably to them, as Hezekiah did, ch. 30. 22. He promised ternal part of the service should be performed with due solemnity. them his countenance. Note, Those whom we charge, we
I. The king exhorted and directed, quickened and encouraged, should encourage. Most people love to be accosted kindly, and the priesis and Levites to do their office in this solemnity. | will be wrought upon by encouragements more than by threats, Perhaps he saw them remiss and indifferent, unwilling to go II. The king and the princes, influenced by his example, gave out of their road, or mend their pace; if ministers are so, it is liberally for the bearing of the charges of this passover. The not amiss for any, but most proper for magistrates, lo stir them ceremonial services were expensive, which perhaps was one up to their business. Say to Archippus, Take heed to thy mi reason why they had been neglected. People had not zeal enough nistry, Col. 4. 17. Let us see how this good king managed to be at the charge of them; nor were they now very fond of his clergy upon this occasion.
them, for that reason. And therefore, 1. He reduced them to the office they were appointed to by: 1. Josiah, at his own proper cost, furnished the congregation the law of Moses, (v. 6,) and the order they were put into by with paschal lambs, and other sacrifices, to be offered during David and Solomon, v. 4. He set them in their charge, v. 2. the seven days of the feast. He allowed out of his own estate, He did not cut them out new work, nor put them into any new 30,000 lambs for passover-offerings; which the offerers were to method, but called them back to their institution. Their feast upon, and 3000 bullocks, (v.7,) to be offered during the courses were settled in writing; let them have recourse to that following seven days. Note, Those who are serious in religion, writing, and marshal themselves according to the divisions of when they persuade others to that which is good, should make their families, v.5. Our rule is settled in the written word; it as cheap and easy to them as may be. And where God sows let magistrates take care that ministers walk according to that plentifully, he expects to reap accordingly; it is to be feared rule, and they do their duty.
that the congregaiion, generally, had not come provided; so that 12. He ordered the ark to be put in its place, which, it should if Josiah had not furnished them, the work of God must have seem, had of late been displaced, either by the wicked kings, stood still. to make room for their idols in the most holy place, or by He 2. The chief of the priests, that were men of great estates, zekiah, to make room for the workmen that repaired the temple. contributed toward the priests' charges, as Josiah toward the However it was, Josiah bids the Levites put the holy ark in the people's. The princes, (v. 8,) that is, the chief of the priests, house, (v. 3,) and not carry it about from place to place, as per the princes of the holy tribe, rulers of the house of God, bore the haps of late they had done, justifying themselves therein by priests' charges. And some of the rich and great men of the the practice before the temple was built. Now that the priests Levites furnished them also with cattle, both great and small,
24 His servants therefore took him out of that THEN the people of the land took Jehoahaz the
neither did all the kings of Israel keep such a pass- 1 died, and was buried in one of the sepulchres of his over as Josiah kept, and the priests, and the Levites, fathers : and all Judah and Jerusalem mourned for and all Judah and Israel that were present, and the Josiah. inhabitants of Jerusalem.
25 And Jeremiah lamented "for Josiah; and all 19 In the eighteenth year of the reign of Josiah the singing men "and the singing women spa ke of was this passover kept.
Josiah in their lamentations to this day, and made 20 After all this, when Josiah had prepared the them an ordinance win Israel ; and, behold, they a
are *temple, Necho 'king of Egypt came up to fight written in the lamentations. against Charchemish by Euphrates : and Josiah 26 Now the rest of the acts of Josiah, and his went out against him.
goodness, according to that which was writien in the 21 But he sent ambassadors to him, saying, What law of the LORD, have I to do with thee, thou king of Judah? I come 27 And his deeds, first and last, behold, they are not against thee this day, but against the house written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah. twherewith I have war; for God commanded me to make haste : forbear thee from meddling with God,
CHAPTER XXXVI. who is with me, that he destroy thee not.
We have here, 1. A short but sad account of the utter ruin of Judah and Jerosalem, 22 Nevertheless, Josiah would not turn his face
within a few years after Josiah's death. 1. The history of it in the upliant
reigns of Jehoahaz, for 3 months, v. 1-4. Jehoiakimo, v.5-8, fer 11 years; from him, but disguised himself, that he might fight Jehoiachin 3 months, v. 9, 10. and Zedekiah 11 years, v. 41. Additions were
made to the antional guilt, and advances toward the national destruktion, in with him, and hearkened not unto the words of
each of those reigos. The destruction was, at length, completed is the slaoghuer Necho from the mouth of God, and came to fight in of multitudes, v. 17, The plandering and burning of the temple and all the
palaces, the desolation of the city, v. 18, 19, and the captivity of the people that the valley of Megiddo.
remained, v. 20. 2. Some remarka upon it; that herein in was pusished. 23 And the archers shot at king Josiah: and the
Zedekialle wickedness, v. 12, 13. The idolatry the people were guily of;. 14.
And their abuse of God's prophets, v. 15, 16. The word of God was bereia final king said to his servants, Have me away; for I am filled, v. 21. 11. The dawning of the day of their deliverance in Cyrus'. Po
clamation, v. 22, 23. sore i wounded.
of Josiah, had; and they brought him to Jerusalem, and he father's stead in Jerusalem. . 2 Kings 23. 29, &c. house. ! Jer. 46. 2, &c. f of my war. I made sick, Zech. 12. 11. Lam. 4. 20. • Matt. 9. 23. Jer, 22.20. # kindnesses, c. 32. 1 Kings 22. 31. $or, among the aepulchres.
G 2 Kings 23. 3), 1c, for offerings, v. 9. For those that sincerely desire to be found belonged not to him. But here it looks worse ; for, it seems, in the way of their duty, Providence sometimes raises up friends the king of Egypt sent ambassadors to him, to warn him against to bear them out in it, beyond what they could have expected. this enterprise, v. 21. He argues, 1. From principles of justice.
III. The priests and Levites performed their office very The king of Egypt professes he had no design to do him any readily, v. 10. They killed the paschal lambs in the court of hurt, and therefore it was unfair, against common equity and the the temple, the priests sprinkled the blood upon the altar, the law of nations, for Josiah to take up arms against him. Iseven Levites flayed them, and then gave the flesh to the people ac a righteous man engage in an unrighteous cause, let him pot excording to their families, (v. 11, 12,) not fewer than ten, nor pect to prosper; God is no Respecter of persons. See Prov. 3. more than twenty, to a lamb; they took it to their several apart- 30.-25.8. 2. From principles of religion. "God is with me; ments, roasted it, and ate it according to the ordinance, v. 13. nay, He commanded me to make haste, and therefore, if thou reAs for the other sacrifices that were eucharistical, the flesh of tard my motions, thou meddlest with God." It cannot be that them was boiled according to the law of the peace-offerings, and the king of Egypt only pretended this, (as Sennacherib did in a was divided speerlily among the people, that they might feast upon like case, 2 Kings 18. 25,) hoping thereby to make Josiah deit as a token of their joy in the atonement made, and their sist, because he knew he had a veneration for the word of God, reconciliation to God thereby. And, lastly, the priests and for it is said here, (v. 22.) that the words of Neeho were from Levites took care lo honour God by eating of the passover them- the mouth of God; we must therefore suppose that either by a selves, v. 14. Let not ministers ihink that the care they lake dream, or by a strong impulse upon his spirit, which he had for the souls of others, will excuse their neglect of their own; reason to think was from God, or by Jeremiah, or some other or that being employed so much in public worship will super- prophet, he had ordered him to make war upon the king of Assysede the religious exercises of their closets and families. The ria. 3. From principles of policy. “That he destroy thee noi; Levites here made ready for themselves and for the priests, be it is at thy peril, if thou engage against one that has both a better cause the priests were wholly taken up all day in the service of army, and a better cause, and God on his side." the altar; therefore, that they might not have their lamb to dress It was not in wrath to Josiah, whose heart was upright with when they should eat it, the Levites got it ready for them against the Lord his God, but in wrath to a hypocritical nation, who supper-rime. Let ministers learn hence to help one another, were unworthy of so good a king, that he was so far infatuated, and to forward one another's work, as brethren, and fellow-ser- as not to hearken to those fair reasonings, and desist from his vants of the same Master,
enterprise. He would nol lurn his face from him, but went in IV. The singers and porters attended in their places, and person, and fought the Egyptian army in ihe valley of Megidio, did their office, v. 15. The singers with their sacred songs and
If perhaps he could not believe that the king of Egypt music expressed and excited the joy of the congregation, and had a command from God, to do what he did, yet, upon his made the service very pleasant to them; and the porters at the pleading such a command, he ought to have consulted the oracles gates took care that there should be no breaking in of any thing, of God before he had gone out against him. His not doing that, to defile or disquiet the assembly, nor going out of any from it, was his great fault, and of fatal consequence. In this matter, that none should steal away till the service was done. While he walked not in the ways of David his father; for, had it been they were thus employed, their brethren the Levites prepared bis case, he would have inquired of the Lord,' Shall I go up? paschallambs for them.
Wilt thou deliver them into my hands? How can we think to V. The whole solemnity was performed with great exact- prosper in our ways, if we do not acknowledge God in them? ness, according to the law, (v. 16, 17,) and, upon that account, II. The people were a wicked people; yet they are much to there was none like it since Samuel's time,' (v. 18,) for in Heo be praised for lamenting the death of Josiah as they did. That zekiah's passover there were several irregularities. And Bishop Jeremiah lamented him, I do not wonder; he was ihe weeping Patrick observes, that in this also it exceeded the other passovers prophet, and plainly foresaw the utter ruin of his country folwhich the preceding kings had kept, that though Josiah was by Inwing upon the death of this good king. But it is strange to no means so rich as David, and Solomon, and Jehoshaphat, yet find that all Judah and Jerusalem, that stupid senseless people, he furnished the whole congregation with beasts for sacrifice, mourned for him, (v. 24,) contrived how to have their mourning both paschal and eucharistical, at his own proper cost and charge, excited by singing men and singing women; how to have it which was more than any king ever did before him.
spread through the kingdom: they made an ordinance in Israel, V. 20-27. It was thirteen years from Josiah's famous pass that the mournful djuties, penned on this sad occasion, should over to his death; during which time, we may hope, things be learned and sung by all sorts of people. They contrived also went well in his kingdom; that he prospered, and religion flou how to have the remembrance of it perpetuated; these elegies rished; yet we are not entertained with the pleasing account of were inserted in the collections of state poems; they are written those years, but they are passed over in silence, because the in the Lamentations. Hereby it appeared, 1. That they had people, for all this, were not turned from the love of their sins, some respect to their good prince, and that though they did not nor God from the fierceness of his anger. The next news there cordially comply with him in all his good designs, yet they could fore we hear of Josiah, is, that he is cut off in the midst of his not but greatly honour him. Pious useful men will be manidays and usefulness, before he is full forty years old. We had fested in the consciences even of those that will not be influenced this sad story, 2 Kings 23. 29, 30, here it is somewhat more by their example; and many that will not submit to the rules largely related. That appears here, more than did there, which of serious godliness themselves, yet cannot but give it their good reflects such blame on Josiah, and such praise on the people, as word, and esteom it in others. Perhaps those lamented Josiah one would not have expected.
when he was dead, that were not thankful to God for him while 1. Josiah was a very good prince; yet he is much to be blam- he lived. The Israelites murmured at Moses and Aaron while ed for his rashness and presumption in going out to war against they were with him, and spoke sometimes of stoning them, and the king of Egypt, without cause or call. It was bad enough, yet, when they died, they mourned for them many days. We as it appeared in the Kings, that he meddled with strifo which are often taught to value mercies by the loss of them, which,
2 Jehoahaz was twenty and three years old when 10 And when the year was expired, king Nebuhe began to reign; and he reigned three months in chadnezzar sent and brought him to Babylon, with Jerusalem.
the "goodly vessels dof the house of the Lord, and 3 And the king of Egypt *put him down at made ** Zedekiah his brother king over Judah and Jerusalem, and condemned the land in an hundred Jerusalem. talents of silver and a talent of gold.
11 Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when 4 And the king of Egypt made Eliakim his bro- he began to reign ; and reigned eleven years in ther king over Judah and Jerusalem, and turned his Jerusalem. name to Jehoiakim. And Necho took Jehoahaz. 12 And he did that which was evil in the sight of his brother, and carried him to Egypt.
the Lord his God, and humbled not himself before 5 Jehoiakim was twenty and five years old when Jeremiah the prophet, speaking from the mouth of he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in the Lord. Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the 13 And he also rebelled against king Nebuchadsight of the Lord his God.
nezzar, who had made him swear by God: but he 6 Against him came up Nebuchadnezzer king stiffened his neck, and hardened his heart from of Babylon, and bound him in fetters, to carry him turning unto the LORD God of Israel. to Babylon.
14 Moreover, all the chief of the priests, and 7 Nebuchadnezzar also carried of the vessels of the people, transgressed very much, after all the the house of the LORD to Babylon, and put them abominations of the heathen, and polluted the house in his temple at Babylon.
of the Lord which he had hallowed in Jerusalem. 8 Now the rest of the acts of Jehojakim, and his 15 And the Lord God of their fathers sent to abominations which he did, and that which was them by his messengers, rising up betimes, and found in him, behold they are written in the book of sending; because he had compassion on his people, the kings of Israel and Judah : and $Jehoiachin his and on his dwelling-place, son reigned in his stead.
16 But they mocked the messengers of God, 9 Jehoiachin ‘was eight years old when he began and despised his words, and misused his prophets, to reign, and he reigned three months and ten days until the wrath of the Lord arose against his people, in Jerusalem : and he did that which was evil in the till there was no Siremedy. sight of the LORD.
17 Therefore he brought upon them the king • removed him. mulcted. 5 2 Kings 24. 13, &c. 1 or, chaine. Foretold, c Jer. 37. I. Jer. 52. 1, &c. Jer. 52. 3. Ez. 17.15, 18. A 2 Kings 17. 14. Hab. 1. 6, &c. $or, Jeconiah, I Chr. 3. 16, or, Coniah, Jer. 22. 24. C 2 Kings i Jer. 25. 3, 4.35.15. 11 by the Annd of. : 1. e, continually and carefully. 24.8, &c at the return of the year. I vessels of deeire. d Dan. 4. 1, 2. 5. 2. k ls. 28. 22. (Prov. I. 24—30, $$ healing. m Deut. 28. 49. 2 Kings 25, 1, &c. * or, Malania, nis father's brother, 2 Kings 24. 17.
Ezra 9. 7. when we enjoyed them, we did not prize as we ought. 2. That with his doom, Dan. 5. 3, &c. In the reference to the book of they had some sense of their own danger, now that he was gone. the Kings concerning this Jehoiakim, mention is made of that Jeremiah told them, it is likely, of the evil they might now ex which was found in him, (v. 8,) which seems to be meant of the pect to come upon them, from which he was taken away; and treachery that was found in him toward the king of Babylon; so far they credited what he said, that they lamented the death but some of the Jewish writers understand it of certain private of him that was their defence. Note, Many will more easily marks or signatures found in his dead body, in honour of his be persuaded to lament the miseries that are coming upon them, idol ; such cuttings as God had forbidden, Lev. 19. 28. than to take the proper way by universal reformation to prevent 3. Jehojachin, or Jeconiah, the son of Jehoiakim, altempled them; will shed tears for their troubles, but will not be pre to reign in his stead, and reigned long enough to show his evil railed upon to part with their sins. But godly sorrow worketh inclination; but, after three months and ten days, the king of repentance, and that repentance will be to salvation.
Babylon sent and fetched him away captive, with more of the
goodly vessels of the temple. He is here said to be eight years NOTES TO CHAPTER XXXVI.
old, but in Kings he is said to be eighteen when he began to V.1-10. The destruction of Judah and Jerusalem is here reign, so that this seems to be a mistake of the transcriber, uncoming on by degrees. God so ordered it, to show that he has less we suppose that his father took him at eight years old to no pleasure in the ruin of sinners, but had rather they would join with him in the government, as some think. turn and live, and therefore gives them both time and induce. V. 11--21. We have here an account of the destruction of ment to repent, and waits to be gracions. The history of these the kingdom of Judah and the city of Jerusalem by the Chalreigns was more largely recorded in the three last chapters of deans. Abraham, God's friend, was called out of that country, the second of Kings,
from Ur of the Chaldees, when God took him into covenant 1. Jehoahaz was set up by the people, (v. 1,) but in one quarter and communion with himself; and now his degenerate seed of a year was deposed by Pharaoh Necho, and carried a pri- were carried into that country again, to signify that they had soner to Egypt, and the land fined for setting him up, v. 2–4. forfeited all that kindness wherewith they had been loved for of this young prince we hear no more; had he trodden in the the father's sake, and the benefit of that covenant into which he steps of his father's piety, he might have reigned long, and was called; all was now undone again. Here we have, prospered; but we are told in the Kings, that he did evil in the I. The sins that brought this desolation. sighi of the Lord, and therefore his triumphing was short, and 1. Zedekiah the king, in whose days it came, brought it upon his joy but for a moment.
himself by his own folly. For he conducted himself very ill 2. Jehojakim was set up by the king of Egypt, and reigned both toward God and toward the king of Babylon. (1.) If he eleven years. How low was Judah brought when the king of had but made God his Friend, that would have prevented the Egypt, an old enemy to their land, gave what king he pleased ruin. Jeremiah brought him messages from God, which, if he to the kingdom, and what name he pleased to the king, v. 4. had given due regard to them, might have secured a lengthening He made Eliakim king, and called him Jehoiakim, in token of his tranquillity; but it is here charged upon him, that he of his authority over him. He did that which was evil, (v. 5,) humbled not himself before Jeremiah, v. 12. It was expected nay, we read of the abominations which he did, (v. 8,) he was that this mighty prince, high as he was, should humble himself very wild and wicked ; idolatries generally go under the name before a poor prophet, when he spake from the mouth of the of abominations, We hear no more of the king of Egypt, but Lord; should submit to his admonitions, and be amended by the king of Babylon came up against him, (v. 6,) seized him, them, to his counsels, and be ruled by them; should lay himself and bound him with a design to carry him to Babylon; but under the commanding power of the word of God in his mouth: it seems he either changed his mind, and suffered him to reign because he would not thus make himself a servant to God, he is as his vassal, or death released the prisoner before he was made a slave to his enemies. God will find some way or other carried away. However, the best and most valuable vessels to humble them that will not humble themselves. Jeremiah, as of the temple were now carried away, and made use of in a prophet, was set over the nations and kingdoms, (Jer. 1. 10,) Nebuchadnezzar's temple in Babylon, (v. 7;) for we may and, as mean a figure as he made, whoever would not humble suppose, no temple in the world was so richly furnished as themselves before him, found that it was at their peril. (2.) If that of Jerusalem. The sin of Judah was, that they had he had but been true to his covenant with the king of Babylon. brought the idols of the heathen into God's temple; and now that would have prevented his ruin; but he rebelled against him, their punishment was, that the vessels of the temple were though he had sworn to be his faithful tributary, and perfidiouscarried away unto the service of the gods of the nations. If ly violated his engagements to him, v. 13. This was it that men will profane God's institutions by their sinz, it is just provoked the king of Babylon to deal so severely with him as with God to suffer them to be profaned by their enemies. he did. All nations looked upon an oath as a sacred thing, These were the vessels which ihe false prophets flattered and on those that durst break through the obligations of it, as the people with hopes of the return of, Jer. 27. 16. But Je- the worst of men, abandoned of God, and to be abhorred by all remiah told them that the rest should go after them, (v. 22,) mankind; if therefore Zedekiah falsify his oath, when, lo, he and they did so. But, as the carrying away of these vessels to has given his hand, he shall not escape, Ez. 17. 18. Though Babylon began the calamity of Jerusalem, so Belshazzar's Nebuchadnezzar was a heathen, an evemy, yet if, having sworn daring profanation of them there filled the ineasure of the ini- to him, he be false to him, he shall know there is a God to whom quity of Babylon ; for when he drank wine in them to the ho- vengeance belongs. The thing that ruined Zedekiah was, not nour of his gods, the handwriting on the wall presented him only that he turned not to the Lord God of Israel, but that he Vol. I.-131
( 1041 )