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Bible Commentaries
2 Chronicles 23

Gaebelein's Annotated BibleGaebelein's Annotated

Verses 1-21

4. Reformation Under Joash

CHAPTER 23 Joash King and Athaliah’s Execution

1. Joash made king (2 Chronicles 23:1-11 )

2. Athaliah slain (2 Chronicles 23:12-15 )

3. Jehoiada and the revival (2 Chronicles 23:16-21 )

The annotations to this interesting page in the history of Judah have already been made in connection with 2 Kings 11:0 . We therefore pass over the preservation of the young child Joash and his hiding away in the LORD’s house, on this account. However we call attention to the differences in the two accounts in 2 Kings 11:0 and 2 Chronicles 23:0 . As stated before the book of Chronicles is written from the priestly and Levitical view point; this explains the greater detail about Jehoiada, the priest, given in Chronicles. A careful study and comparison of the two chapters will show that there are no discrepancies.

“The differences, and even more the similarity, in the narratives of the event in the books of Kings and Chronicles have suggested what to some appear discrepancies of detail. It is well to know that, even if these were established, they would not in any way invalidate the narrative itself, since in any case they only concern some of its minor details, not its substance. The most notable difference is that in the book of Kings the plot and its execution seem entirely in the hands of the military; in Chronicles, exclusively in those of the priests and Levites. But in Chronicles also--and indeed, there alone--the five military leaders are named; while, on the other hand, the narrative in the book of Kings throughout admits the leadership of the priest Jehoiada. And even a superficial consideration must convince that both the priests and the military must have been engaged in the undertaking, and that neither party could have dispensed with the other. A revolution inaugurated by the high-priest in favor of his nephew, who for six years had been concealed in the Temple, and which was to be carried out within the precincts of the Sanctuary itself, could no more have taken place without the cooperation of the priesthood than a change in the occupancy of the throne could have been brought about without the support of the military power. And this leaves untouched the substance of the narrative in the two accounts (A. Edersheim).

Athaliah received her just recompense. The youthful Joash occupied the throne of David, and the faithful priest Jehoiada was the instrument who brought about the needed revival. The beginning was in a solemn covenant. It was a covenant which bound the young ruler and the people together to be true to Jehovah, as it is demanded of the LORD’s people; there was also a covenant between the King and the people (2 Kings 11:17 ). And the revival under the priestly direction began by the destruction of the idols and false worship and a return to Jehovah and the true worship of His Name. Every true revival must needs begin the same way. Tested by this standard most of the present day revivals are found wanting. “And he set the porters at the gates of the house of the LORD, that none which was unclean in anything should enter in.” The house of the LORD was guarded against all that is unclean. How different from the corruption which is tolerated in Christendom, in that which is “the house,” the professing Church.

Bibliographical Information
Gaebelein, Arno Clemens. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 23". "Gaebelein's Annotated Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gab/2-chronicles-23.html. 1913-1922.
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