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Wednesday, April 17th, 2024
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Bible Commentaries
2 Chronicles 32

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

After these things, and the establishment thereof, Sennacherib king of Assyria came, and entered into Judah, and encamped against the fenced cities, and thought to win them for himself.

After these things. — See 2 Kings 18:13 , … When Hezekiah had set all things in good order, up came Sennacherib with his army. So after sweet communion with God, at the sacrament or otherwise, look for "leviathan, that crooked serpent," to disturb all.

And the establishment thereof. — Or, And the truth or faithfulness thereof, i.e., of the author in relating them, or rather of Hezekiah in transacting them. Postquam haec fideliter sunt gesta: so Munster rendereth it.

And thought to win them for himself. — Heb., To break them up, or to divide them, sow dissension among them, which is the mother of dissolution. Divide et impera. Divide and conquer. His father had carried away, captive the ten tribes: he doubted not, therefore but he should conquer the other two; but his hopes ran aground, as the proverb hath it.

Verse 2

And when Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib was come, and that he was purposed to fight against Jerusalem,

That Sennacherib was come. — See on 2 Kings 18:13 .

Verse 3

He took counsel with his princes and his mighty men to stop the waters of the fountains which [were] without the city: and they did help him.

To stop the waters of the fountains. — He trusted in God: but yet used the best means. God is to be trusted, but not tempted. See Isaiah 22:9 ; Isaiah 22:11 .

Verse 4

So there was gathered much people together, who stopped all the fountains, and the brook that ran through the midst of the land, saying, Why should the kings of Assyria come, and find much water?

And the brook. — Called Gihon. 2 Chronicles 32:30 This was one of those rivers the waters whereof made glad the city of God. See 1 Kings 1:33 .

Come and find much water. — Take we like care that Satan, when he cometh to assault us, find not much matter. "Mortify therefore your earthly members, fornication, … and covetousness." Colossians 3:5

Verse 5

Also he strengthened himself, and built up all the wall that was broken, and raised [it] up to the towers, and another wall without, and repaired Millo [in] the city of David, and made darts and shields in abundance.

And raised it up to the towers. — Or, Mounted the warlike engines upon the towers, for his better defence.

Verse 6

And he set captains of war over the people, and gathered them together to him in the street of the gate of the city, and spake comfortably to them, saying,

He set captains of war. — He did all that could be done: for he knew that the Assyrian came with a mighty force, as a river that "cometh up over all his channels, and goeth over all his banks." Isaiah 8:7

Verse 7

Be strong and courageous, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that [is] with him: for [there be] more with us than with him:

Be strong and courageous. — His speech is short but pithy: very cordial and comfortable.

Now for all the multitude that is with him. — Only go to Christ and say, as Isaiah 8:8 , "The stretching out of his wings hath filled the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel."

Verse 8

With him [is] an arm of flesh; but with us [is] the LORD our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.

With him is an arm of flesh. — Flesh is frail: and God can make the strongest sinew in his arm to crack quickly.

But with us is the Lord our God. — The import of "Immanuel"; by which name Christ now began to be known amongst them.

Verse 9

After this did Sennacherib king of Assyria send his servants to Jerusalem, (but he [himself laid siege] against Lachish, and all his power with him,) unto Hezekiah king of Judah, and unto all Judah that [were] at Jerusalem, saying,

Sent his servants to Jerusalem. — See 2 Kings 18:9 . Antichrist, in like sort, sendeth his legates and nuncios to solicit people to a defection from Christ; as he did Vergerius to Saxony, Campeius to the princes of Germany, Sadoletus to Geneva, Pool hither, …

Verse 10

Thus saith Sennacherib king of Assyria, Whereon do ye trust, that ye abide in the siege in Jerusalem?

Whereon do ye trust. — Like rhetoric hereunto useth Antichrist, where he would seduce. See Sadolet’s sugared Epistle to the Citizens of Geneva, written in Calvin’s absence, who fully and elegantly answered it from Strasburg, where for a while he lived an exile.

Verse 11

Doth not Hezekiah persuade you to give over yourselves to die by famine and by thirst, saying, The LORD our God shall deliver us out of the hand of the king of Assyria?

Doth not Hezekiah persuade (or deceive) you? — See on 2 Kings 18:29-30 .

Verse 12

Hath not the same Hezekiah taken away his high places and his altars, and commanded Judah and Jerusalem, saying, Ye shall worship before one altar, and burn incense upon it?

Hath not the same Hezekiah taken away his high places? — So saith Antichrist, Have not your reformers taken away the abbeys, monasteries, altars, crosses, …? And as there wanted not some in Jerusalem who were of the same mind with Sennacherib’s messengers, so neither wanteth there among us a malignant party, that grumble and grind their teeth at our happy Reformation.

Verse 13

Know ye not what I and my fathers have done unto all the people of [other] lands? were the gods of the nations of those lands any ways able to deliver their lands out of mine hand?

Know you not. — See 2 Kings 19:11-12 .

Verse 14

Who [was there] among all the gods of those nations that my fathers utterly destroyed, that could deliver his people out of mine hand, that your God should be able to deliver you out of mine hand?

That my fathers utterly destroyed. — See 2 Kings 18:34 ; 2 Kings 19:12-13 .

Verse 15

Now therefore let not Hezekiah deceive you, nor persuade you on this manner, neither yet believe him: for no god of any nation or kingdom was able to deliver his people out of mine hand, and out of the hand of my fathers: how much less shall your God deliver you out of mine hand?

Now therefore let not Hezekiah. — See 2 Kings 18:29 .

How much less shall your God. — Prodigious blasphemy! And was not that of John Hunt, a a Popish pamphleteer, every whit as bad, when he said, The God of the Protestants is the most uncivil and evil mannered God of all those who have borne the names of gods upon the earth; yea, worse than Pan, god of the clowns, which can endure no ceremonies nor good manners at all! Humble Appeal to King James, chap. 6.

Verse 16

And his servants spake yet [more] against the LORD God, and against his servant Hezekiah.

And his servants spake yet more. — Adding of their own to their master’s mandates which yet needed not.

Verse 17

He wrote also letters to rail on the LORD God of Israel, and to speak against him, saying, As the gods of the nations of [other] lands have not delivered their people out of mine hand, so shall not the God of Hezekiah deliver his people out of mine hand.

He wrote also letters. — See 2 Kings 19:9 ; 2 Kings 19:14 .

Verse 18

Then they cried with a loud voice in the Jews’ speech unto the people of Jerusalem that [were] on the wall, to affright them, and to trouble them; that they might take the city.

Then they cried … in the Jews’ speech — See 2 Kings 18:28 .

To affright them, and to trouble them. — To sow the seeds of sedition amongst them, to make division, and thereby get dominion.

Verse 19

And they spake against the God of Jerusalem, as against the gods of the people of the earth, [which were] the work of the hands of man.

As against the gods of the people of the earth. — This was high blasphemy. See on 2 Chronicles 32:15 2 Kings 17:30 ; 2 Kings 17:33-41 .

Verse 20

And for this [cause] Hezekiah the king, and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz, prayed and cried to heaven.

For this cause. — See 2 Kings 19:2-3 , …

And the prophet Isaiah … prayed. — And at the same time prophesied comfortably. 2 Kings 19:14-19

Verse 21

And the LORD sent an angel, which cut off all the mighty men of valour, and the leaders and captains in the camp of the king of Assyria. So he returned with shame of face to his own land. And when he was come into the house of his god, they that came forth of his own bowels slew him there with the sword.

And the Lord sent an angel. — See 2 Kings 19:35 .

So he returned with shame of face. — He was not so much preserved, as reserved to a greater mischief

And when he was come. — See 2 Kings 19:36-37 .

Verse 22

Thus the LORD saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria, and from the hand of all [other], and guided them on every side.

And the inhabitants of Jerusalem. — Who were not only preserved, but much enriched by the spoil of their enemies.

And guided them on every side. — As a careful shepherd doth his flock.

Verse 23

And many brought gifts unto the LORD to Jerusalem, and presents to Hezekiah king of Judah: so that he was magnified in the sight of all nations from thenceforth.

And many brought gifts unto the Lord. — Many strangers were hereupon proselyted, like as Jethro also had been by God’s great works for his people against the Egyptians.

Verse 24

In those days Hezekiah was sick to the death, and prayed unto the LORD: and he spake unto him, and he gave him a sign.

In those days Hezekiah was sick to the death. — See 2 Kings 20:1-3 , …

Verse 25

But Hezekiah rendered not again according to the benefit [done] unto him; for his heart was lifted up: therefore there was wrath upon him, and upon Judah and Jerusalem.

But Hezekiah rendered not again. — His returns were not answerable to his receipts. Plerique omnes sumus ingrati. The rain comes down from heaven in showers; it goes up but in mists: so do our praises return slowly and slenderly. We serve God, for most part as little children serve us, who, when they be come in to us from their play, and have got something of us they want, away they go, without reverence or respect of us; but if they know we will have duty, then they do it, but in such a fashion that we may see their hearts are on their game abroad more than on their duty.

For his heart was lifted up. — Not as good Jehoshaphat’s was, 2 Chronicles 17:6 but worse, with pride and self-conceit, whilst he considered not his distance from God and dependence upon God, but acted as if he had been some petty god within himself. Such a blab Satan will easily blow up in the best hearts, if they watch not.

Verse 26

Notwithstanding Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, [both] he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the LORD came not upon them in the days of Hezekiah.

Notwithstanding Hezekiah humbled himself. — He afflicted himself with voluntary sorrows, when once, by the preaching of the prophet, he came to a sight of his sin. Submissior factus est superbia cordis sui - so Vatablus rendereth it - he was made more humble by the pride of his heart: as God’s people are gainers by their sins also; whence that paradox of Augustine, My sins, in some sense, do me more good than my graces; for they make me afterwards more humble, more careful, more thankful for a Saviour, more merciful to others, more desirous of the state of perfection, … See 2 Kings 20:17-19 .

Verse 27

And Hezekiah had exceeding much riches and honour: and he made himself treasuries for silver, and for gold, and for precious stones, and for spices, and for shields, and for all manner of pleasant jewels;

And Hezekiah had exceeding much riches and honour. — And these puffed him up; his heart was lifted up with his wealth, as a boat riseth with the rising of the water that carrieth it.

And for all manner of pleasant jewels. — Heb., Instruments of desire. All these were lawful enough, and useful, had he not shot his affections too far into them.

Difficile est amimos opibus non tradere.

Verse 28

Storehouses also for the increase of corn, and wine, and oil; and stalls for all manner of beasts, and cotes for flocks.

For the increase of corn, wine, and oil. — These are commodities less precious, but more necessary than the former, as the great Caliph of Babylon found when famished to death in the midst of his great treasure, whereof he was willed to eat and make no spare. Turk. Hist., fol. 113.

Verse 29

Moreover he provided him cities, and possessions of flocks and herds in abundance: for God had given him substance very much.

For God had given him substance very much. — That is, The wealth of this world; though to speak properly, true grace only is "substance, durable substance": riches are nec vera, nec vestra Luke 16:11-12

Verse 30

This same Hezekiah also stopped the upper watercourse of Gihon, and brought it straight down to the west side of the city of David. And Hezekiah prospered in all his works.

Stopped the upper watercourse of Gihon. — See 2 Chronicles 32:4 .

And Hezekiah prospered. — See 2 Kings 18:7 .

Verse 31

Howbeit in [the business of] the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon, who sent unto him to enquire of the wonder that was [done] in the land, God left him, to try him, that he might know all [that was] in his heart.

Howbeit in the business of the ambassadors. — See 2 Kings 20:12-14 .

God left him, to try him. — As he oft doth his best children, Genesis 22:1 Job 1:12 ; Job 2:3 ; Job 2:6 but forsaketh them not utterly. Psalms 119:8 The humility that Hezekiah showed when the prophet admonished him, and his perseverance in piety, do show that God never quite deprived him of his grace: only sivit eum agere ex affectu suo, he let him, for this once, do as he would, not strengthening him by his Spirit in this temptation of worldly ambition, that he might discover him to himself and to others; for that a man is, that he is in a temptation. Satan can work but according to the matter he findeth in us. The wind addeth no water to the sea, only can make the waves to rise and surge. The fire addeth nothing to the water when it is set upon it, but attenuateth it only, and causeth it to boil, …

Verse 32

Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, and his goodness, behold, they [are] written in the vision of Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, [and] in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel.

And his goodness. — Heb., His kindnesses; viz., to God’s people in supplying themwith sacrifices, and setting up the sincere service of God.

In the book of the kings. — Either those now extant, or those larger, long since lost, and out of which these chronicles seem to have been compiled.

Verse 33

And Hezekiah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the chiefest of the sepulchres of the sons of David: and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem did him honour at his death. And Manasseh his son reigned in his stead.

See 2 Kings 20:21 .

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 32". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/2-chronicles-32.html. 1865-1868.
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