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JEHOSHAPHAT REBUKED BY JEHU, 2 Chronicles 19:1-3.
1. Jehoshaphat… returned to his house in peace That is, safe, personally uninjured in the battle in which Ahab lost his life.
2. Jehu This prophet had previously exercised his office in the kingdom of Israel, and had foretold the doom of Baasha. 1 Kings 16:1, note.
Went out to meet him As he was returning to his house from the war. So Azariah went out to meet Asa as the latter returned from the war with Zerah. 2 Chronicles 15:2. But Jehu received a better treatment from Jehoshaphat than his father Hanani had received from Asa. 2 Chronicles 16:10.
Shouldest thou help the ungodly Such as the idolatrous Ahab, whose kingdom is so largely given over to the worship of Baal and Ashtoreth.
Love them that hate the Lord Jehoshaphat’s affinity with Ahab’s family by marriage exposed him to this charge of loving those that hated Jehovah. Jezebel, and all whom she could influence, seem to have had a hatred towards Jehovah and his worshippers. Comp. 1Ki 18:4 ; 1 Kings 19:2.
Wrath upon thee Jehovah’s indignation, which will result in future woes to Judah.
3. Nevertheless The seer has for Jehoshaphat words of encouragement as well as words of blame, and reminds the king that in taking away the groves [the Asherah images, 1 Kings 14:15, note] he had shown the true theocratic spirit, which would not fail to be recognized and blessed of God. And this oracle of blame and of praise inspired the king to attempt further reforms.
JEHOSHAPHAT’S FURTHER REFORMS, 2 Chronicles 19:4-11.
4. He went out again through the people The again refers to his previous reforms described in chapter 17. In spite of all his efforts to obliterate idolatry, here and there throughout the kingdom the idol images and worship on “the high places” would again and again appear. Comp. 2 Chronicles 20:33.
5. Set judges in the land… city by city Appointed local magistrates in all the principal cities to attend to the administration of justice, according to the directions of the law. Deuteronomy 16:18-20. Probably Jehoshaphat discovered irregularities and wrongs in the administration of justice, such as respect of persons, and taking of bribes, (2 Chronicles 19:7,) and he accordingly undertook an extensive reform in the matter, and solemnly charged his newly-appointed judges to exercise their office in the fear of Jehovah.
8. Jerusalem… Levites… priests… chief of the fathers From this we need not suppose that no Levites, or priests, or chief fathers were made judges in the other cities. Probably the judges in every city were selected from one or all of these three classes. Comp. 2 Chronicles 23:4; 2 Chronicles 2:0 Chronicles26:29, notes. But at Jerusalem was the supreme tribunal, to which cases came for final decision.
For the judgment of the Lord Equivalent to “all matters of the Lord,” in 2 Chronicles 19:11; that is, all matters pertaining to religion and the worship of Jehovah.
And for controversies Civil suits, as distinguished from religions or ecclesiastical; called in 2 Chronicles 19:11, “all the king’s matters.”
When they returned to Jerusalem Rather, and they returned, etc.
That is, the king and his attendants, who went out (2 Chronicles 19:4) from Jerusalem to settle the judicial interests of the kingdom, returned. This sentence ought to be connected with the verse immediately following.
10. Between law and commandment, statutes and judgments “That is, in cases where the matter concerns the interpretation and application of the law, and its individual commands, statutes, and judgments, to particular crimes; wherever, in short, there is any doubt by what particular provision of the law the case in hand should be decided.” Keil.
11. Amariah the chief priest This dignitary would naturally and of right have oversight of all questions concerning religion and worship, as Zebadiah… the ruler of the house of Judah, (that is, the tribal prince, and probably oldest and most honoured representative of his tribe,) would have oversight of all civil suits that came to Jerusalem.
Matters of the Lord… king’s matters See the note on 2 Chronicles 19:8.
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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 19". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week of Advent