Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Kings 23:30

His servants drove his body in a chariot from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem and buried him in his own tomb. Then the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah and anointed him and made him king in place of his father.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Anointing;   Egyptians;   Israel, Prophecies Concerning;   Jehoahaz;   Josiah;   Megiddo;   Pharaoh;   Thompson Chain Reference - Anointing;   Israel;   Israel-The Jews;   Jehoahaz;   Kings of Israel;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Jehoahaz;   Pharaoh;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Egypt;   Jehoahaz;   Jeremiah;   Josiah;   Shallum;   Zedekiah;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Gods and Goddesses, Pagan;   Kings, First and Second, Theology of;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Chariot;   Congregation;   Josiah;   Pharaoh;   Riblah;   Tombs;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Armageddon;   Fly;   Jehoahaz;   Josiah;   Tahpanhes;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Archaeology and Biblical Study;   Armageddon;   Babylon, History and Religion of;   Egypt;   Jehoahaz;   Kings, 1 and 2;   Megiddo;   Messiah;   Neco;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Canon of the Old Testament;   Esdraelon;   Hexateuch;   Idolatry;   Jehoahaz;   Megiddo;   Temple;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Armageddon ;   Egypt;   Jehoahaz ;   Megiddo, Megiddon ;   Shallum ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Raca;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Egypt;   Jehoahaz;   Pharaoh;   Riblah;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Chariot,;   Pha'raoh,;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Armageddon;   Jehoahaz;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Judah;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Burial;   Chariot;   Egypt;   Esdraelon, Plain of;   Jehoahaz;   Johanan;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Anointing;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Dead from Megiddo - The word מת meth should here be considered as a participle, dying, for it is certain he was not dead: he was mortally wounded at Megiddo, was carried in a dying state to Jerusalem, and there he died and was buried. See 2 Chronicles 35:24.

Herodotus, lib. i., c. 17, 18, 25, and lib. ii. 159, appears to refer to the same war which is here mentioned. He says that Nechoh, in the sixth year of his reign, went to attack the king of Assyria at Magdolum, gained a complete victory, and took Cadytis. Usher and others believe that Magdolum and Megiddo were the same place. The exact place of the battle seems to have been Hadadrimmon, in the valley of Megiddo, for there Zechariah tells us 2 Kings 12:11, was the great mourning for Josiah. Compare this with 2 Chronicles 35:24, 2 Chronicles 35:25.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/2-kings-23.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Dead - It appears from a comparison of this passage with 2Chronicles (marginal reference) that Josiah was not actually killed in the battle.

Jehoahaz - Or Shallum (the marginal note). He may have taken the name of Jehoahaz (“the Lord possesses”) on his accession. He was not the eldest son of Josiah (see 2 Kings 23:36 note). The mention of “anointing” here favors the view that there was some irregularity in the succession (see 1 Kings 1:34 note).

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-kings-23.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo,.... They took him out of the chariot in which he was wounded, and put him into another, where he died of his wounds by the way; being mortally wounded, he is said to be dead, or a dead man, see 2 Chronicles 35:24.

and brought him to Jerusalem; which, according to BuntingF2Travels, &c. p. 188. , was forty four miles from Megiddo:

and buried him in his own sepulchre; which either he had provided for himself in his lifetime, or which in common belonged to the kings of Judah, see 2 Chronicles 35:24.

and the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's stead; though he was not the eldest son, Jehoiakim, who was afterwards placed in his room, being two years older, as appears from 2 Kings 23:31 and this is the reason, as the Jewish commentators in general agree, that he was anointed; which they say was never done to the son of a king, unless there was a competitor, or some objection to, or dispute about, the succession, as in the case of Solomon and others.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-kings-23.html. 1999.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own sepulchre. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's stead.

Dead — Mortally wounded.

Jehoahaz — Who was younger than Jehoiakim, yet preferred by the people before the elder brother; either because Jehoiakim refused the kingdom for fear of Pharaoh, whom he knew he should hereby provoke. Or because Jehoahaz was the more stout and warlike prince; whence he is called a lion, Ezekiel 19:3.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
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Wesley, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/2-kings-23.html. 1765.

James Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

THE DEATH OF JOSIAH

‘His servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo.’

2 Kings 23:30

If you would see the greatness of Josiah, you must look at the history of his life, not at the account which we have of his death. If the text of this sermon had been the only notice of Josiah, you would not have known that he was different from, or better than, other men of his time; you might have grieved over his death, and pitied one who seemed to fall so far short in glory of Solomon and others of the kings. But no, Josiah’s reign was a most glorious one, more glorious I should say than Solomon’s. He won for himself an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and having done this it mattered little whether it was a fever, or old age, or the sword of Pharaoh-nechoh, who was the messenger to call him away.

I. I think that the text may be very instructive to us as a picture of the manner in which God sometimes calls His servants away when they have done their work.—When I read in Holy Scripture of a man who like Josiah found his kingdom in confusion, and idolatry rampant, and false altars raised, and crime and pollution abundant, and when I read of him as setting himself to the work of purification with all his heart and with all his soul, I seem to read a parable describing the condition of each true member of Christ.

Josiah’s kingdom could not have been worse than the heart of each of us if left to itself, and he made it his business to cleanse his kingdom, even as each one of us, if he fulfils his promises, is bound to put out of his heart all that is unclean, all that maketh a lie, all that exalteth itself against God.

II. The moral which I draw from the text is this, that he who does his work in the proper time, who does not put off till old age the work of youth, nor to the hour of death the labour of life, may be quiet and unconcerned of the way in which God is pleased to call him; if he is called by some sudden Providence when engaged in his work, or summoned by some speedy sickness, or in whatever way God may take him, he may be of good cheer and of a quiet mind, knowing that God will do all things well.

Bishop Harvey Goodwin.

Illustrations

(1) ‘Josiah’s death was not a peaceful one. He persisted in going into conflict with Pharaoh-nechoh, king of Egypt, against the latter’s earnest remonstrance; and, in consequence of his hardihood, met his death. “His servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo” (2 Kings 23:30). Is there, then, any real contradiction between the prophet’s prediction (2 Kings 22:20) and this sad event?

Certainly not! The one tells us what God was prepared to do for His servant; the other what he brought on himself by his own folly. There are many instances of this change of purpose in the Word of God. One of them is known as “his breach of promise,” or “altering of purpose” (Numbers 15:34, marg.). He would have saved His people from the forty years’ wandering in the wilderness, but they made Him serve with their sins. He would have gathered Jerusalem as a hen gathers her brood, but she would not.

Let us beware lest there be in any of us an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God, and frustrating some blessed purpose of his heart. Eye hath not seen, nor heart conceived, what He has prepared for those who love Him. But we may limit the Holy One of Israel; we may so restrain Him by our unbelief as to stay Him from the mighty works which are in His thought to do for us.’

(2) ‘King Josiah’s end was sad and, as we may feel, disappointing and untimely. But he had done his work, and therefore God took him. Early as death came upon him, and painful as were its circumstances, it was really in mercy that God removed him. He himself, we may be sure, would not grieve at his departure, but rather thank God for having taken him from the evil to come. His history seems to warn us against laying too much stress on the circumstances of a man’s death, seeing that it is the life that is of real consequence. Our business in the world is to live for God, not to put off to old age the work of youth, nor to the hour of death the labour of life, but to work for God during the time appointed for our work. And then it matters not what the manner of our death may be.’

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Nisbet, James. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". Church Pulpit Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cpc/2-kings-23.html. 1876.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Kings 23:30 And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own sepulchre. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father’s stead.

Ver. 30. And his servants carried him in a chariot dead.] Mortuum, i.e., Moribundum, a dying man. See on 2 Kings 23:29.

And the people of the land took Jehoahaz.] Lest Pharaoh at his return finding no king, should seize upon the kingdom; but this greatly provoked the conqueror, to whom they should rather have sought for peace and liberty to make them a new king.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-kings-23.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Dead, i.e. mortally wounded, as in the former verse; and as we commonly say of a sick man past hopes of recovery, that he is a dead man: compare Genesis 20:3.

Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, who was younger than Jehoiakim, by comparing 2 Kings 23:31 with 2 Kings 23:36, yet preferred by the people before the elder brother; either because Jehoiakim refused the kingdom for fear of Pharaoh, whom he knew he should hereby provoke; or because Jehoahaz was the more stout and warlike prince; whence he is called a lion, Ezekiel 19:3, though indeed he showed his courage more against his people than his enemies; but they judged that he was most able and willing to defend them against the conquering army.

Anointed him; as they used to do in such extraordinary cases, because this was a troublesome time, and he was not the right heir to the crown, and therefore needed this solemn rite of confirmation, which Solomon had in the same circumstances.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-kings-23.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

30.Dead from Megiddo — So he did not die at Jerusalem, as the form of statement in Chronicles would lead one to suppose. He probably gave orders, as soon as wounded, for his whole army to retreat, and he had perhaps been carried as far as Hadadrimmon, some five miles south of Megiddo, before he expired. Hence the origin of the expression, “the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.” Zechariah 12:11.

Buried him in his own sepulchre — Which was probably “in the garden of Uzza,” where his father (2 Kings 21:26) and grandfather (2 Kings 21:18) had been buried. 2 Chronicles adds, that “all Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah. And Jeremiah lamented,” together with “all the singing men and the singing women,” so that their lamentations became “an ordinance in Israel.”

People of the land — The great body of the nation by their representatives, the elders. Compare 2 Kings 11:24.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-kings-23.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Kings 23:30. His servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo — That is, mortally wounded, as in the former verse; and, as we commonly say of a sick man, past hopes of recovery, that he is a dead man. Instead of dead, Houbigant reads dying. The people took Jehoahaz, and made him king — Who was younger than Jehoiakim, yet preferred by the people before the elder brother; either because Jehoiakim refused the kingdom for fear of Pharaoh, whom he knew he should hereby provoke; or, because Jehoahaz was the more stout and warlike prince: whence he is called a lion, Ezekiel 19:3. And anointed him — Which ceremony was used because this was a troublesome time, and he was not the right heir to the crown, and therefore needed this solemn rite of confirmation, which Solomon had in the same circumstances.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-kings-23.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Sepulchre. Paralipomenon xxxv., in the monument (or mausoleum) of his fathers. Such was the end of Josias: he fell gloriously in defence of his country, as he had spent his life in promoting religion. God therefore withdrew him from the sight of the miseries which were shortly to fall on his devoted people, chap. xxii. 20. (Haydock) --- He was a prince of most excellent disposition, and receives the highest encomium, ver. 25., and Ecclesiasticus xlix. 1. Jeremias composed his funeral canticle, which was sung on his anniversary for many years, 2 Paralipomenon xxxv. 24. The mourning for this pious king became proverbial, and resembled that which should be made for the Messias, Zacharias xii. 11. The life and death of Josias prefigured those of Jesus Christ; who should be long expected as the restorer of the true religion, the teacher of a more excellent law, and the most innocent victim for the sins of the people. The glorious Phase under Josias, was but a faint representation of the eucharistic sacrifice. (Calmet)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-kings-23.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

buried him. For the sorrow attending this, see 2 Chronicles 35:25.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-kings-23.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(30) And his servants carried him . . .—See Notes 2 Chronicles 35:24.

The people of the land.—Thenius says they were the soldiery who had fled to Jerusalem; but this is doubtful.

Took Jehoahaz.—He was not the eldest son (see 2 Kings 23:36), but he may have been thought a more capable prince amid the emergencies of the time, although Jeremiah 22:10 seq. shows that this estimate was fallacious.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-kings-23.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own sepulchre. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's stead.
servants
9:28; 1 Kings 22:33-38; 2 Chronicles 35:24
the people
14:21; 21:24; 2 Chronicles 36:1,2-4
Reciprocal: Joshua 12:21 - Megiddo;  Joshua 17:11 - Megiddo;  1 Kings 4:12 - Megiddo;  1 Kings 9:15 - Megiddo;  2 Kings 9:27 - Megiddo;  2 Kings 22:20 - gathered;  1 Chronicles 3:14 - Josiah;  1 Chronicles 11:3 - anointed;  2 Chronicles 35:20 - Necho;  2 Chronicles 35:22 - Megiddo;  Jeremiah 22:10 - Weep ye;  Ezekiel 19:1 - the princes;  Zephaniah 1:8 - the princes;  John 19:41 - and in;  Revelation 16:16 - Armageddon

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Kings 23:30". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-kings-23.html.