Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Kings 3:1

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab became king over Israel at Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Ahaziah;   Joram;   Thompson Chain Reference - Jehoram, or Joram;   Joram or Jehoram;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Kings;   Samaria, Ancient;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Joram or Jehoram;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Ahab;   Jehoram;   Jezebel;   Miracles;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Jehoram;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Archaeology and Biblical Study;   Chronology of the Biblical Period;   Joram;   Kings, 1 and 2;   Moab and the Moabite Stone;   Transjordan;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Chronology of the Old Testament;   Edom, Edomites;   Elisha;   Jehoram;   Jehoshaphat;   Medeba;   Mesha;   Moab, Moabites;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Joram, Jehoram;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Kirharaseth;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Armor;   Arms;   Jehoshaphat;   Moab;   Samaria;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Jeho'ram;   Jehosh'aphat;   Wool;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Israel;   Kingdom of Judah;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Chronology of the Old Testament;   Israel, Kingdom of;   Jehoram;   Jehu;   Jezebel;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

In the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat - This date agrees exactly with the statements that Jehoshaphat began to reign in the fourth year of Ahab 1 Kings 22:41, and Ahaziah in the 17th year of Jehoshaphat 1 Kings 22:51.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-kings-3.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

THE "THREE KINGS" AT WAR AGAINST MOAB

The Moabite Stone (discovered in 1868) has a parallel account of events in this chapter from the viewpoint of Mesha (2 Kings 3:4), the Moabite king who authored the inscription on that stone. Dentan said of this stone that, "It is one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of all time (it may be seen in the Louvre in Paris) and provides interesting confirmation of the situation presupposed by this chapter."[1] This writer prefers the viewpoint that this chapter confirms what is written on the Moabite Stone!

We have cited examples of monuments with false inscriptions (as on Robert Fulton's Tomb on Wall Street in New York City); and the critical dictum that any pagan inscription is a preferable record to the Holy Bible is merely another false axiom of critics!

As a matter of truth, the Moabite Stone is a magnificent account of the war discussed in this chapter, in full agreement with what the inspired author has written here.

JEHORAM; KING OF ISRAEL; AFTER HIS BROTHER AHAZIAH

"Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years. And he did that which was evil in the sight of Jehovah, but not like his father, and like his mother; for he put away the pillar of Baal that his father had made. Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, wherewith he made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom."

The critical allegation that this paragraph is merely, "A Deuteronomic appraisal, and that the successive kings of Israel were judged by the Deuteronomic standard of the single sanctuary (in Jerusalem),"[2] is unacceptable in the light of truth. The implication of such an opinion is that the provision of Jerusalem as the single, one and only, acceptable sanctuary for the Chosen People came, not from Moses via the direct revelation of God, but that it resulted from a very long crusade of certain hard-headed priests who finally succeeded in making it so.

That implication is false. All Israel was aware of God's Divine instructions regarding the uniqueness of His sanctuary, and it was that knowledge that compelled the kings of Northern Israel to persist in their unbelievably hard-headed preference of paganism as the most practical device for retaining their independence. Once all Israel had been allowed to return three times each year to Jerusalem in the great national festivals Divinely ordained for Israel, the northern kingdom could not have continued very long.

The theory of "a Deuteronomic" campaign, lasting through the history of Northern Israel, to make Jerusalem the only sanctuary is nothing but a fairy tale. It had been "the only sanctuary" ever since the days of David, and even prior to that, there was never more than one sanctuary at a time. The efforts of Northern Israel to change that were founded upon absolutely nothing except the vain-glorious ambition of their evil, unbelieving, and conceited rulers.

"He put away the pillar of Baal" (2 Kings 3:2). Yes, he put it away, but he did not destroy it, nor did he get rid of the illegitimate sanctuaries at Dan and Bethel, since they were the king-pins of his stability on the throne. "He did not succeed in exterminating the worship of Baal. It not only continued but appears to have been carried on in the most shameless manner (2 Kings 10:18ff), at which we should not be surprised, because his mother Jezebel, that fanatical worshipper of Baal, was living throughout the whole twelve years of his reign."[3]

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/2-kings-3.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah,.... So that the two years of the reign of his brother Ahaziah were not complete, only part of the seventeenth and part of the eighteenth of Jehoshaphat, since he began to reign in his seventeenth year, at the beginning of that, and died towards the close of the eighteenth, when Jehoram succeeded him, see 1 Kings 22:51, and reigned twelve years.

Copyright Statement
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 3:1". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-kings-3.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the a eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.

(a) Read the annotation in (2 Kings 1:17).
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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/2-kings-3.html. 1599-1645.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

CONTENTS

We are here presented with some account of the reign of Jehoram, In an enquiry concerning a quarrel between Israel and Moab, Elisha is commissioned with a gracious message from the Lord to Israel. The Moabites are conquered.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/2-kings-3.html. 1828.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Kings 3:1 Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.

Ver. 1. In the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat.] But in the second year of Jehoram, [2 Kings 1:17] whom his father Jehoshaphat had made viceroy; but misliking his son’s evil practices, as it is probable, he resumed the sceptre.

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-kings-3.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

2 KINGS CHAPTER 3

Jehoram followeth the sin of Jeroboam; he, with Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom, goeth to battle against Moab, 2 Kings 3:1-8. They, in distress for water, obtain it by Elisha, and a promise of victory, 2 Kings 3:9-20. The Moabites, deceived by the colour of the water, coming to spoil, are overcome, 2 Kings 3:21-25. The king of Moab, by sacrificing his eldest son, raiseth the siege, 2 Kings 3:26,27.

The eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat.

Quest. How can this be true, when Ahaziah, Jehoram’s predecessor, who reigned two years, began his reign in Jehoshaphat’s seventeenth year, 1 Kings 22:51?

Answ. Either Ahaziah reigned the greatest part of two years, to wit, of the seventeenth and eighteenth years of Jehoshaphat, (parts of years being oft called years in the computation of times, both in Scripture and other authors,) and Jehoram began his reign towards the end of his eighteenth year; or Ahaziah reigned part of this two years with his father, and the rest after him.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-kings-3.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

1.Jehoram the son of Ahab — And brother of Ahaziah, who died prematurely from a fall from his upper chamber. 2 Kings 1:2; 2 Kings 1:17. With this Jehoram, or Joram, as he is often called, the dynasty of Omri came to an end.

Eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat — See note on 2 Kings 1:17.

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Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-kings-3.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Achab. Joram succeeded his brother, chap. i. 17.

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-kings-3.html. 1859.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.

Jehoram ... in ... the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat - (cf. 1 Kings 22:51.) To reconcile the statements in the two passages, we must suppose that Ahaziah, having reigned during the 17th year and greater part of the 18th year of Jehoshaphat, was succeeded by his brother Joram or Jehoram, in the end of that 18th year, or else that Ahaziah, having reigned two years in conjunction with his father (see the notes at 2 Kings 1:17), died at the end of that period, when Jehoram ascended the throne. His policy was as hostile as that of his predecessors, to the true religion; but he made some changes. Whatever was his motive for this alteration-whether dread of the many alarming judgments the patronage of idolatry had brought upon his father, or whether it was made as a small concession to the feelings of Jehoshaphat, his ally-he abolished idolatry in its gross form, and restored the symbolic worship of God, which the kings of Israel, from the time of Jeroboam, had set up as a partition wall between their subjects and those of Judah.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-kings-3.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

III.

THE REIGN OF JEHORAM OF ISRAEL, AND HIS EXPEDITION AGAINST MOAB, IN WHICH JEHOSHAPHAT OF JUDAH TAKES PART.

(1) Began to reign.—Literally, reigned.

The eighteenth year.—Comp. Note on 2 Kings 1:17; 2 Kings 8:16.

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Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-kings-3.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.
Jehoram
1:17; 8:16
Joram
1 Kings 22:51
Reciprocal: Genesis 19:37 - Moabites;  2 Kings 3:11 - that we may;  Matthew 1:8 - Josaphat

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Kings 3:1". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-kings-3.html.