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Bible Commentaries

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

2 Chronicles 24

 

 

Verses 1-27

H. Joash ch24

Joash"s life, as the writer narrated it, proves again the principles that Chronicles stresses. God was faithful to His promise to provide rulers over His people from David"s descendants. Each king"s success depended on his submission to God"s authority as expressed in the Law of Moses and the announcements of the prophets. The writer evaluated each king"s success and measured it by his attitude toward prescribed worship that centered at the temple.

"His rule . . . serves as a characterization in miniature for the historical course of his entire nation." [Note: Payne, p513.]

The use of boxes or baskets to receive the gifts of the people was common in the ancient Near East. [Note: Dillard, 2 Chronicles , p191.] Coined money did not exist before the sixth century B.C, so the people evidently brought their contributions in the form of refined or unrefined metals.

The priests were to instruct the kings in God"s Law (cf. 2 Chronicles 26:16-18). As long as Joash listened to this instruction, he succeeded. When he stopped listening, he began to fail. He began to lead the people away from God.

Nevertheless God did not abandon His people because they had abandoned Him. He sent at least one prophet to warn them to return to Him or experience discipline ( 2 Chronicles 24:20). The Hebrew text says literally, "The Spirit clothed Himself with Zechariah" ( 2 Chronicles 24:20; cf. 1 Chronicles 12:18). When the people refused to respond properly, judgment followed ( 2 Chronicles 24:21-27). The way of repentance was still open to the people (cf. 2 Chronicles 6:24-25; Jeremiah 18:7-10).

"This prayer of imprecation, rather than of forgiveness [by Zechariah] (cf. Luke 23:34; Acts 7:60), was justified by the official positions of both the killer and the killed. God"s name was at stake, and vengeance did follow ( 2 Chronicles 24:24-25)." [Note: J. Barton Payne, "Second Chronicles," in The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, p409.]

The murder of Zechariah was especially heinous. He died in the very courtyard where "Jehoiada and his sons" ( 2 Chronicles 23:11) had anointed his executioner, Joash, as king. An earlier instance of conspiracy followed by stoning involved Naboth in the days of Ahab ( 1 Kings 21:8-14). Thus Joash suffers by comparison with Ahab. Ironically, Jehoiada sought to protect the sanctity of the temple from murder ( 2 Chronicles 23:14-15), but his own son was murdered there. Many students of Scripture believe that the Zechariah to whom Jesus referred in Matthew 23:35 was this man. [Note: E.g, Leon J. Wood, The Prophets of Israel, p237 , n8).] However, Jesus referred to Zechariah the son of Berechiah (cf. Zechariah 1:1). Furthermore, Zechariah the son of Berechiah (the prophet) died hundreds of years later than Zechariah the son of Jehoiada (the priest).

In this chapter in particular, the people"s response to the temple clearly reflects their response to God ( 2 Chronicles 24:4-5; 2 Chronicles 24:13; 2 Chronicles 24:18; 2 Chronicles 24:20; 2 Chronicles 24:24). This is always the case in Chronicles.

The writer of Kings presented four kings of Judah as reformers: Asa, Jehoshaphat, Hezekiah, and Josiah. The writer of Chronicles recorded an additional revival that took place in Judah under Joash.

 


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Bibliography Information
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 24:4". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/2-chronicles-24.html. 2012.

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