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Bible Commentaries

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

2 Chronicles 8

 

 

Verse 1

And it came to pass at the end of twenty years, wherein Solomon had built the house of the LORD, and his own house,

At the end of twenty years, wherein Solomon had built the house of the Lord, and his own house - (cf. 1 Kings 6:38; 1 Kings 7:1; also 9:10.)


Verse 2

That the cities which Huram had restored to Solomon, Solomon built them, and caused the children of Israel to dwell there.

Cities which Huram had restored ... Solomon built them ... These cities lay in the northwest of Galilee, and, though included within the limits of the promised land, had never been conquered. The right of occupying them Solomon granted to Huram, who, after consideration, refused them as unsuitable to the commercial habits of his subjects (see the notes at 1 Kings 9:11). Solomon having wrested them from the possession of the Canaanite inhabitants, repaired them and filled them with a colony of Hebrews.


Verse 3

And Solomon went to Hamathzobah, and prevailed against it.

Solomon went to Hamath-zobah. Hamath was on the Orontes, in Coele-Syria. Its king, Toi, had been the ally of David; but, from the combination Hamath and Zobah, it would appear that some revolution had taken place, which led to the union of these two petty kingdoms of Syria into one. For what cause the resentment of Solomon was provoked against it we are not informed, but he sent an armed force which reduced it. He made himself master also of Tadmor, the famous Palmyra, in the same region. The Romans, at a later period, attempted to impose the name of Adrianopolis upon it, but this appellation has utterly perished, and the Bedouins still give the ancient name of Tadmor to the desolate forest of erect and stately columns (see Taylor's 'Words and Papers'). Various other cities along the frontiers of his extended dominions he repaired and fitted up, either to serve as store-places for the furtherance of his commercial enterprises, or to secure his kingdom from foreign invasion (see the notes at 2 Chronicles 1:14; 1 Kings 9:15-24).


Verses 4-6

And he built Tadmor in the wilderness, and all the store cities, which he built in Hamath.

No JFB commentary on these verses.


Verse 7

As for all the people that were left of the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, which were not of Israel,

All the people that were left ... The descendants of the Canaanites who remained in the country were treated as war-prisoners, being obliged to 'pay tribute, or to serve as galley-slaves' (2 Chronicles 2:18), while the Israelites were employed in no works but such as were of an honourable character.


Verse 8-9

But of their children, who were left after them in the land, whom the children of Israel consumed not, them did Solomon make to pay tribute until this day.

No JFB commentary on these verses.


Verse 10

And these were the chief of king Solomon's officers, even two hundred and fifty, that bare rule over the people.

These were the chief of king Solomon's officers, even two hundred and fifty, that bare rule over the people. The number of chief officers is stated, 1 Kings 5:16, to have been 3,300; in 2 Chronicles 2:18, they are declared to have been 3,600; whereas here they are reckoned at the small number of 250. There is no way of reconciling these discrepancies, except by supposing there is an error in the numerical letters, which copyists were extremely liable to commit; or to imagine, with Poole, that 250 of these officers were all that were on actual duty at one time.


Verse 11

And Solomon brought up the daughter of Pharaoh out of the city of David unto the house that he had built for her: for he said, My wife shall not dwell in the house of David king of Israel, because the places are holy, whereunto the ark of the LORD hath come.

Solomon brought up the daughter of Pharaoh out of the city of David. On his marriage with the Egyptian princess at the beginning of his reign, he assigned her a temporary abode in the city of David - i:e., Jerusalem-until a suitable palace for his wife had been erected. While that palace was in progress, he himself lodged in the palace of David, but he did not allow her to occupy it, because he felt that, she being a pagan proselyte, and having brought from her own country an establishment of pagan maid-servants, there would have been an impropriety in her being domiciled in a mansion which was, or had been, hallowed by the reception of the ark. It seems she was received, on her arrival, into his mother's abode (Song of Solomon 3:4; Song of Solomon 8:2). There is in the valley of Jehoshaphat a monolith, minutely described by M. De Saulcy, and situated at the north end of the village Kefr Silwan, which resembles in its architecture some of the tombs of Egypt, and still more a sepulchral monument dug out by Botta from the mound of Khorsabad. It is partially isolated; the sides contract slightly, and are surmounted by a deep Egyptian cornice. De Saulcy's conviction is, that this is the chapel where Solomon's Egyptian wife performed the sacred rites of her native country (cf. 1 Kings 7:8-12).


Verses 12-14

Then Solomon offered burnt offerings unto the LORD on the altar of the LORD, which he had built before the porch,

No JFB commentary on these verses.


Verse 15

And they departed not from the commandment of the king unto the priests and Levites concerning any matter, or concerning the treasures.

They departed not from the commandment of the king - i:e., David, in any of his ordinances, which by divine authority he established, either in regulating the courses of the priests and Levites, or in the destination of his accumulated treasures to the construction and adornment of the temple.


Verse 16

Now all the work of Solomon was prepared unto the day of the foundation of the house of the LORD, and until it was finished. So the house of the LORD was perfected.

No JFB commentary on this verse.


Verse 17

Then went Solomon to Eziongeber, and to Eloth, at the sea side in the land of Edom.

Then went Solomon to Ezion-geber, and to Eloth. These two maritime ports were situated at the eastern gulf of the Red Sea, now called the Gulf of Akaba. Eloth is seen in the modern, Akaba, Ezion-geber, in el Gudyan (Robinson's 'Biblical Researches,' 1:, p. 250). Solomon, determined to cultivate the arts of peace, was sagacious enough to perceive that his kingdom could become great and glorious only by encouraging a spirit of commercial enterprise among his subjects; and, accordingly, with that view, he made a contract with Huram for ships and seamen to instruct his people in navigation.


Verse 18

And Huram sent him by the hands of his servants ships, and servants that had knowledge of the sea; and they went with the servants of Solomon to Ophir, and took thence four hundred and fifty talents of gold, and brought them to king Solomon.

Huram sent him ... ships. Either sent him ship-men, able seamen, overland; or, taking the word "sent" in a looser sense, supplied him i:e., built him ships-namely, in docks at Eloth (cf. 1 Kings 9:26-27). This navy of Solomon was manned by Tyrians, because Solomon had no seamen capable of performing distant expeditions. The Hebrew fishermen, whose boats plied on the Sea of the Tiberias, or coasted the shores of the Mediterranean, were not equal to the conducting of large vessels laden with valuable cargoes on long voyages, and through the wide and unfrequented ocean.

Four hundred and fifty talents of gold - (cf. 1 Kings 9:28.) The text in one of these passages is corrupt.

 


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Bibliography Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 8:4". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-chronicles-8.html. 1871-8.

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