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Bible Commentaries

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

2 Chronicles 2



Verse 13

2 Chronicles 2:13. And now I have sent a cunning man, &c.— Therefore I have sent unto thee a man of understanding, whom my father Huram had for his instructor. Houbigant.

REFLECTIONS.—1st, Solomon, being appointed to build God's house, and by his wisdom so highly qualified for it, begins to set about the glorious structure; and afterwards resolves to raise a palace for himself. Note; Let God be always first and best served. For this purpose he sends an embassage to Hiram, or Huram, king of Tyre, whose assistance he wanted in the work. He mentions the kindness that Hiram had shewn to David, as a reason for continuing his friendship to him his son; informs him of his design to build the house of God, of whose glory he speaks most highly. The God of Israel was above all gods, therefore a temple became him, such as nowhere else could be found: not that the most pompous structure could be worthy of the infinite God, or his immensity be circumscribed by the largest palace, since the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain him. He pretended only to build a place to worship and sacrifice before him. The Tyrians being most expert workmen, he begs him to send him a capital artist in engraving and embroidery, who might instruct those that were ingenious among his own people; and requests that he would cut down, and convey to him from Lebanon, cedars and other timber; in which service he would send his own servants, with Hiram's, who were more skilled in the business. In consideration for which services, he offers to give, as wages and maintenance for Hiram's servants, twenty thousand measures of wheat and barley, and as many baths of wine and oil, commodities which Tyre wanted, and in which Canaan abounded. Note; (1.) We should desire to make our father's friends our own. (2.) They who have the knowledge of the true God themselves, would fain have others acquainted with him also. (3.) Though, when we have done our best, it is poor and unworthy of God, yet it speaks at least our humble gratitude.

2nd, Hiram was as ready to grant, as Solomon to ask, and that in the most friendly manner, congratulating Israel on so good a king, and blessing God for giving so gracious a son to his friend. He sent him an ingenious artist, half an Israelite, and therefore more likely to be hearty in the service; undertook to convey the timber to Joppa by sea, and accepted of the wages proposed. Note; (1.) The polite manner in which a favour is conferred doubles the obligation. (2.) The assistance of the Gentiles in building the church, was a figure of their incorporation in the fulness of time with the Israel of God.

Solomon immediately dispatched his servants to Lebanon, to meet Hiram's. He employed no Israelites in servile work, but the strangers who, probably by becoming proselytes, were incorporated among them; whether of the remnant of the old inhabitants or others. These, to the number of 153,600, David had registered before; and Solomon now set them to work for him, and, no doubt, well paid them for their labour.


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 2 Chronicles 2:4". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. 1801-1803.

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