2 Chronicles Chapter 18  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Bible: 2 Chronicles 18
2Ch 18:1

“great riches and honor.” Jehoshaphat had great riches and great honor; he was highly honored.

“and he formed a marriage alliance with Ahab.” It is unclear how the first and second half of the verse relate to each other. Was it due to the wealth of Jehosaphat that Ahab was willing to enter into a marriage alliance with Jehoshaphat? Or, is the text saying that Jehoshaphat was wealthy and highly honored, “but” he made the mistake of making a marriage alliance with Ahab? Or, both might be true.

2Ch 18:2

“After some years.” In 1 Kings 22:1-2 the time is given as three years.

2Ch 18:3

“I am as you are.” This is the kind of answer we would expect from someone in a marriage alliance (2 Chron. 18:1).

2Ch 18:4(top)
2Ch 18:5(top)
2Ch 18:6

“another prophet of Yahweh.” Jehoshaphat does not challenge the claim of the false prophets to be prophets of Yahweh, even though he likely suspected they were not true prophets of Yahweh. Instead, he asked if there was another prophet of Yahweh who could ask Yahweh about the wisdom of going to war at Ramoth-gilead.

2Ch 18:7(top)
2Ch 18:8(top)
2Ch 18:9

“threshing floor at the entrance.” This threshing floor would be outside the gate and since it was flat would be a convenient place to set up the kings’ thrones. The threshing floor would not be in the city. The kings “sat” while the prophets prophesied, and in the Bible, the word “sat” often indicates taking a ruling position (see commentary on the parallel record in 1 Kings 22:10).

2Ch 18:10(top)
2Ch 18:11(top)
2Ch 18:12(top)
2Ch 18:13(top)
2Ch 18:14

“Go up, and succeed.” The verbs are plural in Hebrew, so Micaiah is speaking to both kings.

2Ch 18:15(top)
2Ch 18:16

“like sheep that have no shepherd.” Kings were often called the “shepherd” of their people. For Israel to be like sheep without a shepherd was a very clear cultural way of saying that the king would be dead; he would be killed in the battle, and indeed, Ahab was killed in the battle. This is reinforced when God says, “These [people] have no lord,” meaning their lord the king was dead.

“lord.” The Hebrew is literally “lords,” which is a grammatical plural, in this case, the idiom of the “plural of emphasis,” here used when speaking of the king. The king (singular) is the “shepherd” (singular) of the previous phrase.

2Ch 18:17(top)
2Ch 18:18(top)
2Ch 18:19(top)
2Ch 18:20(top)
2Ch 18:21(top)
2Ch 18:22(top)
2Ch 18:23(top)
2Ch 18:24(top)
2Ch 18:25(top)
2Ch 18:26(top)
2Ch 18:27

“return, yes, return.” Micaiah emphasizes that Ahab will not return from this battle by using the figure of speech polyptoton, in which the verb is repeated twice but in different cases, in this case, an infinitive paired with an imperfect.

[For more on polyptoton, see commentary on Gen. 2:16.]

2Ch 18:28(top)
2Ch 18:29

“I will disguise myself and go into the battle, but you put on your royal robes.” That Jehoshaphat would even comply with Ahab’s idea defies logic. Soldiers have always known that a major way to defeat an enemy army is to kill off the leadership. There are several possibilities as to why Ahab would say what he did to Jehoshaphat. One certainly is that to some extent he did not trust his own prophets who foretold victory, but had some trust in Micaiah, who foretold his death in the war, and he wanted to do everything he could to avoid that. One way to possibly save his life was to not be known as the king of Israel but to wear a disguise. Also, if the enemy thought Jehoshaphat was the king, when they killed him they may have retreated and waited to see what would become of the Israelite army; whether they would disband or not. Also, from a spiritual perspective, it seems clear that Satan wanted Jehoshaphat, who was a godly king, to be killed, and so having Jehosaphat dress in his royal robes and enter the battle was a spiritual set-up to kill him. Ahab, who suggested that tactic, was married to Jezebel, and the two of them were both pawns of Satan and idolaters and they had conspired together in murder before this (1 Kings 21; the murder of Naboth and his family), so Ahab’s suggestion to Jehoshaphat was not out of character for him.

Jehoshaphat, on the other hand, was weak-willed and apparently naïve, and went along with Ahab’s ridiculous plan. This may have been due to an unhealthy desire to please Ahab since he had entered into a marriage alliance with Ahab (2 Chron. 18:1) and his son Jehoram was married to Ahab’s daughter (2 Chron. 21:6). It often happens that believers make unwise decisions based on the desire to please someone, including ungodly people, and that is why believers are to love God with “all” their heart, soul, mind, and strength.

2Ch 18:30(top)
2Ch 18:31(top)
2Ch 18:32(top)
2Ch 18:33(top)
2Ch 18:34(top)

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