2 Chronicles Chapter 36
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Go to Bible: 2 Chronicles 36
“took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah and made him king.” Jehoahaz becomes king here and in 2 Kings 23:30.(top)
|2Ch 36:2||- (top)|
|2Ch 36:3||- (top)|
“the brother of Jehoahaz.” The text is literally, “his brother,” but a straightforward reading in English would make Eliakim the brother of Pharaoh Neco, which is not the case.(top)
|2Ch 36:5||- (top)|
“and bound him in bronze chains to carry him to Babylon.” Chronicles omits that Jehoiakim served Nebuchadnezzar for three years before he rebelled (2 Kings 24:1-6). Jehoiakim died in chains and never made it to Babylon (see commentary on 2 Kings 24:5).(top)
“palace.” The Hebrew word can also mean “temple,” but the articles seem to have been kept in the palace at Babylon (Dan. 5:2-3). Also, it is unlikely that Nebuchadnezzar had a temple referred to as “his temple” in Babylon.(top)
“and what was found against him.” The Hebrew is more literally, “that which was found upon him,” and the Jewish commentator Rashi surmises that Jehoiakim had tattoos on him. But Jehoiakim did have a lot of sin against him, such as cutting up the scroll of the prophet Jeremiah.(top)
“18.” The Masoretic Hebrew text, which is normally used for the translation of the Old Testament, reads “eight,” but in this instance, as in quite a few in the Old Testament, there was an obvious copyist’s error. The original reading of “18” is preserved in 2 Kings 24:8, as well as in some of the other Hebrew manuscripts, and also in the Septuagint version. Thus, some modern translations read “18” as the REV does (BBE; HCSB; Darby; ESV; NAB; NET; NIV; NLT). There was no apparent good reason to preserve the reading in the Masoretic text when there was such weighty evidence that it was a scribal error and it caused a contradiction between the books of Kings and Chronicles. For another example of a scribal error involving numbers, see 1 Samuel 6:19, where the Masoretic text reads 50,070 people, when the actual reading was no doubt just 70 (see commentary on 1 Sam. 6:19).(top)
“At the beginning of the year.” The literal Hebrew is “at the return of the year,” but it refers to the start of the year. The year started in Nisan, which was a spring month, so some versions read, “In the springtime.”
“father’s brother.” Zedekiah was a son of Josiah and thus an uncle of Jehoiachin. The Hebrew word is just “brother,” and that has been handled different ways in the English translations. Some just leave it as “brother” in the text even though that is confusing and contradicts 2 Kings 24:17. Some translator’s recognize that in the Hebrew jargon, “brother” can mean “relative,” so they translate it “relative,” which is accurate but vague. The REV chose to retain the word “brother,” but put the word “father’s” in italics in front of brother. Zedekiah was Jehoiachin’s uncle, his “father’s brother.”(top)
|2Ch 36:11||- (top)|
|2Ch 36:12||- (top)|
“He also rebelled against King Nebuchadnezzar.” For his rebellion, Zedekiah was blinded and carried to Babylon, where he died in prison (2 Kings 25:5-7; Jer. 52:10-11).(top)
“defiled.” That is, they made it ceremonially unclean.(top)
“messengers.” The Hebrew word can refer to angels or human messengers, and here it refers to human messengers, the prophets.
“rising up early and sending them.” This is an idiom meaning to send again and again. The idea is that God rose up and sent His prophets early and often; He sent them over and over as the day progressed. The REV has kept the idiom but inserted the meaning of the idiom by adding “again and again” in italics.
[For more on this idiom and where it occurs, see commentary on Jeremiah 26:5.](top)
|2Ch 36:16||- (top)|
“he brought against them the king of the Chaldeans.” The record of the siege of Jerusalem and its conquest is in 2 Kings 25:1-4 and Jeremiah 52:4-5. The siege of Jerusalem took from the tenth day of the tenth month of the ninth year of Zedekiah (2 Kings 25:1; Jer. 52:4) to the ninth day of the fourth month of the eleventh year of Zedekiah (2 Kings 25:2-3; Jer. 52:6-7). So the siege of Jerusalem took about 18 months.(top)
|2Ch 36:18||- (top)|
“They burned the house of God.” The burning of the Temple in Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar’s army is mentioned in 2 Kings 25:9; 2 Chron. 36:19, and Jeremiah 52:13. The Temple was so central to Judaism that one would think God would have given more detail about its destruction, but instead, He just states it quickly in a matter-of-fact way.(top)
“to him and his sons.” That is, to Nebuchadnezzar and his descendants, in this case, the kings who ruled Babylon after him, not all of whom were related to him.
“until the reign of the kingdom of Persia.” The Persians conquered Babylon in 539 BC (cp. Dan. 5:30-31). Cyrus let the Jews return from Babylon (Ezra 1:1-3).(top)
“to fulfill the word of Yahweh by the mouth of Jeremiah.” Jeremiah the prophet foretold that the Babylonian Captivity would last 70 years and after that, they would return to the land of Judah (Jer. 25:11-12; 29:10).
“made up for.” The Hebrew word translated in the REV as “made up for” can also mean more like “enjoyed,” and thus could be translated “until the land had enjoyed its Sabbaths,” but here “made up for,” in the sense of “paid back,” catches the meaning well. God expected the Jews to give the land rest on the Sabbath years, and the fact that they did not was taken in the sense that the Jews then “owed” God that time for His land to rest, and that is the point being made here in 2 Chronicles 36:21. See commentary on Leviticus 26:34.(top)
|2Ch 36:22||- (top)|
“Yahweh his God is with him, so let him go up.” Many English translations translate the verse as if it is a jussive: “May his God be with him,” but there is no jussive in the Hebrew text. This seems to be a statement about Cyrus’ confidence. Yahweh had raised him up and now stirred him up, so with confidence he can say to the Jews who would be available to go back to Judah, “Yahweh his God is with him.”(top)