2 Chronicles

2 Chronicles 1 – Solomon secured his throne. He asks God for wisdom to lead His people and God gave him more because of this humble request.

2 Chronicles 2 – Solomon organizes men to build the Temple.

2 Chronicles 3 – The Temple is made along with the Holy of Holies room where God’s Spirit would soon dwell.

2 Chronicles 4 – Many of the furnishings for the Temple are described here.

2 Chronicles 5 – When the Temple was finished, the priests brought in the Ark of the Covenant and placed it into the inner sanctuary — the Holy of Holies Room. There was nothing inside it except the two tablets which Moses put there at Mt. Horeb. Too bad Indiana Jones’ fans and alien theorists! There was nothing special about this Ark — no super modern transmitter, no emitter of radiation, nothing alien. It was God’s Spirit that killed Uzzah not some alien laser ray. Something was actually supernatural. 🙂

2 Chronicles 6 – Solomon gives a long oration for a Temple dedication in front of all the people. He realizes that God will soon dwell in this house and will be a blessing and haven for those who fear Him and turn to Him in times of need. In verses 32-33, Solomon also wishes well for non-Jews who place their trust in God. He knows that God wants to reach them as well via the Temple. Solomon hits the heart beat of God with his speech. He recognizes that the true God is not only for the Jews, but for all other nations (all people sin, he said in v36). Some Jews think they are superior to non-Jews because they are the “chosen ones of God.” What they fail to see is that role comes with heavy responsibility which they have failed at fulfilling. I sense no feeling of superiority in Solomon here. Today, some Christians have an impression of superiority. That pride will lead to a fall. While it is healthy to know that we are the apple of God’s eye, our responsibility is to be more humble than the non-believer knowing that we do not deserve God’s favor.

2 Chronicles 7 – A Great Promise. When Solomon finished praying during the dedication of the Temple, fire came down from heaven and consumed the sacrifices and the glory of the Lord filled the Temple. The priests could not enter because the glory filled the house. They worshiped and praised God. Later God appeared to Solomon and said He would be in this Temple always and made this great promise to Solomon and the Hebrew people: If things go bad in life (no rain, no food) and if His people will humble themselves and pray and seek His face and turn from their evil ways, then He will hear from heaven and forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Application for Today: I believe that promise is for us today as well, but believers in the USA need to do more than just have a National Day of Prayer to turn things around. (This was typed in 2012 but became more urgent in 2021 which when I typed this note in parenthesis).

2 Chronicles 8 – It took Solomon 26 years to build the Temple and his own house, then he began building cities that the Israelites could live in. His wealth grew.

2 Chronicles 9 – Solomon was visited by the Queen of Sheba. She traveled many miles to see for herself the wealth and wisdom of Solomon. She concluded that all was more than the rumors. Jesus commented about her long trip saying that she will be in a position to judge those who had Him right in front of them and still rejected God while she traveled way out of her way to seek and find God’s anointed ruler (someone far less than Jesus) – Matthew 12:42 and Luke 11:31. Many more acts of Solomon were recorded by the prophet Nathan, in the prophecy of Ahijah, and the visions of Iddo (Jedo in Hebrew). Solomon reigned for 40 years in Jerusalem and then died. His son Rehoboam took over as king.

2 Chronicles 10 – Because Rehoboam agreed with the young men he grew up with concerning Israel’s offer for peace rather than taking the counsel of the elders who had served Solomon, there began a long civil war between Israel and Judah. Jeroboam vs. Rehoboam.

Application for Today: Each new generation of people need to respect the wisdom of the past and not just “go with the flow” of their peers who may have no respect for the people of the past. Rehoboam should have recognized that Solomon’s wisdom and sense of God must have rubbed off a bit onto the men who served under him, yet Rehoboam went along with his peers’ advice — and that was to be harsher toward Israel than Solomon was. We are doomed to repeat history if we ignore it. We can pray that our politicians and church leaders would have this wisdom.

2 Chronicles 11 – Rehoboam began to prepare troops to fight against Israel, but God said “No.” So he built and fortified many cities throughout Judah and strengthened all the defenses of his land. For 3 years he walked in right ways, but he also took many wives for himself and his sons.

2 Chronicles 12 – By his 5th year as king, Rehoboam had turned his heart away from following God, so God allowed Egypt to come and defeat the Hebrew people. Then the king admitted his wrong, so God spared many lives, but did allow them to be taken into captivity so that they would know the difference between being in service to God and in service to another country of this world. Egypt plundered Judah and Jerusalem and took all the treasures away. Overall, Rehoboam did evil because he never set his heart to seek the Lord. He reigned 17 years in Jerusalem and died.

Applications for Today:

1) We need to know the difference between living for ourselves compared to living for God. With God, there are many immediate perks such as power to love and forgive others, and the eternal benefits are out of this world (figuratively and literally). Every so often we need to check our “priority of life” list.
2) We need to make that internal decision to seek God each day. Paul said “I die (to self) daily.” This is the only way we can walk in the spirit and not in the flesh.

2 Chronicles 13 – Rehoboam’s son Abijah was a good king of Judah. He prepared for battle against Jeroboam and Israel, but gave them a chance to retreat because God was about to defeat them. But Jeroboam had set up an ambush and attacked Judah’s troops from the rear and the front. But Judah called on the Lord and the Lord routed the Israelite army and killed 500,000* soldiers. God killed Jeroboam after never recovering during Abijah’s reign.

*World history record for most soldiers killed from one side in one battle.

2 Chronicles 14 – Abijah died and his son, Asa, took over. Asa was a very good king and the land was not disturbed for 10 years during his reign. Then an Ethiopian leader came against them with one million soldiers and 300 chariots. Asa had 580,000 men. Asa knew he was outnumbered so he called on the Lord and the Lord gave him a huge victory and they gained much plunder.

2 Chronicles 15 – Asa received a prophecy from Azariah promising protection and peace if he sought God and did not turn away. If he would turn away, God would then reject him and enemies would plunder the people and their cities again. He was also told to be brave and to not lose courage. Right after this, Asa tore down many false idols in the land, but left the high places alone (although his heart was fully with the Lord). He then persuaded all of Judah, Benjamin, and some defectors from Israel to enter the covenant of following the true God. So the Lord gave them all rest on every side, and there was no more war until Asa’s 35th year of reign.

Application for Today: Same Choice Today

God repeatedly gave the Hebrews the choice of serving Him and living in peace, or following idols and living in turmoil. Furthermore, He repeatedly proved Himself to be true to His Word. People today have the same life or death choice: God finally made a personal appearance in Christ Jesus, and people’s eternal destiny (peace or turmoil) depends on whether or not they have believed on the only begotten One of God. Jesus is the “last plane out of Viet Nam.” Noah’s Ark was the same for the people of his day.

2 Chronicles 16  – Although Asa was one of the few good kings, he did not end well. When the king of Israel came against one of his cities, Asa bribed the Syrian king to fight for him rather than seek the Lord. Remember also that the Syrians were normally enemies to Israel and Judah (anyone Jewish). God rebuked him through a seer named Hanani, but Asa just got angry at the seer and put him in prison. Hanani also spoke for God and said, “For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.” Because Asa had acted foolishly, he would continue to have wars. Later Asa’s feet developed a severe disease, but sought only physicians and not the Lord. He then died.

Applications for Today:

Something went astray in the heart of Asa or else he would not have bribed a heathen king to rescue his people. He should have turned to the Lord. After all, God did miraculously conquer a superior force recently. The condition of our heart toward God is most important. A well-conditioned heart is one who loves Him and others, and wants to serve Him and glorify Him. It wants to tell others about how great He is. It repents when confronted with sin and knows that it is only grace that we live. Failures and disappointments, however, can lead to bitterness which poisons the heart (Hebrews 12:15). Keeping a good watch over our hearts can indeed change the future of our life (even how long we live in some cases) and the lives of those around us. Something such as bitterness can never be justified, although our wills try. I have had to confess bitterness to the Lord. I called it sin (no excuses) and asked Him to forgive me and give me something more powerful to replace it. He did. It’s nice to be free of something, especially when we really never had the right to have it in the first place.

What about seeing a physician? I don’t think we can use verse 12 in this chapter to say Christians should never go to a doctor. The main point of the verse is that Asa did not seek the Lord at all. I see nothing wrong with doing both. Paul, at one point, suggested to Timothy to take a little wine with water for his stomach and frequent ailments (1 Timothy 5:23). I would only caution for us not to trust in man too much, however. Praying for doctors and surgeons to do well is a good thing.

2 Chronicles 17 – Asa’s son Jehoshaphat took over and was a good king. He even tore down the altars in the high places. He also sent officials and priests to many cities to teach the Law to the people. All surrounding nations were too afraid of God to attack, so Jehoshaphat had peace on all sides and grew in riches and honor.

2 Chronicles 18 – This is a repeat of 1 Kings 22:2-35:

True to His word to Ahab, God allowed peace for 3 years. Then Ahab wanted to drive out people from the city of Ramoth-Gilead and Jehoshaphat joined him. This is the first time that Judah and Israel came together for one cause. But Jehoshaphat (being more right with God than Ahab) wanted to seek the Lord first. So Ahab called in his prophets and they all said go and fight guaranteeing success for Ahab. But Jehoshaphat wanted to ask a true prophet of God, not Ahab’s phonies. So Micaiah was called in. Ahab hated him because he never said good things to him (duh). So after the phony prophets got done with their “little show of false prophecy,” Micaiah spoke up. At first he predicted success for Ahab and Jehoshaphat, but I think he was doing this with an attitude of “yeah, okay, sure…I’ll just tell you what you want to hear.” Ahab picked up on it right away and demanded Micaiah to speak the Lord’s words to him. So he did — again, not good for Ahab. Furthermore, Micaiah saw something in the heavens that was amazing, and he told this to the ones around him — God was asking for a volunteer angel to go to Ahab’s prophets as a deceiving spirit and He finally got one to go. This explained why all of Ahab’s prophets were speaking wrong outcomes to Ahab. One of Ahab’s prophets smacked Micaiah because he was so insulted. Nonetheless, Micaiah bravely stood his ground and predicted disaster and death for Ahab. As a result, Ahab had Micaiah thrown into prison on few rations until Ahab returned from battle alive (long wait?).

Ahab seemed so determined to prove God wrong. How he thought he could trick or prevail against God is a mystery to me after all he had seen. My guess is that he really did not think there was a God, or at least an all-Powerful God. Now the King of Syria had commanded all his captains to go after the King of Israel only (Ahab). I’m not sure if Ahab got wind of this, but if he did, it would more logically explain what he did during the battle. Or perhaps he suspected it because he had broken his treaty with Ben-Hadad of Syria. In any case, he told Jehoshaphat that he would disguise himself and enter the battle, and he told him to put on robes. This left only Jehoshaphat standing there looking like a king. So when the enemies approached and saw Jehoshaphat, they started to pursue him only to discover that he was not Ahab, so they left him alone. Then one soldier shot a “random” arrow into the air and it struck Ahab between the joint of his armor. Coincidence? I don’t think so. He bled badly in his chariot and later died. When they washed out his blood from the chariot in a public pool in Samaria where prostitutes bathed, the dogs licked it up. This fulfilled what God had said would happen to Ahab in 1 kings 21:19. His son Ahaziah took over but he was evil too. Jehoshaphat finally died after serving for 25 years and his son Jehoram took over, but he would do evil immediately.

Controversy: Did God, who cannot lie (Titus 1:2), initiate a lie via a spirit? Scholars can only speculate. The information leading to this dilemma came from a heavenly vision that the prophet Micaiah saw. Anytime a human sees into the heavenly realm, much can be symbolic and not as literal as we may think at first glance. The entire Book of Revelation is like this. Since God cannot lie, I think the Bible merely expresses what God allows, not what He forces to happen. For example, when Judas was about to betray Jesus, Jesus told him to do it quickly. Jesus did not make or suggest that Judas betray Him, He merely knew what was in his heart just as God knew what was in Ahab and his prophets. Some speculate that the volunteer spirit was Satan or a demon, but we don’t know for sure. We do learn from the Book of Job that Satan can present himself before the angels and God, so fallen angels may have been allowed to be in the mix for this vision of Micaiah.

2 Chronicles 19 – Jehoshaphat not only appoints judges throughout the land but he warned them all to fear God, to be ever mindful that He is with them while they judge, and God would have no part in unrighteousness, partiality, or taking a bribe.

Application for Today: In our nation today, I don’t think there is one official that can say to our judges what Jehoshaphat said to his judges. Alas, for judges need to work unto the Lord, not unto political factions or philosophies.

2 Chronicles 20 – Our One-Two Punch Revealed! Plus, NT Reality!

King Jehoshaphat continued to do right, but armies from 3 heathen nations assembled to attack Judah. Jehoshaphat was afraid, but sought the Lord by proclaiming a fast for everyone in Judah, and he promised God that he would stand fast before God’s house. He also acknowledged that he/they were powerless over these strong and numerous enemies and asked God to deliver them. Then the Spirit of the Lord spoke through a prophet and said to not fear because the battle belongs to the Lord. They would be given a supernatural victory the next day. Acting on faith, Jehoshaphat put the singers and worshipers in front of his soldiers and they led their advance toward the heathen armies. Then God caused the enemies to fight and destroy each other. The Hebrews never had to fight and it was a rout. As a result, all surrounding nations feared the Hebrew God and dared not attack. In the meantime, Jehoshaphat never removed the high places because the people had not yet turned their hearts toward God. Then he allied himself with an evil king from Israel so he could build many ships, but God was displeased about this alliance and destroyed the ships. So, even though he was one of the few decent kings, his end was not good.

Application for Today: What God did in the natural realm during OT times He does in the spiritual realm in NT times. I realize that the context of 1 Corinthians 15:46 is different from what I am saying here, but I also believe that this concept can be easily stretched to apply to this context. Those enemy armies represent the demons that array themselves against the Christian. The Christian must know that the battle BELONGS TO THE LORD. If we yield to Him and trust His power to defeat our demonic foes working through people and situations, we will have great victories. Our first two “weapons” are faith and worship! This is why Jehoshaphat put singers and worshipers at the front line. It takes FAITH to put worship first. This is the ol’ “one-two punch” from God that successfully “knocks out” our spiritual opponents. We cannot fight these forces with worldly ways. God was trying to teach reliance on Him to His early people so that by the time Christ accomplished His mission and the Holy Spirit given throughout the earth, God’s New Covenant people could fight and win battles at the supernatural level and do more damage to the demonic realm than anyone had done previously. I also believe that this fulfills what Matthew stated when he was quoting Psalms 110:1-3 in Matthew 22:44 – “…Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet…Your people will volunteer freely in the day of Your power; in holy array….” This accurately describes the Church Age and how spirit-filled Christians are doing great exploits for His Kingdom on a greater scale than ever before! But how do we know where Jesus Christ is today? Acts 2:32-36 and Colossians 3:1 reveal that after Christ’s resurrection from the dead, God raised Him up to His rightful place of power (on the right hand side of God). Therefore, at this moment of you reading these words, Jesus is ruling the world through His people. Compared to OT living, this is radically new (and exciting!). Sadly, some Christians do not realize this and are doing little to advance His Kingdom. The devil has blinded them to our New Covenant reality.

2 Chronicles 21 – Jehoshaphat died and his son, Jehoram took over. He murdered all of his brothers so that there was no rival to his position of king. He had married Ahab’s daughter and followed in his footsteps causing Judah to do return to evil. Because of God’s covenant with David’s line, He did not instantly destroy Jehoram, but did kill him later by way of a painful bowel disease. God also stirred up the spirit of the Philistines and they plundered Judah.

2 Chronicles 22 – This was covered in 2 Kings 8-11.
2 Chronicles 23 – This was covered in 2 Kings 11.
2 Chronicles 24 – This was covered in 2 Kings 12.
2 Chronicles 25 – This was covered in 2 Kings 14.
2 Chronicles 26 – This was covered in 2 Kings 15.
2 Chronicles 27 – This was covered in 2 Kings 16.
2 Chronicles 28 – This was covered in 2 Kings 16.

Comment: Back in Genesis 6:3, God said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever….” I think He must have had the history of the Hebrew kings and these people also in mind when He said this (plus probably us as well).

2 Chronicles 29 – Hezekiah took over and went to work doing right in God’s sight. He ordered the Temple to be repaired and cleaned out of all idols and unclean things that the previous king allowed in. He had the Levites and priests consecrate themselves before doing any work. He reinstituted proper sacrificing and the people rallied behind him. It was a breath of fresh air in Jerusalem.

2 Chronicles 30 – Hezekiah brings back the Passover for both Israel and Judah. Not all people joined this “movement.” Some laughed and mocked, yet some were willing to come to Jerusalem to do things properly and pay their respects to God and worship Him in the proper manner. So many people arrived in Jerusalem that did not purify themselves according to the Law of Moses, but they ate the Passover anyway. Hezekiah therefore prayed that God would understand and forgive those who had not prepared their hearts to seek Him, and He did. The feast and celebration was so great that Jerusalem had not seen one as good since the days of Solomon.

2 Chronicles 31 – Hezekiah organized everyone. Priests resumed their functions and tithes of all sorts were brought in and God made them prosper. There was quite a surplus of food so Hezekiah made sure it was all fairly distributed.

2 Chronicles 32 – This was covered in 2 Kings 18-19. Hezekiah dies at the end of this chapter. He was one of the best kings.

2 Chronicles 33 – This was covered in 2 Kings 21. Hezekiah’s son Manasseh was an evil king for 55 years.

2 Chronicles 34 – This was covered in 2 Kings 22-23. Josiah was Judah’s last and greatest reformer.

2 Chronicles 35 – This was covered in 2 Kings 23:21-30. King Josiah sadly went to battle against the will of God and he was mortally wounded by an arrow. He reigned during the great prophet Jeremiah who offered a lament in honor of him.

2 Chronicles 36 – This was covered in 2 Kings 23-24. Eventually all of the important people of the nation went bad and even God’s prophets were mocked and scoffed at. This was the last straw for God. He sent the King of Babylon to them and destroyed most while some were led away captive. The Temple was burned down along with all its valuable contents and the walls of Jerusalem were broken down. Jeremiah’s words came true — the land must rest for 70 years to make up for the years they forsook observing the Sabbath. But Jeremiah also had prophesied that the Jews would return, so later, King Cyrus of Persia was stirred by God to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem. He also let the Hebrew people return to their land in order to do the work with the Lord’s blessing. Historically, this was unprecedented and a huge breath of fresh air and hope for the Jews.