|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
36:1-21 The ruin of Judah and Jerusalem came on by degrees. The methods God takes to call back sinners by his word, by ministers, by conscience, by providences, are all instances of his compassion toward them, and his unwillingness that any should perish. See here what woful havoc sin makes, and, as we value the comfort and continuance of our earthly blessings, let us keep that worm from the root of them. They had many times ploughed and sowed their land in the seventh year, when it should have rested, and now it lay unploughed and unsown for ten times seven years. God will be no loser in his glory at last, by the disobedience of men. If they refused to let the land rest, God would make it rest. What place, O God, shall thy justice spare, if Jerusalem has perished? If that delight of thine were cut off for wickedness, let us not be high-minded, but fear.
Verse 6. - Against him came up Nebuchadnezzar King of Babylon. Our mere allusions in this and the following verse to Nebuchadnezzar's relations to Jehoiakim and Judah are strange in comparison with the graphic account furnished by the parallel (2 Kings 24:1-6). The name is the same with Nabokodrosoros, is written in the Assyrian monuments Nebu-kuduri-utzur, and meaning, "Nebo (Isaiah 46:1), protector from ill," or "protects the crown." In Jeremiah (Jeremiah 49:28) we have the name written Nebuchadrezzar, as also in Ezekiel. Nebuchadnezzar, second King of Babylon, was the son of Nabopolassar, who took Nineveh B.C. 625, and reigned above forty years. Though we are here told he bound Jehoiakim in chains, to take him to Babylon, for some reason or other he did not carry out this intention, and Jehoiakim was put to death at Jerusalem (Jeremiah 12:18, 19; Jeremiah 36:30; Ezekiel 19:8, 9). The expedition of Nebuchadnezzar was B.C. 605-4 (Daniel 1:1; Jeremiah 25:1), and during it, his father dying, he succeeded to the throne.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
6. Against him came up Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon—This refers to the first expedition of Nebuchadnezzar against Palestine, in the lifetime of his father Nabopolassar, who, being old and infirm, adopted his son as joint sovereign and despatched him, with the command of his army, against the Egyptian invaders of his empire. Nebuchadnezzar defeated them at Carchemish, drove them out of Asia, and reduced all the provinces west of the Euphrates to obedience—among the rest the kingdom of Jehoiakim, who became a vassal of the Assyrian empire (2Ki 24:1). Jehoiakim at the end of three years threw off the yoke, being probably instigated to revolt by the solicitations of the king of Egypt, who planned a new expedition against Carchemish. But he was completely vanquished by the Babylonian king, who stripped him of all his possessions between the Euphrates and the Nile (2Ki 24:7). Then marching against the Egyptian's ally in Judah, he took Jerusalem, carried away a portion of the sacred vessels of the temple, perhaps in lieu of the unpaid tribute, and deposited them in the temple of his god, Belus, at Babylon (Da 1:2; 5:2). Though Jehoiakim had been taken prisoner (and it was designed at first to transport him in chains to Babylon), he was allowed to remain in his tributary kingdom. But having given not long after some new offense, Jerusalem was besieged by a host of Assyrian dependents. In a sally against them Jehoiakim was killed (see on 2Ki 24:2-7; also Jer 22:18, 19; 36:30).
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