2 Chronicles 36:23
Thus said Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth has the LORD God of heaven given me; and he has charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The LORD his God be with him, and let him go up.
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36:22,23 God had promised the restoring of the captives, and the rebuilding of Jerusalem, at the end of seventy years; and that time to favour Zion, that set time, came at last. Though God's church be cast down, it is not cast off; though his people be corrected, they are not abandoned; though thrown into the furnace, they are not lost there, nor left there any longer than till the dross be separated. Though God contend long, he will not contend always. Before we close the books of the Chronicles, which contain a faithful register of events, think what desolation sin introduced into the world, nay, even into the church of God. Let us tremble at what is here recorded, while in the character of some few gracious souls, we discover that the Lord left not himself without witness. And when we have looked at this faithful portrait of man by nature, let us contrast with it that same nature, when recovered by Almighty grace, through the justifying and soul-adorning righteousness of Christ our Saviour.This and the next verse are repeated at the commencement of the book of Ezra Ezr 1:1-3, which was, it is probable, originally a continuation of Chronicles, Chronicles and Ezra together forming one work. See the introduction to Chronicles.2Ch 36:22, 23. Cyrus' Proclamation.

22. the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus—(See on [484]Ezr 1:1-3).

No text from Poole on this verse. Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia,.... These two verses are the same with which the next book, the book of Ezra, begins, where they will be explained; and these two books, the one ending and the other beginning with the same words, is a strong presumption, that one and the same person, Ezra, is the writer of them both; or rather, as a learned (e) writer conjectures, these two verses are added by some transcriber, who, having finished the book of Chronicles at verse twenty one went on with the book of Ezra, without any stop; but, perceiving his mistake, broke off abruptly; for so it is plain these verses conclude; however, this shows, as the same writer observes, that the book of Ezra followed that of the Chronicles, in the Hebrew copies, though it now does not.

(e) Dr. Kennicott's Dissert. 1. p. 492, &c.

Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the LORD God of heaven given me; and he hath {n} charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The LORD his God be with him, and let him go up.

(n) God had so forewarned by his prophet over 100 years before Cyrus was born, Isa 44:28 that Jerusalem and the temple would be rebuilt by Cyrus his anointed: so called because God used his service for a time to deliver his Church.

23. All the kingdoms of the earth] The king of Babylon bore the title of “king of the four quarters of the world.” Cyrus succeeded to this title on his conquest of Babylon.

God of heaven] R.V. the God of heaven.

Who is there among you of all his people? The Lord … etc.] R.V. Whosoever there is among you of all his people, the LORD … etc.

let him go up] i.e. to Jerusalem; cp. Ezra 1:3. Since Chronicles is the last book of the Old Testament (according to the Hebrew order), these words are to be reckoned the last words of the Old Testament.Verse 23. - Hath the Lord God of heaven given me... the Lord his God be with him. The adopting by Cyrus of the Hebrew "Jehovah" in both these places cannot escape our notice. There can be no room to doubt that Cyrus was acquainted with the sacred literature of the Hebrews, and especially with the writings of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, as with the language of Daniel. It may have been partly a graceful act on the part of Cyrus to word his proclamation to the Jews thus, or it may have been simply, what under the circumstances came most naturally to him, with little or no intention in it either way. The numerous passages in Ezra parallel in matter with this verse do not need specification here. Now begins the new period of Jewish life, with fiercer probation, with unbounded and various trial, and probably of world-length continuance.

When the moral corruption had reached this height, judgment broke upon the incorrigible race. As in 2 Chronicles 36:12-16 the transgressions of the king and people are not described according to their historical progression, but are portrayed in rhetorical gradation; so, too, in 2 Chronicles 36:17-21 the judgment upon the sinful people and kingdom is not represented in its historical details, but only rhetorically in its great general outlines. "Then brought He upon them the king of the Chaldeans, who slew their young men with the sword in their sanctuary, and spared not the youth and the maiden, the old man and the grey-headed; he gave everything into his hand." Prophetic utterances form the basis of this description of the fearful judgment, e.g., Jeremiah 15:1-9; Jeremiah 32:3., Ezekiel 9:6; and these, again, rest upon Deuteronomy 32:25. The subject in the first and last clause of the verse is Jahve. Bertheau therefore assumes that He is also the subject of the intermediate sentence: "and God slew their young men in the sanctuary;" but this can hardly be correct. As in the expansion of the last clause, "he gave everything into his hand," which follows in 2 Chronicles 36:18, not Jahve but the king of Babylon is the subject; so also in the expansion of the first clause, which וגו ויּהרג introduces, the king of the Chaldeans is the subject, as most commentators have rightly recognised. By מקדּשׁם בּבית the judgment is brought into definite relationship to the crime: because they had profaned the sanctuary by idolatry (2 Chronicles 36:14), they themselves were slain in the sanctuary. On נתן ב הכּל, cf. Jeremiah 27:6; Jeremiah 32:3-4. הכּל includes things and persons, and is specialized in 2 Chronicles 36:18-20.
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