Now the rest of the acts of Baasha, and what he did, and his might, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)1 Kings 15:17-21.
over my people Israel—With all their errors and lapses into idolatry, they were not wholly abandoned by God. He still showed His interest in them by sending prophets and working miracles in their favor, and possessed a multitude of faithful worshippers in the kingdom of Israel.1 Kings 14:19. Now the rest of the acts of Baasha, and what he did, and his might, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 5. - Now the rest of the acts of Baasha, and what he did, and his might [as to which see 1 Kings 15:17-21. He could hardly have given a stronger proof of his might thou by fortifying a post but five miles distant from Jerusalem. Keil, however, would interpret the word, both here and in 1 Kings 15:23, of his energy and strength in government. Better Bahr, tapfere Thaten. Ewald hence infers that Baasha was "a man of distinguished bravery"], are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? 1 Kings 15:34); there then follow in 1 Kings 16:1-4 the words of the prophet Jehu, the son of Hanani (2 Chronicles 16:7), concerning the extermination of the family of Baasha; and lastly, in 1 Kings 16:5-7, his death is related with the standing allusion to the annals of the kings. The words of Jehu concerning Baasha (1 Kings 16:1-4) coincide exactly mutatis mutandis with the words of Ahijah concerning Jeroboam.
(Note: "There was something very strange in the perversity and stolidity of the kings of Israel, that when they saw that the families of preceding kings were evidently overthrown by the command of God on account of the worship of the calves, and they themselves had overturned them, they nevertheless worshipped the same calves, and placed them before the people for them to worship, that they might not return to the temple and to Asa, king of Jerusalem; though prophets denounced it and threatened their destruction. Truly the devil and the ambition of reigning blinded them and deprived them of their senses. Hence it came to pass, through the just judgment of God, that they all were executioners of one another in turn: Baasha was the executioner of the sons of Jeroboam; Zambri was the executioner of the sons of Baasha; and the executioner of Zambri was Omri." - _C. a Lapide.)
The expression "exalted thee out of the dust," instead of "from among the people" (1 Kings 14:7), leads to the conjecture that Baasha had risen to be king from a very low position. גּבוּרתו (his might) in 1 Kings 16:5 refers, as in the case of Asa (1 Kings 15:23), less to brave warlike deeds, than generally to the manifestation of strength and energy in his government.
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