2 Chronicles 15:13
That whoever would not seek the LORD God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman.
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(13) That.And.

Whosoever would not seek the Lord God . . .—Part of the solemn oath of the king and people; a sanction prescribed by the law of Deuteronomy 13:6, sqq., Deuteronomy 17:2-6.

2 Chronicles 15:13. That whosoever would not seek the Lord God of Israel — Would either worship other gods, or refuse to join with them in the worship of the true God; that was either an obstinate idolater, or an obstinate atheist, should be put to death — Which was not a new law of their own making, but an order to put in execution the law of God to this purpose, contained Deuteronomy 18:2, &c., which, if it had been duly executed in former times, would have kept the land clear of those many abominable idols which were found in and brought God’s wrath upon it: compare Hebrews 10:28. But though they might do well in executing the sentence of the law upon idolaters, this ought not to be pleaded by any persons professing Christianity as a precedent for persecuting any of their fellow-Christians, much less for putting them to death who may happen to differ from them in any point of doctrine, or mode of worship; because all Christians, as such, however they may disagree as to some lesser points, yet worship one and the same living and true God; and, added to this, the spirit of the gospel is very different from that of the Jewish law: see Luke 9:55. Nor may we, under our mild dispensation, attempt to compel by force any man to become religious. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal.15:1-19 The people make a solemn covenant with God. - The work of complete reformation appeared so difficult, that Asa had not courage to attempt it, till assured of Divine assistance and acceptance. He and his people offered sacrifices to God; thanksgiving for the favours they had received, and supplication for further favours. Prayers and praises are now our spiritual sacrifices. The people, of their own will, covenanted to seek the Lord, each for himself, with earnestness. What is religion but seeking God, inquiring after him, applying to him upon all occasions? We make nothing of our religion, if we do not make heart-work of it; God will have all the heart, or none. Our devotedness to God our Saviour, should be avowed and shown in the most solemn and public manner. What is done in hypocrisy is a mere drudgery.Solemn renewals of the original covenant which God made with their fathers in the wilderness Exodus 24:3-8 occur from time to time in the history of the Jews, following upon intervals of apostasy. This renewal in the reign of Asa is the first on record. The next falls 300 years later in the reign of Josiah. There is a third in the time of Nehemiah (see the marginal references). On such occasions, the people bound themselves by a solem oath to observe all the directions of the Law, and called down God's curse upon them if they forsook it. 10-14. the third month—when was held the feast of pentecost. On this occasion, it was celebrated at Jerusalem by an extraordinary sacrifice of seven hundred oxen and seven thousand sheep, the spoil of the Ethiopians being offered. The assembled worshippers entered with great and holy enthusiasm into a national covenant "to seek the Lord their God … with all their heart and with all their soul;" and, at the same time, to execute with rigor the laws which made idolatry punishable with death (2Ch 15:13; De 17:2-5; Heb 10:28). The people testified unbounded satisfaction with this important religious movement, and its moral influence was seen in the promotion of piety, order, and tranquillity throughout the land. Whosoever should obstinately refuse to pay unto God that solemn worship which he required at his temple in Jerusalem, or should disown God, or serve other gods,

should be put to death, by virtue of all those laws which command that such persons should be cut off, and in pursuance of that law, Deu 17:2. Compare Hebrews 10:28. That whosoever would not seek the Lord God of Israel should be put to death,.... That obstinately refused to worship him, and served other gods, which by the law was deserving of death, Deuteronomy 17:2,

whether small or great, whether man or woman; without any regard to rank or dignity, age or sex.

That {g} whosoever would not seek the LORD God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman.

(g) These were the words of their covenant, which commanded all idolaters be put to death, according to the law of God, De 13:5,9,15.

13. should be put to death] According to the Law; Deuteronomy 17:2-7.Verse 13. - Whosoever would not... should be put to death (see Exodus 22:20; Deuteronomy 13:9; Deuteronomy 17:2-6). "And one people is dashed in pieces by the other, and one city by the other; for God confounds them by all manner of adversity." המם denotes confusion, which God brings about in order to destroy His enemies (Exodus 14:24; Joshua 10:10; Judges 4:15). Days when they were without the true God, without teaching prophets, and without law, Israel had already experienced in the times of defection after Joshua (cf. Judges 2:11.), but will experience them in the future still oftener and more enduringly under the idolatrous kings in the Assyrian and Babylonian exile, and still even now in its dispersion among all nations. That this saying refers to the future is also suggested by the fact that Hosea (Hosea 3:4) utters, with a manifest reference to 2 Chronicles 15:3 of our speech, a threat that the ten tribes will be brought into a similar condition (cf. Hosea 9:3-4); and even Moses proclaimed to the people that the punishment of defection from the Lord would be dispersion among the heathen, where Israel would be compelled to serve idols of wood and stone (Deuteronomy 4:27., Deuteronomy 28:36, Deuteronomy 28:64), i.e., would be without the true God. That Israel would, in such oppression, turn to its God, would seek Him, and that the Lord would be found of them, is a thought also expressed by Moses, the truth of which Israel had not only had repeated experience of during the time of the judges, but also would again often experience in the future (cf. Hosea 3:5; Jeremiah 31:1; Ezekiel 36:24.; Romans 11:25.). בּצּר־לו refers back to Deuteronomy 4:30; the expression in 2 Chronicles 15:4 is founded upon Deuteronomy 4:29 (cf. Isaiah 55:6). - Of the oppression in the times of defection portrayed in 2 Chronicles 15:5., Israel had also had in the time of the judges repeated experience (cf. Judges 5:6), most of all under the Midianite yoke (Judges 6:2); but such times often returned, as the employment of the very words of the first hemistich of 2 Chronicles 15:5 in Zechariah 8:10, in reference to the events of the post-exilic time, shows; and not only the prophet Amos (Amos 3:9) sees רבּות מהוּמות, great confusions, where all is in an indistinguishable whirl in the Samaria of his time, but they repeated themselves at all times when the defection prevailed, and godlessness degenerated into revolution and civil war. Azariah portrays the terrors of such times in strong colours (2 Chronicles 15:6): "Dashed to pieces is people by people, and city by city." The war of the tribes of Israel against Benjamin (Judges 20:.), and the struggle of the Gileadites under Jephthah with Ephraim (Judges 12:4.), were civil wars; but they were only mild preludes of the bellum omnium contra omnes depicted by Azariah, which only commenced with the dissolution of both kingdoms, and was announced by the later prophets as the beginning of the judgment upon rebellious Israel (e.g., Isaiah 9:17-20), and upon all peoples and kingdoms hostile to God (Zechariah 14:13; Matthew 24:7). With הממם אלהים כּי cf. רבּה יי מהוּמת, Zechariah 14:13. To this portrayal of the dread results of defection from the Lord, Azariah adds (2 Chronicles 15:7) the exhortation, "Be ye strong (vigorous), and show yourselves not slack, languid" (cf. Zephaniah 3:16; Nehemiah 6:9); i.e., in this connection, proceed courageously and vigorously to keep yourselves true to the Lord, to exterminate all idolatry; then you shall obtain a great reward: cf. on these words, Jeremiah 31:16.
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