2 Chronicles 19:3
Nevertheless there are good things found in thee, in that thou hast taken away the groves out of the land, and hast prepared thine heart to seek God.
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(3) Nevertheless.—Yet the Divine wrath will not pursue thee to destruction, for there are good things found in thee. (So 2Chronicles 12:12; comp. also 1Kings 14:13.)

Thou hast taken away the groves.Thou hast consumed (or exterminated ) the Ashērahs. (Deuteronomy 13:6; 2Kings 23:24.) So Asa had done (2Chronicles 17:4). (Ashērôth, as equivalent to Ashērîm, recurs in 2Chronicles 33:3 and in Judges 3:7 only.)

And hast prepared.—Or, directed. The contrary was said of Rehoboam (2Chronicles 12:14.)

19:1-11 Jehoshaphat visits his kingdom. - Whenever we return in peace to our houses, we ought to acknowledge God's providence in preserving our going out and coming in. And if we have been kept through more than common dangers, we are, in a special manner, bound to be thankful. Distinguishing mercies lay us under strong obligations. The prophet tells Jehoshaphat he had done very ill in joining Ahab. He took the reproof well. See the effect the reproof had upon him. He strictly searched his own kingdom. By what the prophet said, Jehoshaphat perceived that his former attempts for reformation were well-pleasing to God; therefore he did what was then left undone. It is good when commendations quicken us to our duty. There are diversities of gifts and operations, but all from the same Spirit, and for the public good; and as every one has received the gift, so let him minister the same. Blessed be God for magistrates and ministers, scribes and statesmen, men of books, and men of business. Observe the charge the king gave. They must do all in the fear of the Lord, with a perfect, upright heart. And they must make it their constant care to prevent sin, as an offence to God, and what would bring wrath on the people.Jehu ... went out to meet him - Compare 2 Chronicles 15:2. The monarch was therefore rebuked at the earliest possible moment, and in the most effective way, as he was entering his capital at the head of his returning army. Jehu, 35 years previously, had worked in the northern kingdom, and prophesied against Baasha 1 Kings 16:1-7, but had now come to Jerusalem, as prophet and historian (compare 2 Chronicles 20:34).

Shouldest thou help ... - As a matter of mere human policy, the conduct of Jehoshaphat in joining Ahab against the Syrians was not only justifiable but wise and prudent. And the reasonings upon which such a policy was founded would have been unexceptionable but for one circumstance. Ahab was an idolater, and had introduced into his kingdom a false religion of a new and most degraded type. This should have led Jehoshaphat to reject his alliance. Military success could only come from the blessing and protection of Yahweh, which such an alliance, if persisted in, was sure to forfeit.


2Ch 19:1-4. Jehoshaphat Visits His Kingdom.

1-4. Jehoshaphat … returned to his house in peace—(See 2Ch 18:16). Not long after he had resumed the ordinary functions of royalty in Jerusalem, he was one day disturbed by an unexpected and ominous visit from a prophet of the Lord [2Ch 19:2]. This was Jehu, of whose father we read in 2Ch 16:7. He himself had been called to discharge the prophetic office in Israel. But probably for his bold rebuke to Baasha (1Ki 16:1), he had been driven by that arbitrary monarch within the territory of Judah, where we now find him with the privileged license of his order, taking the same religious supervision of Jehoshaphat's proceedings as he had formerly done of Baasha's. At the interview here described, he condemned, in the strongest terms, the king of Judah's imprudent and incongruous league with Ahab—God's open enemy (1Ki 22:2)—as an unholy alliance that would be conducive neither to the honor and comfort of his house nor to the best interests of his kingdom. He apprised Jehoshaphat that, on account of that grave offense, "wrath was upon him from before the Lord," a judgment that was inflicted soon after (see on [442]2Ch 20:1-37). The prophet's rebuke, however, was administered in a mingled strain of severity and mildness; for he interposed "a nevertheless" (2Ch 19:3), which implied that the threatened storm would be averted, in token of the divine approval of his public efforts for the promotion of the true religion, as well as of the sincere piety of his personal character and life.

There are good things found in thee, i.e. good works proceeding from an honest heart; which God more regards than this particular error; and therefore though he will chasten thee, yet he will not utterly destroy thee. Or, directed or set thy heart, i.e. thou hast sought and served God with all thy heart, and not feignedly, as many others do. And this work of preparing or directing his heart is here ascribed to Jehoshaphat, as elsewhere it is attributed to God, Proverbs 16:1 Philippians 2:13, because it is man’s action, but performed by God’s grace, preventing, enabling, and inclining him to it.

Nevertheless, there are good things found in thee,.... Principles of grace, righteousness, and holiness, faith, love, zeal, and other graces, true and genuine, from whence sprung many good works done by him:

in that thou hast taken away the groves out of the land; cut down the groves of trees, and destroyed the idols and images in them:

and hast prepared thine heart to seek God; through the grace of God his heart was disposed to serve and worship the Lord, and to seek his honour and glory.

Nevertheless there are good things found in thee, in that thou hast taken away the groves out of the land, and hast prepared thine heart to seek God.
3. good things] Cp. 2 Chronicles 12:12 (note).

taken away the groves] R.V. put away the Asheroth (plur. of “Asherah”); cp. 2 Chronicles 17:6 (note).

Verse 3. - Nevertheless; Hebrew, אֲכָל one of the few particles that were affirmative in the earlier Hebrew (Genesis 42:21), but adversative in the later (2 Chronicles 1:4; Daniel 10:7, 21). It may be well rendered, "on the other hand." The expression here recalls the less favourable "notwithstanding" of Revelation 2:20. There are good things found in thee (see 2 Chronicles 17:1-9). 2 Chronicles 19:3The prophet Jehu's declaration as to Jehoshaphat's alliance with Ahab, and Jehoshaphat's further efforts to promote the fear of God and the administration of justice in Judah. - 2 Chronicles 19:1-3. Jehu's declaration. Jehoshaphat returned from the war in which Ahab had lost his life, בּשׁלום, i.e., safe, uninjured, to his house in Jerusalem; so that the promise of Micah in 2 Chronicles 18:16 was fulfilled also as regards him. But on his return, the seer Jehu, the son of Hanani, who had been thrown into the stocks by Asa (2 Chronicles 16:7.), met him with the reproving word, "Should one help the wicked, and lovest thou the haters of Jahve!" (the inf. with ל, as in 1 Chronicles 5:1; 1 Chronicles 9:25, etc.). Of these sins Jehoshaphat had been guilty. "And therefore is anger from Jahve upon thee" (על קצף as in 1 Chronicles 27:24). Jehoshaphat had already had experience of this wrath, when in the battle of Ramoth the enemy pressed upon him (2 Chronicles 18:31), and was at a later time to have still further experience of it, partly during his own life, when the enemy invaded his land (2 Chronicles 20), and when he attempted to re-establish the sea trade with Ophir (2 Chronicles 20:35.), partly after his death in his family (2 Chronicles 21 and 2 Chronicles 22:1-12). "But," continues Jehu, to console him, "yet there are good things found in thee (cf. 2 Chronicles 12:12), for thou hast destroyed the Asheroth..." אשׁרות equals אשׁרים, 2 Chronicles 17:6. On these last words, comp. 2 Chronicles 12:14 and 2 Chronicles 17:4.
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