2 Chronicles 20:1
It came to pass after this also, that the children of Moab, and the children of Ammon, and with them other beside the Ammonites, came against Jehoshaphat to battle.
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(1) It came to pass after this also.—Rather, And it came to pass afterwards, i.e., after the battle of Ramoth-Gilead, and Jehoshaphat’s reformation of law and religion.

And the children of Ammon, and with them other beside the Ammonites.—This is an attempt to get a reasonable sense out of a corrupted text. What the Heb. says is: And the sons of Ammon, and with them some of the Ammonites. So the Vulg., “et filii Ammon et cum eis de Ammonitis.” Transpose a single Hebrew letter, and there results the intelligible reading: And the sons of Ammon, and with them the Maonites (Heb., Me’ûnîm. See on 1Chronicles 4:41-42.) The Maonites are mentioned again (2Chronicles 26:7) in company with Arabs. They appear to have been a tribe, whose chief seat was Maon, on the eastern slopes of the chain of Mount Seir, after which they are called “sons,” or “inhabitants of Mount Seir” in 2Chronicles 20:10; 2Chronicles 20:22-23. Accordingly Josephus (Ant. ix. 1, § 2) calls them a multitude of Arabs. [The LXX. reads: “And with them some of the Minaioi,” a name which possibly represents the me’înîm of the Heb. text of 1Chronicles 4:41. Syriac, “and with them men of war;” Arabic, “brave men.” Perhaps the expression rendered and with themwe’immahèm—is a relic of an original reading, and the Maonites; and the some of the Ammonites (mēhā’ammônîm) which follows, is merely a gloss on an obscure name by some transcriber].

2 Chronicles 20:1. It came to pass after this also, &c. — After Jehoshaphat had been so very well and zealously employed in reforming his kingdom, and providing for the due administration of justice, and the support of religion in it, and when one would have expected to hear of nothing but the peace and prosperity of his reign, he is interrupted in his good work, and brought into great perplexity, through a formidable invasion of his kingdom by several neighbouring nations: this, however, was permitted in order to such a glorious deliverance as was an abundant recompense for the distress he suffered. If we meet with trouble in the way of duty, we may believe it is in order that God may have an occasion of showing us so much the more of his marvellous loving-kindness.

20:1-13 In all dangers, public or personal, our first business should be to seek help from God. Hence the advantage of days for national fasting and prayer. From the first to the last of our seeking the Lord, we must approach him with humiliation for our sins, trusting only in his mercy and power. Jehoshaphat acknowledges the sovereign dominion of the Divine Providence. Lord, exert it on our behalf. Whom should we seek to, whom should we trust to for relief, but the God we have chosen and served. Those that use what they have for God, may comfortably hope he will secure it to them. Every true believer is a son of Abraham, a friend of God; with such the everlasting covenant is established, to such every promise belongs. We are assured of God's love, by his dwelling in human nature in the person of the Saviour. Jehoshaphat mentions the temple, as a token of God's favourable presence. He pleads the injustice of his enemies. We may well appeal to God against those that render us evil for good. Though he had a great army, he said, We have no might without thee; we rely upon thee.The present Hebrew (and English) text mentions the Ammonites twice over. Hence, some adopt a different reading and translate "the children of Ammon, and with them certain of the Maonites," etc. Compare 2 Chronicles 20:10, note; Judges 10:12, note; 1 Chronicles 4:41, note. CHAPTER 20

2Ch 20:1-21. Jehoshaphat, Invaded by the Moabites, Proclaims a Fast.

1. the children of Moab … Ammon, and with them other beside the Ammonites—supposed to be rather the name of a certain people called Mohammonim or Mehunim (2Ch 26:7), who dwelt in Mount Seir—either a branch of the old Edomite race or a separate tribe who were settled there.Several armies come against Judah: Jehoshaphat in his fear proclaimeth a fast, 2 Chronicles 20:1-4. His prayer, 2 Chronicles 20:5-13. Jehaziel’s prophecy, 2 Chronicles 20:14-17. The enemies are overthrown, 2 Chronicles 20:20-25. The people return in triumph, blessing God, 2 Chronicles 20:26-30. His reign: his navy miscarrieth, 2 Chronicles 20:31-37.

Other beside the Ammonites, to wit, the people that dwelt in Mount Seir, who were now confederate with them, as appears from 2 Chronicles 20:10,22,23. Or this is the name of a peculiar people, called either Mehumin, of whom you read 2 Chronicles 26:7 (and so there is only a transposition of two letters in the Hebrew word, which is not unusual in that language); or Minoceans, as the LXX. interpreters render this word; or Ammonium, or Mehaammonim, as it is in the Hebrew, (the two first letters being not prefixes, as they are commonly made, but part of the word or proper name of that people,) who, as it may seem, now dwelt in Mount Seir, being either of the old stock of the Edomites, or another nation since come in their stead or mixed with them. Others render the place thus, for (as the Hebrew vau is oft taken) with them (i.e. with the Moabites) were the Ammonites, or children of Ammon; which may be distinctly noted, either to show the largeness of the confederacy, in which not only the Moabites were engaged, who dwelt near Jehoshaphat’s kingdom, but the Ammonites also, who lived at a greater distance from him; or to intimate that the Ammonites being possibly instigated by the Syrians, their next neighbours, were the first beginners and chief promoters of the war, and engaged both the Moabites and the inhabitants of Mount Seir in their quarrel.

It came to pass after this also,.... After Jehoshaphat's return from Ramothgilead, and putting the civil and religious affairs of his people on a better footing, when he might have expected much peace and prosperity:

that the children of Moab, and the children of Ammon; both the descendants of Lot, see Psalm 83:8,

and with them other besides the Ammonites; a great company of Arabians, according to Josephus (r); or "with the Meamonites", which the Targum understands of the Idumaeans or Edomites; and so do other interpreters, and which they conclude from 2 Chronicles 20:10. Jarchi thinks the Amalekites are meant, who were of the race of Edom; but the notion of Kimchi seems best, that these are the people that are so called from the name of a place, Meon, and, by an inversion of letters, the same with the Meunim or Maonites, mentioned along with the Zidonians and Amalekites, Judges 10:12 and whom the Septuagint version here calls Minaeans; some (s) take them to be such who counterfeited the Ammonites in their apparel and gestures:

these came against Jehoshaphat in battle; being instigated perhaps by the Syrians, who owed him ill will for assisting Ahab against them at Ramothgilead; for from that quarter they came, as the following verse shows.

(r) Antiqu. l. 9. c. 1. sect. 2.((s) Weemse of the Moral Law, l. 2. c. 6. p. 161.

It came to pass after this also, that the children of Moab, and the children of Ammon, and with them other beside the {a} Ammonites, came against Jehoshaphat to battle.

(a) That is, who copied the Ammonites in language and apparel. The Hebrews thought that they were the Amalekites, but as it appeared by 2Ch 20:10 they were the Idumeans of mount Seir.

1. other beside the Ammonites] Render, some of the Meunim (2 Chronicles 26:7; 1 Chronicles 4:41, R.V.). In all three places LXX. has Μειναῖοι (Μιναῖοι). They were an Arabian people whose name seems to be preserved in that of Ma‘în, a village (south-east of Petra) on the pilgrim route between Damascus and Mecca. Bädeker, p. 144. The Minaeans have been supposed to be a very ancient people, but the only dated inscription coming from them with which we are acquainted belongs to the reign of one of the Ptolemies and cannot be earlier than circ. 300 b.c.

Ch. 2 Chronicles 20:1-4 (no parallel in Kings). The Invasion of the Moabites and their Allies

For a discussion of the historical probabilities of the following account see Introduction, § 8, and G. A. Smith, Hist. Geography, pp. 272, 3.

Verse 1. - The children of Moab. In 2 Kings 3:5-27 we read of a rebellion on the part of Moab, and of the victory of Israel's king Joram, together with Jehoshaphat and the King of Edom, over Moab, now probably in quest of revenge. Beside the Ammonites. The reading of our Authorized Version here cannot stand. The Septuagint gives us some guidance in the name "the Minoei." By the mere transposing of one Hebrew character in the name Ammonites, we obtain the name Maonites (read מֲעונִים for עַמּונִים), i.e. the people of Maon, a town near Petra, no doubt Edomitish (see vers. 10, 22, 23), and possibly the same with the Septuagint Minoei (see also 2 Chronicles 26:7). 2 Chronicles 20:1By אהרי־כן, postea, the war which follows is made to fall in the latter part of Jehoshaphat's reign, but certainly not in the last year in which he reigned alone, two years before his death, but only somewhat later than the events in 2 Chronicles 18 and 2 Chronicles 19:1-11, which occurred six or seven years before his death. Along with the Moabites and Ammonites there marched against Jehoshaphat also מהעמּונים. This statement is obscure. Since מן has unquestionably a partitive or local signification, we might take the word to signify, enemies who dwelt aside from the Ammonites (מן as in 1 Samuel 20:22, 1 Samuel 20:37), which might possibly be the designation of tribes in the Syro-Arabic desert bordering upon the country of the Ammonites on the north and east; and מארם in 2 Chronicles 20:2 would seem to favour this idea. But 2 Chronicles 20:10 and 2 Chronicles 20:22. are scarcely reconcilable with this interpretation, since there, besides or along with the sons of Ammon and Moab, inhabitants of Mount Seir are named as enemies who had invaded Judah. Now the Edomites dwelt on Mount Seir; but had the Edomites only been allies of the Ammonites and Moabites, we should expect simply אדם בּני or אדומים, or שׂעיר בּני (cf. 2 Chronicles 25:11, 2 Chronicles 25:14). Nor can it be denied that the interpretation which makes מהעמּונים to denote peoples dwelling beyond the Ammonites is somewhat artificial and far-fetched. Under these circumstances, the alteration proposed by Hiller in Onomast. p. 285 commends itself, viz., the change of מהעמונים into מהמּעוּנים, Maunites or Maonites, - a tribe whose headquarters were the city Maan in the neighbourhood of Petra, to the east of the Wady Musa; see on 1 Chronicles 4:41. Maan lay upon Mount Seir, i.e., in the mountainous district to the west of the Arabah, which stretches upwards from the head of the Dead Sea to the Elanitic Gulf, now called Jebl (Gebalene) in its northern part, and es-Sherah in the south. The Maunites were consequently inhabitants of Mount Seir, and are here mentioned instead of the Edomites, as being a people dwelling on the southern side of the mountain, and probably of non-Edomitic origin, in order to express the idea that not merely the Edomites took part in the campaign of the Ammonites and Moabites, but also tribes from all parts of Mount Seir. In 2 Chronicles 26:7 the מעוּנים are mentioned along with Arabs and Philistines as enemies of Israel, who had been conquered by Uzziah. These circumstances favour the proposed alteration; while, on the contrary, the fact that the lxx have here ἐκ τῶν Μιναίων for מהעמּונים proves little, since these translators have rendered העמּונים in 2 Chronicles 26:8 also by οἱ Μιναῖοι, there erroneously making the Ammonites Minaiites.
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