2 Chronicles 20:35
And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(35) And after this.—The chronicler has omitted the notice that “Jehoshaphat made peace with the king of Israel” (1Kings 22:44), and now he omits two other short verses of the parallel account, viz., 1Kings 22:46-47 : “And the remnant of the sodomites, which had remained in the days of his father Asa, he consumed out of the land. There was then no king in Edom: a deputy was king.” The former omission is perfectly natural, as the Qĕdēshîm were not mentioned in Asa’s reign (comp. 1Kings 15:12); and the latter is probably due to the fact that it was the religious aspect, and not the political antecedents, of Jehoshaphat s conduct that most interested the chronicler. Hence also the didactic tone of the following verses as compared with 1Kings 22:48-49. The expression, “after this,” can only mean after the overthrow of the three nations (2Chronicles 20:1-30). As Ahaziah began to reign in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat, and reigned two years (1Kings 22:51), the league between them was formed in the seventeenth or eighteenth year of the king of Judah.

Join himself (‘ethchabbar).—An Aramaism (here only). This verse is peculiar to the chronicle.

Who did very wickedly.—He (viz., Ahaziah, the pronoun is emphatic) did very wickedly. The implied thought is: And, therefore, Jehoshaphat’s alliance was wrong. (Comp. 2Chronicles 19:2.)

2 Chronicles 20:35. After this did Jehoshaphat join him with Ahaziah — This is mentioned as an aggravation of his sin, after so great an obligation laid upon him by God, and after he had been so sharply reproved by a prophet, yet he relapsed into the same sin; which proceeded partly from that near relation which was contracted between the two families, and partly from the easiness of Jehoshaphat’s temper, which could not resist the solicitations of others, in such things as might seem indifferent. For he did not join with him in war, as he did with Ahab, but in a peaceable way only, in a matter of trade and commerce. And yet God reproves and punishes him for it, (2 Chronicles 20:37,) to show his great dislike of all familiar conversation of his servants and people with professed enemies of God and of religion, as Ahaziah was. Who did very wickedly — Or, who did industriously, and maliciously, and constantly, work wickedness, as the Hebrew phrase implies, giving himself up to idolatry, and all wickedness. 20:31-37 Jehoshaphat kept close to the worship of God, and did what he could to keep his people close to it. But after God had done such great things for him, given him not only victory, but wealth; after this, to go and join himself with a wicked king, was very ungrateful. What could he expect but that God would be angry with him? Yet it seems, he took the warning; for when Ahaziah afterward pressed him to join him, he would not, 1Ki 22:49. Thus the alliance was broken, and the Divine rebuke had its effect, at least for a season. Let us be thankful for any losses which may have prevented the loss of our immortal souls. Let us praise the Lord, who sought after us, and left us not to perish in our sins.After this - Jehoshaphat's history had been formally completed 2 Chronicles 20:34. Consequently we can lay no stress on the note of time contained in the words "after this," which are detached from the context to which they originally referred. On the history 2 Chronicles 20:35-37, see marginal references and notes. 35-37. after this did Jehoshaphat … join himself with Ahaziah … to make ships—A combined fleet was built at Ezion-geber, the destination of which was to voyage to Tartessus, but it was wrecked. Jehoshaphat's motive for entering into this partnership was to secure a free passage through Israel, for the vessels were to be conveyed across the Isthmus of Suez, and to sail to the west of Europe from one of the ports of Palestine on the Mediterranean. Eliezer, a prophet, denounced this unholy alliance, and foretold, as divine judgment, the total wreck of the whole fleet. The consequence was, that although Jehoshaphat broke off—in obedience to the divine will—his league with Ahaziah, he formed a new scheme of a merchant fleet, and Ahaziah wished to be admitted a partner [1Ki 22:48]. The proposal of the Israelitish king was respectfully declined [1Ki 22:49]. The destination of this new fleet was to Ophir, because the Israelitish seaports were not accessible to him for the Tartessus trade; but the ships, when just off the docks, were wrecked in the rocky creek of Ezion-geber. This is mentioned as an aggravation of his sin, after so great a favour and obligation laid upon him by God, and after he had been so sharply reproved and threatened by a prophet for the same thing, 2 Chronicles 19:2; yet he relapsed into the same sin; which proceeded partly from that near relation which was contracted between the two families, and partly from the sweetness and easiness of Jehoshaphat’s temper, which could not resist the solicitations of others in such things as might seem indifferent. For he did not join with him in a war, as he did with Ahab, but in a peaceable way only, in a matter of trade and commerce. And yet God sharply reproves and punisheth him for it, 2 Chronicles 20:37, to show his great dislike and detestation of all friendly and familiar conversation of his servants and people with idolaters and professed enemies of God and of religion, as Ahaziah was, who is therefore thus stigmatized in the next words,

who did very wickedly. Who did very wickedly, or, who did industriously, and maliciously, and constantly work wickedness, as the Hebrew phrase implies, giving himself up to idolatry and all wickedness. And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel,.... Meaning, not after the invasion of the Moabites, &c. and the slaughter of them, but after Jehoshaphat returned from Ramothgilead, when he was reproved by a prophet for helping the ungodly, 2 Chronicles 19:1 so that it was a great aggravation of his folly and weakness, that after that, and quickly after that, he should join himself to a wicked prince, though not in war, but in trade; for so it must be, since Ahaziah reigned but two years, and those not complete, see 1 Kings 22:51, but is here related, that Jehoshaphat's weaknesses and blemishes might be laid together:

who did very wickedly; that is, Ahaziah, who walked in the ways of Ahab his father, and of Jezebel his mother, and of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, 1 Kings 22:52.

And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
35. who did very wickedly] R.V. the same did very wickedly.

35–37 (cp. 1 Kings 22:48-49). The Destruction of Jehoshaphat’s Fleet

The Chronicler gives an account of this incident quite different from that given in Kings. According to the latter it seems that Jehoshaphat’s fleet was wrecked through the inexperience of his mariners, and that he rejected the offer of the king of Israel to lend the services of more experienced seamen. In Chron. the loss of the ships is ascribed through the mouth of a prophet to Divine displeasure caused by Jehoshaphat’s association with Ahaziah. The accounts may be partly reconciled by the supposition that Jehoshaphat accepted the aid of the king of Israel in building but not in navigating the ships. The Chronicler here follows his habit of looking upon great public calamities as the direct punishment of particular sins.Verse 35. - And after this. The historical episode of these three verses (35-37) is evidently misplaced. As Ahaziah succeeded his father Ahab in Jehoshaphat's seventeenth year, we of course are at no loss to fix the time of Jehoshaphat's "joining himself with Ahaziah." He had "joined himself" with Ahab, and had smarted for it, and yet "after" that, he "joined himself" with his son Ahaziah. We do not doubt that the "who" of this verse refers to Ahaziah, not, as some think, to Jehoshaphat. The fame of this victory of the Lord over the enemies of Israel caused the terror of God to be spread abroad over all the kingdoms of the surrounding lands, in consequence of which the kingdom of Judah had rest (cf. 2 Chronicles 17:10). On the last clause of 2 Chronicles 20:30, cf. 2 Chronicles 15:15. This wonderful acts of the Lord is made the subject of praise to God in the Korahite Psalms, Psalm 46:1, Psalm 47:1, and Psalm 48:1, and perhaps also in Psalm 83, composed by an Asaphite, perhaps Jahaziel (see Del. Introduction to these Psalms).
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