2 Chronicles 34:5
And he burnt the bones of the priests on their altars, and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(5) And he burnt . . . upon their altar.—See 2Kings 23:13-14; 2Kings 23:16; 2Kings 23:20 for details. Literally, and bones of priests he burnt. They were bones taken from the graves of the idolatrous priests, who were thus punished, while their altars were irreparably defiled. (For the horror with which such a violation of the dead was then regarded, see Amos 2:1.)

And cleansed (i.e., “purged,” 2Chronicles 34:3) Judah and Jerusalem.—This phrase does not occur at all in the parallel account.

34:1-33 Josiah's good reign in Judah. - As the years of infancy cannot be useful to our fellow-creatures, our earliest youth should be dedicated to God, that we may not waste any of the remaining short space of life. Happy and wise are those who seek the Lord and prepare for usefulness at an early age, when others are pursuing sinful pleasures, contracting bad habits, and forming ruinous connexions. Who can express the anguish prevented by early piety, and its blessed effects? Diligent self-examination and watchfulness will convince us of the deceitfulness and wickedness of our own hearts, and the sinfulness of our lives. We are here encouraged to humble ourselves before God, and to seek unto him, as Josiah did. And believers are here taught, not to fear death, but to welcome it, when it takes them away from the evil to come. Nothing hastens the ruin of a people, nor ripens them for it, more than their disregard of the attempts made for their reformation. Be not deceived, God is not mocked. The current and tide of affections only turns at the command of Him who raises up those that are dead in trespasses and sins. We behold peculiar loveliness, in the grace the Lord bestows on those, who in tender years seek to know and to love the Saviour. Hath Jesus, the Day-spring from on high, visited you? Can you trace your knowledge of this light and life of man, like Josiah, from your youth? Oh the unspeakable happiness of becoming acquainted with Jesus from our earliest years!The images - Margin, sun-images. See Leviticus 26:30 note. 5. he burnt the bones of the priests upon their altars—A greater brand of infamy could not have been put on idolatrous priests than the disinterment of their bones, and a greater defilement could not have been done to the altars of idolatry than the burning upon them the bones of those who had there officiated in their lifetime. No text from Poole on this verse. And he burnt the bones of the priests upon their altars,.... On which they sacrificed, in detestation of their idolatry, and to deter from it; and this he did according to the prophecy of him, above three hundred and fifty years before:

and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem; from idolatry, and all the monuments of it.

And he burnt the {d} bones of the priests upon their altars, and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem.

(d) Read 2Ki 23:16.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
5. he burnt the bones of the priests] Specially at Beth-el; 2 Kings 23:15-16.

cleansed] R.V. purged (as in 2 Chronicles 34:3; 2 Chronicles 34:8).Verse 5. - Note herein the striking fulfilment of 1 Kings 13:1-3, of which our parallel (2 Kings 23:12-14, 16-20) gives a more detailed account, especially as regards Israel, though not failing to recognize Judah and Jerusalem's share in the need of purgation and punishment. The reign of Amon. Cf. 2 Kings 21:19-26. - Both accounts agree; only in the Chronicle, as is also the case with Manasseh and Ahaz, the name of his mother is omitted, and the description of his godless deeds is somewhat more brief than in Kings, while the remark is added that he did not humble himself like Manasseh, but increased the guilt. In the account of his death there is nothing said of his funeral, nor is there any reference to the sources of his history. See the commentary on 2 Kings 21:19.
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