Five and twenty years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)2 Kings 15:33-34. Five and twenty years old was he when he began to reign — Namely, properly and alone; for he had reigned before this as his father’s deputy. And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord — Josephus gives him a very high character; that he was pious toward God, just toward men, and laid himself out for the public good; that whatever was amiss he took care to have it rectified; and, in short, wanted no virtue that became a good prince. And though the high places were not taken away, yet, to draw the people from them, and keep them close to God’s holy place, he showed great respect to the temple, and built, or rebuilt rather, the higher gate, not indeed of the temple itself, but of one of its courts, probably that which led to the king’s palace, 2 Chronicles 23:20. “If magistrates,” says Henry, “cannot do all they would for the suppression of vice and profaneness, let them do so much the more for the support and advancement of piety and virtue, and bringing of them into reputation. If they cannot pull down the high places of sin, yet let them build and beautify the high gate of God’s house.”2 Kings 15:7, to resume and conclude the history of Israel in 2 Kings 17. When he began to reign, to wit, properly and alone; for he had reigned before this, as his father’s deputy and viceroy.
and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem; and his reign, upon the whole, was a good reign:
and his mother's name was Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok; a person well known in those times; Dr. Lightfoot (h) thinks he was high priest.Five and twenty years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 33. - Five and twenty years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem - i.e. sixteen years from his appointment to be regent, as appears plainly from 2 Chronicles 26:23 and 2 Chron 27:1 (comp. Josephus, 'Ant. Jud.,' 9:10. § 4; 12. § 1) - and his mother's name was Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok. So the author of Chronicles (2 Chronicles 27:1); Josephus ('Ant. Jud.,' 9:11. § 2) calls his mother "Jerasa."
(Note: As this is apparently at variance not only with 2 Kings 15:30, according to which Pekah was slain in the twentieth year of Jotham, i.e., in the fourth year of Ahaz, abut also with 2 Kings 17:1, according to which Hosea the murderer of Pekah became king in the twelfth year of Ahaz and reigned nine years, Ewald has added ותשׁע after עשׂרים without any hesitation, and lengthened Pekah's reign to twenty-nine years, whereas Thenius proposes to alter twenty into thirty. But we do not thereby obtain an actual agreement either with 2 Kings 15:30 or with 2 Kings 17:1, so that in both these passages Thenius is obliged to make further alterations in the text. For instance, if Pekah had reigned for thirty years from the fifty-second or closing year of Uzziah's reign, Hosea would have ascended the throne in the fourteenth year of Ahaz, supposing that he really became king immediately after the murder of Pekah, and not in the twelfth, as is stated in 2 Kings 17:1. It is only with a reign of twenty-eight years and a few months (one year of Uzziah, sixteen of Jotham, and eleven of Ahaz), which might be called twenty-nine years, that the commencement of Hosea's reign could fall in the twelfth year of Ahaz. But the discrepancy with 2 Kings 15:30, that Hosea conspired against Pekah and slew him in the twentieth year of Jotham, is not removed thereby. For further remarks see at 2 Kings 15:30 and 2 Kings 17:1.)
During his reign the Assyrian king Tiglath-pileser came, and after conquering the fortified cities round Lake Merom took possession of Gilead and Galilee, namely the whole land of Naphtali, and led the inhabitants captive to Assyria. Tiglath-pileser (פּלאסר תּגלת or פּלסר תּגלת, 2 Kings 16:7; פּלנאסר or פּלנסר תּלגת פּלנסר, 1 Chronicles 5:26, and 2 Chronicles 28:20; Θεγλαθφαλασάρ or Θαλγαθφελλασάρ, lxx; written Tiglat-palatsira or Tiglat-palatsar on the Assyrian monuments, and interpreted by Gesenius and others "ruler of the Tigris," although the reading of the name upon the monuments is still uncertain, and the explanation given a very uncertain one, since Tiglat or Tilgat is hardly identical with Diglath equals Tigris, but is probably a name of the goddess Derketo, Atergatis), was, according to M. v. Niebuhr (pp. 156, 157), the last king of the Derketade dynasty, who, when the Medes and Babylonians threw off the Assyrian supremacy after the death of Pul, attempted to restore and extend the ancient dominion.
(Note: M. Duncker (Gesch. des Alterthums, i. pp. 658, 659) also assumes that the dynasty changed with the overthrow of the Derketades, but he places it considerably earlier, about the year 900 or 950 b.c., because on the one hand Niebuhr's reasons for his view cannot be sustained, and on the other hand there are distinct indications that the change in the reigning family must have taken place about this time: viz., 1. in the ruins of the southern city of Nineveh, at Kalah, where we find the remains of the palace of two rulers, who sat upon the throne of Assyria between the years 900 and 830, whereas the castles of Ninos and his descendants must undoubtedly have stood in the northern city, in Nineveh; 2. in the circumstance that from the time mentioned the Assyrian kingdom advanced with fresh warlike strength and in a fresh direction, which would agree with the change in the dynasty. - Which of these two assumptions is the correct one, cannot yet be decided in the present state of the researches on this subject.)
His expedition against Israel falls, according to 2 Kings 15:29 and 2 Kings 16:9, in the closing years of Pekah, when Ahaz had come to the throne in Judah. The enumeration of his conquests in the kingdom of Israel commences with the most important cities, probably the leading fortifications. Then follow the districts of which he took possession, and the inhabitants of which he led into captivity. The cities mentioned are Ijon, probably the present Ayun on the north-eastern edge of the Merj Ayun; Abel-beth-maacah, the present Abil el Kamh, on the north-west of Lake Huleh (see at 1 Kings 15:20); Janoach, which must not be confounded with the Janocha mentioned in Joshua 16:6-7, on the border of Ephraim and Manasseh, but is to be sought for in Galilee or the tribe-territory of Naphtali, and has not yet been discovered; Kedesh, on the mountains to the west of Lake Huleh, which has been preserved as an insignificant village under the ancient name (see at Joshua 12:22); Hazor, in the same region, but not yet traced with certainty (see at Joshua 11:1). Gilead is the whole of the land to the east of the Jordan, the territory of the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half-Manasseh (1 Chronicles 5:26), which had only been wrested from the Syrians again a short time before by Jeroboam II, and restored to Israel (2 Kings 14:25). הגּלילה (the feminine form of הגּליל, see Ewald, 173, h.) is more precisely defined by the apposition "all the land of Naphtali" (see at 1 Kings 9:11). - In the place of אשּׁוּרה, "to the land of Assyria," the different regions to which the captives were transported are given in 1 Chronicles 5:26. For further remarks on this point see at 2 Kings 17:6.
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