2 Kings 24:3
Surely at the commandment of the LORD came this on Judah, to remove them out of his sight, for the sins of Manasseh, according to all that he did;
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(3) Surely at the commandment.—Literally, Only (i.e., upon no other ground than) upon the mouth (i.e., at the command of; 2Kings 23:35) of Jehovah did it happen in Judah. The LXX. and Syriac read wrath instead of mouth, which Ewald prefers (so 2Kings 24:20).

Out of his sight.From before his face, i.e., as the Targum explains, from the land where he was present in his Temple.

For the sins of Manasseh.—Comp. 2Kings 21:11 seq., 2Kings 23:26 seq.; Jeremiah 15:4.

2 Kings 24:3-4. To remove them out of his sight for the sins of Manasseh — Properly and directly for their own sins, and remotely for the sins of Manasseh; who had so corrupted the whole body of the people, that they were become incurable, and Josiah’s reformation had no lasting influence to recover them: for, immediately upon his death, they relapsed into their old idolatry, and other vices. Manasseh’s personal sins, although, as he was their chief ruler, they were to be considered as national sins, and merited national punishment, yet would never have been charged on the nation, unless they had made them their own by their impenitency for them, and repetition of them. And for the innocent blood which he shed — Namely, of those prophets and saints, who either reproved, or would not comply with his idolatrous worship. Which the Lord would not pardon — That is, would not remit the temporal punishment of the land, though he did pardon it so as not to inflict eternal punishment upon his own person, for from that God undoubtedly exempted him upon his repentance. God is the righteous governor of the world, and the guardian of civil society, and in it order could not be preserved, if he did not interpose in his providence, and, on proper occasions, cause signal and national judgments to follow public and national crimes.24:1-7 If Jehoiakim had served the Lord, he had not been servant to Nebuchadnezzar. If he had been content with his servitude, and true to his word, his condition had been no worse; but, rebelling against Babylon, he plunged himself into more trouble. See what need nations have to lament the sins of their fathers, lest they smart for them. Threatenings will be fulfilled as certainly as promises, if the sinner's repentance prevent not.See the marginal references. Instead of coming up in person Nebuchadnezzar sent against Jehoiakim his own troops and those of the neighboring nations.

The ravages of the Moabites and the Ammonites are especially alluded to in the following passages: Jeremiah 48:26-27; Jeremiah 49:1; Ezekiel 25:3-6; Zephaniah 2:8.


2Ki 24:1-7. Jehoiakim Procures His Own Ruin.

1, 2. Nebuchadnezzar—the son of Nabopolassar, the founder of the Chaldee monarchy. This invasion took place in the fourth year of Jehoiakim's, and the first of Nebuchadnezzar's reign (Jer 25:1; compare Jer 46:2). The young king of Assyria being probably detained at home on account of his father's demise, despatched, along with the Chaldean troops on his border, an army composed of the tributary nations that were contiguous to Judea, to chastise Jehoiakim's revolt from his yoke. But this hostile band was only an instrument in executing the divine judgment (2Ki 24:2) denounced by the prophets against Judah for the sins of the people; and hence, though marching by the orders of the Assyrian monarch, they are described as sent by the Lord (2Ki 24:3).

For the sins of Manasseh; properly and directly for their own sins, and occasionally for the sins of Manasseh, which had never been charged upon them, if they had not made them their own by their impenitency for them, and repetition of them. Surely at the commandment of the Lord came this upon Judah, to remove them out of his sight,.... It was the sure and certain decree of God they should be carried captive, and therefore he stirred up the spirit of Nebuchadnezzar, and gave him orders to go against it:

for the sins of Manasseh, according to all that he did; which were still continued among the Jews, and committed by them, though repented of by Manasseh, and he returned from them.

Surely at the {b} commandment of the LORD came this upon Judah, to remove them out of his sight, for the sins of Manasseh, according to all that he did;

(b) Though God used these wicked tyrants to execute his just judgments, they are not to be excused, for they proceeded from ambition and malice.

3. for the sins of Manasseh] See above on 2 Kings 23:26. The fifty-five years of Manasseh’s rule sealed the nation’s fate.Verse 3. - Surely at the commandment of the Lord came this upon Judah; literally, only at the mouth of the Lord did this come upon Judah; i.e. there was no other cause for it but the simple "mouth" or "word" of the Lord. The LXX., who translate πλὴν θυμὸς Κυρίου ῆν ἐπὶ τὸν ιούδαν, seem to have had אַף instead of פִי in their copies. To remove them out of his sight (comp. 2 Kings 23:27; and see also the comment on 2 Kings 17:18) for the sins of Manasseh, according to all that he did. The meaning is not that the nation was punishes for the personal sins and crimes of the wicked Manseseh forty or fifty years previously, but that the class of sins introduced by Manasseh, being persisted in by the people, brought the stern judgments of God upon them. As W. G. Sumner well observes, "The sins of Manasseh had become a designation for a certain class of offences, and a particular form of public and social depravity, which was introduced by Manassseh, but of which generation after generation continued to be guilty." The special sins were

(1) idolatry, accompanied by licentious rites;

(2) child-murder, or sacrifice to Moloch;

(3) sodomy (2 Kings 23:7); and

(4) the use of enchantments and the practice of magical arts (2 Kings 21:6). From the words "Necho made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in the place of his father Josiah," it follows that the king of Egypt did not acknowledge the reign of Jehoahaz, because he had been installed by the people without his consent. "And changed his name into Jehoiakim." The alteration of the name was a sign of dependence. In ancient times princes were accustomed to give new names to the persons whom they took into their service, and masters to give new names to their slaves (cf. Genesis 41:45; Ezra 5:14; Daniel 1:7, and Hvernick on the last passage). - But while these names were generally borrowed from heathen deities, Eliakim, and at a later period Mattaniah (2 Kings 24:17), received genuine Israelitish names, Jehoiakim, i.e., "Jehovah will set up," and Zidkiyahu, i.e., "righteousness of Jehovah;" from which we may infer that Necho and Nebuchadnezzar did not treat the vassal kings installed by them exactly as their slaves, but allowed them to choose the new names for themselves, and simply confirmed them as a sign of their supremacy. Eliakim altered his name into Jehoiakim, i.e., El (God) into Jehovah, to set the allusion to the establishment of the kingdom, which is implied in the name, in a still more definite relation to Jehovah the covenant God, who had promised to establish the seed of David (2 Samuel 7:14), possibly with an intentional opposition to the humiliation with which the royal house of David was threatened by Jeremiah and other prophets. - "But Jehoahaz he had taken (לקח, like יקּח in 2 Kings 24:12), and he came to Egypt and died there" - when, we are not told. - In 2 Kings 23:35, even before the account of Jehoiakim's reign, we have fuller particulars respecting the payment of the tribute which Necho imposed upon the land (2 Kings 23:33), because it was the condition on which he was appointed king. - "The gold and silver Jehoiakim gave to Pharaoh; yet (אך equals but in order to raise it) he valued (העריך as in Leviticus 27:8) the land, to give the money according to Pharaoh's command; of every one according to his valuation, he exacted the silver and gold of the population of the land, to give it to Pharaoh Necho." נגשׂ, to exact tribute, is construed with a double accusative, and בּערכּו אישׁ placed first for the sake of emphasis, as an explanatory apposition to הערץ את־עם.
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