2 Kings 3:1
Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.
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(1) Began to reign.—Literally, reigned.

The eighteenth year.—Comp. Note on 2Kings 1:17; 2Kings 8:16.

3:1-5 Jehoram took warning by God's judgment, and put away the image of Baal, yet he maintained the worship of the calves. Those do not truly repent or reform, who only part with the sins they lose by, but continue to love the sins that they think to gain by.In the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat - This date agrees exactly with the statements that Jehoshaphat began to reign in the fourth year of Ahab 1 Kings 22:41, and Ahaziah in the 17th year of Jehoshaphat 1 Kings 22:51. CHAPTER 3

2Ki 3:1-3. Jehoram's Evil Reign over Israel.

1, 2. Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat—(compare 1Ki 22:51). To reconcile the statements in the two passages, we must suppose that Ahaziah, having reigned during the seventeenth and the greater part of the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, was succeeded by his brother Joram or Jehoram, in the end of that eighteenth year, or else that Ahaziah, having reigned two years in conjunction with his father, died at the end of that period when Jehoram ascended the throne. His policy was as hostile as that of his predecessors to the true religion; but he made some changes. Whatever was his motive for this alteration—whether dread of the many alarming judgments the patronage of idolatry had brought upon his father; or whether it was made as a small concession to the feelings of Jehoshaphat, his ally, he abolished idolatry in its gross form and restored the symbolic worship of God, which the kings of Israel, from the time of Jeroboam, had set up as a partition wall between their subjects and those of Judah.Jehoram followeth the sin of Jeroboam; he, with Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom, goeth to battle against Moab, 2 Kings 3:1-8. They, in distress for water, obtain it by Elisha, and a promise of victory, 2 Kings 3:9-20. The Moabites, deceived by the colour of the water, coming to spoil, are overcome, 2 Kings 3:21-25. The king of Moab, by sacrificing his eldest son, raiseth the siege, 2 Kings 3:26,27.

The eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat.

Quest. How can this be true, when Ahaziah, Jehoram’s predecessor, who reigned two years, began his reign in Jehoshaphat’s seventeenth year, 1 Kings 22:51?

Answ. Either Ahaziah reigned the greatest part of two years, to wit, of the seventeenth and eighteenth years of Jehoshaphat, (parts of years being oft called years in the computation of times, both in Scripture and other authors,) and Jehoram began his reign towards the end of his eighteenth year; or Ahaziah reigned part of this two years with his father, and the rest after him.

Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah,.... So that the two years of the reign of his brother Ahaziah were not complete, only part of the seventeenth and part of the eighteenth of Jehoshaphat, since he began to reign in his seventeenth year, at the beginning of that, and died towards the close of the eighteenth, when Jehoram succeeded him, see 1 Kings 22:51, and reigned twelve years. Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the {a} eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.

(a) Read the annotation in 2Ki 1:17.

Ch. 2 Kings 3:1-20. Jehoram king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah march against Moab. In the desert they obtain water through Elisha, who also promises them victory (Not in Chronicles)

1. the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat] How this year may be identified with ‘the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat’, which in 2 Kings 1:17 is the date assigned to Jehoram’s accession, is not clear. But see above on that passage.

Verse 1. - Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat King of Judah. This note of time is not quite in accordance with the chronology of 1 Kings, which gives Jehoshaphat a reign of twenty-five years (1 Kings 22:42), Ahab one of twenty-two years (1 Kings 16:29), and Ahaziah one of two years (1 Kings 22:51), and makes Jehoshaphat's first year run parallel with Ahab's fourth (1 Kings 22:41), since thus Ahab's death-year would be Jehoshaphat's nineteenth, and Jehoram's accession-year, at the earliest, Jehoshaphat's twentieth. The difficulty may be removed by assigning to Ahab a reign of twenty instead of twenty-two years. On the mode of reconciling the statement of this place with that of 2 Kings 1:17, that Jehoram of Israel began to reign in the second year of Jehoram of Judah, see the comment upon that passage. And reigned twelve years. 2 Kings 3:1Reign of Joram of Israel. - For the chronological statement in 2 Kings 3:1, see at 2 Kings 1:17. Joram or Jehoram was not so ungodly as his father Ahab and his Mother Jezebel. He had the statue or pillar of Baal, which his father had erected in Samaria, removed; and it was only to the sin of Jeroboam, i.e., the calf-worship, that he adhered. Joram therefore wished to abolish the worship of Baal and elevate the worship of Jehovah, under the image of the calf (ox), into the region of his kingdom once more. For the singular suffix ממּנּה see Ewald, 317, a. He did not succeed, however, in exterminating the worship of Baal. It not only continued in Samaria, but appears to have been carried on again in the most shameless manner (cf. 2 Kings 10:18.); at which we cannot be surprised, since his mother Jezebel, that fanatical worshipper of Baal, was living throughout the whole of his reign (2 Kings 9:30).
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