2 Kings 8:16
And in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel, Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah, Jehoram the son of Je hoshaphat king of Judah began to reign.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(16-24) The reign of Jehoram, king of Judah. (Comp. 2 Chronicles 21)

(16) In the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab.—See Note on 2Kings 1:17.

The name Joram is an easy contraction of Jehoram. In this verse and in 2Kings 8:29 the king of Israel is called Joram, and the king of Judah Jehoram; in 2Kings 8:21; 2Kings 8:23-24 Joram is the name of the king of Judah. In 2Kings 1:17 and 2Chronicles 22:6, both kings are called Jehoram.

Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah.—Literally, and Jehoshaphat king of Judah; so that the meaning is, “In the fifth year of Joram . . . and of Jehoshaphat.” Were the reading correct, it would be implied that Jehoram was for some reason or other made king or co-regent in the lifetime of his father, just as Esarhaddon united his heir Assurbanipal with himself in the government of Assyria. But the clause should be omitted as a spurious anticipation of the same words in the next line. So some Hebrew MSS., the Complut., LXX., the Syriac, and Arabic, and many MSS. of the Vulg. The clause as it stands is an unparalleled insertion in a common formula of the compiler, and there is no trace elsewhere of a co-regency of Jehoram with his father. Ewald, after Kimchi, would turn the clause into a sentence, by adding the word mêth, “had died:” “Now Jehoshaphat the king of Judah had died,” an utterly superfluous remark.

2 Kings 8:16. Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat began to reign — Jehoram was first made king or viceroy by his father, divers years before this time, at his expedition to Ramoth-gilead, which dominion of his ended at his father’s return. But now Jehoshaphat, being not far from his death, and having divers sons, and fearing some competition among them, makes Jehoram king the second time, as David did Solomon upon the like occasion. See note on chap. 2 Kings 1:17.8:16-24 A general idea is given of Jehoram's badness. His father, no doubt, had him taught the true knowledge of the Lord, but did ill to marry him to the daughter of Ahab; no good could come of union with an idolatrous family.The passage is parenthetic, resuming the history of the kingdom of Judah from 1 Kings 22:50.

2 Kings 8:16

The opening words are - "In the fifth year of Joram, son of Ahab, king of Israel, and of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah;" but they contradict all the other chronological notices of Jehoshaphat 1 Kings 22:42, 1 Kings 22:51; 2 Kings 3:1; 2 Chronicles 20:31, which give him a reign of at least twenty-three years. Hence, some have supposed that the words "Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah," are accidentally repeated. Those, however, who regard them and 2 Kings 1:17 as sound, suppose that Jehoshaphat gave his son the royal title in his 16th year, while he advanced him to a real association in the empire seven years later, in his 23rd year. Two years afterward, Jehoshatphat died, and Jehoram became sole king.

2Ki 8:16-23. Jehoram's Wicked Reign.

16. Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat … began to reign—(See on [333]2Ki 3:1). His father resigned the throne to him two years before his death.

Jehoram was first made king or viceroy by his father divers years before this time, to wit, at his expedition to Ramoth-gilead, as was noted before; which dominion of his ended at his father’s return. But now Jehoshaphat, being not far from his death, and having divers sons, and fearing some competition and dissension among them, makes Jehoram king the second time, as David did Solomon upon the like occasion, 1 Chronicles 29:22, which is the thing here related. But of this See Poole "2 Kings 1:17"; See Poole "2 Kings 3:1". And in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel,.... Who began his reign in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, 2 Kings 3:1.

Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah; as he continued to be two years more; for this must be in the twenty third year of his reign, and he reigned twenty five years, 1 Kings 22:42.

Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah began to reign; according to Dr. Lightfoot (h), there were three beginnings of his reign; "first", when his father went with Ahab to Ramothgilead, when be was left viceroy, and afterwards his father reassumed the kingdom; the "second" time was, when Jehoshaphat went with the kings of Israel and Edom against Moab; and this is the time here respected, which was in the fifth of Joram king of Israel; and the "third" time was, at the death of his father; but knew his father was living.

(h) Works, vol. 1. p. 84.

And in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel, Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah, {i} Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah began to reign.

(i) Read 2Ki 1:17.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
16–24. Jehoram, the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah. His wars with Edom and Libnah (2 Chronicles 21:1-20)

16. In the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab] On the difficulties connected with the chronology of this period, see above on 2 Kings 1:17. On the strength of the words in this verse ‘Jehoshaphat being then king of Judah’ it is supposed that Jehoram king of Judah was co-regent with his father. But, as is noted on the margin of R.V., some ancient authorities omit the sentence which makes father and son to be reigning together. The chief difficulty is introduced by the words of 2 Kings 1:17, which make Joram the son of Ahab commence his reign in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat of Judah. That statement contradicts the present verse, and the explanation given on 2 Kings 1:17 though generally accepted gives rise to many questions. Especially it is objected that in no other instance is a son found reigning along with his father. Then Jehoshaphat was a vigorous monarch and zealous for the service of Jehovah, and was not likely to take as his coadjutor a prince of so weak a character, and of such different religious feeling as Jehoram. Still no more satisfactory solution has been suggested.Verses 16-24. - THE WICKED REIGN OF JEHORAM IN JUDAH. At this point the writer, who has been concerned with the history of the kingdom of Israel hitherto in the present book, takes up the story of the kingdom of Judah from 1 Kings 22:50, and proceeds to give a very brief account of the reign of Jehoshaphat's eldest son, Jehoram, or (by contraction) Joram. His narrative has to be supplemented from 2 Chronicles 21, which contains many facts not mentioned by the writer of Kings. Verse 16. - And in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab King of Israel, Jehoshaphat being then King of Judah; literally, and of Jehoshaphat King of Judah. The words are wanting in three Hebrew manuscripts, in some editions of the Septuagint, in the Peshito Syriac, in the Parisian Heptaplar Syriac, in the Arabic Version, and in many copies of the Vulgate. They cannot possibly have the sense assigned to them in our version, and are most probably a gloss which has crept into the text from the margin. Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat King of Judah began to reign. Jehoram's reign was sometimes counted from the seventeenth year of his father, when he was given the royal title, sometimes from his father's twenty-third year, when he was associated, and sometimes from his father's death in his twenty-fifth year, when he became sole king (see the comment on 2 Kings 1:17 and 2 Kings 3:1). According to the Chethb חיה לא, Elisha's answer was, "Thou wilt not live, and (for) Jehovah has shown me that he will die;" according to the Keri חיה לו, "tell him: Thou wilt live, but Jehovah," etc. Most of the commentators follow the ancient versions, and the Masoretes, who reckon our לא among the fifteen passages of the O.T. in which it stands for the pronoun לו (vid., Hilleri Arcan. Keri, p. 62f.), and some of the codices, and decide in favour of the Keri. (1) because the conjecture that לו was altered into לא in order that Elisha might not be made to utter an untruth, is a very natural one; and (2) on account of the extreme rarity with which a negative stands before the inf. abs. with the finite verb following. But there is not much force in either argument. The rarity of the position of לא before the inf. abs. followed by a finite verb, in connection with the omission of the pronoun לו after אמר, might be the very reason why לא was taken as a pronoun; and the confirmation of this opinion might be found in the fact that Hazael brought back this answer to the king: "Thou wilt live" (2 Kings 8:14). The reading in the text לא (non) is favoured by the circumstance that it is the more difficult of the two, partly because of the unusual position of the negative, and partly because of the contradiction to 2 Kings 8:14. But the לא is found in the same position in other passages (Genesis 3:4; Psalm 49:8, and Amos 9:8), where the emphasis lies upon the negation; and the contradiction to 2 Kings 8:14 may be explained very simply, from the fact that Hazael did not tell his king the truth, because he wanted to put him to death and usurp the throne. We therefore prefer the reading in the text, since it is not in harmony with the character of the prophets to utter an untruth; and the explanation, "thou wilt not die of thine illness, but come to a violent death," puts into the words a meaning which they do not possess. For even if Benhadad did not die of his illness, he did not recover from it.
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