James Gray - Concise Bible Commentary
And Solomon the son of David was strengthened in his kingdom, and the LORD his God was with him, and magnified him exceedingly.2 Chronicles 1:1-9:31
HIS PRAYER AND ITS ANSWER (2 Chronicles 1:1-3)
With verses three and four compare 1 Chronicles 16, and especially 1 Chronicles 16:37-40. The tabernacle at Gibeon was the legal place for worship, but the threshing-floor on Matthew Moriah was chosen by David for the reason given (1 Chronicles 21:29). A comparison with the corresponding place in 1 Kings will show how this account is abbreviated as the matter was not necessary to the author’s purpose.
HIS POWER AND WEALTH (2 Chronicles 1:14-17)
This record is given in Kings near the close of the reign, but inserted here as a proof of the instant fulfillment of God’s promise.
HIS CONSTRUCTION AND DEDICATION OF THE TEMPLE (2 Chronicles 2-7)
Huram is the same with whom we have previously met. The two houses (2 Chronicles 2:1) are the temple and Solomon’s palace. The description of the temple here differs in several particulars from that in Kings. For example, this is more particular as to the plan of the building but less so as to the time when it began; this speaks of the arrangement of the building and its furnishings in an unbroken narrative, but that has two interruptions; this arranges the objects differently and describes with more fullness in some cases, etc. But remember what has been said about the Holy Spirit as the real author of Scripture, and His right to use such liberty to emphasize certain facts or impress certain lessons as He desires. This does not take into account errors of copyists to which reference also has been made.
Here the location of the temple is named for the first time (2 Chronicles 3:1, compare Genesis 22:2). Moriah means “land of the appearing of the Lord.” Note the reference to the brazen scaffold (2 Chronicles 4:13) not given in Kings, the additional words at the close of Solomon’s prayer (2 Chron. 4:40-42), and the fuller account of the divine acceptance of the temple (2 Chronicles 7:1-10).
The large number of oxen and sheep offered in sacrifice is astounding (7:5), but Josephus in his Jewish Wars says that even in Roman times, 256,000 passover lambs were slain at Jerusalem within a few hours. A current commentator reminds us that these colossal offerings and festivals are no more astonishing to us than the magnitude of our steam or railway trade, or of modern warfare would be astonishing to the ancients.
HIS EARTHLY END (2 Chronicles 8-9)
In the first of these chapters we have brief notes of events recorded more at length in 1 Kings, for example: the building of certain cities, the palace for the daughter of the Egyptian king, the navigation to Ophir, etc. The comments upon these in that book occupy as much space as seems relatively necessary.
In the next chapter the story of the Queen of Sheba is very much as in 1 Kings.
1. Where was the tabernacle of Moses at this period?
2. Who is the real author of this book, and how does that fact bear on the differences in its record as compared with 1 Kings?
3. How may other differences be explained?
4. Tell what you know of the history of Matthew Moriah?
5. Give a later parallel to the large number of sacrifices at the dedication of the temple.