Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary
Second, from his being associated in the empire. It was the first of his reigning alone.
David. Yet not with a perfect heart, 2 Paralipomenon xxv. 2. --- Father. He imitated his early piety, as well as his miserable end. (Calmet)
But, &c. All that Amasias did, at first, was right, (ver. 3.) but this only. See 3 Kings xxii. 24. (Haydock) --- Joas had also left such high places, chap. xii. 3.
Sin. This is the rule of human tribunals, to which God is not restrained. (Salien) (Ezechiel xviii. 20.) (Menochius) --- The action of Amasias is commended as something unusual (Calmet) among princes, who are but too apt to exceed the bounds of moderation (Haydock) to revenge their murdered parents. (Calmet)
Edom, who had rebelled under Joram, chap. viii. 20. The particulars of this war are given, 2 Paralipomenon xxv. 5. Josephus ([Antiquities?] ix. 9.) says, Amasias designed also to attack Amalec and Gebal in the same country. --- Pits. Called the woody vale, Genesis xiv. 8., (Menochius) south-west of the Dead Sea, (Adrichomius) or rather to the south of Palmyra, towards Bosra, 3 Kings ix. 18. --- Rock. Petra, the capital of the country, formerly called Rekem Arke, or Hagor. Most of the houses are hewn out of the rock. Hebrew Sela signifies "a rock;" and many think that this was some other place, whence the Idumeans were hurled down, after the victory. Amasias gave it the name of Jectehel, "obedience of God," in memory of his having obtained this success, in consequence of his having obeyed the prophet, and sent away 100,000, for whom he had paid 100 talents to the king of Israel.
Let us see one another. This was a challenge to fight. (Challoner) (Worthington) --- The interviews of ambitious kings are often baneful. (Haydock) --- Abner said in the same sense, "Let the young men rise and play," 2 Kings ii. 14; and Virgil, (Æneid xii.) Inter se coiisse viros & cernere ferro. Amasias had many reasons to be displeased with the king of Israel. He might justly redemand part of the money, (Calmet) as he had not employed the soldiers. (Haydock) --- They had also committed depredations in Juda. (Paralipomenon) Jehu had slain Ochozias, and many of his relations. (Calmet) --- Josephus also observes that he now required Israel to return to his obedience, and acknowledge the power of the lawful descendants of David. (Sanctius)
Thistle. Hebrew choach, something prickly; (Haydock) "a thorn." Syriac and Arabic, "a plum-tree." Nothing could be more cutting (Calmet) than this answer of Joas, to shew the king of Juda how much he despised his power. (Haydock) --- The ancients were much pleased with such ingenious similes. See Judges ix. 7.
Home, to boast of thy victory, (Haydock) but do not offer to molest others. (Calmet) --- God permitted that Amasias should pay no attention to this advice, nor to the prophet who reproached him for adoring the idols which he had brought from Edom, 2 Paralipomenon xxv. 14.
Saw, or fought, ver. 8., and chap. xxiii. 29. Bethsames was in the tribe of Dan, (Calmet) but belonging to the king of Juda.
Cubits. Josephus says 300, and that he led Amasias in triumph through the ruins, (Antiquities ix. 10.) on the west side, (Calmet) or on the north. (Villalpand) (Menochius)
Hostages, as he left Amasias, on condition he should pay tribute, (Menochius) and took "the children of the nobles" (Chaldean) to secure his fidelity. (Haydock)
Valour. Hence it appears that Juda made a stout resistance, though Josephus would insinuate the contrary.
Lachis, in the tribe of Dan. Some say that the kings resided there twelve years, in a kind of exile. (Malvenda) --- But the conspiracy only took place in the last year of his reign. (Usher, the year of the world 3194.) --- Some powerful men rose up against him, and the people were displeased with his conduct. (Menochius) --- But the majority did not approve of his death, so that they granted him the funeral honours, and appointed his son to succeed. (Calmet)
Azarias. Hebrew Hazarya. Sometimes printed more correctly Azieu, at others Azrien, (Haydock) by the blundering of transcribers, who have confounded the name of the king Ozihu (Azieu or Ozias) with that of the priest Ozrichu. (Azrien.) Carpzovius maintains that Azarias and Usias are two names of the same person. (Crit. p. 789.) But if he should find Carpzovius, Carpzorvius, and Carpzoviu, in the same book, would he not think them the same name erroneously printed? Kennicott, (Dis. i. p. 478.) who observes that the Syriac and Arabic versions have here, as in the sequel, Uzia, and St. Matthew (i. 8.) calls the king Ozias, conformably to 2 Paralipomenon xxvi. 1., &c. The manuscripts also vary. (Kennicott)
Built, or rebuilt Elath; which gives its name to the eastern branch of the Red Sea. David had possession of all Idumea. Amasias had reconquered a great part, and his son pushed his conquests still further.
Wilderness, or the Dead Sea, to which place the dominion of Israel originally extended, under Jeroboam I. (Calmet) --- Opher, in the tribe of Zabulon. (Challoner) --- Protestants, "which was of Gath-hepher." (Haydock) --- We have not all the works of the prophets, nor did they write all their predictions. (Calmet) --- Here we learn at what time Jonas lived. (Menochius)
In prison is not expressed in the original, (Calmet) which has, "not any shut up, nor last." Neither those who had strong castles, nor the poorest people, were exempt from suffering. (Haydock) --- None durst appear, 3 Kings xiv. 10. (Menochius)
Israel, like Amalec, 1 Kings xv. 3. (Menochius)
To Juda, or "of Juda;" Judæ; (Haydock) as those strong cities had been conquered by David. The Syriac and Arabic omit this word entirely, and suppose, with many others, that Jeroboam kept possession of these cities. (Calmet) (Tirinus) --- In Israel, or "to Israel," over which he reigned. (Haydock)
Slept, dying a natural death; though the idolatrous priests of Bethel falsely asserted, that Amos had foretold he should fall by the sword, Amos vii. 11.