Matthew Poole's Commentary
Joash was seven years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Zibiah of Beersheba.Joash reigneth well all the days of Jehoiada, 2 Chronicles 24:1-14. He dieth; is buried honourably; and Joash falleth to idolatry; slayeth Zechariah the son of Jehoiada, 2 Chronicles 24:15-22. He is spoiled by the Syrians; slain by Zabad and Jehozabad: Amaziah succeedeth him, 2 Chronicles 24:23-27.
A great part of this chapter is explained on 2 Kings 12.
And Joash did that which was right in the sight of the LORD all the days of Jehoiada the priest.No text from Poole on this verse.
And Jehoiada took for him two wives; and he begat sons and daughters.No text from Poole on this verse.
And it came to pass after this, that Joash was minded to repair the house of the LORD.No text from Poole on this verse.
And he gathered together the priests and the Levites, and said to them, Go out unto the cities of Judah, and gather of all Israel money to repair the house of your God from year to year, and see that ye hasten the matter. Howbeit the Levites hastened it not.Gather of all Israel, i.e. of all the Israelites that were in the kingdom of Judah. See 2 Chronicles 15:17 21:2. To repair the house of your God from year to year; either,
1. Repair part of it every year till the reparations be perfected; or,
2. Gather it from year to year, till you get such a sum as may suffice for the work; for he supposed one or two years’ collection would not suffice for the work, whether it were that collection of half a shekel for every man, of which see Exodus 30:12,13 2 Kings 12:14; or a voluntary contribution required for the present exigence of the temple by virtue of the command and example of Moses, who made such a collection for the building of the tabernacle, Exodus 35:5; see also Nehemiah 10:32; which he thought would not be any great sum, because of the great iniquity and impiety which yet had reigned for many years, and yet continued in the generality of the people of the land, the Levites not excepted, as the last clause of this verse shows.
And the king called for Jehoiada the chief, and said unto him, Why hast thou not required of the Levites to bring in out of Judah and out of Jerusalem the collection, according to the commandment of Moses the servant of the LORD, and of the congregation of Israel, for the tabernacle of witness?Jehoiada the chief: it is observable, that he is not called the chief priest, or high priest, but only
the chief, or &c the head, which he might be in many other respects, either by reason of his near relation to the royal family; or because he was the chief of one of the twenty-four families; or because he had been the chief man in the contriving and bringing about of this great change, and the general of the forces employed about it. And the high priest seems to be mentioned as a distinct person from Jehoiada here, 2 Kings 12:9,10; all which make it questionable whether Jehoiada was the high priest or no.
The collection, according to the commandment of Moses, Heb. the collection of Moses, i.e. such a one as he commanded or made in the like case; of which See Poole "2 Chronicles 24:5". In like manner we read of the sins of Manasseh, 2 Kings 24:3, and of the sin of Jeroboam frequently.
For the sons of Athaliah, that wicked woman, had broken up the house of God; and also all the dedicated things of the house of the LORD did they bestow upon Baalim.The sons of Athaliah, to wit, Ahaziah and his brethren, before they were carried away captive, 2 Chronicles 21:17, who did this by her instigation, as this phrase implies.
Had broken up the house of God; both broken up the treasuries, and defaced the house itself.
And at the king's commandment they made a chest, and set it without at the gate of the house of the LORD.i.e. Of the court of the people, whither all manner of persons might come to offer.
And they made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in to the LORD the collection that Moses the servant of God laid upon Israel in the wilderness.i.e. A collection answerable to it; as they are said to be guilty of the error of Balaam and gainsaying of Core, Judges 1:11, who fell into sins of the same kind.
And all the princes and all the people rejoiced, and brought in, and cast into the chest, until they had made an end.No text from Poole on this verse.
Now it came to pass, that at what time the chest was brought unto the king's office by the hand of the Levites, and when they saw that there was much money, the king's scribe and the high priest's officer came and emptied the chest, and took it, and carried it to his place again. Thus they did day by day, and gathered money in abundance.The chest was brought unto the king’s office, from the gate of the court into one of the chambers belonging to the temple, which was appointed by the king for this office.
And the king and Jehoiada gave it to such as did the work of the service of the house of the LORD, and hired masons and carpenters to repair the house of the LORD, and also such as wrought iron and brass to mend the house of the LORD.No text from Poole on this verse.
So the workmen wrought, and the work was perfected by them, and they set the house of God in his state, and strengthened it.No text from Poole on this verse.
And when they had finished it, they brought the rest of the money before the king and Jehoiada, whereof were made vessels for the house of the LORD, even vessels to minister, and to offer withal, and spoons, and vessels of gold and silver. And they offered burnt offerings in the house of the LORD continually all the days of Jehoiada.Whereof were made vessels for the house of the Lord; because Athaliah and her sons had taken the old ones away, 2 Chronicles 24:7.
But Jehoiada waxed old, and was full of days when he died; an hundred and thirty years old was he when he died.No text from Poole on this verse.
And they buried him in the city of David among the kings, because he had done good in Israel, both toward God, and toward his house.He had done good in Israel, i.e. in Judah, which was an eminent part of Israel, and the only part of it which owned God, or was owned by God as his Israel, to whom therefore he oft appropriates this name, thereby signifying that the other tribes were unworthy of that honourable title, and had forfeited all their right in it to Judah. See Poole "2 Chronicles 21:2".
Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king hearkened unto them.Made obeisance to the king; in that posture presenting their requests to him, that they might not be confined to unnecessary and troublesome journeys in coming to Jerusalem to worship, but might have the liberty which their forefathers enjoyed of worshipping God in the high places; which liberty, when once they had obtained, they knew they could then worship idols without observation or disturbance, which was the thing at which they aimed. And for the prevention of such abuses, God obliged all to worship him in one place.
And they left the house of the LORD God of their fathers, and served groves and idols: and wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem for this their trespass.By Hazael of Syria; of which see 2 Kings 12:17,18
Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again unto the LORD; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, which stood above the people, and said unto them, Thus saith God, Why transgress ye the commandments of the LORD, that ye cannot prosper? because ye have forsaken the LORD, he hath also forsaken you.Above the people; in a higher place, that his voice and message might be the better heard.
And they conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of the LORD.They conspired, i. e. the people to whom he preached, who were easily corrupted by the examples of their apostate king and princes.
Thus Joash the king remembered not the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but slew his son. And when he died, he said, The LORD look upon it, and require it.i.e. Make inquisition for my innocent blood; which he did not wish from any desire of private revenge, with which so wise and good a man would never be willing to die; but partly from a zeal to public justice, and the punishment of such gross wickedness; and partly to deter them, if possible, from completing their murderous intentions. But these words may as well be rendered indicatively as optatively,
The Lord will look upon it, and
require it, i. e. he will examine this action, and require satisfaction from you for it.
And it came to pass at the end of the year, that the host of Syria came up against him: and they came to Judah and Jerusalem, and destroyed all the princes of the people from among the people, and sent all the spoil of them unto the king of Damascus.At the end of the year; so soon did God hear the cry of his holy prophet’s blood, and revenge it.
Destroyed all the princes of the people; that it might appear they were sent and directed by God to single out to destruction the first beginners and chief promoters of this general apostacy.
Unto the king of Damascus; to Hazael, the king of that part of Syria called Syria Damascena, from its capital city Damascus.
For the army of the Syrians came with a small company of men, and the LORD delivered a very great host into their hand, because they had forsaken the LORD God of their fathers. So they executed judgment against Joash.No text from Poole on this verse.
And when they were departed from him, (for they left him in great diseases,) his own servants conspired against him for the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest, and slew him on his bed, and he died: and they buried him in the city of David, but they buried him not in the sepulchres of the kings.For the blood of the sons of Jehoiada, i.e. of Zechariah his son; the plural number sons put for the singular son, as it is frequently, both in Scripture, as Genesis 46:7 Numbers 26:42, and in Cicero and other profane authors. Or he might kill other sons of Jehoiada with him, either because they owned him in what he had said, or lest they should revenge his death.
And these are they that conspired against him; Zabad the son of Shimeath an Ammonitess, and Jehozabad the son of Shimrith a Moabitess.No text from Poole on this verse.
Now concerning his sons, and the greatness of the burdens laid upon him, and the repairing of the house of God, behold, they are written in the story of the book of the kings. And Amaziah his son reigned in his stead.The greatness of the burdens laid upon him; either the severe prophecies against him, which are oft called burdens; of which one instance is recorded, and there might be others that are not recorded; or the great judgments of God upon him, both by the Syrians, 2 Chronicles 24:23,24, and by great diseases, 2 Chronicles 24:25.