Matthew Poole's Commentary
Then the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and made him king in his father's stead in Jerusalem.Jehoahaz succeeding is deposed by Pharaoh, and carried to Egypt, 2 Chronicles 36:1-4. Jehoiakim’s wicked reign; his captivity into Babylon, 2 Chronicles 36:5-8. Jehoiachin likewise, 2 Chronicles 36:9,10. Zedekiah’s wicked reign; his contempt of the prophet, and rebellion against Nebuchadnezzar, 2 Chronicles 36:11-13. Jerusalem’s destruction, 2 Chronicles 36:14-21. The proclamation of Cyrus, 2 Chronicles 36:22,23.
The contents of this chapter, for the substance of them, are explained See Poole "2 Kings 23:31", &c.; also 2 Kings 24 2Ki 25; what is peculiar to it shall be here opened, so far as is necessary.
Jehoahaz was twenty and three years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the king of Egypt put him down at Jerusalem, and condemned the land in an hundred talents of silver and a talent of gold.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the king of Egypt made Eliakim his brother king over Judah and Jerusalem, and turned his name to Jehoiakim. And Necho took Jehoahaz his brother, and carried him to Egypt.No text from Poole on this verse.
Jehoiakim was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD his God.No text from Poole on this verse.
Against him came up Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and bound him in fetters, to carry him to Babylon.No text from Poole on this verse.
Nebuchadnezzar also carried of the vessels of the house of the LORD to Babylon, and put them in his temple at Babylon.No text from Poole on this verse.
Now the rest of the acts of Jehoiakim, and his abominations which he did, and that which was found in him, behold, they are written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah: and Jehoiachin his son reigned in his stead.That which was found in him; that crime of rebellion against the king of Babylon, which for a time he kept in his own breast; but when he saw fit, he discovered it, and was convicted of it. See 2 Kings 24:1.
Jehoiachin was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months and ten days in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD.Jehoiachin was eight years old; of which See Poole "2 Kings 24:8", where he is said to be eighteen years old.
And when the year was expired, king Nebuchadnezzar sent, and brought him to Babylon, with the goodly vessels of the house of the LORD, and made Zedekiah his brother king over Judah and Jerusalem.When the year was expired, Heb. at the return of the year, i.e. at the beginning of the next year, according to the sacred account of the Hebrews, at the spring of the year, the time when kings go forth to battle, as is elsewhere said, when Nebuchadnezzar, among others, went forth to settle and enlarge his conquests.
Zedekiah his brother; largely so called, for this was his uncle, or his father’s brother, as he is called, 2 Kings 24:17, being the son of Josiah. See 1 Chronicles 3:15 Jeremiah 1:3.
Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign, and reigned eleven years in Jerusalem.No text from Poole on this verse.
And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD his God, and humbled not himself before Jeremiah the prophet speaking from the mouth of the LORD.Humbled not himself by repentance for his past errors, and obedience to God’s express commands, which he would not yield to through the pride of his heart, as is intimated by this phrase, and expressed Jeremiah 38:19.
And he also rebelled against king Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him swear by God: but he stiffened his neck, and hardened his heart from turning unto the LORD God of Israel.Who had made him swear by God; who had required and forced him to swear fealty and constant obedience to him by the true God, whom he had served, and whom he called upon to be a witness against him if he broke his oath. So his rebellion was aggravated with perjury, and horrid contempt of God. Compare Ezekiel 17:18. Hardened his heart, i.e. he added obstinacy and incorrigibleness to his sins.
Moreover all the chief of the priests, and the people, transgressed very much after all the abominations of the heathen; and polluted the house of the LORD which he had hallowed in Jerusalem.The people transgressed very much; they were universally corrupt, and therefore God justly brought upon them a general destruction.
And the LORD God of their fathers sent to them by his messengers, rising up betimes, and sending; because he had compassion on his people, and on his dwelling place:Rising up betimes, and sending, i.e. sending them early and diligently, as a careful householder who riseth betimes about his business, and pursues it till night come. God sent them many prophets and messages, some at the very beginning of their apostacy, and others afterward, as they proceeded in their impiety, until the very day of their captivity.
But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against his people, till there was no remedy.They mocked the messengers of God; of which see instances, Ezekiel 11:3 20:49.
Misused his prophets; imprisoning and persecuting them, as they did Jeremiah. Or, seduced themselves by his prophets, i.e. by their prophecies, which they perverted or misconstrued. An eminent instance we have in this, that because Jeremiah prophesied that Zedekiah should be led to Babylon, Jeremiah 32:5, and Ezekiel, that he should not see Babylon, Ezekiel 12:13, therefore they believed neither, as the Hebrew writers relate.
Till there was no remedy; because the people would not repent, and God would not pardon them.
Therefore he brought upon them the king of the Chaldees, who slew their young men with the sword in the house of their sanctuary, and had no compassion upon young man or maiden, old man, or him that stooped for age: he gave them all into his hand.In the house of their sanctuary; either in Jerusalem, which was the dwelling-place of God’s sanctuary; or, in the house which was their sanctuary; as the river of Euphrates, Genesis 15:18, is the river which is Euphrates. It is probable they killed them in the very courts and house of God, to which some of them fled for refuge, such places being esteemed sacred and inviolable by the heathens themselves.
And all the vessels of the house of God, great and small, and the treasures of the house of the LORD, and the treasures of the king, and of his princes; all these he brought to Babylon.No text from Poole on this verse.
And they burnt the house of God, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem, and burnt all the palaces thereof with fire, and destroyed all the goodly vessels thereof.No text from Poole on this verse.
And them that had escaped from the sword carried he away to Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the kingdom of Persia:No text from Poole on this verse.
To fulfil the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed her sabbaths: for as long as she lay desolate she kept sabbath, to fulfil threescore and ten years.Had enjoyed her sabbaths, i.e. had rested from the labour of the husbandmen in ploughing and harrowing it, &c., the people that should have managed it being destroyed. Of the phrase, See Poole "Leviticus 25:2".
To fulfil threescore and ten years; that so the seventy years’ captivity prophesied of by Jeremiah might be accomplished.
Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD spoken by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying,This and the next verse are repeated in the beginning of the next book, where they will be more fitly explained.
Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the LORD God of heaven given me; and he hath charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The LORD his God be with him, and let him go up.No text from Poole on this verse.