2 KINGS CHAPTER 15
Azariah, his good reign, but is punished with leprosy, and dieth, 2 Kings 15:1-7. Zachariah reigneth ill; is slain by Shallum; who reigneth a month, and is slain by Menahem, 2 Kings 15:8-15. He is strengthened by Pul king of Assyria: his son succeedeth him, 2 Kings 15:16-22. He is slain by Pekah, 2 Kings 15:23-26. A part of the Israelites is carried away captive to Assyria by Tiglath-pileser, 2 Kings 15:27-29. Hoshea slayeth Pekah, and succeedeth him. Jotham’s good reign over Judah: Ahaz succeedeth him, 2 Kings 15:30-38.
Quest. How can this be true, seeing Amaziah, the father of this Azariah, lived only till the fifteenth year of Jeroboam’s reign, 2 Kings 14:2,23?
Answ. This might be either, first, Because Jeroboam was made king by and reigned with his father eleven or twelve years, and afterwards reigned alone; and so there is a twofold beginning of his kingdom; by the former this was his twenty-seventh year, and by the latter his fifteenth year. Or, secondly, Because there was an interreign for eleven or twelve years in the kingdom of Judah; either through the prevalency of that faction which cut off Amaziah the father, and kept the son out of his kingdom; or because Azariah was very young when his father was slain, and the people were not agreed to restore him to his right till his sixteenth year, 2 Kings 14:21 2 Chronicles 26:1. And yet these eleven or twelve years of interreign, in which he was excluded from the exercise of his regal office, some think to be included in those fifty-two years which are here ascribed to Azariah’s reign, 2 Kings 15:2, which may well be doubted. Azariah, called also Uzziah here, 2 Kings 15:13,30. Began Azariah to reign; solely and fully to exercise his regal power.
Besides the sixteen years of his minority last mentioned.
i.e. In the same manner, unsincerely, and but for a time.
Save that; understand this as howbeit, 2 Kings 14:4.
He was a leper; the cause whereof see 2 Chronicles 26:16.
Dwelt in a several house; separated from conversation with others by virtue of that law, Leviticus 13:46, which being the law of the King of kings, bound kings no less than subjects.
Over the house, judging the people of the land, i.e. he governed the king’s court and whole kingdom, in his name, and as his vicegerent.
The thirty and eighth year of Azariah; of which See Poole "2 Kings 15:2".
Shallum the son of Jabesh; one of his chief captains.
Before the people openly and impudently; which he presumed to do, either because he remembered that the promise of the kingdom made to Jehu was confined to the fourth generation, 2 Kings 10:30, which he observed to be now expired; or because he perceived that the people were generally disaffected to their king, and favourable to his attempt.
Tiphsah; either that Tiphsah mentioned 1 Kings 4:24, or another city of that name.
The coasts thereof from Tirzah, i.e. all the people dwelling between Tirzah and Tiphsah.
Because they opened not to him; because they refused to open the gates of their city to him, and to submit to him as conqueror.
The women he ripped up; that by this example of severity he might affright all the rest of the people into obedience.
Pul the king of Assyria; called by heathen authors Pulbelochus, who by the help of Arbaces the Mede vanquished Sardanapalus the last monarch of Assyria, and translated the kingdom to Chaldea, and was the first king of Babylon and Assyria; Arbaces being made king of the Medes and Persians.
Against the land, to wit, of Israel, as the context shows.
Menahem gave, i.e. agreed or promised to give, as the next verse explains it.
That his hand might be with him, to confirm the kingdom in his hand; that he might assist him against all that did or should oppose him. By which it appears that his cruelty to Tiphsah was so far from establishing him, as he expected, that it weakened and endangered him so far, that he was forced to call in a foreign prince to his aid.
Of each man, i.e. of each of those wealthy Israelites. But as each of these were not equally wealthy, so it is not probable that he taxed them equally. Others therefore render it to or for each man, i.e. for every Assyrian soldier; which interpretation is favoured by the placing of the words in the Hebrew text, which differs from that in our translation.
Argob and Arieh might be either Pekah’s partners in this treason, or the king’s courtiers or officers, who were now slain with him.
Fifty men of the Gileadites; who assisted him in the execution of his treason.
Tiglath-pileser, or, Tilgath-pilneser, 2 Chronicles 28:20, called in heathen authors Phulasar, or Phul-assur, the son of that Pul or Phul above, 2 Kings 15:19.
Abel-beth-maachah; of which see 1 Kings 15:20. Janoah; a city of Ephraim, Joshua 16:6. Kedesh and Hazor; two cities of Naphtali, Joshua 12:22 19:36.
Gilead; all the land beyond Jordan, which was nigher to the Assyrian than the rest.
Galilee, to wit, the Upper Galilee, as may be gathered from the following words, all (or, even all)
the land of Naphtali; which seem to be added by way of explication or restriction, to show what Galilee he meant, even the Upper, in which Naphtali’s lot fell. See Poole "Isaiah 9:1".
Smote him, and slew him; which he did more easily effect, because the people were enraged against Pekah, as the man who by his murder of king Pekahiah the son of Menahem, whom the Assyrian monarch set up and favoured, and by his unnecessary war with Ahaz, had brought the Assyrian upon them, and caused the loss of one half of that kingdom.
In the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah.
Quest. How could this be, when Jotham reigned only sixteen years, below, 2 Kings 15:33?
Answ. The meaning is, that he began his reign in the twentieth year after the beginning of Jotham’s reign; or, which is the same thing, in the fourth year of Ahaz, son of Jotham, as appears from 2 Kings 16:2. But the sacred writer, having not yet made mention of Ahaz, thought it more proper to number Hoshea’s years by Jotham, of whom he had spoken, than by Ahaz. Besides, as Jotham did reign divers years in his father’s life, so might Ahaz in Jotham’s life, and Jotham might for divers reasons (which it is needless here to inquire) resign up the administration of the kingdom wholly into Ahaz’s hands some years before his death, and therefore might be said to reign but sixteen years, though he lived longer.
When he began to reign, to wit, properly and alone; for he had reigned before this, as his father’s deputy and viceroy.
Not of the temple, properly so called; but of one of the courts of the temple, probably that which led to the king’s palace, 2 Chronicles 23:20; called also the new gate, Jeremiah 26:10 36:10.
In those days i.e. towards the end of Jotham’s reign.
The Lord began to send, i.e. disposed their hearts to unite their forces together, and to make preparation for a war against Judah; which yet they did not execute till Ahaz’s reign.
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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Kings 15". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://pro.studylight.org/
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34