2 Chronicles 18


Jehoshaphat joins affinity with Ahab, king of Israel, 1, 2;

who invites him to assist him in the war against the Syrians,

to which Jehoshaphat agrees, 3.

They consult the prophets concerning the success of the war;

and all, except Micaiah, promise Ahab victory, 4-17.

Micaiah relates his vision concerning the lying spirit in the

mouth of Ahab's prophets, 18-22.

Zedekiah, a false prophet, opposes Micaiah; and Micaiah is put

in prison, 23-27.

Both the kings go against the Syrians; the confederate armies

are defeated, and the king of Israel slain, 28-31.


Verse 1. Jehoshaphat had riches and honour] The preceding

chapter gives ample proof of this.

Joined affinity with Ahab.] Took his daughter Athalia to be wife

to his son Joram.

Verse 3. To Ramoth-gilead] This place belonged to the

Israelites, and was now held by the king of Syria.

The whole of this chapter is circumstantially explained in the

notes on 1Ki 22:1-53.

Verse 9. The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat] "Ahab consulted

false prophets; but Jehoshaphat sought instruction from the

presence of the Lord, and prayed at the entering in of Samaria;

and before these all the false prophets prophesied lies."-Targum.

Verse 20. Then there came out a spirit] The Targum gives a

strange gloss here: "Then the spirit of Naboth of Jezreel came out

from the abode of the righteous, and stood before the Lord, and

said, I will deceive him. And the Lord said, By what means? To

which he answered, I will be a spirit of false prophecy in the

mouth of his prophets. And the Lord said, Thou mayest then. But

although the power of deceiving them is given unto thee,

nevertheless it will not be lawful for thee to sit among the

righteous; for whosoever shall speak falsely cannot have a mansion

among the righteous. Therefore go forth from me, and do as thou

hast said."-Targum.

Verse 29. I will disguise myself] See Clarke on 1Ki 22:30.

Verse 31. But Jehoshaphat cried out] "Jehoshaphat cried, and the

WORD of the Lord brought him assistance."-Targum.

Verse 33. A certain man drew a bow] The Targum tells us who it

was. "Now, Naaman, the captain of the host of the great king of

Syria, drew a bow against him, (that the prophecy of Elijah the

Tishbite, and of Micaiah the son of Imla, might be fulfilled,) and

smote the king of Israel between the heart and the caul of the

liver, through the place where the coat of mail is joined."

See Clarke on 2Ki 5:1 for this tradition.

Verse 34. Stayed himself up-against the Syrians] There was a

great deal of true personal courage and patriotism in this last

act of the king of Israel: he well knew that if his troops found

that he was mortally wounded, they would immediately give way, and

the battle would not only be lost, but the slaughter would be

great in the pursuit; therefore he stayed himself up till the

evening, when the termination of the day must necessarily bring

the battle to a close: and when this was done, the Israelites

found that their king was slain, and so they left the field of

battle to their foes. Thus Israel had a great loss, and the

Syrians had got a great deliverance. Had it not been for this

accident, the Syrians had probably been defeated. See on

1Ki 22:36.

IN the notes referred to above, the quibbling predictions of

false prophets and lying oracles are mentioned, and several

instances given; and the whole account of the lying spirit going

forth from the Lord to deceive Ahab, particularly considered. See

especially the notes as above on 2Ch 18:19, 23, 24.

The reader should never forget a truth so very frequently

occurring in the Bible, that God is repeatedly represented as

doing what, in the course of his providence, he only permits to

be done.

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