2 Kings 11

CHAPTER XI

Athaliah destroys all that remain of the seed royal of Judah, 1.

Jehosheba hides Joash the son of Ahaziah, and he remains hidden

in the house of the Lord six years; and Athaliah reigns over the

land, 2, 3.

Jehoiada, the high priest, calls the nobles privately together

into the temple, shows them the kings son, takes an oath of

them, arms them, places guards around the temple, and around

the young king's person; they anoint and proclaim him, 4-12.

Athaliah is alarmed, comes into the temple, is seized, carried

forth, and slain, 13-16.

Jehoiada causes the people to enter into a covenant with the

Lord; they destroy Baal's house, priest, and images, 17, 18.

Joash is brought to the king's house, reigns, and all the land

rejoices, 19-21.

NOTES ON CHAP. XI

Verse 1. Athaliah] This woman was the daughter of Ahab, and

grand-daughter of Omri, and wife of Joram king of Judah, and

mother of Ahaziah.

Destroyed all the seed royal.] All that she could lay her hands

on whom Jehu had left; in order that she might get undisturbed

possession of the kingdom.

How dreadful is the lust of reigning! it destroys all the

charities of life; and turns fathers, mothers, brothers, and

children, into the most ferocious savages! Who, that has it in his

power, makes any conscience

"To swim to sovereign rule through seas of blood?"

In what a dreadful state is that land that is exposed to

political revolutions, and where the succession to the throne is

not most positively settled by the clearest and most decisive law!

Reader, beware of revolutions; there have been some useful ones,

but they are in general the heaviest curse of God.

Verse 2. Daughter of-Joram, sister of Ahaziah] It is not likely

that Jehosheba was the daughter of Athaliah; she was sister, we

find, to Ahaziah the son of Athaliah, but probably by a different

mother. The mother of Jehoash was Zibiah of Beer-sheba; see

2Ki 12:1.

Verse 3. He was-hid in the house of the Lord] This might be

readily done, because none had access to the temple but the

priests; and the high priest himself was the chief manager of this

business.

Verse 4. And the seventh year Jehoiada sent] He had certainly

sounded them all, and brought them into the interests of the young

king, before this time; the plot having been laid, and now ripe

for execution, he brings the chief officers of the army and those

of the body guard into the temple, and there binds them by an oath

of secrecy, and shows them the king's son, in whose behalf they

are to rise.

Verse 5. That enter in on the Sabbath] It appears that Jehoiada

chose the Sabbath day to proclaim the young king, because as that

was a day of public concourse, the gathering together of the

people who were in this secret would not be noticed; and it is

likely that they all came unarmed, and were supplied by Jehoiada

with the spears and shields which David had laid up in the temple,

2Ki 11:10.

The priests and Levites were divided into twenty-four classes by

David, and each served a week by turns in the temple, and it was

on the Sabbath that they began the weekly service, all this

favoured Jehoiada's design.

Verse 10. King David's spears and shields] Josephus expressly

says that David had provided an arsenal for the temple, out of

which Jehoiada took those arms. His words are; ανοιξαςδειωαδος

τηνεντωιερωοπλοθηκηνηνδαβιδηςκατεσκευασεδιεμερισετοις

εκατονταρχαιςαμακαιιεροισικαιλευιταιςαπανθοσαευρενεν

αυτηδορατατεκαιφαρετραςκαιειτιετερονειδοςοπλου

κατελαβε. "And Jehoiada having opened the arsenal in the temple,

which David had prepared, he divided among the centurions,

priests, and Levites, the spears, (arrows,) and quivers, and all

other kinds of weapons which he found there."-Ant. lib. ix., c. 7,

s. 8.

Verse 12. Put the crown upon him] This was a diadem or golden

band that went round the head.

And-the testimony] Probably the book of the law, written on a

roll of vellum. This was his sceptre. Some think that it was

placed upon his head, as well as the diadem. The diadem, the

testimony, and the anointing oil, were essential to his

consecration.

They clapped their hands] This I believe is the first instance

on record of clapping the hands as a testimony of joy.

God save the king] yechi hannmelech; May the king live!

So the words should be translated wherever they occur.

Verse 14. The king stood by a pillar] Stood ON a pillar or

tribunal; the place or throne on which they were accustomed to

put the kings when they proclaimed them.

Treason, Treason.] kesher, kasher; A conspiracy, A

conspiracy! from kashar, to bind, unite together.

Verse 15. Have her forth] She had pressed in among the guards

into the temple.

And him that followeth] The person who takes her part, let him

instantly be slain.

Verse 16. By the way-which the horses came] They probably

brought her out near the king's stables. It has been supposed,

from Eze 46:1, 2, that the

east gate of the inner court was that by which the king entered

on the Sabbath day, whereas on all other days he entered by the

south gate. And there was another gate, called the horse gate,

in the wall of the city, (Jer 31:40,) for the king's horses to go

out at from the stables at Millo, which is therefore called,

2Ch 23:15,

the horse gate toward the king's house.

Verse 17. Jehoiada made a covenant] A general covenant was first

made between the Lord, the Supreme King, the king his viceroy, and

the people, that they should all be the Lord's people; each being

equally bound to live according to the Divine law.

Then, secondly, a particular covenant was made between the king

and the people, by which the king was bound to rule according to

the laws and constitution of the kingdom, and to watch and live

for the safety of the public. And the people were bound on their

part, to love, honour, succour, and obey the king. Where these

mutual and just agreements are made and maintained, there can be

nothing else than prosperity in the Church and the state.

Verse 18. His altars and images brake they in pieces] It is

probable that Athaliah had set up the worship of Baal in Judah, as

Jezebel had done in Israel; or probably it had never been removed

since the days of Solomon. It was no wonder that Jehoiada began

his reform with this act, when we learn from 2Ch 24:7, that

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.

Verse 20. The people-rejoiced] They were glad to get rid of the

tyranny of Athaliah.

And the city was in quiet] She had no partisans to rise up and

disturb the king's reign.

Verse 21. Seven years old was Jehoash] The first instance on

record of making a child seven years old the king of any nation,

and especially of such a nation as the Jews, who were at all times

very difficult to be governed.

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