Amaziah was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem.
twenty and five
And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, but not with a perfect heart.
Now it came to pass, when the kingdom was established to him, that he slew his servants that had killed the king his father.
A. M. 3166. B.C. 838. Now it came
established to him
Heb. confirmed upon him. he slew.
24:25,26 Genesis 9:5,6 Exodus 21:14 Numbers 35:31-33 No doubt those wicked men, Jozachar and Jehozabad, who murdered his father, had considerable influence; and therefore he found it dangerous to bring them to justice, till he was assured of the loyalty of his other officers: when this was clear, he called them to an account, and justly put them to death for treason and murder; for, if even these conspirators against Joash intended to avenge upon him the death of Zechariah, they acted without a commission from that God "to whom vengeance belongeth."
But he slew not their children, but did as it is written in the law in the book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, saying, The fathers shall not die for the children, neither shall the children die for the fathers, but every man shall die for his own sin.
as it is written
Moreover Amaziah gathered Judah together, and made them captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, according to the houses of their fathers, throughout all Judah and Benjamin: and he numbered them from twenty years old and above, and found them three hundred thousand choice men, able to go forth to war, that could handle spear and shield.
A. M. 3177. B.C. 827. captains over thousands
He hired also an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel for an hundred talents of silver.
an hundred talents of silver
Estimating the shekel at 2s. 6d., and the talent, being 3,000 shekels, (see Ex 38:25, 26,) at 375£., one hundred talents would amount to 37,500£.; which, divided among 100,000 men, quotes only 7s. 6d.; hence we may suppose, that this was only an earnest of their pay, or that they expected to be enriched by the plunder of the Edomites.
But there came a man of God to him, saying, O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee; for the LORD is not with Israel, to wit, with all the children of Ephraim.
a man of God
for the Lord
But if thou wilt go, do it, be strong for the battle: God shall make thee fall before the enemy: for God hath power to help, and to cast down.
God hath power
Then Amaziah separated them, to wit, the army that was come to him out of Ephraim, to go home again: wherefore their anger was greatly kindled against Judah, and they returned home in great anger.
Heb. to their place. great anger. Heb. heat of anger.
And Amaziah strengthened himself, and led forth his people, and went to the valley of salt, and smote of the children of Seir ten thousand.
And other ten thousand left alive did the children of Judah carry away captive, and brought them unto the top of the rock, and cast them down from the top of the rock, that they all were broken in pieces.
And other ten thousand
No intimation is given on what account, or on what provocation, this most cruel conduct towards the prisoners of war was adopted. The enmity between Israel and Edom seems to have been reciprocal and deeply malignant. The victorious king and his army considered every individual of Edom as a traitor and rebel; and so adjudged them to death, and acted on this judgment. But their conduct was wholly inexcusable, and could only perpetuate rancour to future generations, and provoke the surviving Edomites to cruel retaliations, whenever they had it in their power.
broken in pieces
But the soldiers of the army which Amaziah sent back, that they should not go with him to battle, fell upon the cities of Judah, from Samaria even unto Bethhoron, and smote three thousand of them, and took much spoil.
soldiers of the army
Heb. sons of the band.
fell upon the cities
These Israelites seem to have returned home, when discharged by Amaziah, whose powerful army deterred them from attempting revenge at that time; but when he was engaged in war with the Edomites, they marched from Samaria, and plundered all the cities till they came to Beth-horon, where they slew 3,000 of the inhabitants.
Now it came to pass, after that Amaziah was come from the slaughter of the Edomites, that he brought the gods of the children of Seir, and set them up to be his gods, and bowed down himself before them, and burned incense unto them.
Wherefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against Amaziah, and he sent unto him a prophet, which said unto him, Why hast thou sought after the gods of the people, which could not deliver their own people out of thine hand?
Why hast thou sought
And it came to pass, as he talked with him, that the king said unto him, Art thou made of the king's counsel? forbear; why shouldest thou be smitten? Then the prophet forbare, and said, I know that God hath determined to destroy thee, because thou hast done this, and hast not hearkened unto my counsel.
Art thou made
Then Amaziah king of Judah took advice, and sent to Joash, the son of Jehoahaz, the son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, Come, let us see one another in the face.
A. M. 3178. B.C. 826. Amaziah
let us see
And Joash king of Israel sent to Amaziah king of Judah, saying, The thistle that was in Lebanon sent to the cedar that was in Lebanon, saying, Give thy daughter to my son to wife: and there passed by a wild beast that was in Lebanon, and trode down the thistle.
or, furze-bush, or thorn.
a wild beast
Heb. a beast of the field.
Thou sayest, Lo, thou hast smitten the Edomites; and thine heart lifteth thee up to boast: abide now at home; why shouldest thou meddle to thine hurt, that thou shouldest fall, even thou, and Judah with thee?
But Amaziah would not hear; for it came of God, that he might deliver them into the hand of their enemies, because they sought after the gods of Edom.
it came of God
So Joash the king of Israel went up; and they saw one another in the face, both he and Amaziah king of Judah, at Bethshemesh, which belongeth to Judah.
they saw one another
That is, "they fought against each other." To face an enemy, or to face one another, is still a common expression. The reason of this war was evidently the injury the army of Joash had done to the unoffending inhabitants of Judah. The ravages committed by them were totally unprovoked, base, and cowardly: they fell upon women, old men, and children, and butchered them in cold blood, when all the effective men were gone with their king against the Edomites. The quarrel of Amaziah were certainly just, yet he was put to the rout: he fell, and Judah with him, as Joash had said; and the reason was, because "it came of God, that he might deliver them into the hands of their enemies, because they sought after the gods of Edom." This was the reason why the Israelites triumphed.
And Judah was put to the worse before Israel, and they fled every man to his tent.
put to the worse
And Joash the king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah, the son of Joash, the son of Jehoahaz, at Bethshemesh, and brought him to Jerusalem, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem from the gate of Ephraim to the corner gate, four hundred cubits.
gate of Ephraim.
Heb. the gate of it that looketh.
And he took all the gold and the silver, and all the vessels that were found in the house of God with Obededom, and the treasures of the king's house, the hostages also, and returned to Samaria.
all the gold
the hostages also
It is probable that these hostages were given in order that Amaziah might regain his liberty.
And Amaziah the son of Joash king of Judah lived after the death of Joash son of Jehoahaz king of Israel fifteen years.
A. M. 3179-3194. B.C. 825-810. Joash
Now the rest of the acts of Amaziah, first and last, behold, are they not written in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel?
rest of the acts
Now after the time that Amaziah did turn away from following the LORD they made a conspiracy against him in Jerusalem; and he fled to Lachish: but they sent to Lachish after him, and slew him there.
A. M. 3194. B.C. 810. after the time
Heb. after. made. Heb. conspired.
And they brought him upon horses, and buried him with his fathers in the city of Judah.
the city of Judah
that is, the city of David, as it is.