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2 Chronicles is historical narrative that likely served as a focal point for the returning exiles. It perhaps served the function of a "manifesto" intended to inspire devotion.
- 2 Chronicles 1:7
- Can God be seen, or not?
- 2 Chronicles 1:12
- Was Solomon's wealth bogus or worthless?
- 2 Chronicles 2:2
- ...and three thousand and six hundred to oversee them. 3600, or 3300, per 1 Kings 5:16? The likely answer is a copyist error in one of the passages, though it is not obvious which.
- 2 Chronicles 2:12
- And Hiram added: "Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who made heaven and earth! He has given King David a wise son, endowed with intelligence and discernment, who will build a temple for the LORD and a palace for himself. -One Skeptic asks why Hiram, a non-Jew, would say this about Israel's God. Well, we don't know what Hiram actually believed, but foreign kings regularly said such things about the gods of allies or subjects; just read the Cyrus Cylinder, where the heathen Cyrus says all kinds of nice things about the God of Israel - and other gods as well. It was quite usual for the Persian kings to adopt the titles of the
gods of other peoples when issuing decrees relevant to the other peoples; and the Cylinder has Cyrus giving credit to the Babylonian god Marduk for his conquest of Babylon. Hiram's declaration need be regarded no differently -- perhaps it may be thought of as an
ancient sort of political correctness.
- 2 Chronicles 2:13-14
- What tribe was Hyrum aligned with? This says Dan; 1 Kings 7:13-14 says Naphtali. But note what this actually says: "The son of a woman of the daughters of Dan..." This is a political statement rather than a geneaological one: Dan was a tribe associated with idolatry (cf. Judg. 18:30). The Chronicles writer, Ezra, is writing after the Exile and making a polemical statement against cooperation with one like Hyrum who is descended from a mixed marriage (which Ezra had his own objections to! -- see his book for details).
- 2 Chronicles 3:15
- Versus 1 Kings 7:15
- 2 Chronicles 4:2
- Does this verse give an incorrect value for pi? I like this answer, but this one is even better.
- 2 Chronicles 4:5
- Were there two thousand baths (per 1 Kings 7:26) or three thousand? No clear answer emerges, though the LXX lacks verse 26 of 1 Kings and has likely been hit by a copyist error. The confusion of the letter gimel [Hebrew letter-number for "3"] with beth [Hebrew
letter-number for "2"] is a reasonable possibility. See our foundational essay on copyist errors for general background.
- 2 Chronicles 6:1
- Does God dwell in light, or darkness?
- 2 Chronicles 6:2
- Does God dwell in temples or not?
- 2 Chronicles 7:5
- Is this an excessive sacrifice?
- 2 Chronicles 8:10
- Are there 550 officers, or 250, per 1 Kings 9:23? A reasonable solution that is suggested by the fact that the totals of men coincide at 3850 is that the 550 "elite" foremen in 1 Kings 9:23 include the 250 "elite" foremen of 2 Chr 8:10. This is essentially the thesis advanced by Keil and Delitzsch. I personally find it most reasonable as it is reasonable for parallel documents to reckon parallel events differently.
- 2 Chronicles 8:18
- How much gold from Hyrum -- 420 or 450 talents (vs. 1 Kings 9:27-8)? This is likely a copyist error.
- 2 Chronicles 9:25
- 40,000 stalls or 4,000 stalls? This foundational article deals with the general problem of copyist errors and answers the issue of this verse.
- 2 Chronicles 11:20, 13:2
- The second verse says Abijah's mother was named Michaiah; the first says Maachah. Which is correct? The first is, literally -- Michaiah is a typical Israelite name meaning, "Who is like Yahweh?" But the name "Maachah" is a play on words that means "depression" -- as well Michaiah might experience, being the "most loved"....out of 18 wives and 60 concubines (11:21). The whole passage from 11:20-1 is an ironic joke using typical Hebrew humor -- just as Nebuchadnezzar's name is "spelled incorrectly" by Daniel to make a point. Also, whose daughter was she -- Absalom's or Uriel's? Keeping in mind Absalom was long dead by this time, Uriel is a more recent ancestor (probably a father) and Abslaom a more distant one (perhaps grandfather) -- and mentioned to note her royal heritage (not surprising as well that the play on words is used with reference to him, though).
- 2 Chronicles 12:3
- Is this army for real?
- 2 Chronicles 13:1-2
- Who was Abijam's grandmother?
- 2 Chronicles 14-16
- On a bunch of "errors" regarding Asa
- 2 Chronicles 14:9
- Is this army for real?
- 2 Chronicles 16:1
- When did Baasha die?
- 2 Chronicles 17:5-6, 20:33-4
- Were the high places removed, or not?
- 2 Chronicles 18:21-2
- If God hates lying, why does He use lying spirits?
- 2 Chronicles 21:12
- Did Elijah send a letter after his death?
- 2 Chronicles 21:20, 22:1-2
- Thirty and two years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years, and departed without being desired. Howbeit they buried him in the city of David, but not in the sepulchres of the kings. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son king in his stead: for the band of men that came with the Arabians to the camp had slain all the eldest. So Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah reigned. Forty and two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem His mother's name also was Athaliah the daughter of Omri. How can a son be 42 and older than his father who dies at 40? The likely answer is a copyist error in Ahaziah's recorded age. "Forty and two" was likely once "twenty or two" -- nd the parallel verse 2 Kings 8:26 says 22.
- 2 Chronicles 22:2
- Was Ahaziah forty-two or twenty-two (per 2 Kings 8:26) when he ascended the throne? More likely 22, and 2 Chronicles has been hit by a copyist error. See our foundational essay on copyist errors for general background. In favor of the "22" reading in 2 Chronicles: The 2 Kings reading; some LXX and Syriac manuscripts, and that Chronicles calls Ahaziah Jehoram's "youngest son" (22:1) and Jehoram passed away at age 40 (21:20).
- 2 Chronicles 22:9
- Ahaziah's death -- see supplemental material for a similar issue
- 2 Chronicles 24:24-5
- Where was Joash buried? 2 Kings 12:21 says, "they buried him with his fathers in the city of David"; 2 Chr. says "and they buried him in the city of David, but they buried him not in the sepulchres of the kings." There is no contradiction here: Chronicles merely adds extra information. There is only contradiction if "with his fathers" is synonymous with "in the sepulchres of the kings." But it is not; the phrase "with his fathers" is synonymous with death (1 Kings 1:21, "Otherwise it shall come to pass, when my lord the king shall sleep with his fathers, that I and my son Solomon shall be counted offenders." -- does this mean that Sol had to wait until David was buried in the sepulchre to be king? 1 Kings 11:21, "And when Hadad heard in Egypt that David slept with his fathers, and that Joab the captain of the host was dead, Hadad said to Pharaoh, Let me depart, that I may go to mine own country." Was Hadad waiting for news of a burial or a death?)
- 2 Chronicles 26:15
- Is this an anachronism?
- 2 Chronicles 28:20
- Is this verse historically inaccurate?
- 2 Chronicles 32:31
- Does this verse indicate that God is not omniscient?
- 2 Chronicles 35:24
- How did Josiah die?
- 2 Chronicles 36:9
- Was Jehoiachin 8 years old, or 18 (per 2 Kings 24:8) when he ascended the throne? 18 is more likely, and is supported by one Hebrew mss., some LXX mss., and Syriac mss.
Gleason Archer ( Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties , 214-5) states: "A numerical system
generally in use during the fifth century BC (when Chronicles was probably
composed -- very likely under Ezra's supervision) features a horizontal
stroke ending in a hook at its right end as the sign for "ten"; two of them
would make the number "20". The digits under ten would be indicated by rows of little vertical strokes, generally in groups of three. Thus, what was originally written over one or more of these groups of short vertical strokes (in this case, eight strokes) would appear
as a mere `eight' instead of `eighteen'". See our foundational essay on copyist errors for general background.
Another noted issue: 2 Kings 24:8 which states the regnal length as three months, whereas
2 Chr 36:9 states three months and ten days. The author(s) of Kings, from the reign of Rehoboam on through Zedekiah (at the end of 2 Kings), presents regnal lengths in round figures. For those whose regnal length was more than twelve months, and exact year figure was given. So, if
I reigned 17 months as King of Judah, Kings would either say my reign was one year
or two years, rounding off the months figure. For those whose regnal length was less than twelve months (Zechariah, Shallum, Jehoahaz, and Jehoiachin), the author lists their reigns in exact months. The only special case here is Zimri, whose regnal length was a scant 7 days. But the internal testimony of Kings is that round figures are being used. 2 Kings used round
numbers, the Chronicler used an exact count here.
- 2 Chronicles 36:10
- Zedekiah: Father's brother or brother?
- 2 Chronicles 36:20
- 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 -- is this false? Only if Nabodinus and Belshazzar were not in some sense "sons" of Nebuchadnezzar; see here.