Jehoshaphat’s War against an Eastern Coalition; His Alliance with Ahaziah and His Death (20:1–37)

From: 2 Chronicles

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279 1/ Some time afterwards the Moabites and the Ammonites, together with some of the Meunim,1 came against Jehoshaphat for war. 2/ Messengers2 came and told Jehoshaphat, “A great multitude is coming against you from across the sea, from Edom.3 They are already at Hazazontamar —that is, En-gedi.” 3/ Jehoshaphat was afraid and set his face to seek Yahweh, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. 4/ Judah came together to seek help from Yahweh;4 indeed, from all the cities of Judah they came to seek Yahweh. 5/ Jehoshaphat stood up in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem5 in the house of Yahweh before the new court. 6/ He said, “Yahweh the God of our ancestors, are you not God in the heavens?6 Do you not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations?7 In your hand is power and might, and no one is able to withstand you.8 7/ Did you not, O our God, dispossess the inhabitants of this land before your people9 Israel, and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham, your friend?10 8/ They have lived in it and have built in it11 a sanctuary for your name, saying, 9/ ‘If disaster comes upon us, sword, flood,12 pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before you, for your name is13 in this house, and we will cry to you in our distress, and you will hear and save.’ 10/ And now, see the Ammonites and Moab, and Mount Seir, whom you did not allow Israel to enter when they came out from the land of Egypt, but Israel14 turned aside from them and did not destroy them. 11/ See they are repaying15 us16 by coming to drive us out from your possession17 that you have given to us to possess. 12/ Our God,18 will you not bring judgment on them? For we are powerless before this great multitude that is coming against us, and we do not know what we should do, but our eyes are on you.” 13/ All Judah was standing before Yahweh, including their families,19 their wives, and their children.20 14/ Then the spirit of Yahweh came on Jahaziel, the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, the Levite, from the sons of Asaph, in the middle of the assembly. 15/ He said, “Pay attention , all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and king Jehoshaphat. Thus says Yahweh to you,21 ‘Do not be afraid or be dismayed on account of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours but God’s. 16/ Tomorrow go down against them; they will come up at the ascent of Ziz.22 You will find them at the end of the Translation 20:1-37 Jehoshaphat’s War against an Eastern Coalition; His Alliance with Ahaziah and His Death 1 !ynw[mhm; LXX ejk tw'n Meinaivwn. MT !ynwm[hm “some of the Ammonites.” But the Ammonites have already been mentioned in this verse. The MT reading results from assimilation to the preceding @wm[ ynbw. The Targum reads: “Edomites who had allied themselves to the Ammonites.” 2 The subject of this sentence is not identified explicitly . 3 !dam, with one Hebrew ms VL; this reading presupposes a d instead of the r in MT !ram “from Aram.” See Mount Seir in v. 10. Syr Arab !da !y “the Red Sea.” Rainey (Carta’s Atlas, 203) argues for the retention of Aram, which had, in his view, incited the Ammonites and Moabites to launch this invasion. See also Rainey, “Mesha’s Attempt to Invade,” 175. Cf. Williamson, 294. 4 hwhym vqbl. The word “help” or something similar is implied by the Hebrew construction. Cf. the various direct objects for vqb in Ezek 7:26 (“a vision”); Isa 1:12 (“this”); Dan 1:8 (“the palace master”). LXX ejkzhth'sai to;n Kuvrion “to seek out the Lord.” 5 !lvwryw; a few Hebrew mss LXX Tg !lvwryb “in Jerusalem.” Rudolph (258) notes that “in Jerusalem ” would be a superfluous comment since the temple was in Jerusalem. This variant reading may have been precipitated by the preposition on lhqb earlier or tybb later in the verse. An assembly in Jerusalem is mentioned in 2 Chr 30:3, 13. 6 !ymvb; LXX ejn oujranwæ' a[nw. The rhetorical questions in vv. 6-7 are to be understood as expressions of absolute confidence. GKC §150e. 7...