Week #61; Wed, Feb 27: 2 Chronicles 7:1–15:19

PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS:
1. Like the pillar of fire that led the Hebrew people through the desert, God continues to speak and move through fire.
2. The Lord repeats the covenant he made with David to Solomon and promises that disaster awaits him if he abandons the Lord and worships other gods.
3. Solomon’s wealth grew bigger and bigger, there was none like the wealth of Solomon.

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:
2 Chronicles 7, Fire from Heaven Fills the Temple
1. When Solomon finished his prayer of dedication for the temple, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the Lord filled the temple.
2. The glory of the Lord filled the Lord’s house; even the priests could not enter the house of the Lord.
3. The people bowed down with their faces to the ground and worshiped and gave thanks to the Lord saying, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.”
4. King Solomon offered 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep as an offering for the dedication for the house of God.
5. The people also offered sacrifices with music, trumpets, and praise.
6. At that time Solomon held the feast for seven days, and all Israel with him, from Lebo-hamath to the Brook of Egypt.
7. The dedication of the altar and the feast lasted for seven days each.
8. On the twenty-third day, Solomon sent the people away to their homes, joyful and glad of heart.
9. This marked the successful completion of the house of the Lord and the king’s house at the 23rd day of the 7th month.
10. Then the Lord appeared to Solomon in the night and said to him: “I have heard your prayer (of dedication) and have chosen this place for myself as a house of sacrifice. . . . If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and urn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
11. He also told Solomon, “As for you, if you will walk before me as David your father walked, doing according to all that I have commanded you and keeping my statutes and my rules, then I will establish your royal throne, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, ‘You shall not lack a man to rule Israel.'”
12. But the Lord also cautioned Solomon saying, “If you turn aside and forsake my statutes and my commandments that I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, I will pluck you up from my land that I have given you, and this house that I have consecrated for my name, I will cast out of my sight.”
13. Disaster awaits if Solomon abandons the Lord.

2 Chronicles 8, Solomon’s Accomplishments
1. After the 20 years of building the house of the Lord and his own house, Solomon rebuilt the cities that Hiram had given to him, and settled the people of Israel in them.
2. Solomon assigned 250 officers that exercised authority over the people.
3. Solomon assigned those who were left in the land whom the people of Israel had not destroyed for forced labor.
4. But the people of Israel were made soldiers and officers.
5. Solomon observed the Sabbaths and the three feasts (Unleavened Bread, Weeks, and Booths) according to the commandment of Moses.
6. Solomon went to Ezion-geber and Eloth on the shore of the sea, in the land of Edom where Hiram sent to him ships and servants who joined his servants that brought 450 talents of gold to King Solomon.

2 Chronicles 9, The Queen of Sheba
1. The queen of Sheba also brought camels, spices, gold, and precious stoned to Solomon in Jerusalem.
2. The queen of Sheba had many questions to test Solomon and he answered all of her questions; there was nothing hidden from Solomon that he could not explain to her.
3. The queen of Sheba was greatly impressed by the wisdom of Solomon, the joy of the people, and all of his wealth.
4. Solomon gave the queen of Sheba all that she wanted and she went back to her own land with her servants.
5. 666 talents of gold came to Solomon in one year which was besides that which the explorers and merchants brought.
6. All the kings of Arabia and the governors of the land brought gold and silver to Solomon.
7. King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.
8. Solomon had 4,000 stalls for horses and chariots, and 12,000 horsemen, whom he stationed in the chariot cities and with the king of Jerusalem.
9. Solomon ruled over all the kings from the Euphrates to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt.
10. Solomon reigned in Jerusalem of all Israel 40 years and he slept with his fathers; he was buried in the city of David and Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.

2 Chronicles 10, Revolt Against Rehoboam
1. Rehoboam was made king in Shechem and soon Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard of it.
2. Jeroboam returned from Egypt where he was in hiding from Solomon.
3. Jeroboam and all Israel came to Rehoboam saying, “Your father made our yoke heavy; now lighten the hard service of your father and we will serve you.”
4. He said, “Come to me again in three days.”
5. The Rehoboam took counsel with the old men who stood before Solomon asking, “How do you advise me to answer this people?”
6. They told him to be good to the people and please them and they will be your servants.
7. But Rehoboam also took counsel with the young men who he grew up with.
8. They told him to be harsher than his father making their yoke even heavier.
9. Rehoboam took the advice of the young men and made a turn of affairs brought about by God that the Lord might fulfill his word, which he spoke by Ahijah to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
10. The people of Israel took to their own tents and would not submit to the forced labor of Rehoboam who fled to Jerusalem.

2 Chronicles 11, Rehoboam Secures His Kingdom
1. When Rehoboam came to Jerusalem, he assembled the house of Judah and Benjamin, 180,000 chosen warriors, to fight against Israel to restore the kingdom to Rehoboam.
2. The Lord came to Shemaiah the man of God saying, “You shall not go up or fight against your relatives for this thing is from me.”
3. Rehoboam lived in Jerusalem and he built cities for defense in Judah (Bethlehem, Etam, Tekoa, Beth-zur, Soco, Adullam, Gath, Mareshah, Ziph, Adoraim, Lachish, Azehah, Zorah, Aijalon, and Hebron).
4. Rehoboam held Judah and Benjamin (effectively dividing the kingdom into two).
5. When Jeroboam cast out the priests of the Lord, they came presented themselves to Rehoboam making the kingdom of Judah under Rehoboam secure, walking in the way of David and Solomon.
6. However, Jeroboam replaced the priests of the Lord with his own priest for the high places and for the goat idols and for the calves that he had made.
7. Rehoboam took as wife Mahalath and she bore him sons (Jeush, Shemariah, and Zaham).
8. After Mahalath, he took Maacah who bore him Abijah, Attai, Ziza, and Shelomith; he loved Maacah the most (over 18 wives, 60 concubines).
9. Rehoboam fathered 28 sons and 60 daughters; he appointed Abijah as chief prince among these, for he intended to make him king.

2 Chronicles 12, Egypt Plunders Jerusalem
1. When the rule of Rehoboam was established and strong, he abandoned the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him.
2. In the 5th year of Rehoboam, Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem with 1,200 chariots and 60,000 horsemen, and people without number from Libyans, Sukkiim, and Ethiopians.
3. They took the fortified cities of Judah arriving at Jerusalem to do the same.
4. Then the Lord told Shemaiah the prophet to say to Rehoboam, “You abandoned me, so I have abandoned you to the hand of Shishak king of Egypt.”
5. Then the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, “The Lord is righteous.”
6. When the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, he sent word by Shemaiah, “They have humbled themselves. I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance, and my wrath shall not be poured out on Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak; but they will be servants to him that they may know my service and the service of my countries.”
7. Shishak king of Egypt took away the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king’s house; he took everything.
8. Rehoboam was 41 when he began to reign and he reigned for 17 years in Jerusalem.
9. There were continual wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam.
10. Abijah, Rehoboam’s son reigned in his place.

2 Chronicles 13, Abijah Reigns in Judah
1. War between Abijah and Jeroboam broke out and Abijah went out to battle having an army of 400,000 against Jeroboam’s 800,000.
2. At the line of battle, Abijah stood on Mount Zemaraim in the hill country of Ephraim and said that the covenant with the Lord and David gave the kingship over to Israel forever to David and his sons and you think that you can withstand the kingdom of the Lord because you are a great multitude.
3. Abijah reminded Jeroboam’s army that they have with them the golden calves that were made into gods, but we have not forsaken the Lord and our priests minister to the Lord as the sons of Aaron did.
4. Even though Jeroboam had sent an ambush around behind Abijah to surround him, God defeated Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.
5. The men of Israel fled before Judah losing 500,000 men because they relied on the Lord, the God of their fathers.
6. Jeroboam did not recover his power in the days of Abijah and the Lord struck Jeroboam down, but Abijah grew strong.
7. Abijah had 14 wives, 22 sons and 16 daughters.

2 Chronicles 14, Asa Reigns in Judah
1. Abijah was buried in the city of David and Asa his son reigned in his place.
2. Asa did good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God.
3. He took away the foreign altars and the high places, broke down the pillars, cut down the Asherim; he commanded Judah to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, and to keep the law and the commandment.
4. He took out of all the cities of Judah the high places and the incense altars and the kingdom had rest under Asa.
5. Asa had an army of 300,000 from Judah and 280,000 from Benjamin.
6. Zerah the Ethiopian came against Asa with 1,000,000 men and 300 chariots and Asa went out to meet them where he cried out to the Lord for help.
7. So the Lord defeated the Ethiopians before Asa and before Judah; they fled until none remained alive, for they were broken before the Lord and his army.
8. The men of Judah carried away much spoil and returned to Jerusalem.

2 Chronicles 15, Asa’s Religious Reforms
1. Azariah said to Asa, the Lord of God is with you and if you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.
2. Asa listened to the prophecy of Azariah, he took courage and put away the detestable idols from all the land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities that he had taken in the hill country of Ephraim.
3. He repaired the altar of the Lord and gathered all Judah and Benjamin and those in Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who were residing with them.
4. They gathered in Jerusalem and sacrificed to the Lord on that day sacrificing 700 oxen and 7,000 sheep.
5. They entered into a covenant to seek the Lord with all their heart and soul.
6. Whoever would not seek the Lord, the God of Israel, should be put to death, whether young or old, man or woman.
7. They swore an oath to the Lord with a loud voice and with shouting and with trumpets and with horns.
8. Asa’s mother Maacah was removed from being queen mother because she had made a detestable image for Ashera; he cut it down and crushed it then burned it.
9. However, he did not take down the high places out of Israel.
10. Asa brought into the house of God the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels.
11. There was no more war until the thirty-firth year of the reign of Asa.

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