18:3 And he did [that which was] a right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that David his father did.
(a) Although they of Judah were given to idolatry
and impiety, as they of Israel were, yet God for the sake of his promise was
merciful to the throne of David, and yet by his judgment toward the other,
provoked to repentance.
18:4 He removed the high places, and brake the
images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that
Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to
it: and he called it b Nehushtan.
(b) That is "a piece of brass": thus he
calls the serpent by contempt, which even though it was set up by the word of
God, and miracles were wrought by it, when it was used for idolatry this good
king destroyed it, not thinking it worthy to be called a serpent, but a piece
He smote the Philistines, [even] unto Gaza, and the borders thereof, c
from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced city.
(c) Read (2 Kings
And Hezekiah king of Judah sent to the king of Assyria to Lachish, saying, d
I have offended; return from me: that which thou puttest on me will I bear. And
the king of Assyria appointed unto Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents
of silver and thirty talents of gold.
(d) As his zeal was before praised, so his
weakness is here set forth, that no one should glory in himself.
And the king of Assyria sent e Tartan
and Rabsaris and Rabshakeh from Lachish to king Hezekiah with a great host
against Jerusalem. And they went up and came to Jerusalem. And when they were
come up, they came and stood by the conduit of the upper pool, which [is] in the
highway of the fuller's field.
(e) After certain years, when Hezekiah ceased to
send the tribute appointed by the king of the Assyrians, he sent his captains
and army against him.
Thou sayest, (but [they are but] vain words,) [I have] f
counsel and strength for the war. Now on whom dost thou trust, that thou
rebellest against me?
(f) You think that words will serve to persuade
your people, or to move my master.
18:21 Now, behold, thou trustest upon the
staff of this bruised reed, [even] upon g
Egypt, on which if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so [is]
Pharaoh king of Egypt unto all that trust on him.
(g) Egypt will not only be unable to help you,
but will be a detriment to you.
18:22 But if ye say unto me, We trust in the
LORD our God: [is] not that he, whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah hath
h taken away, and hath said to Judah and
Jerusalem, Ye shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem?
(h) Thus the idolaters think that God's
religion is destroyed, when superstition and idolatry are reformed.
18:23 Now therefore, I pray thee, give i
pledges to my lord the king of Assyria, and I will deliver thee two thousand
horses, if thou be able on thy part to set riders upon them.
(i) Meaning, that it was best for him to yield to
the king of Assyria because his power was so small that he did not have men to
care for two thousand horses.
18:25 Am I now come
up without the k LORD against this place
to destroy it? The LORD said to me, Go up against this land, and destroy it.
(k) The wicked always flatter themselves in their
prosperity, that God favours them. Thus he speaks to scare Hezekiah into
thinking that by resisting him he would be resisting God.
Until l I come and take you away to a
land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards,
a land of oil olive and of honey, that ye may live, and not die: and hearken not
unto Hezekiah, when he persuadeth you, saying, The LORD will deliver us.
(l) He makes himself so sure, that he will not
grant them a truce, unless they give themselves to him to be led away as
Who [are] they among all the gods of the countries, that have delivered their
country out of mine hand, that the m
LORD should deliver Jerusalem out of mine hand?
(m) This is an execrable blasphemy against the
true God, to make him equal with the idols of other nations: therefore God
sharply punished him.