G4 A 13:1,2 Introduction. B 13:3. War declared. C 13:4-12. Address to Jeroboam. B 13:13-21. War made. A 13:21-14:1-. Conclusion.
2 Chronicles 13)
1 Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam began Abijah to reign over Judah. (cp. 1 Kings 15:1)
2 He reigned three years in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Michaiah (called also Maachah in 11:20; 1 Kings 15:2. See 1 Chron. 25:11. Michaiah = Who is like Yahaveh? This name used of her as the queen-mother; but she is called Maachah = oppression, when speaking of her idolatry [15:16]) the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. (he was the husband of Tamer the daughter of Absalom, and the mother of Michaiah. See 11:20. 1 Kings 15:2) And there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam.
3 And Abijah set the battle in array with an army of valiant men of war, even four hundred thousand chosen men: Jeroboam also set the battle in array against him with eight hundred thousand chosen men, being mighty men of valor. (Note the steady increase of Judah and the decrease of Israel: Rehoboam could assemble 180,000; Abijah [18 years later], 400,000; Asa 6 years later], 580,000; Jehoshophat [32 years later], 1,160,000. On the other hand, with Israel, Jeroboam could assemble 800,000, while Ahab's army was compared to "two little flocks of kids" [1 Kings 20:27], which could not stand against the Syrians. This increase of Judah was caused by the constant emigration of Israelites from the 10 tribes. See 1 Kings 12:17)
C a 4,5. Kingdom given. b 6. Rebellion against Rehoboam. c 7. Dependence of Jeroboam on man. a 8-. Kingdom withstood. b -8-11. Rebellion against Yahaveh. c 12. Dependence of Abijah on God.
4 And Abijah stood up upon mount Zemaraim, which is in hill country of Ephraim, and said, "Hear me, you Jeroboam, and all Israel;
5 Ought you not to know that the Lord God (Yahaveh Elohim) of Israel gave the kingdom over Israel to David for ever, even to him (Israel's king must be of David's line) and to his sons by a covenant of salt? (See Lev. 2:13 and Num. 18:19. This is the 3rd of 3 occurrences.)
6 Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, is risen up, and has rebelled against his lord. (Cp. 1 Kings 11:26)
7 And there are gathered unto him vain men, the sons of Belial, and have strengthened themselves against Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam showed himself to [be young and weak] tenderhearted, and could not withstand them.
8 And now you think to withstand the kingdom of the Lord (once pertaining to the whole nation [1 Chron. 28:5. 2 Chron. 9:8], now confined to Judah) in the hand of the sons of David;
and you be a great multitude, and there are with your golden calves, which Jeroboam made you for gods. (Cp. 1 Kings 12:28)
9 Have you not cast out the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and have made you priests after the manner of the peoples of other lands? (Cp. 11:14) so that whosoever comes to consecrate himself (see Ex. 28:41 and Lev. 9:17) with a young bullock and seven rams, (in Ex. 29:1 and Lev. 8:2 only "2 rams" appointed. But religion and ritual, being for the flesh, always add outward things while they diminish the spiritual) the same may be a priest of them that are no gods.
10 But as for us, the Lord is our God, and we have not forsaken Him; and the priests, which minister to the Lord, are the sons of Aaron, and the Levites wait upon their business:
11 And they burn [as incense] to the Lord every morning and every evening burnt sacrifices and sweet incense: the shew-bread also set they in order upon the pure table; and the lampstands of gold with the lamps thereof, to burn every evening: for we keep the charge of the Lord our God; but you have forsaken Him.
12 And, behold, God Himself is with us for our captain, and His priests with sounding trumpets to cry alarm against you. (cp. Num. 10:9; 31:6) O children of Israel, fight you not against the Lord God of your fathers; for you shall not prosper."
B d 13. Jeroboam. e 14,15. Abijah. Cry to Yahaveh. d 16-16. Jeroboam. Defeat. e 19,20. Abijah. Victory through Yahaveh.
13 But Jeroboam caused an ambush to come about behind them: so they were before Judah, and the ambush was behind them.
14 And when Judah looked back, behold, the battle was before and behind: and they cried to the Lord, and the priests sounded with the trumpets.
15 Then the men of Judah gave a shout: and as the men of Judah shouted, it came to pass, that God smote Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah.
16 And the sons of Israel fled before Judah: and God delivered them into their hand.
17 And Abijah and his people slew them with a great slaughter: so there fell down slain of Israel five hundred thousand chosen men.
18 Thus the sons of Israel were brought under at that time, and the children of Judah prevailed, because they relied upon the Lord God of their fathers.
19 And Abijah pursued after Jeroboam, and took cities from him, Bethel with the towns thereof, and Jeshanah with the towns thereof, (probably 'Aim Sīnia, in Valley north of Bethel) and Ephraim with the towns thereof. (John 11:54)
20 Neither did Jeroboam recover strength again in the days of Abijah: and the Lord struck him, and he died. (Jeroboam outlived Abijah. See 1 Kings 14:20)
21 But Abijah waxed mighty, and married fourteen wives, and begat twenty and two sons, and sixteen daughters.
22 And the rest of the acts of Abijah, and his ways, and his sayings, are written in the story (Heb. midrash = a historical cometary, having in view the moral instruction rather than historic facts.) of the prophet Iddo. (Cp. 9:29; 12:15)