2 Chronicles 16:10
Then Asa was wroth with the seer, and put him in a prison house; for he was in a rage with him because of this thing. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time.
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(10) Then.And. In a prison house: in the stocks. Literally, House of the stocks (Jeremiah 20:2, Jer_29:26). The word mahpèkheth literally means “turning,” “distortion,” and so an instrument of torture, by which the body was bent double, hands and feet being passed through holes in a wooden frame. (See Acts 16:24.) The Syriac and LXX. have simply “prison;” Vulgate, “nervus,” i.e., stocks. (Comp. the similar behaviour of Ahab to the prophet Michaiah, 1Kings 22:26-27.)

Because of this thing=“Herein” of 2Chronicles 16:9.

And Asa oppressed.Riççaç (Job 20:19; comp. 1Samuel 12:3).

The same time.At that time.

Some of the people.—Those who sympathised with Hanani. Asa suppressed their murmurs with violence.

2 Chronicles 16:10. Asa was wroth with the seer — Though the reproof came from God by one that was known to be his messenger; though it was just, and the reasoning fair, and all intended for his good, yet he was wroth with the prophet; nay, he was in a rage with him, for telling him of his folly. Is this Asa? Is this he whose heart is said to have been perfect with the Lord? How needful that advice, Let him that standeth take heed lest he fall! A wise man! and yet in a rage! An Israelite! and yet in a rage with a prophet!

A good man! and yet impatient of reproof, and cannot bear to be told of his faults! Lord, what is man when left to himself! They that idolize their own conduct, cannot bear contradiction; and they that indulge a peevish, passionate temper, may be transported by it into impieties as well as indecencies, and will some time or other, probably, fly in the face of God himself. See what gall and wormwood this root of bitterness bore! Asa put him in the prison-house — Him whom he knew to be a prophet of the Lord, and God’s messenger to him! Or, in the house of the stocks, (as some read it,) in which the feet, or, as some of the Hebrews say, the necks of the prisoners were locked up. God’s prophets meet with many that cannot bear reproof; still, however, they must proceed on doing their duty. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time — Probably such as owned the prophet in his sufferings, or were known to be his particular friends. He that abused his power for the persecuting of God’s prophet, was left to himself further to abuse it for the crushing of his own subjects, whereby he weakened himself, and lost his interest. Most persecutors have been tyrants.

16:1-14 Asa seeks the aid of the Syrians, His death. - A plain and faithful reproof was given to Asa by a prophet of the Lord, for making a league with Syria. God is displeased when he is distrusted, and when an arm of flesh is relied on, more than his power and goodness. It is foolish to lean on a broken reed, when we have the Rock of ages to rely upon. To convince Asa of his folly, the prophet shows that he, of all men, had no reason to distrust God, who had found him such a powerful Helper. The many experiences we have had of the goodness of God to us, aggravate our distrust of him. But see how deceitful our hearts are! we trust in God when we have nothing else to trust to, when need drives us to him; but when we have other things to stay on, we are apt to depend too much on them. Observe Asa's displeasure at this reproof. What is man, when God leaves him to himself! He that abused his power for persecuting God's prophet, was left to himself, to abuse it further for crushing his own subjects. Two years before he died, Asa was diseased in his feet. Making use of physicians was his duty; but trusting to them, and expecting that from them which was to be had from God only, were his sin and folly. In all conflicts and sufferings we need especially to look to our own hearts, that they may be perfect towards God, by faith, patience, and obedience.In a prison house - Or, "in the stocks." Compare 1 Kings 22:26-27. 10. Asa oppressed some of the people the same time—The form or degree of this oppression is not recorded. The cause of his oppressing them was probably due to the same offense as that of Hanani—a strong expression of their dissatisfaction with his conduct in leaguing with Ben-hadad, or it may have been his maltreatment of the Lord's servant. In a prison-house, or, in the house of the stocks; in which the feet, or, as some of the Hebrews say, the necks of the prisoners were locked up. See Jeremiah 20:2 29:26.

Then Asa was wroth with the seer,.... For this faithful reproof of him, which was another instance of his sin and folly:

and put him in a prison house; in a very strait place, in which he could not turn himself, what we call "little ease"; some say it was the stocks, others a pillory he put him into:

for he was in a rage with him because of this thing; his passion rose very high, and to which he gave way, and was his infirmity:

and Asa oppressed some of the people the same time; by fines and imprisonments, such as perhaps expressed their disapprobation of his league with the king of Syria, and of his ill usage of the prophet.

Then Asa was wroth with the seer, and put him in a prison house; for he was {d} in a rage with him because of this thing. And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time.

(d) Thus instead of turning to God in repentance, he disdained the admonition of the prophet, and punished him, as the wicked do when they are told of their faults.

10. in a prison house] Render, in the stocks (lit. in the house of the stocks). Jeremiah 20:2; Jeremiah 29:26 (R.V.).

oppressed] Lit. brake in pieces, an expression which when applied to things would mean, made spoil of, when applied to persons treated outrageously, tortured, ἐλυμήνατο LXX.

Verse 10. - A prison-house; literally, Hebrew, the house of the מַהְפֶכֶת; i.e. "of the twisting or distortion;" i.e. "the stocks." The word occurs three other times only, all of them in Jeremiah viz. 20:2, 3; 29:26. (For a forcible parallel, see 1 Kings 22:27.) And Asa oppressed some of the people the same time. This may throw some explanatory, though no exculpatory, light on Asa's wrath and violence towards Hanani; for it probably marks that either some goodly portion of the wiser of the people had anticipated of their own common sense the matter of the message of Hanani the seer, or that they had not failed to follow it with some keenly sympathetic remarks For our Authorized Version, "oppressed," read a stronger verb, as "crushed." 2 Chronicles 16:10This sharp speech so angered the king, that he caused the seer to be set in the stock-house. המּהשפכת בּית, properly, house of stocks. מהפּכת, twisting, is an instrument of torture, a stock, by which the body was forced into an unnatural twisted position, the victim perhaps being bent double, with the hands and feet fastened together: cf. Jeremiah 20:2; Jeremiah 29:26; and Acts 16:24, ἔβαλεν εἰς τὴν φυλακὴ̀ν καὶ τοὺς πόδας ἠσφαλίσατο αὐτῶν εἰς τὸ ξύλον. "For in wrath against him (scil. he did it) because of this thing, and Asa crushed some of the people at this time." Clearly Hanani's speech, and still more Asa's harsh treatment of the seer, caused great discontent among the people, at least in the upper classes, so that the king felt himself compelled to use force against them. רצץ, to break or crush, is frequently used along with עשׁק (Deuteronomy 28:33; 1 Samuel 12:3, etc.), and signifies to suppress with violence. Asa had indeed well deserved the censure, Thou hast dealt foolishly. His folly consisted in this, that in order to get help against Baasha's attack, he had had recourse to a means which must become dangerous to him and to his kingdom; for it was not difficult to foresee that the Syrian king Benhadad would turn the superiority to Israel which he had gained against Judah itself. But in order to estimate rightly Asa's conduct, we must consider that it was perhaps an easier thing, in human estimation, to conquer the innumerable multitudes of the Ethiopian hordes than the united forces of the kings of Israel and Syria; and that, notwithstanding the victory over the Ethiopians, yet Asa's army may have been very considerably weakened by that war. But these circumstances are not sufficient to justify Asa. Since he had so manifestly had the help of the Lord in the war against the Cushites, it was at bottom mainly weakness of faith, or want of full trust in the omnipotence of the Lord, which caused him to seek the help of the enemy of God's people, the king of Syria, instead of that of the Almighty God, and to make flesh his arm; and for this he was justly censured by the prophet.
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