2 Chronicles 17:12
And Jehoshaphat waxed great exceedingly; and he built in Judah castles, and cities of store.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(12) And Jehoshaphat waxed great.—Literally, And Jehoshaphat was going on and waxing great, i.e., became greater and greater. (Comp. 1Chronicles 11:9.)

Exceedingly.—‘Ad lĕmà’lah. This phrase occurs again in 2Chronicles 16:12; 2Chronicles 26:8, and nowhere else in the Old Testament. (See on 1Chronicles 14:2.)

And he built.—Like his predecessors—Solomon, Rehoboam, Asa—he displayed his wealth and power in great public works. The records of the Assyrian and Babylonian sovereigns are largely taken up with similar accounts of temple and palace building.

Castles.Biranîyôth, a derivative from birah (1Chronicles 29:1; 1Chronicles 29:19; comp. Syriac here, birôthô). It only recurs at 2Chronicles 27:4. It is an Aramaic term. (Comp. bîranyâthâ, which in the Targums means “palaces.”)

Cities of stores.—Comp. 2Chronicles 8:4; 2Chronicles 16:4; Exodus 1:11.

17:1-19 Jehoshaphat promotes religion in Judah, His prosperity. - Jehoshaphat found his people generally very ignorant, and therefore endeavoured to have them well taught. The public teaching of the word of God forms, in all ages, the great method of promoting the power of godliness. Thereby the understanding is informed, the conscience is awakened and directed. We have a particular account of Jehoshaphat's prosperity. But it was not his formidable army that restrained the neighbouring nations from attempting any thing against Israel, but the fear of God which fell upon them, when Jehoshaphat reformed his country, and set up a preaching ministry in it. The ordinances of God are more the strength and safety of a kingdom, than soldiers and weapons of war. The Bible requires use to notice the hand of God in every event, yet this is little regarded. But let all employ the talents they have: be faithful, even in that which is little. Set up the worship of God in your houses. The charge of a family is important. Why should you not instruct them as Jehoshaphat did his subjects, in the book of the law of the Lord. But be consistent. Do not recommend one thing, and practise another. Begin with yourselves. Seek to the Lord God of Israel, then call upon children and servants to follow your example.Some of the Philistines brought Jehoshaphat presents - i. e. "some of the Philistines were among his tributaries." Compare 2 Samuel 8:2; 1 Kings 4:21.

Tribute silver - Or, "much silver" - literally "silver of burthen."

The Arabians - The Arab tribes who bordered Judaea to the south and the southeast paid Jehoshaphat a fixed tribute in kind. Compare 2 Kings 3:4 note.

2Ch 17:12-19. His Greatness, Captains, and Armies. No text from Poole on this verse. And Jehoshaphat waxed great exceedingly,.... In wealth and riches, power and authority, in his forces and fortifications:

and he built in Judah castles, and cities of stores; castles for the defence of his kingdom, and store cities to lay up corn, and wine, and all provisions, in case of an invasion, or against a time of war.

And Jehoshaphat waxed great exceedingly; and he built in Judah castles, and cities of store.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
12. castles] Heb. bîrâniyyôth; cp. 2 Chronicles 27:4 (same word); and 2 Chronicles 26:10 (“towers”). Such small castles or towers lie scattered along the pilgrim-road from Damascus to Mecca at the present day to make the way safe.

cities of store] Cp. 2 Chronicles 11:11-12.Verse 12. - Castles. This rendering, better than "palaces" (margin), wound bear improving to the rather stronger word "fortresses," Hebrew, בִּירָנִיּות, found only here and in 2 Chronicles 27:4, plur. of בִּירָנִית connected with the Chaldee and later Hebrew, בִּירָה, of Ezra 6:2; Nehemiah 1:1; Esther 1:2; Daniel 8:2, Cities of store (see note under 2 Chronicles 8:4; see also 1 Kings 9:19; Exodus 1:11). This blessing encouraged Jehoshaphat to extirpate from the land all idolatrous worship, and to teach the people the law of the Lord. לב נּבהּ, usually sensu malo, to be haughty, proud, cf. e.g., 2 Chronicles 26:16; 2 Chronicles 32:25; here sensu bono, of rising courage to advance in ways pleasing to God: and he removed the high places also, etc. עוד points back to 2 Chronicles 17:3 : not only did he himself keep far from the Baals, but he removed, besides, all memorials of the Baal-worship from Judah. On בּמות and אשׁרים, see on 2 Chronicles 14:2.
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