And Hoshea the son of Elah made a conspiracy against Pekah the son of Remaliah, and smote him, and slew him, and reigned in his stead, in the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)2 Kings 15:30. Hosea made a conspiracy against Pekah, and smote him — It is probable that the people were provoked at him for leaving them exposed to a foreign enemy, while he invaded Judah; and that Hosea took advantage of their discontent and disgust to seize and slay him. Thus Pekah’s treason and violence returned upon himself at last. And reigned in his stead in the twentieth year of Jotham — The meaning is, that he began his reign in the twentieth year after the beginning of Jotham’s reign; or, which is the same thing, in the fourth year of Ahaz, son of Jotham.
The twentieth year of Jotham - According to 2 Kings 15:33 and 2 Chronicles 27:1, Jotham reigned only 16 years. See also the suggestion in the margin. Strangely enough, this first year of Hoshea is also called, not the fourth, but the twelfth of Ahaz 2 Kings 17:1. The chronological confusion of the history, as it stands, is striking.
Uzziah - i. e. Azariah. See 2 Kings 15:1-4.
in the twentieth year of Jotham—Jotham's reign lasted only sixteen years, but the meaning is that the reign of Hoshea began in the twentieth after the beginning of Jotham's reign. The sacred historian, having not yet introduced the name of Ahaz, reckoned the date by Jotham, whom he had already mentioned (see 2Ch 27:8).Smote him, and slew him; which he did more easily effect, because the people were enraged against Pekah, as the man who by his murder of king Pekahiah the son of Menahem, whom the Assyrian monarch set up and favoured, and by his unnecessary war with Ahaz, had brought the Assyrian upon them, and caused the loss of one half of that kingdom.
In the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah.
Quest. How could this be, when Jotham reigned only sixteen years, below, 2 Kings 15:33?
Answ. The meaning is, that he began his reign in the twentieth year after the beginning of Jotham’s reign; or, which is the same thing, in the fourth year of Ahaz, son of Jotham, as appears from 2 Kings 16:2. But the sacred writer, having not yet made mention of Ahaz, thought it more proper to number Hoshea’s years by Jotham, of whom he had spoken, than by Ahaz. Besides, as Jotham did reign divers years in his father’s life, so might Ahaz in Jotham’s life, and Jotham might for divers reasons (which it is needless here to inquire) resign up the administration of the kingdom wholly into Ahaz’s hands some years before his death, and therefore might be said to reign but sixteen years, though he lived longer. 2 Kings 15:28, this was measure for measure, as the Jews say: and this he did
in the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah; and yet Jotham is said to reign but sixteen years, 2 Kings 15:33, this must be reckoned therefore either from the time of his being viceroy, and judging Israel in his father's lifetime, 2 Kings 15:5 or this was the fourth year of Ahaz, and the twentieth year, reckoning from the time Jotham began to reign, who is the rather mentioned, because as yet the historian had taken no notice of Ahaz.And Hoshea the son of Elah made a conspiracy against Pekah the son of Remaliah, and smote him, and slew him, and reigned in his stead, in the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)30. Hoshea the son of Elah] Josephus (Ant. IX. 13. 1) says Hoshea was a friend of Pekah. He is mentioned in the Assyrian inscriptions (Smith, Assyrian Discoveries, p. 285), and it appears from that record as if he had been set up by the Assyrian king. Perhaps Hoshea, having conspired and slain Pekah, put himself as a vassal under the protection of Assyria. The inscription speaks of the tribute which he was to pay to the Assyrians. Though the death of Pekah is here mentioned we have a further account of his attempts against Judah in the next chapter.
in the twentieth year of Jotham] As Jotham is said below in verse 33 to have reigned only sixteen years, there must be some mistake in the numbers either here or there. The occurrence of such variations makes the task of fixing the chronology very difficult, and probably no satisfactory solution will be discovered, to the several questions which arise on this subject, until more is known of the contemporary history. If ever the annals of Assyria and Egypt be brought into trustworthy order, the points of contact with Jewish affairs will help to settle some dates and to clear up what seems now irremediably obscureVerse 30. - And Hoshea the son of Elah made a conspiracy against Pekah the son of Remaliah, and smote him, and slew him, and reigned in his stead. By a mutilated notice in the records of Tiglath-pileser, it appears that the revolution here related was the result of another invasion of the Israelite territory by that monarch. "The land of Beth-Croft," he says, "... the tribe... the goods of its people and their furniture I sent to Assyria. Pekah their king [I caused to be put to death?] and Hoshea I appointed to the kingdom ever them; their tribute I received, and [their treasures?] to Assyria I sent" ('Eponym Canon,' pp. 123, 124, lines 15-19). It is probably this invasion of which the writer of Chronicles speaks (1 Chronicles 5:26) as resulting in the deportation of the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. In the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah. This date stands in contradiction with ver. 33, where Jotham's entire reign is reckoned at sixteen years, and apparently must be a corrupt reading. 2 Samuel 23:8) Pekah conspired against him and slew him in the citadel (ארמון, see at 1 Kings 16:8) of the king's palace, with Argob and Aryeh. Argob and Aryeh were not fellow-conspirators of Pekah, who helped to slay the king, but principes Pekachijae, as Seb. Schmidt expresses it, probably aides-de-camp of Pekahiah, who were slain by the conspirators when defending their king. We must take the words in this sense on account of what follows: וגו חמשּׁים ועמּו, "and with him (Pekah) were fifty men of the Gileadites" (i.e., they helped him). The Gileadites probably belonged to the king's body-guard, and were under the command of the aides-de-camp of Pekah.
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