2 Kings 16:10
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
When King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, he saw the altar that was at Damascus. And King Ahaz sent to Uriah the priest a model of the altar, and its pattern, exact in all its details.

King James Bible
And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, and saw an altar that was at Damascus: and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the pattern of it, according to all the workmanship thereof.

American Standard Version
And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, and saw the altar that was at Damascus; and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the pattern of it, according to all the workmanship thereof.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And king Achaz went to Damascus to meet Theglathphalasar king of the Assyrians, end when he had seen the altar of Damascus, king Achaz sent to Urias the priest a pattern of it, and its likeness according to all the work thereof.

English Revised Version
And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, and saw the altar that was at Damascus: and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the pattern of it, according to all the workmanship thereof.

Webster's Bible Translation
And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, and saw an altar that was at Damascus: and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the pattern of it, according to all the workmanship of it.

2 Kings 16:10 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

"Ahaz walked in the way of the kings of Israel," to which there is added by way of explanation in 2 Chronicles 28:2, "and also made molten images to the Baals." This refers, primarily, simply to the worship of Jehovah under the image of a calf, which they had invented; for this was the way in which all the kings of Israel walked. At the same time, in 2 Kings 8:18 the same formula is so used of Joram king of Judah as to include the worship of Baal by the dynasty of Ahab. Consequently in the verse before us also the way of the kings of Israel includes the worship of Baal, which is especially mentioned in the Chronicles. - "He even made his son pass through the fire," i.e., offered him in sacrifice to Moloch in the valley of Benhinnom (see at 2 Kings 23:10), after the abominations of the nations, whom Jehovah had cast out before Israel. Instead of בּנו we have the plural בּנין in 2 Chronicles 28:3, and in 2 Chronicles 28:16 אשּׁוּר מלכי, kings of Asshur, instead of אשּׁוּר מלך, although only one, viz., Tiglath-pileser, is spoken of. This repeated use of the plural shows very plainly that it is to be understood rhetorically, as expressing the thought in the most general manner, since the number was of less importance than the fact.

(Note: The Greeks and Romans also use the plural instead of the singular in their rhetorical style of writing, especially when a father, a mother, or a son is spoken of. Cf. Cic. de prov. cons. xiv. 35: si ad jucundissimos liberos, si ad clarissimum generum redire properaret, where Julia, the only daughter of Caesar, and the wife of Pompey the Great, is referred to; and for other examples see Caspari, der Syr. Ephraimit. Krieg, p. 41.)

So far as the fact is concerned, we have here the first instance of an actual Moloch-sacrifice among the Israelites, i.e., of one performed by slaying and burning. For although the phrase בּאשׁ העביר or למּלך does not in itself denote the slaying and burning of the children as Moloch-sacrifices, but primarily affirms nothing more than the simple passing through fire, a kind of februation or baptism of fire (see at Leviticus 18:21); such passages as Ezekiel 16:21 and Jeremiah 7:31, where sacrificing in the valley of Benhinnom is called slaying and burning the children, show most distinctly that in the verse before us בּאשׁ העביר is to be taken as signifying actual sacrificing, i.e., the burning of the children slain in sacrifice to Moloch, and, as the emphatic וגם indicates, that this kind of idolatrous worship, which had never been heard of before in Judah and Israel, was introduced by Ahaz.

(Note: "If this idolatry had occurred among the Israelites before the time of Ahaz, its abominations would certainly not have been passed over by the biblical writers, who so frequently mention other forms of idolatry." These are the correct words of Movers (Phniz. i. p. 65), who only errs in the fact that on the one hand he supposes the origin of human sacrifices in the time of Ahaz to have been inwardly connected with the appearance of the Assyrians, and traces them to the acquaintance of the Israelites with the Assyrian fire-deities Adrammelech and Anammelech (2 Kings 17:31), and on the other hand gives this explanation of the phrase, "cause to pass through the fire for Moloch," which is used to denote the sacrificing of children: "the burning of children was regarded as a passage, whereby, after the separation of the impure and earthly dross of the body, the children attained to union with the deity" (p. 329). To this J. G. Mller has correctly replied (in Herzog's Cyclop.): "This mystic, pantheistic, moralizing view of human sacrifices is not the ancient and original view of genuine heathenism. It is no more the view of Hither Asia than the Mexican view (i.e., the one which lay at the foundation of the custom of the ancient Mexicans, of passing the new-born boy four times through the fire). The Phoenician myths, which Movers (p. 329) quotes in support of his view, refer to the offering of human sacrifices in worship, and the moral view is a later addition belonging to Hellenism. The sacrifices were rather given to the gods as food, as is evident from innumerable passages (compare the primitive religions of America), and they have no moral aim, but are intended to reward or bribe the gods with costly presents, either because of calamities that have already passed, or because of those that are anticipated with alarm; and, as Movers himself admits (p. 301), to make atonement for ceremonial sins, i.e., to follow smaller sacrifices by those of greater value.")

In the Chronicles, therefore העביר is correctly explained by ויּבער, "he burned;" though we cannot infer from this that העביר is always a mere conjecture for הבעיר, as Geiger does (Urschrift u. Uebers, der Bibel, p. 305). The offering of his son for Moloch took place, in all probability, during the severe oppression of Ahaz by the Syrians, and was intended to appease the wrath of the gods, as was done by the king of the Moabites in similar circumstances (2 Kings 3:27). - In 2 Kings 16:4 the idolatry is described in the standing formulae as sacrificing upon high places and hills, etc., as in 1 Kings 14:23. The temple-worship prescribed by the law could easily be continued along with this idolatry, since polytheism did not exclude the worship of Jehovah. It was not till the closing years of his reign that Ahaz went so far as to close the temple-hall, and thereby suspend the temple-worship (2 Chronicles 28:24); in any case it was not till after the alterations described in 2 Kings 16:11. as having been made in the temple.

2 Kings 16:10 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

saw an altar

Deuteronomy 12:30 Take heed to yourself that you be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before you...

2 Chronicles 28:23-25 For he sacrificed to the gods of Damascus, which smote him: and he said, Because the gods of the kings of Syria help them...

Jeremiah 10:2 Thus said the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.

Ezekiel 23:16,17 And as soon as she saw them with her eyes, she doted on them, and sent messengers to them into Chaldea...

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good...

1 Peter 1:18 For as much as you know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold...

the pattern

Exodus 24:4 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and built an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars...

Exodus 39:43 And Moses did look on all the work, and, behold, they had done it as the LORD had commanded, even so had they done it...

1 Chronicles 28:11,12,19 Then David gave to Solomon his son the pattern of the porch, and of the houses thereof, and of the treasuries thereof...

Psalm 106:39 Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions.

Ezekiel 43:8,11 In their setting of their threshold by my thresholds, and their post by my posts, and the wall between me and them...

Matthew 15:6,9 And honor not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have you made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition...

Cross References
2 Kings 15:29
In the days of Pekah king of Israel, Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria came and captured Ijon, Abel-beth-maacah, Janoah, Kedesh, Hazor, Gilead, and Galilee, all the land of Naphtali, and he carried the people captive to Assyria.

2 Kings 16:11
And Uriah the priest built the altar; in accordance with all that King Ahaz had sent from Damascus, so Uriah the priest made it, before King Ahaz arrived from Damascus.

2 Kings 21:4
And he built altars in the house of the LORD, of which the LORD had said, "In Jerusalem will I put my name."

Isaiah 8:2
And I will get reliable witnesses, Uriah the priest and Zechariah the son of Jeberechiah, to attest for me."

Ezekiel 16:28
You played the whore also with the Assyrians, because you were not satisfied; yes, you played the whore with them, and still you were not satisfied.

Ezekiel 44:12
Because they ministered to them before their idols and became a stumbling block of iniquity to the house of Israel, therefore I have sworn concerning them, declares the Lord GOD, and they shall bear their punishment.

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