New International Version
For a long time Israel was without the true God, without a priest to teach and without the law.
King James Bible
Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law.
Darby Bible Translation
Now for a long while Israel [was] without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law;
World English Bible
Now for a long time Israel was without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law.
Young's Literal Translation
and many days are to Israel without a true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law,
2 Chronicles 15:3 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Now for a long season Israel - "Israel hath followed Jeroboam, and they have not worshipped the true God. They have burnt incense to their golden calves; their priestlings [כומריא cumeraiya, their black, sooty sacrificers] have burnt perfumes with a strange worship, and have not exercised themselves in the law." - Targum. These priests could not teach, because they had not learnt; and as they had abandoned the law of the Lord, consequently they had no proper matter for instruction.
There is a great diversity of opinions concerning the meaning of this text. Some consider it a prophecy relative to the future state of this people, and the final destruction of the Jews as to their political existence: others consider it as referring to the state of the people under the reigns of Rehoboam and Abijah, which were happily changed under that of Asa; and this appears to me to be the most natural sense of the words.
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'They ... sought Him with their whole desire; and He was found of them: and the Lord gave them rest round about.'--2 CHRON. xv. 15. These words occur in one of the least familiar passages of the Old Testament. They describe an incident in the reign of Asa, who was the grandson of Solomon's foolish son Rehoboam, and was consequently the third king of Judah after the secession of the North. He had just won a great victory, and was returning with his triumphant army to Jerusalem, when there met him …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
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Then the LORD said to Aaron,
1 Kings 12:28
After seeking advice, the king made two golden calves. He said to the people, "It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem. Here are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt."
2 Chronicles 17:7
In the third year of his reign he sent his officials Ben-Hail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel and Micaiah to teach in the towns of Judah.
2 Chronicles 17:9
They taught throughout Judah, taking with them the Book of the Law of the LORD; they went around to all the towns of Judah and taught the people.
"The days are coming," declares the Sovereign LORD, "when I will send a famine through the land-- not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD.
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