2 Kings 17

Hoshea's wicked reign 1
Shalmaneser makes him tributary, and casts him into prison 3
He besieges Samaria, takes it, and takes the people captive 5
The reason 7
Judah copies the misconduct of Israel 19
The Lord rejects all the seed of Israel 20
The king of Assyria brings foreign people to Samaria 24
Many of these strange people are destroyed by lions 25
Assyria sends back some of the Israelitish priests which mix in pagan religion 26
The state of the Israelites, and foreign people 34
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Text
Explanation
.1 ¶ In the twelfth year of Ahaz king of Judah began Hoshea the son of Elah to reign in Samaria over Israel nine years.
 2  And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, but not as the kings of Israel that were before him.
.3  Against him came up Shalmaneser king of Assyria; and Hoshea became his servant, and gave him presents.
.4  And the king of Assyria found conspiracy in Hoshea: for he had sent messengers to So king of Egypt, and brought no present to the king of Assyria, as he had done year by year: therefore the king of Assyria shut him up, and bound him in prison.
.5  Then the king of Assyria came up throughout all the land, and went up to Samaria, and besieged it three years.
.6  In the ninth year of Hoshea the king of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes.
  1 - Began Hoshea  ... to reign Assyrian king, Tiglath-pileser III claimed that he captured King Pekah after the people overthrew him, then he (Tig.) put Hoshea on the throne receiving gold and silver from him. The story of Pekah begins at 2ki1523.
  2 - But not as the kings before Hoshea was not known for great wickedness as were some who came before him. However, he made no effort for reform. Had he done so, the history of the Jewish people could have been different.
  4 - Conspiracy ... sent messengers Prophet Hoshea (notice spelling) comments on Israel's foreign policies. ho0513, ho0708, ho0809, ho1105, ho1403, ho1201.
  4 - Brought no present After having paid tribute for several years, Hoshea, determined on throwing off the Assyrian yoke, withheld the stipulated tribute. Shalmaneser, incensed at this rebellion, proclaimed war against Israel. This was in the sixth year of Hoshea's reign. 
  6 - Took Samaria Shalmaneser had set a siege of three years.
  6 - Carried Israel away What was left of the ten tribes.
.7 ¶ For so it was, that the children of Israel had sinned against the Lord their God, which had brought them up out of the land of Egypt, from under the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and had feared other gods,
  And this was so, because the people of Israel had sinned against the Lord their God, who had brought them up out of the land of Egypt from under the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and had feared other gods (RSV)
 8  And walked in the statutes of the heathen, whom the Lord cast out from before the children of Israel, and of the kings of Israel, which they had made.
.9  And the children of Israel did secretly those things that were not right against the Lord their God, and they built them high places in all their cities, from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced city.
 
  7 - For so it was that Instead see the RSV translation at the left. The people chose to reject the love and guidance of the Lord.
  8 - Lord cast them out "The native peoples of Canaan were cast out before Israel because of their abominable customs and gross immoralities. The Israelites could hardly have displayed greater stupidity than to follow the same practices. As the native inhabitants of Palestine were doomed because of their evil ways, so likewise was Israel." (SDA Bible Commentary).
  8 - And of the kings... made The leaders in Israel led the people into sin.
  9 - Did secretly ... against They, and perhaps we, tend to make our religious practice look good while indulging in sin 2ti0305.
.10  And they set them up images and groves in every high hill, and under every green tree:
 11  And there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the LORD carried away before them; and wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger:
 12  For they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing.
.13  Yet the LORD testified against Israel, and against Judah, by all the prophets, and by all the seers, saying, Turn ye from your evil ways, and keep my commandments and my statutes, according to all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by my servants the prophets.
  10 - Images ... Against the divine commandments v15.
.14  Notwithstanding they would not hear, but hardened their necks, like to the neck of their fathers, that did not believe in the LORD their God.
.15  And they rejected his statutes, and his covenant that he made with their fathers, and his testimonies which he testified against them; and they followed vanity, and became vain, and went after the heathen that were round about them, concerning whom the LORD had charged them, that they should not do like them.
.16  And they left all the commandments of the LORD their God, and made them molten images, even two calves, and made a grove, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal.
 17  And they caused their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire, and used divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger.
.18  Therefore the LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them out of his sight: there was none left but the tribe of Judah only.
  18 - Removed them " It was  the Lord that removed Israel out of his sight; whoever were the instruments, he was the author of this calamity. It was destruction from the Almighty; the Assyrian was but the rod of his anger, Isa 10:5. It was the Lord that rejected the seed of Israel, else their enemies could not have seized upon them, 2Ki 17:20 .... Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to the robbers? Did not the Lord?  Isa 43:24. We lose the benefit of national judgments if we do not eye the hand of God in them, and the fulfilling of the scripture, for that also is taken notice of here (2Ki 17:23) ... The Lord removed Israel out of his favour, and out of their own land, as he had said by all his servants the prophets. Rather shall heaven and earth pass than one tittle of God's word fall to the ground. When God's word and his works are compared, it will be found not only that they agree, but that they illustrate each other. But why would God ruin a people that were raised and incorporated, as Israel was, by miracles and oracles? Why would he undo that which he himself had done at so vast an expense? Was it purely an act of sovereignty? No, it was an act of necessary justice." (Matthew Henry's Commentary).
  15 - Rejected his statutes The following verses describe the result. A lesson to anyone today who turns to the occult which is now considered as entertainment.
.19  Also Judah kept not the commandments of the LORD their God, but walked in the statutes of Israel which they made.
.20  And the LORD rejected all the seed of Israel, and afflicted them, and delivered them into the hand of spoilers, until he had cast them out of his sight.
 21  For he rent Israel from the house of David; and they made Jeroboam the son of Nebat king: and Jeroboam drave Israel from following the LORD, and made them sin a great sin.
 22  For the children of Israel walked in all the sins of Jeroboam which he did; they departed not from them;
 23  Until the LORD removed Israel out of his sight, as he had said by all his servants the prophets. So was Israel carried away out of their own land to Assyria unto this day.
  19 - Also Judah It seems that Judah (and Benjamin), the southern kingdom, would have learned a lesson from the fate of the northern kingdom.
  20 - All the seeds But individuals who chose the way of the Messiah would be saved. Compare ro117-24.
.24 ¶ And the king of Assyria brought men from Babylon, and from Cuthah, and from Ava, and from Hamath, and from Sepharvaim, and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the children of Israel: and they possessed Samaria, and dwelt in the cities thereof.
.25  And so it was at the beginning of their dwelling there, that they feared not the LORD: therefore the LORD sent lions among them, which slew some of them.
.26  Wherefore they spake to the king of Assyria, saying, The nations which thou hast removed, and placed in the cities of Samaria, know not the manner of the God of the land: therefore he hath sent lions among them, and, behold, they slay them, because they know not the manner of the God of the land.
  24 - King Probably Sargon whose reign began 722 BC. See map for Babylon in Assyria
  24 - Samaria The Assyrians moved people to keep down revolts. This may explain why Samaria, in the time of Jesus, had non-Jews.
 27  Then the king of Assyria commanded, saying, Carry thither one of the priests whom ye brought from thence; and let them go and dwell there, and let him teach them the manner of the God of the land.
 28  Then one of the priests whom they had carried away from Samaria came and dwelt in Bethel, and taught them how they should fear the LORD.
 29  Howbeit every nation made gods of their own, and put them in the houses of the high places which the Samaritans had made, every nation in their cities wherein they dwelt.
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.30  And the men of Babylon made Succothbenoth, and the men of Cuth made Nergal, and the men of Hamath made Ashima,
.31  And the Avites made Nibhaz and Tartak, and the Sepharvites burnt their children in fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharvaim.
 32  So they feared the LORD, and made unto themselves of the lowest of them priests of the high places, which sacrificed for them in the houses of the high places.
.33  They feared the LORD, and served their own gods, after the manner of the nations whom they carried away from thence.
  30 - Babylon See on v24 above.
  31 - Burnt their children The name of the god is related to the name Molech and could indicate the same wicked practice. See le1821.
  32 - Feared the Lord Here, perhaps, they were  afraid of Him and wanted their gods to protect them. They apparently tried to please all the gods including the Hebrew God.
.34  Unto this day they do after the former manners: they fear not the LORD, neither do they after their statutes, or after their ordinances, or after the law and commandment which the LORD commanded the children of Jacob, whom he named Israel;   34 - Unto this day And later when Jesus walked this earth, the situation of mixed and confused religion continued.
  34 - Fear not The Lord does not share worship. Idol worship is always apostasy. How could they "fear" v33 and "fear not" at the same time? Fear in the sense of blessing instead of curses de28 is compatible with the lack of fear in the sense of reverence. Sadly, we today may have the same mindset unless we continually commit ourselves to the Lord.
 35  With whom the LORD had made a covenant, and charged them, saying, Ye shall not fear other gods, nor bow yourselves to them, nor serve them, nor sacrifice to them:
 36  But the LORD, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt with great power and a stretched out arm, him shall ye fear, and him shall ye worship, and to him shall ye do sacrifice.
 37  And the statutes, and the ordinances, and the law, and the commandment, which he wrote for you, ye shall observe to do for evermore; and ye shall not fear other gods.
  35 - Covenant See ex1905,6. Not fearing other gods and not worshipping them (or their idols).
  36 - Brought you up The idea is also in ex2002.
 38  And the covenant that I have made with you ye shall not forget; neither shall ye fear other gods.
 39  But the LORD your God ye shall fear; and he shall deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.
 40  Howbeit they did not hearken, but they did after their former manner.
 41  So these nations feared the LORD, and served their graven images, both their children, and their children's children: as did their fathers, so do they unto this day.
  41 - Feared the Lord and They worshipped idols and the true God or they pretended to.
  41 - Unto this day The writer was not living at the time brought to view. Compare 1ki1821.

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