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- 2 Chronicles
by Robert Hawker
THE SECOND BOOK OF THE CHRONICLES
THIS second book of the Chronicles bears no proportion, in point of the time it records, to that of the former. For all the events registered in this volume, include the history of somewhat less than 500 years. It takes up the records of the church from about a thousand years before the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the history is pursued through this book to the period of the Babylonish captivity.
The events recorded in this second book of the Chronicles, correspond, in point of history, to what is related in the first and second book of the Kings; but the Reader will do well to observe, what further accounts are given here, in addition to what were then recorded. The design of the Holy Ghost, (if one may presume so to speak) in the compilation of these Chronicles, is to preserve the history of the church of God, and especially in a faithful record of the regular descent of the family of David. The dying patriarch, Jacob, under the influence of God the Spirit had prophesied, that the sceptre should not depart from Judah, nor a law-giver from between his feet, until the Shiloh should come. These Chronicles, when traced in a regular succession, and compared with what follows in the other books of sacred inspiration, lead the Reader on to the discovery of the fulfillment of this prophecy. Through the several monarchies which succeeded the Babylonian, to the coming of Christ, we trace the lineal descent of David's royal house. And as, through all the tributary state in which the church was brought, under the Persian, the Grecian, and at last the Roman government, the Jews never lost sight of their own king, neither their own laws; so it is worthy the highest attention, that under the latter empire, during which time the Lord Jesus came, the Jews themselves confessed, that now they had no king but Cesar. Now therefore the Shiloh was come. And the royal house of David, in the person of Jesus, emerged from the obscurity in which it had been so long hid, and brought forward again that kingdom, of the increase and government of which there shall be no end.
I shall detain the Reader no longer from entering on the perusal of this book of God, but only, as in every former instance, so in this, to beg his eye may be always on the lookout for Him, on whose account, and for whose great work of redemption, not the Bible was written, but even creation itself, with all its magnificence, was appointed. It is offering no violence to truth, to believe that, as the Lord Jehovah from everlasting had determined the redemption of his people; when he went forth in acts of creation, these were preparatory to the more glorious deeds in redemption, which were to follow. And hence, every event from the creation of the world, to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, was designed as intermediate, and preparatory to the introduction of him, who though appearing in what is called the fullness of time, was in reality set up from everlasting. It is under the most perfect conviction of this, that I venture to beg again and again the Reader's most earnest enquiry through every page, for him to whom the whole ministers. And oh! thou Holy Spirit of truth; thou Glorifier of the Lord Jesus! let it please thee to call up the diligence, and to reward the search both of Writer and Reader in their enquiries, like the Greeks which came up to the feast, when like them, as we explore this feast of divine records, we say also, We would see Jesus. Be pleased, Lord, to hang out his star in the firmament of thy word, and by a more luminous light of thy grace within our souls, lead us, and go before us, until it points to the place where the Lord Jesus is. One such view of thee, thou blessed Jesus! discovered in those Chronicles of thy church, in manifesting both thy love then and now, will give a joy unspeakable, and full of glory; and become a renewed evidence, to all the numbers we are continually receiving, that thou, art indeed Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and, today, and forever.
the First Week of Advent