New European Commentary


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Deeper Commentary

1Ch 3:1 Now these were the sons of David, who were born to him in Hebron: the firstborn, Amnon, of Ahinoam the Jezreelitess; the second, Daniel, of Abigail the Carmelitess-
"Daniel", 'God is judge', is an understandable name for David to choose at a time when he was under persecution from Saul and opposition from the house of Saul to whom he had been so gracious. He was trying to learn to leave judgment to God, although his imprecatory Psalms seem to struggle at leaving things at that. 

1Ch 3:2 the third, Absalom the son of Maacah the daughter of Talmai king of Geshur; the fourth, Adonijah the son of Haggith-
We note David early in his reign had relations with a Gentile woman, daughter of a Gentile king. It is unsurprising that Solomon repeated this error, also early in his reign, by marrying Pharaoh's daughter. Whilst spirituality isn't genetic, it is true that unspiritual attitudes pass on very easily from fathers to sons.

1Ch 3:3 the fifth, Shephatiah of Abital; the sixth, Ithream by Eglah his wife-
Solomon  wished  to imitate his father David in every sense; his own  real  personality  only really came out in the Ecclesiastes years,  when he took to drink, materialism, women and idolatry. It  took  the  influence  of his parents many years to wear off. David  had  weaknesses  for  horses (2 Sam. 8:4) and many wives; and Solomon  followed  in  these  steps  too. Note that David had six sons in seven years by six different women, including Gentiles (1 Chron. 3:3). And in addition to these, David had children by “the concubines” (1 Chron. 3:9). Doubtless Solomon reasoned, albeit deep   within  his  psyche,  that  such  behaviour  was legitimate  because  David  his father had done it. David  seems to have over interpreted the promises made to him  about Solomon and the temple, and assumed that  his  interpretation was certainly correct. And Solomon did exactly the same. The weaknesses of the parents all too easily are repeated by the children to an even greater extent.  

1Ch 3:4 Six were born to him in Hebron; and there he reigned seven years and six months. In Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years-
David was 30 when he became king (2 Sam. 5:4), meaning he lived 70 years. But we must be aware that time periods are often used symbolically or generally. For David, Saul and Solomon are all said to have reigned 40 years. The period of 40 years assigned to Absalom in 2 Sam. 15:7 has to be read less than literally.

1Ch 3:5 These were born to him in Jerusalem: Shimea, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon, four, of Bathshua the daughter of Ammiel-
This could imply that Bathsheba had no other children before those she had by David. This means that she may have been barren until that point; her conception was certainly brought about by God. Was it that they would both have been aware of the unlikelihood of her bearing children, and therefore perhaps more inclined to take a chance?

1Ch 3:6 and Ibhar, Elishama, Eliphelet-
Eliphelet, "God of deliverance", was to celebrate God's deliverance of David. But he died in childhood (see on :8), perhaps to remind David that God doesn't always deliver as we expect.

1Ch 3:7 Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia-
The lists in 1 Chron. 3:5-8; 14:4-7 mention two more sons than we find in 2 Sam. 5:15, Eliphalet or Elpalet and Nogah. Perhaps  they are omitted here because they died in infancy, and that the second Eliphalet was named after his dead brother.

1Ch 3:8 Elishama, Eliada and Eliphelet, nine-
The two sons named Eliphelet (:6) presumably means that one died and was replaced by another son of the same name.

1Ch 3:9 All these were the sons of David, besides the sons of the concubines; and Tamar was their sister-
See on :3. The repeated reference to the possession of concubines can be read as an indication of Israel's weakness in abandoning the ideal standards of God regarding marriage. Yet we read that even David had concubines- as if to show the extent of Israel's weakness in the area of marriage.

1Ch 3:10 Solomon’s son was Rehoboam, Abijah his son, Asa his son, Jehoshaphat his son-
The kings of Judah all have, for the most part, the 'Yah' prefix or suffix. Rehoboam stands out as an exception, as does Manasseh and Amon.

1Ch 3:11 Joram his son, Ahaziah his son, Joash his son-
Ahaziah is Jehoahaz (2 Chron. 21:17), Azariah (2 Chron. 22:6) and Ahaziah (1 Chron. 3:11); a reminder that people carried multiple names, which explains many of the so called contradictions in the genealogies.

1Ch 3:12 Amaziah his son, Azariah his son, Jotham his son-
Azariah is usually called Uzziah.

1Ch 3:13 Ahaz his son, Hezekiah his son, Manasseh his son-
This is a parade example of how a bad king [Ahaz] has a good son [Hezekiah] who has a bad son [Manasseh]. One thing we learn from these genealogies is that spirituality is not genetic. Faith cannot be passed on, in the sense; but each must forge their own unique, individual relationship with the Father, just as today.

1Ch 3:14 Amon his son, Josiah his son-
As noted on :13, we have another example of a bad king having a good son. "Christianity" in its religious sense seems to be generally passed on from parents to children, but we learn from the genealogies that true spirituality cannot be passed on. It has to be personally forged. 

1Ch 3:15 The sons of Josiah: the firstborn Johanan, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum-
This is a list of the kings of Judah, so we wonder why Johanan is mentioned when he was never king. Shallum is also known as Jehoahaz (2 Chron. 36:1 cp. Jer. 22:11).

1Ch 3:16 The sons of Jehoiakim: Jeconiah his son, Zedekiah his son-
"His son" may also mean 'his heir' (see on :17), because Zedekiah was not son but uncle to Jeconiah. "Son" has a wide range of meaning in Hebrew. Jeconiah of 1 Chron. 3:16 is Coniah in Jer. 22:14, and Jehoiachin in 2 Chron. 36:8,9; 2 Kings 24:6. A reminder that people carried multiple names, explaining some of the apparent contradictions in the genealogies.

1Ch 3:17 The sons of Jeconiah the captive: Shealtiel his son-
"The captive" could be translated as AV as the name of another son, "Assir". Jeconiah didn't have sons in the sense that he had no son to succeed him on the throne (Jer. 22:27,30), a reminder that "sons" doesn't always mean literal male children, but descendants who inherited the throne. See on :16.

1Ch 3:18 and Malchiram, and Pedaiah, and Shenazzar, Jekamiah, Hoshama, and Nedabiah-
It is unclear whose sons these were (cp. 2 Kings 24;12,15; Jer. 22:30).

1Ch 3:19 The sons of Pedaiah: Zerubbabel, and Shimei. The sons of Zerubbabel: Meshullam, and Hananiah; and Shelomith was their sister-
In Ezra 7, 15 names are listed between Ezra and Aaron- covering about 1000 years. Clearly many generations were omitted. We note there are 26 names listed between Zerubbabel (a generation or two before Ezra) and Nashon a contemporary of Aaron, in 1 Chron. 2:10-15; 3:1-19). Some details of the omitted generations are found in 1 Chron. 9:10,11; Neh. 11:11.

Zerubbabel was son of Shealtiel (Ezra 3:2; Hag. 1:1,2; Lk. 3:27-31). But it seems he was grandson of Pedaiah on his mother's side.

1Ch 3:20 and Hashubah, Ohel, Berechiah, Hasadiah and Jushab Hesed, five-
This separate group of sons may be because they were from a different mother. Jushab-hesed means "Grace is returned", as if reflecting the restoration, by grace.

1Ch 3:21 The sons of Hananiah: Pelatiah and Jeshaiah; the sons of Rephaiah, the sons of Arnan, the sons of Obadiah, the sons of Shecaniah-
The LXX is very different in :19-24, giving six generations between Hananiah and Shemaiah, and accounting for eleven generations from Zerubbabel in this genealogy.  

1Ch 3:22 The sons of Shecaniah: Shemaiah. The sons of Shemaiah: Hattush, Igal, Bariah, Neariah and Shaphat, six-
This would make Hattush the great-great-grandson of Zerubbabel. He returned only at the time of Ezra 8:3, so it seems his family had not returned with Zerubbabel. Shemaiah is the one of Neh. 3:29. He must have been an old man, as his son Hattush had returned to Jerusalem with Ezra (Ezra 8:2,3); again we get the impression of those not naturally adequate to the work still doing it (goldsmiths, perfumers, daughters, administrators and now old men). Whilst we are given talents which we should use in God's service, it is also true that His service is a going against the grain of our natural desires and not a mere reinforcement of our natural aptitudes and personalities; ultimately, we are called to carry the cross of the Lord Jesus.

1Ch 3:23 The sons of Neariah: Elioenai, Hizkiah and Azrikam, three-
Elioenai means “My eyes are towards Jehovah”, implying the looking for the restoration.

1Ch 3:24 The sons of Elioenai: Hodaviah, Eliashib, Pelaiah,
Akkub, Johanan, Delaiah and Anani, seven
Hodaviah (1 Chron. 3:24) may be Abiud (Mt. 1:13) or Juda (Lk. 3:26), (Ezra 3:9; Neh. 11:9; cp. Ezra 2:40; 1 Chron. 9:7).