Prolegomena to the History of Israel
Julius Wellhausen

Part 5 out of 13

taken over from Deuteronomy and at the same time an involuntary
concession to fact; what would the forty-eight cities have been,
had they actually existed, if not a lot, a territorial possession,
and that too a comparatively large one? The general basis which
serves as starting-point for the historical fiction being thus far
recognisable, we are able also to gain a closer view of its
concrete material. The priestly and Levitical cities stand in
close connection with the so-called cities of refuge. These are
also appointed in Deuteronomy (xix.), although not enumerated by
name (for Deuteronomy iv. 41-43 cannot be regarded as genuine).
Originally the altars were asylums (Exodus xxi. 14; 1Kings ii.
28), some in a higher degree than others (Exodus xxi. 13). In
order not to abolish the asylums also along with the altars, the
Deuteronomic legislator desired that certain holy places should
continue as places of refuge, primarily three for Judah, to which,
when the territory of the kingdom extended, three others were to
be afterwards added. The Priestly Code adopts the arrangement,
and specifies three definite cities on this side and three on the
other side of Jordan (Numbers xxxv.; Joshua xx.), four of which
are demonstrably famous old seats of worship,--all the three western
ones, and Ramoth, that is, Mizpah, of the eastern ones (Genesis
xxxi.; Judges xi. 11). But as all these asylums are at the same
time priestly and Levitical cities, it is an obvious conjecture
that these also in like manner arose out of old sanctuaries. We
need not suppose that there is more in this than an echo of the
general recollection that there were once in Israel many holy
places and residences of priesthoods; it is by no means
necessary to assert that each of the towns enumerated in Joshua
xxi. had actually been an ancient sanctuary. In many cases,
however, this also admits of being shown, /1/ although some of the

1. In the cases of Hebron, Gibeon, Shechem, Ramoth, Mahanaim and
Tabor (Host v. 1) by historical data; in those of Bethshemesh,
Ashtaroth, Kadesh,, perhaps also Rimmon, by the names. Not even
here can one venture to credit the Priestly Code with consistent
fidelity to history. As for Hosea v. 1, 2, the original
meaning seems to be: "A snare have ye become for Mizpah, and an
outspread net upon Tabor, and the pit-fall of Shittim (#XT
H#+YM) have they made deep." Shittim as a camping-place under
Moses and Joshua must certainly have been a sanctuary, just like
Kadesh, Gilgal, and Shiloh; the prophet names these seats at
which in his opinion the worship was especially seductive and
soul-destroying; his reproach is levelled at the priests
most famous (or according to the later view, infamous) high
places, such as Bethel, Dan, Gilgal, and Beersheba are omitted,
probably of set purpose.

The immediate starting-point, however, for this territorial
donation to the Levites is perhaps to be sought in Ezekiel,
in the picture of the future Israel which he draws at the close
of his book. He concerns himself there in a thorough-going
manner about the demarcation of the national and tribal
boundaries, and in doing so sets quite freely to work, taking,
so to speak, the yard measure in his hand. Leaving the land
eastward of Jordan wholly to the Saracens, he divides the
western portion into thirteen parallel transverse sections;
in the middle of the thirteenth (the rest of which is assigned
to the prince), lying between Judah and Benjamin, the twelve
tribes give up a square with a base line of 25,000 ells as a
sacred offering to Jehovah. This square is divided into three
parallelograms, 25,000 ells long, running east and west;
the southernmost of these, 5000 ells broad, includes the capital
with its territory; the middle one, 10,000 ells broad, contains
the temple and the priestly territory; the northernmost, also
10,000 ells broad, has the inheritance and the cities of the Levites. /1/

1. For (S#RYM L#KT (xlv. 5), read, with the LXX, #(RYM L#BT
"to dwell within the gates." Compare a similar transposition of
letters in xiii. 3, LXX. The expression "gates" for "cities"
has its origin in Deuteronomy.

Thus we have here also a surrender of land to the clergy on the
part of the tribes; the comparison with Josh. xxi. is not to be
put aside,--all the less, because nowhere else in the Old Testament
is anything similar met with. Now Ezekiel is quite transparent,
and requires no interpreter but himself. In order that the temple
may be protected in its sanctity in the best possible manner,
it is placed in the centre of the priestly territory, which in its
turn is covered by the city on the south, and by the Levites on the
north. At the same time the _personnel_ connected with the function
of worship is to dwell as much as possible apart on its own soil
and territory, which _shall serve them for separate houses to
sanctify them_, as is expressly remarked for the priests (xiv. 4),
and in an inferior degree holds good also, of course, for the Levites
beside them. Here everything starts from, and has its explanation in,
the temple. Its original is unmistakably the temple of Solomon;
its site is beside the capital, in the heart of the sacred centre
of the land between Judah and Benjamin; there the sons of Zadok
have their abode, and beside them are the Levites whom Josiah had
brought up from all the country to Jerusalem. Obviously the
motives are not here far to seek. In the Priestly Code, on the
other hand, which was not in a position to shape the future freely
out of the present, but was compelled to accept archaeological
restrictions, the motives are historically concealed and almost
paralysed. The result has remained, namely, the holding of
separate territory by the clergy, but the cause or the
purpose of it can no longer be recognised on account of the
sanctuary being now an abstract idea. Jerusalem and the temple,
which, properly speaking, occasioned the whole arrangement, are
buried in silence with a diligence which is in the highest degree
surprising; and on the other hand, in remembrance of the
priesthoods scattered everywhere among the high places of Israel
in earlier days, forty-eight fresh Levitical cities are created,
from which, however, their proper focus, a temple to wit, is
withheld only in the circumstance that precisely the thirteen
cities of Judah and Benjamin happen to fall to the lot of the sons
of Aaron, does the influence of Jerusalem unconsciously betray

V.II.2. Apart from this historical fiction, the other claims that
are made for the endowment of the clergy are, however exorbitant,
nevertheless practicable and seriously meant. So far as the
circumstances of their origin are concerned, two possibilities
present themselves. Either the priests demanded what they could
hope to obtain, in which case they were actually supreme over the
nation, or they set up claims which at the time were neither
justified nor even possible; in which case they were not indeed
quite sober, yet at the same time so sane prophetically, that
centuries afterwards the revenues they dreamed of became in
actuality theirs. Is it to be supposed that it was (say) Moses,
who encouraged his people as they were struggling for bare life
in the wilderness to concern themselves about a superabundantly
rich endowment of their clergy? Or is it believed that it was
in the period of the judges, when the individual tribes and
families of Israel, after having forced their way among the
Canaanites, had a hard fight to maintain their position, get
somehow settled in their new dwelling-places and surroundings,
that the thought first arose of exacting such taxes from a people
that was only beginning to grow into a national unity, for an end
that was altogether remote from its interest? What power could
then have been able in those days, when every man did what was
right in his own eyes, to compel the individual to pay? But
even when actually, under the pressure of circumstances, a
political organisation had arisen which embraced all the tribes,
it could hardly have occurred to the priests to utilise the
secular arm as a means for giving to themselves a place of
sovereignty; and still less could they have succeeded WITHOUT
the king on whom they were so completely dependent. In short,
the claims they make in the Law would in the pre-exilic period
have been regarded as utopian in the strict sense of that word;
they allow of explanation only by the circumstances which from
the beginning of the Chaldaean rule, and still more that of the
Persians, lent themselves to the formation of a hierocracy,
to which, as to the truly national and moreover divine authority,
the people gave voluntary obedience, and to which the Persians
also conceded rights they could not have granted to the family
of David. At the very beginning of the exile, Ezekiel begins
to augment the revenues of the priests (xliv. 28-30), yet he
still confines himself on the whole to the lines of Deuteronomy,
and makes no mention of tithes and firstlings. Of the demands
of the Priestly Code in their full extent we hear historically
in Nehemiah x. for the first time; there it is stated
that they were carried through by men who had the authority of
Artaxerxes behind them. This was the most difficult and at the
same time the most important part of the work Ezra and Nehemiah
had to do in introducing the Pentateuch as the law of the Jewish
Church; and that is the reason why it is so specially and
minutely spoken of. Here plainly lies the material basis of the
hierocracy from which the royal throne was ultimately reached.

For all these dues, apart from sacrificial perquisites, flowed into
a common coffer, and benefited those who had the control of this,
viz., the priestly aristocracy of Jerusalem, whom it helped to
rise to a truly princely position. The ordinary priests,
and especially the Levites, did not gain by all this wealth.
The latter indeed ought, according to law, to have had the tithes,
and to have handed over the tithes of these again to the sons
of Aaron, but as the general tendency of the time was to depress
the Levites, this legal revenue was also gradually withdrawn
from them and appropriated by the priests. Afterwards the chief
priests claimed the tithes for themselves alone, while their
inferior brethren had to suffer severe privation and even
hunger itself (Josephus, Ant., xx. 8, 8; 9, 2).

Upon the difference just stated between the later practice and
the Law, one argument more has recently been founded against
assigning the latter to the Babylonio-Persian period. "Another
testimony borne by tradition completely excludes the idea of
the Elohistic torah (i.e., the Priestly Code) having been
composed by Ezra. As is well known, it is the Elohistic torah
that carefully regulates the mutual relations of priests and
Levites, while Deuteronomy groups the two together without
bringing forward the distinction. It is the former that assigns
the tithes to the Levites, while requiring these in their turn to
hand over the tithe of their tithes as a due to the priests. Such
was also the practice (Nehemiah x. 38 seq.) soon after the exile
[i.e., a hundred years later; Nehemiah vii. 5]. But subsequently
the payment of the tithes to the Levites fell entirely into
disuse; these were rendered immediately and exclusively to the
priests, so that Jose ben Hanina actually confesses: "We do
not pay the tithes according to the command of God" (Sota, 47b).
But everywhere the Talmud refers this practice back to Ezra. Ezra
it was who punished the Levites by withdrawal of the tithes, and
that because they had not come out from Babylon (Jebam. 386b;
Chullin 11b). The point to be noted is that Ezra, according to
the testimony of tradition, superseded a precept of the Elohistic
torah, supporting himself in this perhaps by reference to the
Deuteronomic torah." So Delitzsch in the Zeitschr. fuer luth.
Theol., 1877, p. 448 seq. That Ezra is not the author of the
Priestly Code may readily be granted--only not on such an
argument as this. If the genuine historical tradition expressly
names Ezra as the man who introduced the Levites' tithe just as
prescribed by law (Nehemiah x. 38 seq.), what conscientious man can
attach any weight to the opposite assertion of the Talmud ?

But, even assuming that the divergence of practice from the legal
statute actually does go back to the time of Ezra, what would
follow from that against the post-exilic origin of the Priestly
Code? For this is what the question comes to, not to Ezra's
authorship, which is made the main point by a mere piece of
transparent controversial tactics. The demands of the Priestly
Code, which demonstrably were neither laid down, nor in any sense
acted on before the exile, attained the force of law one hundred
years after the return from Babylon (Nehemiah x.); the whole
taxation system of Judaism ever afterwards rested upon it;- -
shall this be held to have no meaning as against the trifling
circumstance that the tithe also was indeed paid to the clergy,
in full accordance with the Priestly Code, and inconsistently with
ancient custom, but paid to the higher, and not to the lower order?

In point of fact any other difference whatever between Jewish
practice and the Law might better have been adduced against the
thesis of Graf,--for example, the absence of Urim and Thummim (Nehemiah
vii. 65), or of the forty-eight Levitical cities, the church of
the returned exiles instead of that of the twelve tribes of
Israel, the second temple instead of the tabernacle, Ezra instead
of Moses, the sons of Zadok instead of the sons of Aaron,
the absence of the other marks of Mosaicity. For the position
of the Levites is the Achilles heel of the Priestly Code.
If the Levites at a later date were still further lowered beneath
the priests, and put into a worse position in favour of these,
this nevertheless presupposes the distinction between the two;
let it first then be shown that the distinction is known to
the genuine Old Testament, and that, in particular, it is
introduced by Ezekiel not as a new thing, but as of immemorial
antiquity. Or is the primary fact that the separation between
priests and Levites was set up only in the Priestly Code and
in Judaism, and that its genesis can be traced with confidence
from the time of Josiah downwards, a fact of less importance
than the secondary one that the distinction extended itself
somewhat further still in the subsequent development of
Judaism ?




Under the influence of the spirit of each successive age,
traditions originally derived from one source were very
variously apprehended and shaped; one way in the ninth and
eighth centuries, another way in the seventh and sixth, and yet
another in the fifth and fourth. Now, the strata of the tradition
show the same arrangement as do those of the legislation. And
here it makes no difference whether the tradition be legendary or
historical, whether it relates to pre-historic or to historic
times; the change in the prevailing ideas shows itself equally in
either case. To show the truth of this in the case of the
Hexateuch is of course our primary object, but we make our
commencement rather with the properly historical books. For on
various grounds we are here able with greater certainty to
assert: Such was the aspect of history at this period and such
at that; such were the influences that had the ascendancy at
one time, and such those which prevailed at another.

We begin the inquiry where the matter is clearest--namely, with
the Book of Chronicles. Chronicles, which properly speaking forms
but a single book along with Ezra and Nehemiah, is a second
history running parallel with the Books of Samuel and Kings,
and we are here in the favourable position of starting with the
objects of comparison distinctly defined, instead of having as
usual to begin by a critical separation of sources of various age
combined in one document. And, what is more, we can also date the
rival histories with tolerable certainty. The Books of Samuel and
of Kings were edited in the Babylonian exile; Chronicles, on the
other hand, was composed fully three hundred years later, after
the downfall of the Persian empire, out of the very midst of fully
developed Judaism. We shall now proceed to show that the mere
difference of date fully accounts for the varying ways in which
the two histories represent the same facts and events, and the
difference of spirit arises from the influence of the Priestly
Code which came into existence in the interval. De Wette's "Critical
Essay on the Credibility of the Books of Chronicles" (Beitraege,
i.; 1806), is throughout taken as the basis of the discussion:
that essay has not been improved on by Graf (Gesch. Bucher d.
A. T. p. 114 seq.), for here the difficulty, better grappled
with by the former, is not to collect the details of evidence,
but so to shape the superabundant material as to convey a right
total impression.


VI.I.1. After Jehovah had slain Saul (so begins the narrative of
Chronicles), He turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.
All Israel gathered themselves unto David to Hebron and anointed
him king over Israel, according to the word of Jehovah by Samuel
(I Chronicles x. 1.-xi. 3). How simply and smoothly and wholly
without human intervention according to this version did the thing
come to pass! Quite otherwise is it in the narrative of the Book
of Samuel. This also indeed has the statement of Chronicles word
for word, but it has something over and above which gives a quite
different aspect to the matter. Here David, on the lowest step to
the throne, is the guerilla leader in the wilderness of Judah who
finally is compelled by Saul's persecutions to pass over to
Philistine territory, there under the protection of the enemies
of his nation, carrying on his freebooter life. After the battle of
Gilboa he avails himself of the dissolution of the kingdom to set
up a separate principality in the south as a vassal of the
Philistines; he is not chosen, but comes with a following six
hundred strong, and offers himself to the elders of Judah,
whom he has already at an earlier period laid under obligations
to him by various favours and gifts. In the meantime Saul's cousin
Abner takes over what of the kingdom there is, not for himself
but for the legitimate heir Ishbaal; from Gilead, whither the
government had been transferred after the great catastrophe,
he gradually reconquers the territory west of Jordan, and is
scheming how to recover also the lost Judah. Thus it comes
to protracted struggles between Abner and David, in which fortune
is most on the side of the latter; yet he does not leave the
defensive or gain the sovereignty over Israel. That falls
into his hands rather by treachery. Abner himself, indignant
at the ingratitude of his royal nephew, offers the crown to
his rival, and enters into negotiations with him about it;
but as he immediately afterwards falls a victim to blood revenge,
nothing comes of the matter until Ishbaal is privily murdered
in his sleep by two of his captains; then at last the elders
of Israel come to Hebron, and David becomes king in succession
to Saul. What a length of time these affairs demand, how natural
is their development, how many human elements mingle in their
course,--cunning, and treachery, and battle, and murder!
Chronicles indeed knows them all well enough, as is clear from
incidental expressions in chaps. xi. and xii., but they are
passed over in silence. Immediately after his predecessor's death
the son of Jesse is freely chosen by all Israel to be king,
according to the word of Jehovah by Samuel. The sequence of x.
13, 14, xi. 1 does not admit of being understood in any other
way, nor is it in point of fact otherwise understood, for it has
actually been successful, at least to this extent, that the
kingship of Ishbaal has virtually dropped out of traditional Bible
history; after Saul came David is what is said. We have before
us a deliberate and in its motives a very transparent mutilation
of the original narrative as preserved for us in the Book of

As all Israel has made David the successor of Saul, and all Israel
gone out with him to the conquest of Jerusalem (xi. 4),--in 2Samuel
v. 6 we hear only of David's following,--so now immediately
afterwards, the noblest representatives of all the tribes of
Israel, who even before he had attained the throne were in
sympathy and indeed already on his side, are enumerated by name
and numbers in three lists (xi. 10-xii. 40), which are introduced
between what is said in 2Samuel v. 1-1110 and in 2Samuel v. 11
seq. The first (xi. 10-47: "these are the mighty men who took
part with him with all Israel to make him king") is the list of
2Samuel xxiii., which the Chronicler, as he betrays in chaps. xx.,
xxi., was acquainted with as it stood in that place, and here
gives much too early, for it is for the most part warriors of
David's later campaigns who are enumerated. /1/ The second list (xii.

1. The division into a group of three and another of thirty heroes,
obscured in 2Samuel xxiii. by corruption of the text (Text der
BB. Sam. p. 213-216), has not been understood by the
Chronicler, and thus been made quite unrecognisable. In this way
he has been able to bring in at the end (xi. 42-47) a string of
additional names exceeding the number of thirty. In ver. 42 his
style unmistakably betrays itself, wherever it may be that he
met with the elements.

1-22: "these are they that came to David to Ziklag, while he yet
kept himself close because of Saul") is not taken from the Book of
Samuel, but one also observes this difference: along with old
and genuine there are extremely common names, and hardly one
that occurs here only; the notes of ancestry carefully given
in chap. xi. are almost always wanting; and instead of performing
before our eyes such deeds as the rescue of a field of barley
from the enemy, the purchase of a draught of water with blood,
the slaying of a lion in a pit, the heroes receive all sorts
of _epitheta ornantia_ (xii. 1-3) and titles of honour (xii. 14,
20), and ordinarily talk a highly spiritual language (xii. 17, 18).
And as for the historical situation, how impossible that a great
Israelite army should have been gathered around David as the
feudatory of the Philistines in Ziklag (xii. 2 2), with a crowd
of captains of hundreds and thousands! Plainly the banished
fugitive is according to this representation the splendid king
and illustrious ancestor of the established dynasty; hence also
the naive remark of ver. 29. No better is it with the third
list (xii. 23-40: "these are the numbers of the bands, ready
armed for the war, who came to David to Hebron"). Observe the
regular enumeration of the twelve tribes, which nowhere occurs
in the older historical books, and is quite artificial; then
the vast numbers, which are not matters of indifference here,
but the principal thing and make up the entire contents; finally,
the 4600 Levites and 3700 priests, who also take their place in
the martial train, and constitute the proper guard of the king;
to Chronicles the distinction between secular and spiritual soldiers
is not altogether clear. There are but a few details of a special
kind; the remark in xii. 32 is perhaps connected with 2Samuel
xx. 18; Jehoiada the prince of the house of Aaron, i.e., the high
priest, alongside of the historically certain series,--Eli, Phinehas,
Ahitub, Ahiah (Ahimelech ), Abiathar,--an utterly impossible
person, is a reflection of the Jehoiada of 2Kings xi., xii., and
the allegation that Zadok at that time joined David at the head of
twenty-two chief priests is a hardly credible substitute for what
is stated in Samuel, according to which Abiathar, whose older
claims were disagreeable to the B'ne Zadok and those who came
later, was the priest who from the beginning held with David; the
twenty-two chief priests appear to correspond to the heads of the
twenty-two post-exilian priestly families (Nehemiah xii. 1-7,
12-21, x. 3-9; 1Chronicles xxiv. 7-18). Yet it is hardly necessary
to go so minutely into the contents of the above lists, for the
purpose with which they are given is stated without
circumlocution at the close (2Chronicles xii. 38, 39): "All these
men of war, in order of battle, came with a perfect heart to Hebron
to make David king over all Israel, and all the rest of Israel also
were of one heart to make David king. And they were there with David
three days, eating and drinking, for there was joy in Israel."

After the explication of the idea "all Israel" thus inappropriately
interpolated, the narrative proceeds to reproduce the contents of 2
Samuel v.-vii. David's first deed, after the conquest of the
stronghold of Jebus, is in Chronicles to make it the holy city
by transferring the ark of Jehovah thither (xiii. 1 seq.). It
seems as if the building of a palace and the Philistine war
(2Samuel v. 11-25) were to be omitted; but after the narrative in
2Samuel vi. 1 seq. has been given down to the place "and the ark
of Jehovah abode in the house of Obed-edom three months " (1Chronicles
xiii. 14 = 2Samuel vi. 11), the pause of a quarter of a
year is utilised for the purpose of overtaking what had been left
out (xiv. 1-17 = 2Samuel v. 11-25), and then the history of
the ark is completed. This indeed is to separate things mutually
connected, but at the same time the secular business which,
according to the older narrative, is the nearest and most
pressing, is reduced to the level of a mere episode in the midst of
the sacred. That there is no room for the building of a house and
a Philistine war within the three months which offer themselves so
conveniently for the interpolation is a subordinate affair.

As regards the sacred business, the transference of the ark to
Zion, almost everything that is said in 2Samuel vi. is repeated
word for word in Chronicles also (xiii., xv., xvi., xvii. 1).
Two traits only are absent in Chronicles, and in neither case is
the omission helpful to the connection David's wife Michal, it is
said in 2Samuel vi. 16, 20-23, when she saw the king dancing and
leaping in the procession, despised him in her heart; afterwards
when he came home she told him what she thought of his unworthy
conduct. The first of these two statements is found in Chronicles
also (xv. 29), but the second is (all but the introductory
notice, xvi. 43 = 2Samuel vi. 20, here torn from its connection)
omitted, although it contains the principal fact, for the
historical event was the expression of her contempt, not its
psychological origin; a woman--such is the idea--must not say a
thing like that to David. The other case is quite similar. On
account of the calamity by which those who were bringing up the
ark were overtaken, David does not at first venture to receive it
into his citadel, but deposits it in the house of Obed-edom, one
of his captains; but when Jehovah blesses the house of Obed-edom,
he takes courage to bring the ark to his own home (2Samuel vi. 10-12).
Chronicles also tells that Jehovah blessed the house of Obed-edom
(xiii. 14), but mentions no consequent result; again the cause is
given without the effect. Another explanation is substituted;
David perceived that the disaster connected with the removal of
the ark was due to the fact of its not having been carried by the
Levites in accordance with the Law; the Levites accordingly were
made to bear it and no harm ensued (xv. 2, 13-15). This is in complete
and manifest contradiction to the older narrative, and as Chronicles
(chapter xiii.) copies that narrative, it also contradicts itself
(xiii. 10), and that all the more strikingly as by the addition
in xiii. 2 it represents the accompanying clergy as tacitly
approving the carrying of the ark on the ox-cart. Then due
participation in the sacred procession having been thus once
secured them, 1Chronicles xv. positively revels in priests
and Levites, of whom not a sing]e word is to be found in 2 Samuel
vi., and moreover a sort of musical service is instituted by
David himself before the ark, and a festal cantata made up by him
out of post-exilian psalms is quoted (chapter xvi.). In this way,
out of the original narrative, the scattered fragments of which
now show themselves very strangely in the new connection,
something quite different has grown. "In the former everything is
free, simply the affair of king and people, here all is priestly
ceremonial; there the people with their king shout and dance with
joy before the ark,, here the levites are the musicians and
singers in formal order. To seek to combine the two versions is
wholly against the laws of historical interpretation. If the
first were curt and condensed the unification of the two might
perhaps be possible, but no story could be more particular or
graphic, and could it have been that the Levites alone should be
passed over in silence if they had played so very important a
part? The author of Chronicles was able to introduce them only
by distorting and mutilating his original and landing himself in
contradiction after all. He cannot allow anything to happen
without Levites; and was the ark of the covenant to be fetched to
Jerusalem without them? was the Law to be even a second time
broken under the pious king David? This seemed to him impossible.
That Uzzah perished in the first attempt to fetch the ark, and
that on the second occasion--when only a quite short journey is
spoken of--the ark was carried, ~2Samuel vi. 13, may have been
the suggestions by which he was led. Fertile in combinations,
he profited by the hint." So, justly, De Wette (Beitraege, i.

The narrative of 2Samuel vi. having been broken off at the first
half of ver. 19 (1Chronicles xvi. 3), the second half of the verse
and the beginning of the next are reproduced (xvi. 43) after the
interpolation of xvi. 4-42, and then 2Samuel vii. is appended
word for word (1Chronicles xvii.),--the resolution of David to build
a house for the ark, and what Jehovah said to him about the
subject through Nathan. The point of the prophet's address turns
on the antithesis (2Samuel vii.). "Thou wilt build a house FOR
ME? rather will I build a house FOR THEE;" the house of David
is of course the Davidic dynasty. But an interpolation has
already crept into the text of Samuel (vii. 13), which
apprehends the antithesis thus: "THOU wilt build a house for me?
Nay, THY SON shall build a house for me." Now Chronicles, for which
David comes into consideration merely as the proper founder of the
Solomonic temple, takes up the narrative of 2 Samuel vii. precisely
on account of this interpolation, as is clear from xxii. 9, 10--
increases the misunderstanding by going back to it in an addition
(xvii. 14)--and at the outset destroys the original antithesis
by the innocent alteration, "Thou shalt not build THE HOUSE for me"
instead of "Wilt thou build A house for me? "The house can here
mean only that imperatively needed one, long kept in view alike
by God and men, which must by all means he built, only not by David
but by Solomon; it is without any ambiguity the temple, and does not,
like a house, contain that possibility of a double meaning on
which the original point depends. It is interesting also to compare
2Samuel vii. 14 with 1Chronicles xvii. 13: "I will be to thy seed
a father, and he shall be to me a son. _If he commit iniquity,
then I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes
of the sons of men; but_ my mercy shall not depart from him."
The words in italics are wanting in Chronicles; the meaning, that
Jehovah will not withdraw His grace from the dynasty of Judah
altogether, even though some of its members should deserve
punishment, is thereby destroyed and volatilised into an abstract
idealism, which shows that to the writer the Davidic kingly
family is known only as a dissolving view, and not by historical
experience as it is to the author of 2Samuel vii.

In chaps xviii.-xx., Chronicles seems to refresh itself with a
little variety, relating as it does the foreign wars of David
after the order of 2Samuel, viii., x., xi. 1, xii. 30, 30, xxi.
18-22. But in this it still keeps in view its purpose, which is
directed towards David as founder of the Jerusalem worship;
those wars brought him the wealth that was required for the
building of the temple. On the other hand, everything so
fully and beautifully told in the Book of Samuel about the
home occurrences of that period is omitted, for after all
it does not contribute much to the glorification of the king.
So the story of Meribaal and Ziba (chap. ix.), of Bathsheba and
Uriah (xi., xii.), of Tamar and Amnon (xiii., xiv.), of Absalom's
rebellion (xv.-xx.), and of the delivering-up of the sons of Saul
(xxi. 1-14). The rude and mechanical manner in which statements
about foreign wars are torn from the connection with domestic
events in which they stand in the older narrative is shown in
1Chronicles xx. 1, 2, as compared with 2Samuel xi. 1, xii. 30.
In 2Samuel xi. the mention of the fact that David remained
in Jerusalem when the army set out against Rabbah, prepares for
the story of his adultery with the wife of a captain engaged
in active service in the field; but 1Chronicles xx. 1 is
meaningless, and involves a contradiction with ver. 2. according
to which David appears after all in the camp at Rabbah, although
the connection,--namely, that he followed the army--and all
the intermediate occurrences relating to Bathsheba and Uriah, are
left out (De Wette, pp. 19, 20, 60). To what extent the veil is
drawn over the scandalous falls of saints may be judged also from
the fact that from the list of David's foreign encounters also,
which are otherwise fully given, a single one is omitted which he
is supposed not to have come through with absolute honour, that
with the giant Ishbi-benob (2Samuel xxi. 15-17). Lastly, the
alteration made in 1Chronicles xx. 5 is remarkable. Elhanan the
son of Jair of Bethlehem, we read in 2Samuel xxi. 19, was he who
slew Goliath of Gath, the shaft of whose spear was as thick as a
weaver's beam. But on the other hand, had not David of Bethlehem
according to 1Samuel xvii. vanquished Goliath the giant, the
shaft of whose spear was as thick as a weaver's beam? In
Chronicles accordingly Elhanan smites the brother of the
veritable Goliath.

2. The closing chapters of 2Samuel (xxi.-xxiv.) are, admittedly,
an appendix of very peculiar structure. The thread of xxi. 1-14
is continued in xxiv. 1-25, but in the interval between the two
passages occurs xxi. 15-xxiii. 39, in a very irrational manner,
perhaps wholly due to chance. In this interposed passage itself,
again, the quite similar lists xxi. 15-22 and xxiii. 8-39 are
very closely connected; and the two songs, xxii. 1-51, xxiii.
1-7, are thus an interpolation within an interpolation. This
want of order is imitated by the author of Chronicles also,
who takes 2Samuel xxiii. 8-39 as separated from xxi. 15-22,
and gives 2Samuel xxiv. last, a position which does not belong
to it from any material considerations, but merely because it
had originally been tagged on as an appendix, and besides had
been separated from its connection with xxi. 1-14 by a
large interpolation.

1Chronicles xxi. (the pestilence as punishment of David's sin
in numbering the people, and the theophany as occasioning the
building of an altar on the threshing-floor of Araunah) is on the
whole a copy of 2Samuel xxiv., but with omission of the precise
and interesting geographical details of ver. 5 seq, and with
introduction of a variety of improving touches. Thus (xxi. 1):
"And Satan stood up against Israel and moved David;" instead
of: "And the anger of Jehovah was kindled against Israel, and he
moved David." Similarly (xxi. 6): "Levi and Benjamin Joab
counted not among them; for the king's word was abominable to him,"--
an addition which finds its explanation on the one hand in Numbers
i. 49, and on the other in the circumstance that the holy city lay
within the territory of Benjamin. Again (xxi. 16, 27): "David
saw the angel of Jehovah standing between heaven and earth, and
his sword drawn in his hand and stretched out towards Jerusalem;"
compare this with Sam xxiv. 16 (1Chronicles xxi. t5): "The angel
stretched out his hand to Jerusalem to destroy it, and he was
by the threshing floor of Araunah;" according to the older view,
angels have no wings (Genesis xxviii.). Further (xxi. 25):
"David gave to Araunah for his threshing-floor 600 shekels of
gold ;" compare with 2Samuel xxiv. 24, 50 shekels of silver;
to make the king pay right royally costs the Chronicler nothing.
But lastly, his most significant addition is the fire from
heaven which consumes the burnt-offering (xxi. 26); by this means
the altar on the threshing-floor of Araunah, in other words,
that of the sanctuary of Jerusalem, is intended to be put on
a level with that of the tabernacle, its predecessor, the fire
on which was also kindled from heaven (Leviticus ix. 24).
Whoever has understood the narratives of altar-buildings by
the Patriarchs, by Joshua, Gideon, and Manoah, will grant that
the author of Chronicles has quite correctly understood the
intention of 2Samuel xxiv., in accordance with which he here
proposes to relate the divine inauguration of the place of worship
at Jerusalem; but what in that passage, as in similar older
legends about the indication of consecrated places by means of a
theophany, is only hinted at for contemporaries who understood
the idea conveyed, he requires to retouch strongly in order that
a later generation may notice it; and yet he has half spoiled
the point by making the angel not stand by the threshing-floor of
Araunah on the sacred spot, but hover aloft in the air.

2Samuel xxiv. = 1Chronicles xxi. serves further as a starting point
for the free construction of 1Chronicles xxii.-xxix. The
circumstance that in the last chapter of the Book of Samuel David
builds the altar at Jerusalem is expanded into the statement that
in the last year of his reign he prepared beforehand the building
of the temple of Solomon in all its parts down to the minutest
detail. Unhampered by historical tradition, the author here
expatiates with absolute freedom in his proper element. All that
has hitherto been said about the king on the basis of the older
source is by means of additions and omissions fashioned into what
shall serve as a mere prologue to the proper work of his life,
which is now described thoroughly _con amore_. He himself
unfortunately has not been allowed to build the house, having
shed much blood and carried on great wars (xxii. 8, xxviii. 3),
but he yet in the last year of his reign forestalls from his
successor the whole merit of the business (xxiii. 1, xxviii. 1).
My son Solomon, he says, is young and tender, but the house to be
built for Jehovah must be great and glorious; I will therefore
prepare it for him (xxii. 5). Accordingly he gets ready
beforehand the workmen and artificers, in particular bringing into
requisition the non-Israelitic population; he provides the
material, stone and wood and brass and iron, and gold and silver
and jewels without number; he also gives the plan or rather
receives it direct from Jehovah, and that in black and white
(xxviii. 19), while Moses built the tabernacle only according to
his recollection of the heavenly pattern which had been shown to
him on Sinai. But before all he appoints the _personnel_ for the
temple service,--priests, Levites, porters, singers,-divides their
thousands into classes, and assigns to them their functions by
lot. In doing so he interests himself, naturally, with special
preference, in the music, being the designer of the instruments
(xxiii. 5), and himself acting as principal conductor (xxv. 2,
6). And as he is still king after all, he at the close takes an
inventory also of his secular state, after having duly ordered
the spiritual. All this he does for the future, for his son and
successor; not in reality, but only in plan, are the door-keepers,
for example, assigned to their posts (xxvi. 12 seq.), but none
the less with strictest specification and designation of the
localities of the temple,--and that too the second temple! His
preparations concluded, David calls a great assembly of prelates
and notables (xxiii. 1, xxviii. 1), has Solomon anointed as king,
and Zadok as priest (xxix. 22), and in a long discourse hands over
to the former along with the kingdom the task of his reign,
namely, the execution of what he himself has prepared and
appointed; on this occasion yet more precious stones and noble
metals--among them gold of Ophir and Persian darics--are presented
by David and the princes for the sacred building. The whole
section 1Chronicles xxii.-xxix. is a startling instance of that
statistical phantasy of the Jews which revels in vast sums of
money on paper (xxii. 14), in artificial marshallings of names
and numbers (xxiii.-xxvii.), in the enumeration of mere subjects
without predicates, which simply stand on parade and neither
signify nor do anything. The monotony is occasionally broken
only by unctuous phrases, but without refreshing the reader.
Let the experiment of reading the chapters through be tried.

According to 1Kings i., ii., King David in his closing days was
sick and feeble in body and mind, and very far from being in a
condition thus to make preparations on behalf of his successor
shortly before his own death, or to prepare his bread for him so
far that nothing remained but to put it into the oven. His
purpose of building a house to Jehovah is indeed spoken of in
2 Samuel vii. in connection with vi. 17, but it is definitively
abandoned in consequence of Jehovah's refusal, on the ground that
it is not man's part to build a house for God, but God's to build
a house for man. In strange contrast with this explanation is
that of Chronicles that David is a man of war and has shed much
blood, and therefore dare not set up the temple; that he had waged
the wars of Jehovah, that Jehovah had given victory by his hand,
would in the older warlike time have seemed no reason against but
rather an argument establishing his fitness for such a work. But
the worst discrepancy is that between the solemn installation of
Solomon as king and of Zadok as priest with all the forms of law
and publicity as related in 1Chronicles xxviii., xxix. (comp.
xxii., xxiii. 1) and the older narrative of 1Kings i., ii.
According to the latter it was much more an ordinary palace
intrigue, by means of which one party at court succeeded in
obtaining from the old king, enfeebled with age, his sanction for
Solomon's succession. Until then Adonijah had been regarded as
heir-apparent to the throne, by David himself, by all Israel,
and the great officers of the kingdom, Joab and Abiathar; what
above all things turned the scale in favour of Solomon was the
weight of Benaiah's six hundred praetorians, a formidable force
in the circumstances of the period. The author of Chronicles
naively supposes he has successfully evaded all difficulties
by giving out the coronation of Solomon related by himself
to be the second (xxix. 22),--an advertence to 1Kings i., ii.
which does not remove but only betrays the contradiction.

Yet this is as nothing over against the disharmony of the total
impression. See what Chronicles has made out of David! The
founder of the kingdom has become the founder of the temple and
the public worship, the king and hero at the head of his
companions in arms has become the singer and master of ceremonies
at the head of a swarm of priests and Levites; his clearly cut
figure has become a feeble holy picture, seen through a cloud of
incense. It is obviously vain to try to combine the
fundamentally different portraits into one stereoscopic image;
it is only the tradition of the older source that possesses
historical value. In Chronicles this is clericalised in the taste
of the post-exilian time, which had no feeling longer for anything
but cultus and torah, which accordingly treated as alien the old
history (which, nevertheless, was bound to be a sacred history),
if it did not conform with its ideas and metamorphose itself into
church history. Just as the law framed by Ezra as the foundation
of Judaism was regarded as having been the work of Moses, so what
upon this basis had been developed after Moses--particularly the
music of the sanctuary and the ordering of the temple
_personnel_---was carried back to King David, the sweet singer of
Israel, who had now to place his music at the service of the
cultus, and write psalms along with Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun,
the Levitical singing families.

VI.I.3. With regard to Solomon, Chronicles (2Chronicles i.-ix.)
nowhere departs very far from the lines of the Book of Kings.
As the story of 1Kings i., ii., which is not an edifying one, and
mercilessly assails that of 1Chronicles xxii.-xxix., required to
be omitted, the narrative accordingly begins with 1Kings iii., with
Solomon's accession, sacrifices on the great altar at Gibeon, and
the revelation of Jehovah, which was thereupon communicated to him
in a dream. This last is transcribed with slight alterations,
but at the outset a characteristic divergence is found. "Solomon
loved Jehovah, walking in the statutes of David his father, only
he sacrificed and burnt incense on the high places (because
there was no house built unto the name of Jehovah until those
days). And the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there; for that
was the great high place; a thousand burnt-offerings did Solomon
offer upon that altar, and Jehovah appeared unto him in a dream:
Ask what I shall give thee." So 1Kings iii. 2 seq. Chronicles,
after its manner, first surrounds the king with a great assemblage
of captains of hundreds and thousands, of judges and princes
and heads of houses, and purely Pentateuchal dignities, and then
"And Solomon and all the congregation with him went to
the high place in Gibeon, for there was God's tent of meeting,
which Moses, the servant of God, had made in the wilderness.
But the ark of God had David brought up from Kirjath-jearim,
where he had prepared for it; for he had pitched a tent for it
at Jerusalem. But the brazen altar that Bezaleel, the son of Uri,
the son of Hur, had made, stood there, before the tabernacle of
Jehovah, and Solomon and the congregation sought unto it. And
Solomon offered there, upon the brazen altar, before Jehovah,
by the tent of meeting, he offered a thousand burnt-offerings,
and God appeared to him in a dream, saying, Ask what I shall
give thee" (2Chronicles i. 3 seq.).
In the older narrative there is nothing about the tabernacle,
it being assumed that no apology would be either necessary or
possible for Solomon having sacrificed on a high place. Chronicles,
dominated in its views of antiquity by the Priestly Code, has
missed the presence of the tabernacle and supplied the want in
accordance with that norm; the young and pious king could not
possibly have made his solemn inaugural sacrifice, for which
he had expressly left Jerusalem, anywhere else than at the
legally prescribed place; and still less could Jehovah otherwise
have bestowed on him His blessing. It betokens the narrowness,
and at the same time the boldness of the author, that he retains
the expression _high place_ used in 1Kings iii. 3, and co-ordinates
it with _tabernacle_, although the one means precisely the opposite
of the other. But it is instructive to notice how, on other
occasions, he is hampered by his Mosaic central sanctuary, which
he has introduced _ad hoc_ into the history. According to 1Chronicles
xvi. David is in the best position to institute also a sacrificial
service beside the ark of Jehovah, which he has transferred to
Zion; but he dare not, for the Mosaic altar stands at Gibeon, and
he must content himself with a musical surrogate (vers. 37-42).
The narrative of 1Chronicles xxi., that David was led by the
theophany at the threshing-floor of Araunah to build an altar
there, and present upon it an offering that was accepted by
heaven, is at its close maimed and spoiled in a similar way by
the remark, with anticipatory reference to 2Chronicles i., that the
Mosaic tabernacle and altar of burnt offering were indeed at that
time in the high place at Gibeon, but that the king had not the
strength to go before it to inquire of Jehovah, being so smitten
with fear of the angel with the drawn sword. So also must the
sacrifice which Solomon should have offered on his return from
Gibeon before the ark at Jerusalem be similarly ignored (2Chronicles
i. 13), because it uould destroy the force of the previous
explanation of the high place at Gibeon. Thus the shadow takes
the air from the body. In other places the tabernacle is
significantly confounded with the temple of Jerusalem (Graf, p. 56),
but on the whole it remains a tolerably inert conception, only made
use of in the passage before us (2Chronicles i.) in an _ex machina_
manner in order to clear Solomon of a heavy reproach.

Upon the last solemn act of worship at the Mosaic sanctuary
immediately follows the building of the temple (i. 18 [ii.1]-vii. 11),
1Kings iii. 10-v. 14 [AV. 34] being passed over. A few little
touches are however brought in to show the wealth of Solomon
(i. 14-17); they do not occur in Kings until chap. x. (vers. 26-29),
and are also repeated in Chronicles (ix. 25 seq.) in this much
more appropriate connection (comp. 1Kings iii., LXX). Strictly
speaking indeed, David has taken the preparations for the sacred
building out of the hands of his successor, but the latter
appears not to be satisfied with these (ii. 16 [17]) and looks
after them once more (i. 18-ii. 17 [ii. 1-18]). A comparison
with Ezra iii. (preparation of the second temple) shows that
the story is an elaboration of the author, although suggested
by 1Kings v. 16 [2] seq., and with preservation of many verbal
reminiscences. While Hiram and Solomon according to the older
record are on a footing of equality and make a contract based
on reciprocity of service, the Tyrian king is here the vassal
of the Israelite, and renders to him what he requires as tribute;
instead of as there explaining himself by word of mouth, he here
writes a letter in which he not only openly avows his faith in
Jehovah the God of Israel, the maker of heaven and earth, but
also betrays an extraordinary acquaintance with the Pentateuchal
Priestly Code. The brassfounder whom Solomon brings from Tyre
(1Kings vii. 13, 14) is (ii. 13) described as a very Daedalus
and prodigy of artistic skill, like Bezaleel (Exodus xxxi. 2 seq.);
his being made the son of a woman of Dan and not of a widow of
Naphtali supplies interpreters with the materials for the
construction of a little family romance, /1/

1. She was by birth a woman of Dan, married into the tribe of
Napthali, lost her husband, and as widow out of the tribe of
Naphtali became the wife of the Tyrian. So Bertheau _in loc_.

but has no more real value than the idea that sandalwood is
obtained from Lebanon. The statement of 1Kings v. 27 [13]
(xi. 28, xii. 4) that Israel was requisitioned in large numbers
to render forced service to the king has substituted for it by
the Chronicler that which occurs in another place (1Kings ix. 2I),
that only the Canaanite serfs were employed for this purpose; at
the same time, he reckons their number from the figures supplied
in 1Kings v. 29 [15] seq. Lastly, the manner in which Solomon
(ii. 2 [3] ) assures Hiram that he will arrange the divine
service in the new house in a thoroughly correct manner according
to the ordinance of the Priestly Code, is also characteristic;
similar remarks, from which the uninterrupted practice of the
Mosaic cultus according to the rules of the Law is made to appear,
are afterwards repeated from time to time (viii. 12-16, xiii. 11).

In chaps. iii., iv. the author repeats the description of the
temple in 1Kings vi., vii., with the omission of what relates to
profane buildings. Perhaps in one passage (1Kings vii. 23) he
found the now very corrupt text in a better state; otherwise he
has excerpted from it in a wretchedly careless style or word for
word transcribed it, adding merely a few extravagances or
appointments of later date (e.g., the specification of the gold
in iii. 4 seq. 8, 9, of the ten golden tables and hundred golden
basins in iv. 8, of the brass-covered doors of the outer gateway
in iv. 9, of the court of the priests in iv. 9, of the curtain
between the holy place and the holy of holies in iii. 14;
compare Vatke, pp. 332, 333, 340, 341). To deny that the
original (to which reference must in many places be made in order
that the meaning may be understood) exists in 1Kings vi., vii.,
requires an exercise of courage which might be much better
employed, all the more because in 2Chronicles iv. 11-v. 1, the
summary list follows the description of details precisely as in
1Kings vii. 40 - 51.

While the concrete and material details of 1Kings vi., vii. are
reproduced only in an imperfect and cursory manner, the act of
consecration on the other hand, and the discourse delivered by
Solomon on the occasion, is accurately and fully given (v. 2-vii.
10) in accordance with 1Kings viii.; such additions and
omissions as occur are all deliberate. In 1Kings viii. the
priests and Levites on an occasion which so closely concerned
their interests do not play any adequate part, and in particular
give none of the music which nevertheless is quite indispensable
at any such solemnity. Accordingly, the Chronicler at the word
"priests" inserts between the violently separated clauses of 1Kings
viii. 10, 11, the following:
"For all the priests present had sanctified themselves without
distinction of classes, and the Levites, the singers, all stood in
white linen with cymbals and psalteries and harps at the east end
of the altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding
with trumpets. And it came to pass when the trumpeters and singers
were as one to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking
the Lord, and when the music began with trumpets, and cymbals, and
instruments, and the song of praise,
Praise ye Jehovah,
for He is good;
for His mercy endureth for ever,
then the house was filled with a cloud" (v. 11-13).
Proceeding, the narrative of 1Kings viii. 22 that Solomon came
in front of the altar and there prayed is indeed in the first
instance copied (vi. 12), but forthwith authoritatively interpreted
in the sense that the king did not really and actually stand before
the altar (which was lawful for the priests alone), but upon an
improvised pulpit in the inner court upon a propped-up caldron of
brass (vi. 13), an excellent idea, which has met with the due
commendation of expositors. The close of Solomon's prayer (1Kings
viii. 49-53) is abridged (vi. 39, 40)--perhaps in order to get rid
of viii. 50--and there is substituted for it an original epilogue
(vi. 41, 42) recalling post-exilian psalms. Then comes a larger
omission, that of 1Kings viii. 54-61, explained by the difficulty
involved in the king's here kneeling, not upon the caldron,
but before the altar, then standing up and blessing like a priest;
in place of this it is told (vii. 1-3) how the altar was consecrated
by fire from heaven, which indeed had already descended upon it
(1Chronicles xxi.26), but as it appears had unaccountably gone out.
In vii. 4 the author again returns to his original at 1Kings
viii. 62 seq., but tricks it out, wherever it appears to him too
bare, with trumpeting priests and singing Levites (vii. 6),
and finally dismisses the people, not on the eighth day of
the feast of tabernacles (1Kings viii. 66), but on the ninth
(vii. to), in accordance with the enactment in Numbers xxix. 35.

The rest of Solomon's history (vii. 11-ix. 28) is taken over from
1Kings ix., x. In doing so what is said in 1Kings ix. 10-IO,
to the effect that Solomon handed over to Hiram twenty Galilaean
cities, is changed into the opposite--that Hiram ceded the cities
to Solomon, who settled them with Israelites (viii. 1, 2); and
similarly the already observed statement of 1Kings ix. 24
about the removal of Solomon's Egyptian wife out of the city of
David into his new palace /1/ is altered and put in quite a

1. Even in the text of Kings this statement has been obscured;
Comp. 1Kings iii. 1. In ix. 24 we must at least say _betho
asher bana lo_, but this perhaps is not enough.

false light:
"Solomon brought up the daughter of Pharaoh out of the
city of David unto the house that he had built for her; for he
said, No woman shall dwell in the house of David, for the place
is holy whereunto the ark of Jehovah hath come" (viii. 11).
There is no further need to speak of viii. 12-16 (1Kings ix. 25);
more indifferent in their character are the addition in vii.
12-15, a mere compilation of reminiscences, the embellishment in
viii. 3-6, derived from 1Kings ix. 17-19, and the variations in
viii. 17 seq., ix. 2I, misunderstood from 1Kings ix. 26 seq.,
x. 22. The concluding chapter on Solomon's reign (1Kings xi.),
in which the king does not appear in his most glorious aspect, is
passed over in silence, for the same motives as those which
dictated the omission of the two chapters at the beginning.

The history of the son is treated after the same plan and by the
same means as that of the father, only the subject accommodates
itself more readily to the purpose of the change. The old
picture is retouched in such wise that all dark and repulsive
features are removed, and their place taken by new and brilliant
bits of colour not in the style of the original but in the taste of
the author's period,--priests and Levites and fire from heaven, and
the fulfilment of all righteousness of the law, and much music,
and all sorts of harmless legendary anachronisms and
exaggerations besides. The material of tradition seems broken up
in an extraneous medium, the spirit of post-exilian Judaism.


VI.II.1. After Solomon's death the history of Israel in Chronicles
is traced only through Jehovah's kingdom in the hand of the sons
of David, and all that relates to the ten tribes is put aside.
For according to the notions of the Judaistic period Israel is the
congregation of true worship, and this last is connected with the
temple at Jerusalem, in which of course the Samaritans have no
part. Abijah of Judah makes this point of view clear to Jeroboam
I. and his army in a speech delivered from Mount Zemaraim before
the battle.
"Think ye to withstand the kingdom of Jehovah in the
hand of the sons of David, because ye are a great multitude, and
with you are the golden calves which Jeroboam made you for gods ?
Have ye not cast out the priests of Jehovah, the sons of Aaron and
the Levites, and made for yourselves priests after the manner of
the Gentiles? so that whosoever cometh to fill his hands with a
young bullock and seven rams, even he may become a priest for the
false gods? But as for us, we have not forsaken Jehovah our God,
and our priests minister to Jehovah, the sons of Aaron and the
Levites in the service; and they burn unto Jehovah every morning
and every evening burnt sacrifices and sweet incense; the shewbread
also is upon the pure table; for we have maintained the service of
Jehovah our God, but ye have forsaken Him. And behold, God Himself
is with us at our head, and His priests, and the loud-sounding
trumpets to cry an alarm against you. O children of Israel,
fight ye not against Jehovah the God of your fathers, for ye shall
not prosper" (2Chronicles xiii. 8-12; comp. xi. 13-17).

The kingdom which bore the name of Israel was actually in point of
fact in the olden time the proper Israel, and Judah was merely a
kind of appendage to it. When Amaziah of Judah after the
conquest of the Edomites challenged to battle King Jehoash of
Samaria, whose territory had at that time suffered to the utmost
under the continual wars with the Syrians, the latter bid say to
"The thistle that was in Lebanon sent to the cedar that was
in Lebanon, saying, Give thy daughter to my son to wife;--then
passed by a wild beast that was in Lebanon and trode down the
thistle. Thou hast indeed smitten Edom, and thy heart hath
lifted thee up. Enjoy thy glory, but tarry at home."
(2Kings xiv. 9, 10). And as the other would not listen, he
punished him as if he had been a naughty boy and then let him go.
Religiously the relative importance of the two corresponded
pretty nearly to what it was politically and historically.
Israel was the cradle of prophecy; Samuel, Elijah, and Elisha
exercised their activity there; what contemporary figure from
Judah is there to place alongside of these? Assuredly the author
of the Book of Kings would not have forgotten them had any such
there been, for he is a Judaean with all his heart, yet is compelled
purely by the nature of the case to interest himself chiefly about
the northern kingdom. And yet again at the very close it was the
impending fall of Samaria that called into life a new phase of
prophecy; he who inaugurated it, the Judaean Amos of Tekoah, was
sent not to Judah but to Israel, the history of which had the
first and fullest sympathy of his inmost soul as that of the people
of Jehovah. Isaiah was the first who placed Jerusalem in the centre
of his field of vision and turned away from Israel; for at the time
of his first public appearance war was raging between the sister
nations, and when his activity was at its acme all was over with
the northern kingdom and all hope had to cling to the remnant,--
the fallen tabernacle of David. As regards the cultus, certainly,
matters may have been somewhat less satisfactory in Israel than
in Judah, at least in the last century before the Assyrian captivity,
but at the outset there was no essential difference. On all hands
Jehovah was worshipped as the peculiar divinity of the nation at
numerous fanes, in the service at the high places there were wanting
neither in the one nor in the other sacred trees, posts, and
stones, images of silver and gold (Isaiah ii. 8 seq., xvii. 8,
xxxi. 22; Micah v. 12). It is a question whether in the time
before Hezekiah the cultus of the kingdom at Jerusalem had so much
to distinguish it above that at Bethel or at Dan; against
Jeroboam's golden calves must be set the brazen serpent of Moses,
and the ark of Jehovah itself--which in ancient times was an idol
(1Samuel iv.-vi.) and did not become idealised into an ark of the
covenant, ie., of the law, until probably it had actually
disappeared. As for the prophetic reaction against the popular
cultus, the instance of Hosea shows that it came into activity as
early and as powerfully in Israel as in Judah. Even after
Josiah's reformation Jeremiah complains that the sister who
hitherto had been spared is in no respect better than the other
who a hundred years before had fallen a victim to the Assyrians
(iii. 6-1O); and though in principle the author of the Book of
Kings, taking his stand upon Deuteronomy, prefers Judah and
Jerusalem, yet he does not out of deference to this judgment alter
the facts which show that old Israel was not further than old
Judah from compliance with the Deuteronomic precepts. Chronicles,
on the other hand, not only takes the Law--the Pentachal Law
as a whole, but more particularly the Priestly Code therein
preponderating--as its rule of judgment on the past; but also
idealises the facts in accordance with that norm, and figures to
itself the old Hebrew people as in exact conformity with the
pattern of the later Jewish community,--as a monarchically graded
hierocracy with a strictly centralised cultus of rigidly
prescribed form at the holy place of Jerusalem. When,
accordingly, the ten tribes fail to exhibit all the marks of the
kingdom of God, this is taken to mean their falling away from the
true Israel; they have made goats and calves their gods, driven
away the priests and Levites, and in a word broken quite away
from the institutions which shaped themselves in Judah during the
period subsequent to Josiah and received their finishing-touches
from Ezra. /1/

1. The Chronicler indeed is unable, even in the case of these
schismatics, to divest himself of his legal notions, as appears
almost comically in the circumstance that the priests of Jeroboam
set about their heretical practices quite in accordance with the
prescriptions of the Priestly Code, and procure their
consecration by means of a great sacrifice (2 Chron xiii. 9).

Like other heathen, therefore, they are taken account of by the
sacred history only in so far as they stood in relations of
friendship or hostility with the people of Jehovah properly so
called, the Israel in the land of Judah (2Chronicles xxiii. 2),
and in all references to them the most sedulous and undisguised
partisanship on behalf of Judah is manifested, even by the
inhabitants of the northern kingdom itself. /2/ If one seriously

2. Compare xi. 16, xv. 9, xix. 2, xx. 35 seq.. xxv 7, xxviii.
9 seq., xxx. 6.

takes the Pentateuch as Mosaic law, this exclusion of the ten
tribes is, in point of fact, an inevitable consequence, for the
mere fact of their belonging to the people of Jehovah destroys the
fundamental pre-supposition of that document, the unity and
legitimacy of the worship as basis of the theocracy, the priests
and Levites as its most important organs, "the sinews and muscles
of the body politic, which keep the organism together as a living
and moving whole."

VI.II.2. The reverse side is, of course, the idealisation of Judah
from the point of view of the legitimate worship,--a process which
the reader can imagine from the specimens already given with
reference to David and Solomon. The priests and Levites who
migrated from Israel are represented as having strengthened the
southern kingdom (xi. 17), and here constitute the truly
dominant element in the history. It is for their sake that kings
exist as protectors and guardians of the cultus, with the internal
arrangements of which, however, they dare not intermeddle (xxvi.
16 seq.); to deliver discourses and ordain spiritual solemnities
(which figure as the culminating points in the narrative) are
among the leading duties of their reign. /1/

1. xiii. 7 seq., xv. 10 seq., xx. 6 seq., xxix. 5 seq., xxx. 1 seq.,
xxxv. 1 seq.

Those among them who are good apprehend their task and are
inseparable from the holy servants of Jehovah,--so, in particular,
Jehoshaphat, Hezekiah, and Josiah. Of the first mentioned we are
told that in the third year of his reign he appointed a royal
commission of notables, priests, and Levites, to go about with the
Book of the Law, and teach in the cities of Judah (xvii. 7-9); in
the larger places, in the strongholds, he further instituted
colleges of justice, and over them a supreme tribunal at
Jerusalem, also consisting of priests, Levites, and notables,
under the presidency of the high priest for spiritual, and of the
Prince of the house of Judah for secular affairs (xix. 5-11).
There is nothing about this in the Book of Kings, although what is
of less importance is noticed (1Kings xxii. 47); the Chronicler
makes the statement in his own language, which is unmistakable,
especially in the pious speeches. Probably it is the
organisation of justice as existing in his own day that he here
carries back to Jehoshaphat, so that here most likely we have the
oldest testimony to the synedrium of Jerusalem as a court of
highest instance over the provincial synedria, as also to its
composition and presidency. The impossibility of such a judiciary
system in antiquity is clear from its presupposing the Book of
the Law as its basis, from its co-ordination of priests and
Levites, and also from its actual inconsistency with incidental
notices, particularly in Isaiah and the older prophets (down to
Jeremiah xxvi.), in which it everywhere is taken for granted as a
thing of course that the rulers are also at the same time the
natural judges. Moreover, Chronicles already tells us about
David something similar to what it says about Jehoshaphat
(1Chronicles xxiii. 4, xxvi. 29-32); the reason why the latter
is selected by preference for this work lies simply in his name
" Jehovah is Judge," as he himself is made to indicate in various
ways (xix. 5-11; compare Joel iv. 12). But the king of Judah
is strengthened by the priests and Levites, not only in these
domestic affairs, but also for war. As the trumpets of the priests
give to Abijah courage and the victory against Jeroboam of
Israel, so do the Levites also to Jehoshaphat against Moab and
Ammon. Having fasted, and received, while praying, the
comfortable assurance of the singer Jahaziel ("See God"), he
advances next morning, with his army, against the enemy, having
in the van the Levites, who march in sacred attire in front of
the armed men and sing:
"Praise ye the Lord, for His mercy endureth for ever."
He then finds that the fighting has already been done by the enemy
themselves, who, at the sound of that song of praise, have fallen
upon and annihilated one another. Three days are spent in
dividing the spoil, and then he returns as he came, the Levitical
music leading the van, with psalteries, and harps, and trumpets to
the house of Jehovah (2Chronicles xx. 1-28). Hezekiah is
glorified in a similar manner. Of the Assyrian siege of Jerusalem
and the memorable relief, comparatively little is made (xxxii. 1
seq.; comp. De Wette, i. 75); according to Chronicles, his
master-work is that, as soon as he has mounted the throne, in the
first month of the year, and of his reign (Exodus xl. 2; Leviticus
ix. 1). he institutes by means of the priests and Levites, whom
he addresses quite paternally as his children (xxix. 11), a
great feast of consecration of the temple, alleged to have been
closed and wasted by Ahaz; thereupon in the second month to
celebrate the passover in the most sumptuous manner; and finally,
from the third to the seventh month to concern himself about the
accurate rendering of their dues to the clergy. All is described
in the accustomed style, in the course of three long chapters,
which tell us nothing indeed about the time of Hezekiah, but are
full of information for the period in which the writer lived,
particularly with reference to the method then followed in
offering the sacred dues (xxix. 1-xxxi. 21). In the case of
Josiah also the account of his epoch-making reformation of the
worship is, on the whole, reproduced in Chronicles only in a
mutilated manner, but the short notice of 2Kings xxiii. 21-23
is amplified into a very minute description of a splendid
passover feast, in which, as always, the priests and above all
the Levites figure as the leading personalities. In this last
connection one little trait worth noticing remains, namely, that
the great assembly in which the king causes the Book of the Law
to be sworn to, is, in every other respect, made up in 2Chronicles
xxxiv. 29 seq. exactly as it is in 2Kings xxiii. 1, , except
that instead of "the priests and _prophets_" we find "the priests
and _Levites_." The significance of this is best seen from the
Targum, where "the priests and prophets" are translated into "the
priests and scribes."

By this projection of the legitimate cultus prescribed in the Law
and realised in Judaism, the Chronicler is brought however into a
peculiar conflict with the statements of his authority, which show
that the said cultus was not a mature thing which preceded all
history, but came gradually into being in the course of history;
he makes his escape as well as he can, but yet not without a
strange vacillation between the timeless manner of looking at
things which is natural to him, and the historical tradition
which he uses and appropriates. The verses in 1Kings (xiv. 22, 23):
Judah (not Rehoboam merely) did that which was evil in the sight
of Jehovah and provoked Him to jealousy by their sins which
they sinned, above all that their fathers had done; and they
set up for themselves high places, macceboth and asherim, &c.,
which in the passage where they occur are, like the parallel
statement regarding Israel (xii. 25 seq.), of primary importance,
and cancel by one bold stroke the alleged difference of worship
between the Levitical and non-Levitical kingdom, are omitted as
quite too impossible, although the whole remaining context is
preserved (2Chronicles xii. 1-16). In the same way the
unfavourable judgment upon Rehoboam's successor Abijah (1Kings xv.
3-5) is dropped, because the first kings of Judah, inasmuch as
they maintain the true religion against those of Israel who have
fallen away from it, must of necessity have been good. But
though the Chronicler is silent about what is bad, for the sake of
Judah's honour, he cannot venture to pass over the improvement
which, according to 1Kings xv. 12 seq., was introduced in Asa's
day, although one does not in the least know what need there was
for it, everything already having been in the best possible
state. Nay, he even exaggerates this improvement, and makes of
Asa another Josiah (2Chronicles xv. 1-15), represents him also
(xiv. 3) as abolishing the high places, and yet after all (xv. 1
7) repeats the statement of 1Kings xv. 14 that the high places
were not removed. So also of Jehoshaphat, we are told in the
first place that he walked in the first ways of his father Asa
and abolished the high places in Judah (2Chronicles xvii. 3, 6,
xix. 3), a false generalisation from 1Kings (xxii. 43, 47);
and then afterwards we learn (xx. 32, 33) that the high places
still remained, word for word according to 1Kings xxii. 43, 44.
To thc author it seems on the one hand an impossibility that
the worship of the high places, which in spite of xxxiii.17 is
to him fundamentally idolatry, should not have been repressed
even by pious, i.e., law-observing kings, and yet on the other
hand he mechanically transcribes his copy.

In the case of the notoriously wicked rulers his resort is to make
them simply heathen and persecutors of the covenant religion,
for to him they are inconceivable within the limits of Jehovism,
which always in his view has had the Law for its norm, and is one
and the same with the exclusive Mosaism cf Judaism. So first, in
the case of Joram: he makes high places on the hills of Judah and
seduces the inhabitants of Jerusalem to commit fornication, and
Judah to apostatise (xxi. 11), and moreover slays all his brethren
with the sword (ver. 4)--the one follows from the other. His widow
Athaliah breaks up the house of Jehovah by the hand of her sons
(who had been murdered, but for this purpose are revived), and
makes images of Baal out of the dedicated things (xxiv. 7); none
the less on that account does the public worship of Jehovah go on
uninterrupted under Jehoiada the priest. Most unsparing is the
treatment that Ahaz receives. According to 2Kings xvi. 10 seq.,
be saw at Damascus an altar which took his fancy, and he caused a
similar one to be set up at Jerusalem after its pattern, while
Solomon's brazen altar was probably sent to the melting-pot; it
was Urijah the priest who carried out the orders of the king. One
observes no sign of autonomy, or of the inviolable divine right of
the sanctuary; the king commands and the priest obeys. To the
Chronicler the story so told is quite incomprehensible; what
does he make of it? Ahaz introduced the idolatrous worship of
Damascus, abolished the worship of Jehovah, and shut up the
temple (2Chronicles xxviii. 23 seq.). He regards not the person
of a man, the inflexible unity of the Mosaic cultus is everything
to the Chronicler, and its historical identity would be destroyed
if an orthodox priest, a friend of the prophet Isaiah, had lent a
helping hand to set up a foreign altar. To make idolaters pure
and simple of Manasseh and Amon any heightening of what is said
in 2Kings xxi. was hardly necessary; and besides, there were
here special reasons against drawing the picture in too dark
colours. It is wonderful also to see how the people, which is
always animated with alacrity and zeal for the Law, and rewards
its pious rulers for their fidelity to the covenant (xv. 15,
xvii. 5, xxiv. 10, xxxi. 10), marks its censure of these wicked
kings by withholding from them, or impairing, the honour of royal
burial (xxi. 19, 20, xxviii. 27, xxxiii. 10),--in spite of 2Kings
ix. 28, xvi. 20, xxi. 1 8.

The periodically recurring invasions of heathenism help, at the
same time, to an understanding of the consequent reforms, which
otherwise surpass the comprehension of the Jewish scribe.
According to the Books of Kings, Joash, Hezekiah, and Josiah hit
upon praiseworthy innovations in the temple cultus, set aside
deeply rooted and immemorial customs, and reformed the public
worship of Jehovah. These advances WITHIN Jehovism, which, of
course, are quite incompatible with its Mosaic fixity, are made
by the Chronicler to be simple restorations of the pure religion
following upon its temporary violent suspension. It is in Hezekiah's
case that this is done in the most thoroughgoing manner. After
his predecessor has shut the doors of the house of Jehovah, put out
the lights, and brought the service to an end, he sets all in
operation again by means of the resuscitated priests and Levites;
the first and most important act of his reign is the consecration
of the temple (2Chronicles xxix.), with which is connected
(xxx., xxx).) the restoration of the passover and the restitution
of the temporalia to the clergy, who, as it seems, have hitherto
been deprived of them. That 2Kings xviii. 1-7, although very
different, has supplied the basis for all these extravagances,
is seen by comparing 2Chronicles xxix. 1, 2, xxxi. 1, 20, 21,
xxxii. 22 only, that the king destroyed the brazen serpent
Nehushtan (2Kings xviii. 4) is passed over in silence, as if
it were incredible that such an image should have been worshipped
down to that date in the belief that it had come down from the
time of Moses; the not less offensive statement, on the other
hand, that he took away _the Asherah_ (by which only that of
the temple altar can be understood; comp. Deuteronomy xvi. 21)
is got over by charging the singular into the plural; he took
away _the Asherahs_ (xxx). 1 ), which occurred here and there
throughout Judah, of course at heathen altars.

In the cases of Joash and Josiah the free flight of the
Chronicler's law-crazed fancy is hampered by the copy to which
he is tied, and which gives not the results merely, but the
details of the proceedings themselves (2Chronicles xxii., xxiii.;
2Kings xi., xii.). It is precisely such histories as these,
almost the only circumstantially told ones relating to Judah
in the Book of Kings, which though in their nature most akin
to our author's preference for cultus, bring him into the greatest
embarrassment, by introducing details which to his notions are
wholly against the Law, and yet must not be represented otherwise
than in the most favourable light.

It cannot be doubted that the sections about Joash in 2Kings
(xi. 1-xii. 17 [16]), having their scene end subject laid in the
temple, are at bottom identical with 2Chronicles xxii. 10-xxiv.
14. In the case of 2Kings xi., to begin with, the beginning and
the close, vers. 1-3, vers. 13-20, recur verbatim in 2Chronicles
xxii. 10-12, xxiii. 12-21, if trifling alterations be left
out of account. But in the central portion also there occur
passages which are taken over into 2Chronicles without any
change. Only here they are inappropriate, while in the original
connection they are intelligible. For the meaning and colour of
the whole is entirely altered in Chronicles, as the following
comparison in the main passage will show; to understand it one
must bear in mind that the regent Athaliah has put to death all
the members of the house of David who had escaped the massacre of
Jehu, with the exception of the child Joash, who, with the
knowledge of Jehoiada, the priest, has found hiding and protection
in the temple.


4. In the seventh year Jehoiada 1. _In the seventh year Jehoiada_
sent and took the captains of sent and took the captains of
the Carians and runners, strengthened himself and _took the
captains_, Azariah the son of Jeroham,
and Ishmael the son of Jehohanan,
and Azariah the son of Obed,
and Maaseiah the son of Adaiah,
and Elishaphat the son of Zichri,
into covenant with him.

2. And they went about in Judah
and gathered the Levites out of
all the cities in Judah, and the
chiefs of the fathers of Israel,
and they came to Jerusalem.

and brought them to him into 3. And the whole congregation
the house of Jehovah, and made a made _a covenant in the house of
covenant with them, and took God_ with the king. And he said
an oath of them in the house of unto them, _Behold, the king's
Jehovah, and showed them the son_ shall reign, as Jehovah said
king's son; concerning the sons of David.

5. And commanded them, saying, 4. _This is the thing that ye shall
This is the thing that ye shall do: the third part of you, which
do; the third part of you which enter on the Sabbath_, of the
enter on the Sabbath and keep the priests and of the Levites,
watch of the king's house, shall keep the doors.

[6. And the third part in the 5. And the third part of you shall
gate of Jesod, and the third be _in the house of the king_, and
part in the gate behind the the third part in the gate Jesod; and
runners, and ye shall keep all the people shall be in the courts
the watch in the house...]: of the house of Jehovah.

7. And the two other third
parts of you, those who go 6. And no one shall come into the
forth on the Sabbath and house of Jehovah save the priests
keep the watch in the house and they of the Levites that minister;
of Jehovah about the king. but all the people shall keep the
ordinance of Jehovah.

8. Ye shall encompass the king 7. And the Levites shall _compass
round about, every man with the king round about, every man
his weapons in his hand, with his weapons in his hands, and
and whosoever cometh within whosoever cometh_ into the house,
the ranks, shall be put to _shall be put to death; and they shall
death, and ye shall be with be with the king whithersoever he
the king whithersoever he goeth. goeth._

9. And the captains did according 8. And the Levites and all Judah
to all that Jehoiada the priest _did according to all that Jehoiada
had commanded, and took each his the priest had commanded, and took
men, those that were to come in each his men, those that were to come
on the Sabbath with those that in on the Sabbath with those that
were to go out on the Sabbath, were to go out on the Sabbath_, for
and came to Jehoiada the priest. Jehoiada the priest dismissed not
the divisions.

10. And to the captains the 9. And Jehoiada the priest delivered
priest gave King David's to the captains of hundreds the spears
spears and shields that were and the bucklers and the shields that
in the house of Jehovah. King David had, which were in the
house of God.

11. And the runners stood, every 10. And he set all the people, _every
man with his weapons in his hand, man having his weapon in his hand,
from the south side of the house from the south side of the house to
to the north side, along by the north side, along by the altar
the altar and the house, and the house, round about the king_.
round about the king.

12. And he brought forth the 11. _And they brought out the king's
king's son and put upon him son and put upon him the crown and
the crown and the bracelet, the bracelet and they made him king_,
and they made him king and and Jehoiada and his sons _anointed
anointed him, and they clapped him and said:
their hands and said: Long live the king_.
Long live the king.

Can the enthronement of Joash, as on a former occasion that of
Solomon, possibly have been accomplished by the agency of the
bodyguard of the kings of Judah? Is it possible that the high
priest should have made a covenant with the captains within the
house of Jehovah, and himself have held out the inducement to
those half-pagan mercenaries to penetrate into the temple
precincts? That were indeed an outrage upon the Law not lightly
to be imputed to so holy a man! Why then did not Jehoiada make
use of his own guard, the myriads of Levites who were at his
command? Such a course was the only right one, and therefore
that which was followed. "No one shall come into the house of
Jehovah save the priests and they of the Levites that minister:"
in accordance with this fundamental principle stated by himself
(xxiii. 6; comp ver. 7 INTO THE HOUSE instead of WITHIN THE RANKS),
our pious historian substitutes his priests and Levites for the
Carians and runners. Hereby also Jehoiada comes into the place
that belongs to him as sovereign of the sanctuary and of the
congregation. He therefore needs no longer to set on foot in
secret a conspiracy with the chiefs of the body-guard, but
through his own spiritual officers calls together the Levites and
heads of houses from all the cities of Judah into the temple,
and causes the whole assemblage there to enter into a covenant
with the young king. The glaring inconsistencies inevitably
produced by the new colouring thus given to individual parts of
the old picture must simply be taken as part of the bargain.
If Jehoiada has unrestricted sway over such a force and sets
about his revolution with the utmost publicity, then it is he
and not Athaliah who has the substance of power; why then all
this trouble about the deposition of the tyrant? Out of mere
delight in Levitical pomp and high solemnities? What moreover
is to be done with the captains who are retained in xxiii. 1, 9,
and in ver. 14 are even called officers of the host as in 2Kings
xi 15, after their soldiers have been taken from them or
metamorphosed? Had the Levites a military organisation, and,
divided into three companies, did they change places every
week in the temple service? The commentators are inclined to call
in to their aid such inventive assumptions, with which, however,
they may go on for ever without attaining their end, for the error
multiplies itself. As a specially striking instance of the manner
in which the procedure of Chronicles avenges itself may be mentioned
chapter xxiii. 8: "and they took each his men," &c. The words are
taken from 2Kings xi. 9, but there refer to the captains, while
here the antecedents are the Levites and all the men of Judah--as
if each one of these last had a company of his own which entered
upon service, or left it, every Sabbath day.

The comparison of 2Chronicles xxiv. 4-14 with 2Kings xii. 5-17
[4-16] is not much less instructive. According to 2Kings xii.
Joash enjoined that all the money dues payable to the temple
should in future fall to the priests, who in turn were to be under
obligation to maintain the building in good repair. But they took
the money and neglected the other side of the bargain, and when
they and Jehoiada in particular were blamed by the king on that
account, they gave up the dues so as not to be liable to the
burden. Thereupon the king set up a kind of sacred treasury, a
chest with a hole in the lid, near the altar, "on the right hand
as one goes into the temple," into which the priests were to cast
the money which came in, with the exception of the sin and
trespass moneys, which still belonged to them. And as often as
the chest became full, the king's scribes and the chief priest
removed the money, weighed it, and handed it over to the
contractors for payment of the workmen; that none of it was to be
employed for sacred vessels is expressly said (ver. 14). This
arrangement by King Joash was a lasting one, and still subsisted
in Josiah's time (2Kings . . xxii. 3 seq.).

The arbitrary proceeding of Joash did not well suit the ideas of
an autonomous hierocracy. According to the Law the current money
dues fell to the priests; no king had the right to take them away
and dispose of them at his pleasure. How was it possible that
Jehoiada should waive his divine right and suffer such a
sacrilegious invasion of sacred privileges? how was it possible
that he should be blamed for his (at first) passive resistance of
the illegal invasion; how was it possible at all that the priest
in his own proper department should be called to account by the
king? Chronicles knows better than that. The wicked Athaliah had
wasted and plundered the temple; Joash determined to restore it,
and for this purpose to cause money to be collected throughout
all Israel by the agency of the Levites. But as these last were
in no hurry, he made a chest and set it outside in the doorway of
the sanctuary; there the people streamed past, and gentle and simple
with joyful heart cast in their gifts until the chest was full.
This being announced by the keepers of the door, the king's scribe
and the delegate of the high priest came to remove the money;
with it the king and the high priest paid the workmen, and what
remained over was made into costly vessels (2Chronicles xxiv. 5-14).
According to this account Joash makes no arrangement whatever
about the sacred dues, but sets on foot an extraordinary collection,
as had once been done by Moses for the building of the tabernacle
(xxiv. 6, 9); following upon this, everything else also which in
2Kings xii. is a permanent arrangement, here figures as an isolated
occurrence; instead of necessary repairs of the temple constantly
recurring, only one extraordinary restoration of it is mentioned,
and for this occasional purpose only is the treasure chest set up,--
not, however, beside the altar, but only at the doorway (xxiv. 8;
comp. 2Kings xii. 10). The clergy, the Levites, are charged
only with making the collection, not with maintaining the building
out of the sacred revenues; consequently they are not
reproached with keeping the money to themselves, but only with
not being heartily enough disposed towards the collection. It
appears, however, that they were perfectly justified in this
backwardness, for the king has only to set up the "treasury of
God," when forthwith it overflows with the voluntary offerings of
the people who flock to it, so that out of the proceeds something
remains over (ver. 14) for certain other purposes--which according
to 2Kings xii. 14 [13] were expressly excluded. Joash imposes
no demands at all upon the priests, and Jehoiada in particular
stands over against him as invested with perfectly equal rights;
if the king sends his scribe, the high priest also does not appear
personally, but causes himself to be represented by a delegate
(xxiv. 11; comp. 2Kings xii. 11 [10]). Here also many a new piece
does not come well into the old garment, as De Wette (i. 10O) shows.
Chronicles itself tacitly gives the honour to the older narrative
by making Joash at last apostatise from Mosaism and refuse the
grateful deference which he owed to the high priest; this is the
consequence of the unpleasant impression, derived not from its
own story, but from that of the Book of Kings, with regard to the
undue interference of the otherwise pious king in the affairs of
the sanctuary and of the priests.

Chronicles reaps the fruits of its perversion of 2Kings xii. in
its reproduction of the nearly related and closely connected
section 2Kings xxii. 3-IO. It is worth while once more to bring
the passages together.

2Kings xxii. 2Chronicles xxxiv.

3. And in the eighteenth year 8. And in the eighteenth year
of king Josiah the king sent of his reign, to cleanse the
Shaphan the son of Azaliah, land and the house, he sent
the son of Meshullam, the scribe, Shaphan the son of Azaliah,
to the house of Jehovah, saying, and Maaseiah the governor of
the city, and Joah the son of
4. Go up to Hilkiah the high Joahaz the recorder, to repair
priest, that he may empty the the house of Jehovah his God.
money which hath been brought
into the house of Jehovah 9. And they came to Hilkiah
which the keepers of the the high priest, and they
threshold have gathered of delivered the money that had
the people. been brought into the house
of God which the Levites that
5. And let them deliver it into kept the threshold had gathered
the hand of the doers of the from Ephraim and Manasseh and
work that have the oversight all the remnant of Israel and
of the house of Jehovah, and from all Judah and Benjamin,
let them give it to the doers and had returned therewith
of the work who are in the to Jerusalem.
house of Jehovah to repair
the breaches of the house. 10. And they gave it into the
hand of the workmen that had the
6. Unto carpenters, and builders, oversight of the house of Jehovah,
and masons, and to buy timber and of the workmen that wrought in
and hewn stones to repair the the house of Jehovah to repair
house. and amend the house.

7. But let no reckoning be 11. They gave it to the artificers
made with them as to the money and to the builders to buy
that is delivered into their hewn stone and timber for roofs
hand, because they deal faithfully. and beams of the houses which
the kings of Judah had destroyed.

12. And the men did the work
faithfully. And the overseers of
them were Jahath and Obadiah,
the Levites, of the sons of
Merari; and Zechariah and
Meshullam, of the Kohathites,
to preside; and all the Levites
that had skill in instruments
of music

13. Were over the bearers of
burdens and overseers of all
that wrought the work in any
manner of service; and others
of the Levites were scribes
and officers and porters.

14. And when they brought out
the money that had been brought
into the house of Jehovah,
Hilkiah the priest found the book
of the law of Jehovah by the hand
of Moses.

8. And Hilkiah the high priest 15. And Hilkiah answered and
said unto Shaphan the scribe: said to Shaphan the scribe:
I have found the book of the I have found the book of the law
law in the house of Jehovah. in the house of Jehovah. And
And Hilkiah gave the book to Hilkiah delivered the book
Shaphan, and he read it. to Shaphan.

9. And Shaphan the scribe came 16. And Shaphan carried the book
to the king and brought the king to the king, and besides brought
word again, and said: Thy word back to the king, saying:
servants have emptied out the All that was committed to thy
money that was found in the servants they are doing.
house and have delivered it
into the hand of them that 17. And they have emptied out
do the work, that have the the money that was found in the
oversight of the house of house of Jehovah, and have
Jehovah. delivered it into the hand
of the overseers and into
10. And Shaphan the scribe the hand of the workmen.
told the king, saying: Hilkiah
the priest hath delivered 18. And Shaphan the scribe
to me a book. And Shaphan told the king, saying: Hilkiah
read it before the king. the priest hath given me a book.
And Shaphan read out of it
before the king.

The occasion on which the priest introduces the Book of the Law
to the notice of Shaphan has presuppositions in the arrangement
made by Joash which Chronicles has destroyed, substituting others
in its place,--that the temple had been destroyed under the
predecessors of Josiah, but that under the latter money was raised
by the agency of peripatetic Levites throughout all Israel for the
restoration, and in the first instance deposited in the treasure-chest.
At the emptying of this chest the priest is then alleged to have
found the book (ver. 14, after Deuteronomy xxxi. 26), notwithstanding
that on this occasion Shaphan also and the two accountants added
in ver. 8 were present, and ought therefore to have had a share
in the discovery which, however, is excluded by ver. 15 (= 2Kings
xxii. 8). There are other misunderstandings besides; in particular,
the superintendents of the works (_muphkadim_), to whom, according
to the original narrative, the money is handed over for payment,
are degraded to the rank of simple workmen, from whom, nevertheless,
they are again afterwards distinguished; and while in 2Kings xxii.
7 they are represented as dealing faithfully _in paying out the money_,
in 2Chronicles xxxiv. 12 they deal faithfully in their work.
Perhaps, however, this is no mere misunderstanding, but is
connected with the endeavour to keep profane hands as far off as
possible from that which is holy, and, in particular, to give the
management of the work to the Levites (vers. 12,13). To what
length the anxiety of later ages went in this matter is seen in
the statement of Josephus (Ant., xv. 11, 2), that Herod caused one
thousand priests to be trained as masons and carpenters for the
building of his temple. The two most interesting alterations in
Chronicles are easily overlooked. In ver. 1 8 the words: "He
read the book to the king," are changed into "He read out of the
book to the king;" and after "Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan"
(ver. 15) the words "and he read it" are omitted. In 2Kings the
book appears as of very moderate size, but the author of
Chronicles figures to himself the whole Pentateuch under that

In the sequel 2Kings xxii. 11-xxiii.3 is indeed repeated verbatim
in 2Chronicles xxxiv. 19-32, but the incomparably more important
section connected with it (xxiii. 4-10), giving a detailed
account of Josiah's vigorous reformation, is omitted, and its
place taken by the meagre remark that the king removed all
abominations out of Israel (xxxiv. 33); in compensation his
passover feast is described all the more fully (chap. xxxv.).
In recording also the finding and publication of the Law,
Chronicles fails to realise that this document begins now for the
first time to be historically operative, and acquires its great
importance quite suddenly. On the contrary, it had been from the
days of Moses the basis on which the community rested, and had
been in force and validity at all normal times; only
temporarily could this life-principle of the theocracy be
repressed by wicked kings, forthwith to become vigorous and
active again as soon as the pressure was removed. As soon as Ahaz
has closed his eyes, Hezekiah, in the first month of his first
year, again restores the Mosaic cultus; and as soon as Josiah
reaches years of discretion he makes good the sins of his fathers.
Being at his accession still too young, the eighth year of his
reign is, as a tribute to propriety, selected instead of the
eighth year of his life, and the great reformation assigned
to that period which in point of fact he undertook at a much
later date (xxxiv. 3-7 = 2Kings xxiii. 4-20> Thus the movement
happily becomes separated from its historical occasion, and
in character the innovation appears rather as a simple recovery
of the spring after the pressure on it has been removed. The mist
disappears before the sun of the Law, which appears in its old
strength; its light passes through no phases, but shines from
the beginning with uniform brightness. What Josiah did had also
been done before him already by Asa, then by Jehoshaphat, then
by Hezekiah; the reforms are not steps in a progressive development,
but have all the same unchanging contents. Such is the influence
upon historical vision of that transcendental Mosaism raised far
above all growth and process of becoming, which can be traced even
in the Book of Kings, but is so much more palpable in the Book
of Chronicles.

VI.II.3. Apart from the fact that it represents the abiding tradition
of the legitimate cultus at Jerusalem, the history of Judah in the
Book of Chronicles has yet another instructive purpose. In the
kingdom of Judah it is not a natural and human, but a divine
pragmatism that is operative. To give expression to this is what
the prophets exist for in unbroken succession side by side with
high priests and kings; they connect the deeds of men with the
events of the course of the world, and utilise the sacred history
as a theme for their preaching, as a collection of examples
illustrative of the promptest operation of the righteousness of
Jehovah. In doing so they do not preach what is new or free, but
have at their command, like Jehovah Himself, only the Law of
Moses, setting before their hearers prosperity and adversity in
conformity with the stencil pattern, just as the law is
faithfully fulfilled or neglected. Of course their prophecies
always come exactly true, and in this way is seen an astonishing
harmony between inward worth and outward circumstance. Never
does sin miss its punishment, and never where misfortune occurs is
guilt wanting.

In the fifth year of Rehoboam Judah and Jerusalem were ravaged by
Pharaoh Shishak (1Kings xiv. 25). The explanation is that three
years they walked in the ways of David and Solomon, because for
three years they were strengthened and reinforced by the priests
and Levites and other pious persons who had immigrated from the
northern kingdom (2Chronicles xi. 17); but thereafter in the fourth
year, after the kingdom of Rehoboam had been strengthened and
confirmed, he forsook the Law and all Israel with him (xii. 1)--
and in the fifth year followed the invasion of Shishak. A prophet
announces this, and in consequence the king humbles himself
along with his people and escapes with comparatively trifling
punishment, being thought worthy to reign yet other twelve years.

Asa in his old age was diseased in his feet (1Kings xv. 23).
According to 2Chronicles xvi. 12, he died of this illness, which is
described as extremely dangerous, in the forty-first year of his
reign, after having already been otherwise unfortunate in his
later years. And why? He had invoked foreign aid, instead of
the divine, against Baasha of Israel. Now, as Baasha survived only
to the twenty-sixth year of Asa, the wickedness must have been
perpetrated before that date. But in that case its connection
with the punishment which overtook the king only towards the
close of his life would not be clear. Baasha's expedition against
Jerusalem, accordingly, and the Syrian invasion of Israel
occasioned by Asa on that account are brought down in Chronicles
to the thirty-sixth year of the latter (xvi. 1). It has been
properly observed that Baasha was at that date long dead, and the
proposal has accordingly been made to change the number
thirty-six into sixteen,--without considering that the first half
of the reign of Asa is expressly characterised as having been
prosperous, that the thirty-fifth year is already reached in
chap. xv. 19, and that the correction destroys the connection of
the passage with what follows (xvi. 7 seq.). For it is in
connection with that flagitious appeal for aid to the Syrians that
the usual prophet makes his appearance (xvi. 7), and makes the
usual announcement of impending punishment. It is Hanani, a man
of Northern Israel (1Kings xvi. 7), but Asa treats him as if he
were one of his own subjects, handles him severely, and shuts him
in prison. By this he hastens and increases his punishment,
under which he falls in the forty-first year of his reign.

Jehoshaphat, the pious king, according to 1Kings xxii., took part
in the expedition of the godless Ahab of Israel against the
Damascenes. Chronicles cannot allow this to pass unrebuked,
and accordingly when the king returns in peace, the same Hanani
announces his punishment, albeit a gracious one (2Chronicles xix.
I-3). And gracious indeed it is; the Moabites and Ammonites
invade the land, but Jehoshaphat without any effort on his part
wins a glorious victory, and inexhaustible plunder (xx. 1 seq.).
One cannot blame him, therefore, for once more entering into an
alliance with Ahab's successor for a naval expedition to be
undertaken in common, which is to sail from a port of the Red Sea,
probably round Africa, to Tarshish (Spain, 2Chronicles ix. 21).
But this time he is punished more seriously as Eliezer the son of
Dodavah had prophesied, the ships are wrecked. Compare on the
other hand 1Kings xxii. 48, 49:
"Jehoshaphat made ships of Tarshish to go to Ophir for gold,
but they went not, for the ships were wrecked in the harbour
on the Red Sea. At that time Ahaziah the son of Ahab had said
to Jehoshaphat: Let my servants go with thy servants in the ships;
but Jehoshaphat would not."
So the original statement. But in Chronicles a moral ground must
be found for the misfortune, and Jehoshaphat therefore makes with
the king of Samaria a sinful alliance, which in point of fact he
had declined, not indeed from religious motives.

Joram, the son of Jehoshaphat, conducted himself very ill, it is
said in 2Kings viii. 18; Chronicles enhances his offence, and
above all adds the merited reward (xxi. 4, seq.). Elijah,
although he had quitted this earth long before (2Kings iii. 11
seq.), must write to the offender a letter, the threats of which
are duly put into execution by Jehovah. The Philistines and
Arabians having previously pressed him hard, he falls into an
incurable sickness of the bowels, which afflicts him for years,
and finally brings him to his end in a most frightful manner
(xxi. 12, seq.). In concurrence with the judgment of God, the
people withhold from the dead king the honours of royalty, and he
is not buried beside his fathers, notwithstanding 2Kings viii. 24.

Joash, according to 2Kings xii., was a pious ruler, but met with
misfortune; he was compelled to buy off Hazael, who had laid
siege to Jerusalem, at a heavy price, and finally he died by
the assassin's hand. Chronicles is able to tell how he deserved
this fate. In the sentence: "He did what was right in the sight
of the Lord all his days, because Jehoiada the high priest had
instructed him " (2Kings xii. 3 [2]), it alters the last
expression into "all the days of Jehoiada the priest," (xxiv. 2).
After the death of his benefactor he fell away, and showed his
family the basest ingratitude; at the end of that very year the
Syrians invade him; after their departure his misfortunes are
increased by a dreadful illness, under which he is murdered
(xxiv. 17 seq.).

Amaziah was defeated, made prisoner, and severely punished by
Jehoash, king of Samaria, whom he had audaciously challenged
(2Kings xiv. 8 seq.). Why? because he had set up in Jerusalem
idols which had been carried off from Edom, and served them
(2Chronicles xxv. 1 4). He prefers the plundered gods of a
vanquished people to Jehovah at the very moment when the latter
has proved victorious over them! From the time of this apostasy--
a crime for which no punishment could be too great--his own servants
are also stated to have conspired against him and put him to death
(xxv. 27), and yet we are assured in ver. 25 (after 2Kings xiv.
I;) that Amaziah survived his adversary by fifteen years.

Uzziah, one of the best kings of Judah, became a leper, and was
compelled to hand over the regency to his son Jotham (2Kings xv.
5); for, adds Chronicles, "when he had become strong, his heart
was lifted up, even to ruin, so that he transgressed against
Jehovah his God, and went into the temple of Jehovah, to burn
incense upon the altar of incense. And Azariah the priest went in
after him, and with him fourscore priests of Jehovah, and
withstood him and said: It is not for thee to burn incense, but
only for the sons of Aaron who are consecrated thereto. Then
Uzziah was wroth and laid not the censer aside, and the leprosy
rose up in his forehead, and the priests thrust him out from
thence" (xxvi. 16-20). The matter is now no longer a mystery.

Ahaz was a king of little worth, and yet he got fairly well out
of the difficulty into which the invasion of the allied Syrians
and Israelites had brought him by making his kingdom tributary
to the Assyrian Tiglath-Pileser (2Kings xvi. 1 seq.). But
Chronicles could not possibly let him off so cheaply. By it he
is delivered into the hand of the enemy: the Israelites alone
slaughter 120,000 men of Judah, including the king's son and his
most prominent servants, and carry off to Samaria 200,000 women
and children, along with a large quantity of other booty. The
Edomites and Philistines also fall upon Ahaz, while the Assyrians
whom he has summoned to his aid misunderstand him, and come up
against Jerusalem with hostile intent; they do not, indeed, carry
the city, but yet become possessors, without trouble, of its
treasures, which the king himself hands over to them (xxviii. 1-21).

The Book of Kings knows no worse ruler than Manasseh was; yet he
reigned undisturbed for fifty-five years--a longer period than was
enjoyed by any other king (2Kings xxi.1-18). This is a stone
of stumbling that Chronicles must remove. It tells that Manasseh
was carried in chains by the Assyrians to Babylon, but there prayed
to Jehovah, who restored him to his kingdom; he then abolished
idolatry in Judah (xxxiii. 11-20). Thus on the one hand he does
not escape punishment, while on the other hand the length of his
reign is nevertheless explained. Recently indeed it has been
sought to support the credibility of these statements by means of
an Assyrian inscription, from which it appears that Manasseh did
pay tribute to Esarhaddon. That is to say, he had been
overpowered by the Assyrians; that is again to say, that he had
been thrown into chains and carried off by them. Not so rapid,
but perhaps quite as accurate, would be the inference that as a
tributary prince he must have kept his seat on the throne of Judah,
and not have exchanged it for the prison of Babylon. In truth,
Manasseh's temporary deposition is entirely on the same plane
with Nebuchadnezzar's temporary grass-eating. The unhistorical
character of the intermezzo (the motives of which are perfectly
transparent) follows not only from the silence of the Book of
Kings (a circumstance of no small importance indeed), but also,
for example, from Jeremiah xv. 4; for when it is there said that
all Judah and Jerusalem are to be given up to destruction because
of Manasseh, it is not presupposed that his guilt has been already
borne and atoned for by himself.

To justify the fact of Josiah's defeat and death at Megiddo, there
is attached to him the blame of not having given heed to the words
of Necho from the mouth of God warning him against the struggle
(xxxv. 21, 22). Contrariwise, the punishment of the godless
Jehoiakim is magnified; he is stated to have been put in irons by
the Chaldaeans and carried to Babylon (xxxvi. 6)--an impossibility
of course before the capture of Jerusalem, which did not take place
until the third month of his successor. The last prince of
David's house, Zedekiah, having suffered more severely than all
his predecessors, must therefore have been stiff-necked and
rebellious (xxxvi.12, 13),--characteristics to which, according to
the authentic evidence of the prophet Jeremiah, he had in reality
the least possible claim.

It is thus apparent how inventions of the most circumstantial kind
have arisen out of this plan of writing history, as it is
euphemistically called. One is hardly warranted, therefore, in
taking the definiteness of statements vouched for by Chronicles
alone as proof of their accuracy. The story about Zerah the
Ethiopian (2Chronicles xiv. 9 seq.) is just as apocryphal as that
of Chushan-Rishathaim (Judges iii 10). Des Vignoles has indeed
identified the first-named with the Osorthon of Manetho, who again
occurs in the Egyptian monuments as Osorkon, son of Shishak, though
not as renewing the war against Palestine; but Osorkon was an Egyptian,
Zerah an Ethiopian, and the resemblance of the names is after all
not too obvious. But, even if Zerah were really a historical
personage, of what avail would this be for the unhistorical
connection? With a million of men the king of the Libyans and
Moors, stepping over Egypt, comes against Judah. Asa, ruler of a
land of about sixty German square miles, goes to meet the enemy
with 580,000, and defeats him on the plain to the north of Mareshah
so effectually that not a single soul survives. Shall it be said
that this story, on account of the accurate statement of locality
(although Mareshah instead of Gath is not after all suggestive of
an old source), is credible-at all events after deduction of the
incredibilities? If the incredibilities are deducted, nothing at
all is left. The invasion of Judah by Baasha of Israel, and Asa's
deportment towards him (1Kings xv. 17 seq.), are quite enough
fully to dispose of the great previous victory over the
Ethiopians claimed for Asa. The case is no better with the victory
of Jehoshaphat over the Ammonites and Moabites (2Chronicles xx.);
here we have probably an echo of 2Kings iii., where we read of
Jehoshaphat's taking part in a campaign against Moab, and where
also recurs that characteristic feature of the self-destruction of
the enemy, so that for the opposing force nothing remains but the
work of collecting the booty (iii. 23; compare 2Chronicles xx.
23). The Chronicler has enemies always at his command when
needed,--Arabians, Ethiopians (xvii. 11, xxi. 16, xxii. 1, xxvi.
7), Mehunims (xx. 1, xxvi. 1), Philistines (xvii. 11, xxi. 16,
xxvi. 6 seq., xxviii. 18), Ammonites (xx. 1, xxvi. 8, xxvii. 5),
whose very names in some cases put them out of the question
for the older time. Such statements as that the Ammonites became
subject to Kings Uzziah and Jotham, are, in the perfect silence of
the credible sources, condemned by their inherent impossibility;
for at that period the highway to Ammon was Moab, and this country
was by no means then in the possession of Judah, nor is it
anywhere said that it was. The Philistines as vindictive enemies
are rendered necessary by the plan of the history (xxi. 16,
xxviii. 18), and this of itself throws suspicion upon the previous
statements (xvii. 11, xxvi. 6 seq.) that they were laid under
tribute by Jehoshaphat, and subjugated by Uzziah; it is utterly
impossible to believe that the latter should have broken down
the walls of Ashdod (Amos i. 7), or have established fortresses
in Philistia. According to the Book of Kings, he did indeed conquer
Edom anew; Edom is according to this authority the one land to
which the descendants of David lay claim and against which they
wage war, while Moab and Philistia (the most important towns being
excepted, however, in the case of the latter) virtually belong to
the territory of Ephraim.

The triumphs given by the Chronicler to his favourites have none
of them any historical effect, but merely serve to add a
momentary splendour to their reigns. Merit is always the obverse
of success. Joram, Joash, Ahaz, who are all depicted as
reprobates, build no fortresses, command no great armies, have no
wealth of wives and children; it is only in the case of the
pious kings (to the number of whom even Rehoboam and Abijah also
belong) that the blessing of God manifests itself by such tokens.
Power is the index of piety, with which accordingly It rises and
fall. Apart from this it is of no consequence if, for example,
Jehoshaphat possesses more than 1,100.000 soldiers (xvii, 14
seq.), for they are not used for purposes of war; the victory


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