The Genesis To Revelation Bible Course
By WILLIAM M. GROOM, Th.M., D.D.
Lesson No. 13 – 1 and 2 Chronicles
COPYRIGHT, 1921 BY THE BIBLE STUDY PUBLISHING CO.
The Books of 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles
* KEY VERSE–1Ch 29:12.
* KEY PHRASE-“HISTORY FROM ADAM TO HEZEKIAH.”
Read this lesson through and the books of Chronicles this week or:–
* Sunday–Psalm of Thanksgiving,–1Ch 16:7-25.
* Monday–Davidic Covenant,–1Ch 17:7-15.
* Tuesday–Counsel to Israel.–1Ch 28:1-10.
* Wednesday–Solomon established in his Kingdom.–2 Chronicles 1:1-17.
* Thursday–Fame of Solomon.–2Ch 9:1-8.
* Friday–Division of the kingdom.–2Ch 10:12-19.
* Saturday–Reforms under Hezekiah.–2Ch 31:1-12.
NAME–The word “Chronicle” means a record. This book is so named because it is the time of the restoration of Judah from the brief record of events from Adam to the captivity.
The two books of Chronicles are one in the Hebrew Bible. While they largely cover the same grounds as I and II Kings, Chronicles was of written especially for the Jews after the return from Babylon and follows the kingdom of Judah from the ecclesiastical viewpoint, and keeps in view the covenant promises.
AUTHOR–Ezra. Time of writing, after the captivity in Babylon, 450-400 B. C.
1. To show bow God preserved the tribe of Judah, and the line of David through which the Messiah was to come.
2. To encourage the Jews to rebuild the temple.
Great Fact I. Man Recognizing God
1Ch 1; 2; 3; 4; 1 Chronicles 5; 1Ch 6.
This record of men and their parentage is not a mere stringing together of names, but shows that throughout Israel’s history God was ever behind the shadows keeping watch above His own. Ever and anon was selecting one and rejecting another, and the basis of selection was character built on faith and obedience. Disobedience forfeited the rights and privileges of the covenant. Noble birth or high family connections never helped. God always chose men who would carry out His will. Men were either made or ruined in the proportion that they recognized God in all the events of life.
LESSON–There are many factors that lead to the success of one, and the absence of which leads to the failure of another. Among these are purity, honesty, industry, courage, shrewdness and politeness. But success will be short-lived and superficial unless it comes as “the heritage of them that loved the Lord.”
Great Fact II. God Overthrowing Saul
Ezra did not give us the history of Saul’s reign, but only his overthrow, through which David comes to the throne.
In a battle with the Philistines Saul is fatally defeated, and 10:13 tells us the reason of it was “his transgressions against the Lord.”
No man’s greatness can exempt him from the judgement of God.
Saul had been a good son, and a brave and modest king in the early part of his reign. However, rebellion against God, stubbornness against God’s will, and jealousy of David, wrecked his whole career. He who often conquered the Philistines could not conquer himself.
LESSON–Likelihoods are not certainties. Our careers may have every prospect of being useful and happy. Whether or not the prospect will be realized, depends upon whether we choose our own time and our own way, or whether our wills are mastered by the Master. No man can resist God and prosper. The God-dominated heart and mind, pressing through the openings that God provides, is the only one who is really useful and happy.
Great Fact III. God Establishing David and Solomon
1Ch 11; 12; 13; 14; 1 Chronicles 15; 1Ch 16; 17; 18; 19; 1 Chronicles 20; 1Ch 21; 22; 23; 24; 1 Chronicles 25; 1Ch 26; 27; 28; 29; 2 Chronicles 1; 2Ch 1; 2; 3; 4; 2 Chronicles 5; 2Ch 6; 7; 8; 9; 2
Chronicles here gives us an account of the crowning of David at Hebron by united Israel. Tells us of David’s mighty men who were doubtless made great by their leader’s greatness. Tells us of the capture of Jerusalem and the bringing of the Ark to that place. It is sometimes called the city of David because he made it the centre of Israel’s life and glory.
The account is next given of the making of Solomon king, the preparations of site, materials, and labor for the temple, and the organization of the Levites, priests, and singers for the service of the temple and kingdom.
Chronicles deals particularly with the glorious periods of the theocracy, depicting its bright scenes and treating as briefly as possible those of the opposite character.
For this reason, the book contains more good cheer for the downcast than any other historical book in the Old Testament.
LESSON–What God (lid for David and Solomon he will do for every good man. God is ever looking for wholly dedicated men whom He may exalt to places of highest usefulness. Take William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army. The fact that God established and owned the work of his hands was due to the utter abandonment of self and of selfish motives and to his one desire that God should have all that there was of him.
Great Fact IV. Dividing the Kingdom
2Ch 11; 12; 13; 14; 2 Chronicles 15; 2Ch 16; 17; 18; 19; 2 Chronicles 20; 2Ch 21; 22; 23; 24; 2 Chronicles 25; 2Ch 26; 27; 28; 29; 2 Chronicles 30; 2Ch 31; 32; 33; 34; 2 Chronicles 35; 2Ch 36.
The second division of Chronicles tells us how the ten northern tribes revolted and chose Jeroboam as their king, and how they rejected the worship of Jehovah.
In the south, Judah kept the forms of the true religion, although there was a great lack of warm spiritual worship, and such a disregard of God’s law and God’s messengers that the people were taken captive to Babylon, and the temple was burned down.
LESSON–A formal religion has no power in the life of a nation. A glorious temple will not take the place of the mighty Spirit of God. What made the Puritans so mighty was not their rules and regulations, but their sublime hold upon God.
Great Fact V. Judah Sometimes Reforming
Under Asa, Jehoshaphat, Joash, Hezekiah, and Josiah, reformations and revivals were attempted. Fasts were proclaimed, idols removed, the law was read and the people were called to prayer.
At one time religious enthusiasm ran so high that they threatened to put to death every person who did not seek the Lord, “and when they sought .him with all their hearts, He was found of them”–and gave them rest!
The true path of blessing is found in learning, believing and obeying.
The self-willed man is not happy! When a man proudly says, “I am my own master,” the answer is, “Could you have worse?” Self-will is captivity and ruin, but loving obedience to the will of God with its self-control and self-denial is health and pace. Human goodness and human nobleness consist in self-forgetfulness the disregard of personal indulgence, and of personal advantages. At their best, David and Solomon were great men, and did a great work because they had a great God. Our conception of God controls everything.
Questions on the Lesson
- Why is this book so named?
- How do Chronicles differ from Kings?
- Who was the author and when written?
- What was the purpose?
- Name the great facts.
- How are men made or ruined?
- Name some factors in success.
- Are great men exempt from God’s judgments?
- What wrecked Saul’s career?
- What makes a man useful and happy?
- With what does Chronicles deal particularly?
- Show why Chronicles contains good cheer.
- Will God do for us what He did for David?
- Will a glorious temple take the place of the Spirit?
- What happened when the people sought the Lord?
- In what is the true path of blessing?
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. — Hebrews 11:1 KJV