King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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2 Chronicles 26

Uzziah’s good reign in Judah. (1-15) Uzziah’s attempt to burn incense. (16-23)

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Uzziah’s good reign in Judah

1 Then all the people of Judah took Uzziah, who was sixteen years old, and made him king in the room of his father Amaziah.

2 He built Eloth, and restored it to Judah, after that the king slept with his fathers.

3 Sixteen years old was Uzziah when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty and two years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Jecoliah of Jerusalem.

4 And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father Amaziah did.

5 And he sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God: and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him to prosper.

6 And he went forth and warred against the Philistines, and brake down the wall of Gath, and the wall of Jabneh, and the wall of Ashdod, and built cities about Ashdod, and among the Philistines.

7 And God helped him against the Philistines, and against the Arabians that dwelt in Gurbaal, and the Mehunims.

8 And the Ammonites gave gifts to Uzziah: and his name spread abroad even to the entering in of Egypt; for he strengthened himself exceedingly.

9 Moreover Uzziah built towers in Jerusalem at the corner gate, and at the valley gate, and at the turning of the wall, and fortified them.

10 Also he built towers in the desert, and digged many wells: for he had much cattle, both in the low country, and in the plains: husbandmen also, and vine dressers in the mountains, and in Carmel: for he loved husbandry.

11 Moreover Uzziah had an host of fighting men, that went out to war by bands, according to the number of their account by the hand of Jeiel the scribe and Maaseiah the ruler, under the hand of Hananiah, one of the king’s captains.

12 The whole number of the chief of the fathers of the mighty men of valour were two thousand and six hundred.

13 And under their hand was an army, three hundred thousand and seven thousand and five hundred, that made war with mighty power, to help the king against the enemy.

14 And Uzziah prepared for them throughout all the host shields, and spears, and helmets, and habergeons, and bows, and slings to cast stones.

15 And he made in Jerusalem engines, invented by cunning men, to be on the towers and upon the bulwarks, to shoot arrows and great stones withal. And his name spread far abroad; for he was marvellously helped, till he was strong.

Uzziah’s attempt to burn incense

16 But when he was strong, his heart was lifted up to his destruction: for he transgressed against the LORD his God, and went into the temple of the LORD to burn incense upon the altar of incense.

17 And Azariah the priest went in after him, and with him fourscore priests of the LORD, that were valiant men:

18 And they withstood Uzziah the king, and said unto him, It appertaineth not unto thee, Uzziah, to burn incense unto the LORD, but to the priests the sons of Aaron, that are consecrated to burn incense: go out of the sanctuary; for thou hast trespassed; neither shall it be for thine honour from the LORD God.

19 Then Uzziah was wroth, and had a censer in his hand to burn incense: and while he was wroth with the priests, the leprosy even rose up in his forehead before the priests in the house of the LORD, from beside the incense altar.

20 And Azariah the chief priest, and all the priests, looked upon him, and, behold, he was leprous in his forehead, and they thrust him out from thence; yea, himself hasted also to go out, because the LORD had smitten him.

21 And Uzziah the king was a leper unto the day of his death, and dwelt in a several house, being a leper; for he was cut off from the house of the LORD: and Jotham his son was over the king’s house, judging the people of the land.

22 Now the rest of the acts of Uzziah, first and last, did Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, write.

23 So Uzziah slept with his fathers, and they buried him with his fathers in the field of the burial which belonged to the kings; for they said, He is a leper: and Jotham his son reigned in his stead.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Ozias, called Azarias (4 K. xiv. 21. C.) improperly. H.

Ver. 2. Juda, till the reign of Achaz. 4 K. xvi. 6. It had revolted under Joram. C.

Ver. 4. Done. And was successful, as long as he attended to the high priest. Num. xxvii. 21. W.

Ver. 5. God, or who had the gift of intelligence and prophecy from God. Heb. “who was intelligent in the visions of God.” Others have read birath, with the Sept. “in the fear;” or Chal. &c. “instructing in the fear of the Lord.” The Jews childishly understand Zacharias to mean the king himself, in the early part of his reign. Others suppose the priest, who was slain by Joas, is designated. Lyran. — But this was rather his son (T. Cajet. C.) and successor, as well as a prophet, who had therefore a more perfect knowledge of God; though none can comprehend his being. H.

Ver. 6. In. Prot. “about Ashdod.” Sept. “he built (or repaired) the cities of Azotus,” to keep under the Philistines, who had revolted under Joram. C. xxi. 16.

Ver. 7. Gurbaal. Gerera, (S. Jer. Trad.) or Gebal. Ps. lxxxii. 8. Sept. “the rock,” or Petra, in Arabia, where Stephanus places the Gabalenes. — Ammonites. Heb. mehunim. Sept. “Mineans,” (C. xx. 1. H.) upon the Red Sea, (Steph.) or Mediterranean, (Pliny vi. 28,) or in Arabia Felix. Strabo. M.

Ver. 8. Gifts. Tribute. C. xxvii. 5. C. — Victories. Prot. “the strengthened himself exceedingly.” H.

Ver. 9. Corner. Repairing what Joas had demolished. 4 K. xiv. 13. T.

Ver. 10. Wilderness, for the protection of shepherds. 4 K. xvii. 9. — Plains. Heb. “valleys, and in the plains husbandmen, and vinedressers in the mountains, and in Carmel; for he loved the earth, or husbandry,” like David. 1 Par. xvii. 25. &c. — Carmel, means, “the vine of God;” as both the mount in Juda, where Nabal resided, and that on the Mediterranean Sea, were famous for wine. Ozias probably cultivated the former mountain. C.

Ver. 11. Doctor. Heb. shoter. Sept. “judge.” Prot. “ruler.” H. — The term is commonly understood of one who executes the sentence of the judge. But this employment does not suit a general, (C.) though such a one might well command. It many denote any “officer.” H.

Ver. 15. Engines. They are here mentioned for the first time. C. — For the. Heb. “for he was wonderfully helped till he was established.” H. — He invented may things for the defence of his kingdom. C.

Ver. 17. Azarias. The prophet, who had hitherto kept the king (H.) within bounds, was now no more, v. 5. T.

Ver. 18. To thee. For usurping spiritual authority, the king was opposed by the high priest; and God confirmed the sentence of the latter, by striking Ozias with the leprosy; on which account, the was not only cast out of the temple, but also lost his kingdom, being obliged to live apart; (Lev. xiii. 46,) and after death, he could not be buried with his ancestors. W.

Ver. 19. Forehead. So that it could not be concealed. According to the rigour of the law, such an offender was to be slain. Num. iii. 10. and xviii. 7. The leprosy was considered as equivalent, and is styled destruction, (v. 16,) and death. Isai. vi. 1. M. See 4 K. xv. 6.

Ver. 22. Prophet. Yet we find little concerning him in the prophecy of Isaias; so that the work has been lost, except what Esdras hath preserved. C.

Ver. 23. Leper. So much was the disease abhorred, (C.) as well as the king’s late conduct. H.