The people destroy all traces of idolatry throughout Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, and Manasseh, 1. Hezekiah reforms the state of religion in general; and the tithes are brought in from all quarters, and proper officers set over them, 2-13. They bring to also the freewill-offerings, and regulate the priests and Levites and their families, according to their genealogies, 14-19. Hezekiah does every thing in sincerity and truth, and is prosperous, 20,21.
Notes on Chapter 31
Brake the images in pieces
This species of reformation was not only carried on through Judah, but they carried it into Israel; whether through a transport of religious zeal, or whether with the consent of Hoshea the Israelitish king, we cannot tell.
In the gates of the tents of the Lord.
That is, in the temple; for this was the house, tabernacle, tent, and camp, of the Most High.
The king's portion of his substance for the burnt-offerings
It is conjectured that the Jewish kings, at least from the time of David, furnished the morning and evening sacrifice daily at their own expense, and several others also.
These were principally for the maintenance of the priests and Levites; they brought tithes of all the produce of the field, whether commanded or not, as we see in the instance of honey, which was not to be offered to the Lord, Leviticus 2:11, yet it appears it might be offered to the priests as first-fruits, or in the way of tithes.
In the third month
"The month Sivan; the seventh, Tisri."-Targum.
The vast collections of grain which they had from the tithes over and above their own consumption; see 2 Chronicles 31:10.
To prepare chambers
To make granaries to lay up this superabundance.
Shimei-was the next.
He was assistant to Cononiah.
Instead of Miniamin, , Benjamin, is the reading of three of Kennicott's and De Rossi's MSS.; and this is the reading of the Vulgate, Syriac, Septuagint, and Arabic.
From twenty years old
Moses had ordered that the Levites should not begin their labour till they were thirty years of age; but David changed this order, and obliged them to begin at twenty.
Wrought-good and right and truth
Here is the proper character of a worthy king: he is GOOD, and he does good; he is UPRIGHT, and he acts justly and maintains justice; he is truly RELIGIOUS, and he lives according to that truth which he receives as a revelation from God.
He did it with all his heart
In every respect he was a thoroughly excellent man, saw his duty to God and to his people, and performed it with becoming zeal and diligence. May God ever send such kings to the nations of the world; and may the people who are blessed with such be duly obedient to them, and thankful to the God who sends them!