2 Chronicles – Second Book of the Chronicles

2 Chronicles Summary

2 Chronicles

photo by Simon Webster

2 Chronicles or the Second Book of the Chronicles is the second text from the Book of Chronicles included in the history texts section of the Old Testament. Originally referred to as Chronicles with both the books forming a part of it, its English title came from Jerome, a 5th century scholar who referred to this historical text as a “chronikon”. Both 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles are also known by a variety of other names such as “Divrei Hayyamim” (in Hebrew) and “Paralipoménōn” (in Greek). The text of 2 Chronicles starts from where the first book 1 Chronicles left off.

Solomon, like David, ruled over Israel for 40 years. During his life, Solomon was offered a choice between great riches and wisdom. So he opted for wisdom and was fortunate to receive all the riches of the world along with wisdom. Solomon then used this wisdom to rule over the Kingdom of Israel. Solomon went on to prepare the construction of the Temple of Jerusalem with the materials that were provided for by his father David. Chapter 2 of 2 Chronicles discusses the final preparations that were made in this regard, after which the construction process is discussed in the third and fourth chapters. The dedication of the Temple is discussed in the chapters 5, 6 and 7.

Various aspects of the life and sovereignty of King Solomon are presented in the next two chapters. The remaining part of the book of 2 Chronicles deals with the division of the kingdom of Israel into Northern and Southern Kingdoms, and narrates various stories that focus on the kings of Judah. Judah throughout its history was ruled by a number of good as well as immoral monarchs. Where kings such as Jotham, Josiah and Hezekiah became well known for their dedication to noble causes, rulers such as Ahaz, Ahaziah and Jehoram gained notoriety for their wicked ways. There were also rulers who at the beginning of their reign were noble and just, but lost their way towards the later part of their life; some of the more well known kings in this regard include Asa and Uzziah.

Although the book of 2 Chronicles uses the name of the kings to indicate the time period of the history discussed, they are not the prime focal point of discussion. The main emphasis is put on the monarchs who dedicated their lives for the will of the Lord during this period of history. Although Israel saw both good and bad days brought on by its noble and sinful rulers, principal stress is put on the ones that gave the impetus to bring the people back to the Lord’s chosen path.

Under the leadership of King Asa, the kingdom of Judah went through a period of repentance and restoration. The ministries of the prophet Azariah also played a major part in this regard. Revival was also seen in King Jehoshaphat’s reign. Although at one point he joined hands with the sinful King Ahab, he still brought himself back to the righteous path of the Lord. These cycles of repentance and eventual restoration could be seen as a dominant theme in the Book of 2 Chronicles. The book of 2 Chronicles ends with the destruction of the First Temple of Jerusalem and the beginning of Babylonian exile that went on for 70 years; the Israelites finally returned to their home when their freedom was sanctioned by Persian King Cyrus the Great. Learn more about our Bible Quotes from 2 Chronicles and other books of the bible.