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The Blue Letter Bible

Dr. J. Vernon McGee :: Overview for 1 & 2 Chronicles

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The ACTS of the Old Testament

WRITER: Probably Ezra. There is a striking resemblance in style and language to the Books of Ezra and Nehemiah. Evidently Chronicles was written during the Babylonian captivity. It could have been a compilation, assembled by Ezra, of diaries and journals of the priests and prophets. These two Books of Chronicles not only constituted one book in the original, but apparently also included Ezra and Nehemiah. This lends support to the authorship of Ezra and supports the Jewish tradition. Scholars have noted a similarity in the Hebrew of all four books.

COMMENT: Many treat Chronicles and Kings as if they were “Cabbages and Kings.” Are the Chronicles a duplication of Kings? Although they cover the same ground from Saul to Zedekiah, they are not duplications. Greek translators gave Chronicles the title of “Things Omitted” — there is more here that does not occur in the other historical books. This is another instance of the law of recurrence or recapitulation, seen previously in Genesis 2 and Deuteronomy, by which God goes over previously covered ground in order to add details and emphasize that which He considers important. This is exactly the case in Chronicles. David is the subject of 1 Chronicles; the house of David is prominent in 2 Chronicles. Chronicles gives the history of Judah while practically ignoring the northern kingdom. Chronicles does not record David’s sin — when God forgives, He forgets. The temple and Jerusalem are prominent in Chronicles. In Kings, the history of the nation is given from the throne; in Chronicles, it is given from the altar. The palace is the center in Kings; the temple is the center in Chronicles. Kings records the political history; Chronicles records the religious history. Chronicles is an interpretation of Kings — hence the constant reference in Kings to Chronicles. Kings gives us man’s viewpoint; Chronicles gives us God’s viewpoint (note this well as you read Chronicles; it will surprise you).



I. Genealogies, Chapters 19

This is important to God. We must be sons of God before we can do the work of God. “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7). These help explain the two genealogies of Christ in Matthew and Luke (compare 1 Chronicles 3:5 with Luke 3:31).

II. Saul’s reign, Chapter 10

III. David’s reign, Chapters 1129

A. David’s mighty men, Chapters 11, 12

B. David and the ark, Chapters 1316

C. David and the temple, Chapter 17

D. David’s wars, Chapters 1820

E. David’s sin in numbering the people, Chapter 21

F. David’s preparation and organization for building the temple, Chapters 2229


I. Solomon’s reign, Chapters 19

Building the temple is his most important accomplishment.

II. Division of the kingdom and the history of Judah, Chapters 1036

Reformations given prominence:

A. Asa’s, Chapters 1416

B. Jehoshaphat’s, Chapters 1720

C. Joash’s, Chapters 23, 24

D. Hezekiah’s, Chapters 2932

E. Josiah’s, Chapters 34, 35

Comments for 2 Kings ← Prior Section
Comments for 1 Chronicles Next Section →
Comments for 2 Kings ← Prior Book
Comments for 2 Chronicles Next Book →
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