2 Kings 17
Israel’s King Hoshea
1In the twelfth year of Judah’s King Ahaz, Hoshea # 2Kg 15:30 son of Elah became king over Israel in Samaria and reigned nine years. 2He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, but not like the kings of Israel who preceded him. # 2Kg 15:24,28
3Shalmaneser # Hs 10:14 king of Assyria attacked him, # 2Kg 18:9-12 and Hoshea became his vassal and paid him tribute money. 4But the king of Assyria discovered Hoshea’s conspiracy. He had sent envoys to So king of Egypt # Is 31:1 and had not paid tribute money to the king of Assyria as in previous years. # Lit as year by year Therefore the king of Assyria arrested him and put him in prison. 5Then the king of Assyria invaded the whole land, marched up to Samaria, and besieged it for three years. # 2Kg 18:9-10; Hs 13:16
The Fall of Samaria
6In the ninth year of Hoshea, # Hs 1:4; 13:16 the king of Assyria captured Samaria. He deported # Dt 28:64; 29:27-28 the Israelites to Assyria and settled them in Halah and by the Habor, Gozan’s river, and in the cities of the Medes. # 1Ch 5:26
Why Israel Fell
7This disaster happened because the people of Israel had sinned against the Lord their God who had brought them out of the land of Egypt from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt # Jos 24:5-7 and because they had worshiped # Lit feared other gods. # Jdg 6:10 8They had lived according to the customs of the nations that the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites # Lv 18:3; Dt 18:9 and the customs the kings of Israel had introduced. # 2Kg 16:3; 17:19 9The Israelites secretly did what was not right # Or Israelites spoke untrue words against the Lord their God. They built high places in all their towns from watchtower # 2Kg 18:8 to fortified city. 10They set up for themselves sacred pillars # Ex 23:24 and Asherah poles # 1Kg 14:15,23; 15:13; 2Kg 18:4 on every high hill and under every green tree. # Dt 12:2 11They burned incense on all the high places just like those nations that the Lord had driven out before them. They did evil things, provoking the Lord. 12They served idols, although the Lord had told them, “You must not do this.” # Ex 20:4-5 13Still, the Lord warned # Neh 9:29-30 Israel and Judah through every prophet and every seer, saying, “Turn from your evil ways and keep My commands and statutes according to all the law I commanded your ancestors and sent to you through My servants the prophets.” # 1Kg 9:6-9; 18:18-21
14But they would not listen. Instead they became obstinate like # Lit they stiffened their neck like the neck of their ancestors who did not believe the Lord their God. # Ex 32:9; 33:3; Nm 14:11 15They rejected His statutes and His covenant He had made with their ancestors # Ex 24:6-8 and the decrees He had given them. They pursued worthless idols and became worthless themselves, # Jr 2:5; Rm 1:21-23 following the surrounding nations the Lord had commanded them not to imitate. # Dt 12:30-31
16They abandoned all the commands of the Lord their God. They made cast images # 1Kg 12:28 for themselves, two calves, and an Asherah pole. # 1Kg 14:15,23 They worshiped the whole heavenly host # 2Kg 21:3 and served Baal. # 1Kg 16:31-33; Am 5:26; Zph 1:5 17They made their sons and daughters pass through the fire # 2Kg 16:3 and practiced divination and interpreted omens. # Lv 19:26; Dt 18:10-12; 2Kg 16:3 They devoted themselves to do what was evil in the Lord’s sight and provoked Him. # 1Kg 21:20
18Therefore, the Lord was very angry with Israel, and He removed them from His presence. # 2Kg 17:6 Only the tribe of Judah remained. # 1Kg 11:13,32,36 19Even Judah did not keep the commands of the Lord their God # 1Kg 14:22-23 but lived according to the customs Israel had introduced. # 2Kg 16:3 20So the Lord rejected all the descendants of Israel, afflicted them, and handed them over to plunderers until He had banished them from His presence. # 2Kg 15:29; 17:6
Summary of Israel’s History
21When the Lord tore # 1Kg 11:11,31 Israel from the house of David, Israel made Jeroboam son of Nebat king. # 1Kg 12:20 Then Jeroboam led Israel away from following the Lord and caused them to commit great sin. 22The Israelites persisted in all the sins that Jeroboam committed and did not turn away from them. # 1Kg 12:28-33 23Finally, the Lord removed Israel from His presence just as He had declared through all His servants the prophets. So Israel has been exiled to Assyria from their homeland until today. # 2Kg 17:6,13
Foreign Refugees in Israel
24Then the king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim and settled them in place of the Israelites in the cities of Samaria. The settlers took possession of Samaria and lived in its cities. # Ezr 4:10 25When they first lived there, they did not fear Yahweh. So the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them. # 1Kg 13:24 26The settlers spoke to the king of Assyria, saying, “The nations that you have deported and placed in the cities of Samaria do not know the requirements of the God of the land. Therefore He has sent lions among them that are killing them because the people don’t know the requirements of the God of the land.”
27Then the king of Assyria issued a command: “Send back one of the priests you deported. # 2Kg 17:6 Have him go and live there so he can teach them the requirements of the God of the land.” 28So one of the priests they had deported came and lived in Bethel, # 1Kg 12:29,32-33 and he began to teach them how they should fear Yahweh.
29But the people of each nation were still making their own gods in the cities where they lived and putting them in the shrines of the high places that the people of Samaria had made. # 1Kg 12:31; 13:32 30The men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth, the men of Cuth made Nergal, the men of Hamath made Ashima, 31the Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak, and the Sepharvites burned their children in the fire # 2Kg 17:17 to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of the Sepharvaim. 32They feared the Lord, but they also appointed from their number priests to serve them in the shrines of the high places. # Jdg 17:5-13; 1Kg 12:31; 13:33 33They feared the Lord, but they also worshiped their own gods # Zph 1:5 according to the custom of the nations where they had been deported from.
34They are still practicing the former customs to this day. None of them fear the Lord or observe their statutes and ordinances, the law and commandments the Lord commanded the descendants of Jacob. He had renamed him Israel. # Gn 32:28; 35:10 35The Lord made a covenant with them and commanded them, “Do not fear other gods; do not bow down to them; # Ex 20:5; Dt 5:9; Jdg 6:10 do not serve them; do not sacrifice to them. # Dt 5:9 36Instead fear the Lord, who brought you from the land of Egypt with great power # Ex 14:15-30 and an outstretched arm. # Ex 6:6; 9:15 You are to bow down to Him, and you are to sacrifice to Him. 37You are to be careful always # Dt 5:32 to observe the statutes, the ordinances, the law, and the commandments He wrote for you; do not fear other gods. 38Do not forget the covenant that I have made with you. # Dt 4:23; 6:12 Do not fear other gods, 39but fear the Lord your God, and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies.” # Ex 23:22; Dt 20:1-4; 23:14
40However, they would not listen but continued practicing their former customs. 41These nations feared the Lord but also served their idols. Their children and grandchildren continue doing as their fathers did until today. # 1Kg 18:21; Ezr 4:2; Mt 6:24
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