Daily Encouragement

July 30 – Army sizes in the Bible

July 30
2 Chronicles 26:1-28:27
Romans 13:1-14
Psalm 23:1-6
Proverbs 20:11

2 Chronicles 26:3 – Uzziah’s 52 years was just 3 years shorter than Manasseh (2 Chronicles 33:1), but in contrast to Manasseh’s evil (2 Chronicles 33:2), Uzziah did right (2 Chronicles 26:4).

2 Chronicles 26:13 – The 307,500 man army sounds impressive – discounting even today’s standards (U.S. has 2,092,900 active + reserves) – but let’s see how this weighs against other counts we have (keep in mind some are standing armies – ready to fight / reserves – census count, able to draft / expeditionary forces – soldiers in a moving army on a campaign):

  • 1,600,000 – David (Israel + Judah-Levi-Benjamin) / c. 950 BC – 2 Samuel 24:9, 1 Chronicles 21:5 {see explanation at DefendingInerrancy)
  • 1,160,000 – Jehoshaphat (Judah + Benjamin / c. 850 BC – 2 Chronicles 17:14-18)
  • 1,000,000 – Zerah (Ethiopia / c. 901 BC – 2 Chronicles 14:8)
  • 800,000 – Jeroboam (Israel / c. 912 BC – 2 Chronicles 13:3)
  • 603,550 – Moses (Israel / c. 1445 BC – Exodus 38:26, Numbers 1:46, Numbers 2:32)
  • 601,730 – Moses (Israel / c. 1407 BC – Numbers 26:51)
  • 600,000 – Moses (Israel / c. 1446 BC – Exodus 12:37)
  • 580,000 – Asa (Judah+Benjamin / c. 901 BC – 2 Chronicles 14:8)
  • 400,000 – Abijah (Judah / c. 912 BC – 2 Chronicles 13:3)
  • 400,000 – Judges (Israel-Benjamin / c.  – Judges 20:2, Judges 20:17)
  • 330,000 – Saul (Israel + Judah / c. 1050 BC – 1 Samuel 11:8)
  • >320,000 – Ahaz (Judah / c. 725 BC – 2 Chronicles 28:6-8)
  • 307,500 – Uzziah (Judah / c. 768 BC – 2 Chronicles 26:13)
  • 300,000 – Amaziah (Judah / c. 795 BC – 2 Chronicles 25:5)
  • 210,000 – Saul (Israel + Judah / c. 1040 BC – 1 Samuel 15:4)
  • 185,000 – Sennacherib/Rabshekah’s Expeditionary Force (Assyria / c. 701 BC – 2 Kings 19:35)
  • 180,000 – Rehoboam (Judah+Benjamin / c. 930 BC – 1 Kings 12:21)
  • 42,360 – Zerubbabel – (Exiles / c. 516 BC – Ezra 2:64)

Uzziah’s army was fairly small historically speaking – but depending on the strength of surrounding kings – it was significant and it was supplied (2 Chronicles 26:14) and they had artillery (2 Chronicles 26:15). Then things went bad (2 Chronicles 26:16).

2 Chronicles 27:2 – Obedient kings were tough to find. Here’s a start of a chart comparing their general practice (if you have a better one let me know). This is not a fully precise chart – analyzing Uzziah’s sin of entering the temple shows a specific practice.

  • Worst – Burnt children (1st Command / 6th Command)
    • Judah: Ahaz (2 Chronicles 28:1-2)
    • Judah: Manasseh (2 Chronicles 33:6)
  • Worse – Sins of Ahab (Baal / 1st Command)
    • Israel: Ahab (1 Kings 16:31)
    • Judah: Manasseh (2 Kings 21:3)
  • Bad – Sins of Jeroboam (Golden Calf / 2nd Commmand / 1 Kings 12:26-30)
    • Israel: Jehoram (2 Kings 3:3).
    • Israel: Pekah (2 Kings 15:28)
  • Good – Solomonic Temple, but left sodomites, high places
    • Judah: Solomon (1 Kings 11:7) – built high places
    • Judah: Asa (1 Kings 15:14)
  • Good – Solomonic Temple, removed sodomites, but left highplaces,
    • Judah: Jehoshaphat (1 Kings 22:43, 1 Kings 22:46)
  • Better – Solomonic Temple, removed highplaces
    • Judah: Hezekiah (2 Kings 18:4)
    • Judah: Josiah (2 Kings 23:8)

2 Chronicles 27:6 – A king that could be trusted with success, as opposed to Uzaah (2 Chronicles 26:16).

2 Chronicles 28:9-13 – Remember that LORD is the name Jehovah/Yahweh – the specific personal name for the God of Israel. So why should Israel that had been so disobedient to the LORD listen to a prophet of the LORD (2 Chronicles 28:9), speak in the name of the LORD (2 Chronicles 28:9), about sins against the LORD (2 Chronicles 28:10), resulting in the wrath of the LORD (2 Chronicles 28:11), resulting in conviction among the leaders (2 Chronicles 28:13)? Because Pekah, the ruler at this time (2 Chronicles 28:6), like most of Israel’s leaders was “Bad” not “Worse/Worst.” While they violated the 2nd Commandment by building the Golden Calf for the worship of the LORD in a city other than Jerusalem, they kept the 1st Commandment. Only a few kings (Ahab, Ahaz, Manasseh) actively promoted the worship of Baal over the LORD. The rest pulled an Aaron and declared a feast to the LORD (Exodus 32:5) to dedicate the molten calf (Exodus 32:4) as the god who brought Israel out of Egypt (Exodus 32:4). This was a direct violation of the 2nd commandment – not “another god” but “the God” in the wrong way (see Nadab & Abihu – Numbers 3:4).

2 Chronicles 28:23 – Everything is easier than repenting and following the LORD.

Romans 13:1 – The man who has called upon the name of the LORD (Romans 10:13), has a changed form (Romans 12:1), and has a relationship with government that reflects submission.

Romans 13:9 – Are we free from the law in the age of grace? Has the freedom to eat Bacon extended to freedom to do whatever? No – Commandments 7, 6, 8, 9, and 10 – the entire second half of the law is directly restated and summarized (and given enforcement power (Romans 13:4)).

Psalm 23:1 – Some comments on Psalm 23 from D.L. Moody’s Bibles:

And from our good friend Patch the Pirate (very close to word perfect KJV)

Proverbs 20:11 – Reputations start early. What’s yours?

Share how reading thru the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *