Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


1 Kings 22:49

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

But Jehoshaphat would not - It appears from the above cited place in Chronicles that Jehoshaphat did join in making and sending ships to Tharshish, and it is possible that what is here said is spoken of a second expedition, in which Jehoshaphat would not join Ahaziah. But instead of אבה ולא velo abah, "he would not," perhaps we should read אבה ולו velo abah, "he consented to him;" two words pronounced exactly in the same way, and differing but in one letter, viz., an א aleph for a ו vau . This reading, however, is not supported by any MS. or version; but the emendation seems just; for there are several places in these historical books in which there are mistakes of transcribers which nothing but violent criticism can restore, and to this it is dangerous to resort, but in cases of the last necessity. Critics have recommended the 48th and 49th verses to be read thus: "Jehoshaphat had built ships of burden at Ezion-geber, to go to Ophir for gold. 49. And Ahaziah, the son of Ahab, had said to Jehoshaphat, Let my servants, I pray thee, go with thy servants in the ships: to which Jehoshaphat consented. But the ships went not thither; for the ships were broken at Ezion-geber." This is Houbigant's translation, who contends that "the words of the 48th verse, but they went not, should be placed at the end of the 49th verse, for who can believe that the sacred writer should first relate that the ships were broken, and then that Ahaziah requested of Jehoshaphat that his servants might embark with the servants of Jehoshaphat?" This bold critic, who understood the Hebrew language better than any man in Europe, has, by happy conjectures, since verified by the testimony of MSS., removed the blots of many careless transcribers from the sacred volume.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

2 Chronicles 20:35-36, explains that the two kings conjointly built the fleet with which the Ophir trade (1 Kings 9:28 note) was to be re-opened. Ahaziah had thus an interest in the ships; and when they were wrecked, attributing, as it would seem, the calamity to the unskillfulness of his ally‘s mariners, he proposed that the fleet should be manned in part by Israelite sailors - men probably accustomed to the sea, perhaps trained at Tyre. This proposal Jehoshaphat refused, either offended at the reflection on his subjects‘ skill, or accepting the wreck of the ships, which Eliezer had prophesied, as a proof that God was against the entire undertaking.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Jehoshaphat's reign appears to have been one of the best, both as to piety and prosperity. He pleased God, and God blessed him.
The Omride Dynasty
The Golden Ages of the 9th & 8th centuries BCE