2 Kings 21:3 MEANING

2 Kings 21:3
(3) For he built up again.--The LXX. and Vulg. imitate the Hebrew idiom, and he returned and built--i.e., and he rebuilt.

The high places . . . altars for Baal . . . a grove (an Ash?rah).--"The idols, the sun-pillars, the ash?rim, the sacred trees, and all the other pagan or half-pagan symbols, so plainly inconsistent with the prophetic faith, were of the very substance of Israel's worship in the popular sanctuaries" (Prof. Robertson Smith).

As did Ahab.--See 1 Kings 16:32-33.

Worshipped all the host of heaven.--See Notes on 2 Kings 17:16, and comp. 2 Kings 23:12. The Babylonian star-worship and astrology, with concomitant superstitions, had been introduced under Ahaz.

Verse 3. - For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed (comp. 2 Kings 18:4, 22). On the high-place worship, see the comment upon 1 Kings 14:23. It is quite clear that the people were deeply attached to it, and gladly saw it restored. And he reared up altars for Baal; i.e. he reintroduced the Phoenician Baal-worship, the special abomination of the house of Ahab (1 Kings 16:31; 1 Kings 22:53; 2 Kings 8:18, 27, etc.), which Athaliah had been the first to introduce into Judah (2 Kings 11:18), which Joash had put away (2 Kings 11:18), but which Ahaz (2 Chronicles 28:2) had recalled. And made a grove; literally, an Asherah, or emblem of Astarte (compare the comment on 1 Kings 14:23) - as did Ahab King of Israel (see 1 Kings 16:33) and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them. The worship the host of heaven, or the entire multitude of the heavenly bodies, commonly known as Sabaeanism or Ssabianism, was an ancient Babylonian, Arabian, and Syrian practice. It had, perhaps, been introduced among the Jews by Ahaz (2 Kings 23:12). At any rate, it was from the time of Manasseh one of the favorite idolatries of the Jewish people. The stars were believed to guide the destiny of men, and astrology was cultivated as a main part, or even as the essence, of religion. Astrological tracts form an important element in the literature of the Babylonians (see' Records of the Past,' vol. 1. pp. 153-163). The chief objects of adoration in this worship were the sun and moon, the five planets, and the signs of the zodiac.

21:1-9 Young persons generally desire to become their own masters, and to have early possession of riches and power. But this, for the most part, ruins their future comfort, and causes mischief to others. It is much happier when young persons are sheltered under the care of parents or guardians, till age gives experience and discretion. Though such young persons are less indulged, they will afterwards be thankful. Manasseh wrought much wickedness in the sight of the Lord, as if on purpose to provoke him to anger; he did more evil than the nations whom the Lord destroyed. Manasseh went on from bad to worse, till carried captive to Babylon. The people were ready to comply with his wishes, to obtain his favour and because it suited their depraved inclinations. In the reformation of large bodies, numbers are mere time-servers, and in temptation fall away.For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed,.... The temples and altars upon them, see 2 Kings 18:4,

and he reared up altars for Baal; in the high places he rebuilt:

and made a grove, as did Ahab king of Israel: which was either an idol itself, or a shade of trees where idols were placed; or rather Asherah, rendered "a grove", is the same with Astarte, the goddess of the Zidonians, the figure of which he made and worshipped; for groves were not so soon and easily planted, raised, and made; so the same in 1 Kings 16:33.

and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them: the sun, moon, and stars, particularly the planets Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, and Venus.

Courtesy of Open Bible