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Barnes' Notes on the Bible
1Jotham was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. His mother's name also was Jerushah, the daughter of Zadok.
This short chapter runs parallel with 2 Kings marginal reference), and is taken mainly from the same source or sources which it amplifies.
2And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father Uzziah did: howbeit he entered not into the temple of the LORD. And the people did yet corruptly.
3He built the high gate of the house of the LORD, and on the wall of Ophel he built much.
Ophel was the name given to the long, narrowish, rounded spur or promontory, which intervenes between the central valley of Jerusalem (the Tyropoeon) and the Kidron, or valley of Jehoshaphat. The anxiety of Uzziah and Jotham to fortify their territory indicates a fear of external attack, which at this time was probably felt mainly in connection with Samaria and Syria (2 Kings 15:37 note). The faithless trust put in fortifications was rebuked by the prophets of the time Hosea 8:14; Isaiah 2:15.
4Moreover he built cities in the mountains of Judah, and in the forests he built castles and towers.
5He fought also with the king of the Ammonites, and prevailed against them. And the children of Ammon gave him the same year an hundred talents of silver, and ten thousand measures of wheat, and ten thousand of barley. So much did the children of Ammon pay unto him, both the second year, and the third.
The Ammonites, who had submitted to Uzziah 2 Chronicles 26:8, revolted against Jotham. This revolt he firmly repressed; and, to punish it, he exacted a high rate of tribute for the three years following the termination of the war. The productiveness of the Ammonite country in grain, which is here indicated, has been remarked upon as extraordinary by modern travelers.
6So Jotham became mighty, because he prepared his ways before the LORD his God.
7Now the rest of the acts of Jotham, and all his wars, and his ways, lo, they are written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah.
8He was five and twenty years old when he began to reign, and reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem.
9And Jotham slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David: and Ahaz his son reigned in his stead.