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In the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa Baasha king of Israel came up against Judah, and built Ramah, to the intent that he might let none go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

16:1 Baasha king of Israel. II Chronicles 16:1-6 is nearly the same as I Kings 15:17-22, indicating that both had used the records in the now-lost “book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah (I Kings 15:23).

16:1 came up against Judah. There is an apparent problem with dates here. Baasha is said to have begun his reign in Israel in the third year of Asa’s reign in Judah and then to have his reign ended in the twenty-sixth year of Asa (I Kings 15:28; 16:8). Yet this verse says that Baasha came up against Judah in the thirty-sixth year of Asa, seemingly nine years after his own death. Other than a possible copyist error here, it has been suggested that the intent of the statement was “the thirty-sixth year of the divided kingdom, now under Asa.”

16:1 Ramah. Ramah was only about five miles from Jerusalem, so a military outpost there from Israel could pose a serious threat to the capital. In order to minimize this threat, Asa felt he should bribe the king of Syria to attack Israel, and Ben-hadad did exactly that. Note II Chronicles 16:4.

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