Who wrote the books of the Bible and when?
1 Chronicles, the chronology of genealogies, clans, armies, and temple staff during the reign of King David, was written about the fifth century (430) B.C. (more critical estimates date it as being compiled later, between 332 B.C. and 167 B.C.). Although the author is unknown, Jewish tradition ascribes it to Ezra the scribe. 1 Chronicles parallels and serves as a commentary to 2 Samuel. It is a priestly account of the reign of King David and contains the lineage of David beginning with Adam. Both 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles were one book in the Hebrew Bible, though separated for easier reading. The first Book of Chronicles includes accounts of the following events:
- Genealogy from Adam to the sons of David, through the line of Solomon
- The clans of Judah
- List of Temple musicians
- Genealogy of Saul
- List of people who resettled Judah after returning from Babylon
- Death of Saul and emergence of King David
- List of David's warriors
- Return of the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem
- David's conquests, including the Ammonites and Philistines
- David's census of Israel and the resulting plague that killed 70,000 Israelites
- David's preparation of the Temple of the Lord for the reign of Solomon
- Division of priests
- List of singers, gatekeepers, and officials of the temple
- Army divisions and officers
- Solomon made king
- Death of David
David looked up and saw the angel of the Lord standing between heaven and earth, with a drawn sword in his hand extended over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell facedown. David said to God, "Was it not I who ordered the fighting men to be counted? I am the one who has sinned and done wrong. These are but sheep. What have they done? O Lord my God, let your hand fall upon me and my family, but do not let this plague remain on your people." Then the angel of the Lord ordered Gad to tell David to go up and build an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. So David went up in obedience to the word that Gad had spoken in the name of the Lord.
(1 Chronicles 21:16-19)
2 Chronicles, the continuation of 1 Chronicles through the reign of King Solomon, was written about the fifth century (430) B.C. (more critical estimates date it as being compiled later, between 332 B.C. and 167 B.C.). Although the author is unknown, Jewish tradition ascribes it to Ezra the scribe. It is a priestly account of the reign of King Solomon and contains descriptions of the splendor of the Temple of the Lord, accounts of the remaining kings of Judah, and the Babylonian captivity. Both 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles were one book in the Hebrew Bible, though separated for easier reading. The second Book of Chronicles includes accounts of the following events:
- Solomon's wisdom
- Building of the Temple of the Lord
- Ark of the Covenant moved to the temple
- Dedication of the temple
- Life and death of King Solomon
- Succession of the kings of Judah, including the life and death of King Asa
- Micaiah's prophecy against Israel
- Hezekiah returns Judah to the Lord's commandments
- Judah's evil and the subsequent fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonian empire
- Cyrus king of Persia decrees the rebuilding of the Lord's Temple
Solomon gave orders to build a temple for the Name of the Lord and a royal place for himself. He conscripted seventy thousand men as carriers and eighty thousand as stone cutters in the hills and thirty-six hundred as foremen over them.
(2 Chronicles 2:1-2)
"The temple I am going to build will be great, because our God is greater than all other gods. But who is able to build a temple for him, since the heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain him? Who then am I to build a temple for him, except as a place to burn sacrifices before him?"
(2 Chronicles 2:5-6)
"The Lord has kept the promise he made. I have succeeded David my father and now I sit on the throne of Israel, just as the Lord promised, and I have built the temple for the Name of the Lord, the God of Israel. There I have placed the ark, in which is the covenant of the Lord that he made with the people of Israel."
(2 Chronicles 6:10-11)
Then the king and all the people offered sacrifices before the Lord. And King Solomon offered a sacrifice of twenty-two thousand head of cattle and a hundred and twenty thousand sheep and goats. So the king and all the people dedicated the temple of God.
(2 Chronicles 7:4-5)
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