This and the following book were reckoned by the Jews as one book, as
appears by the Masoretic note at the end of the second book, and as
is affirmed by Origen {a} and Jerom {b}; and they were by the
ancients {c} called Chronicles, as they are by us; but they are
different from the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel and
Judah, so often mentioned in the preceding books, seeing several
things there referred to, as in them, are not to be found here;
though no doubt many things here recorded were taken from thence
under a divine direction. In the Greek version, and so in the Vulgate
Latin version after that, they are called "Paralipomena", that is,
things passed over or omitted, because they contain several anecdotes
which are not to be found in the books of Samuel and Kings. The
Hebrew title of them is, "Dibre Hayamim", words of days, day books or
diaries, and what the Greeks call "Ephemerides"; though, as "yamim"
sometimes signifies years, they may be named "annals"; and so the
Arabic inscription is,

``the Books of Annals;''

and because they chiefly respect the kings of Judah, the Syriac
inscription is,

``the Book of the Things that were done in the Times of the
Kings of Judah.''

The Targum is,

``the Book of Genealogies, the Words of Days, which were from
the Days of the World;''

because the first ten chapters consist of genealogies beginning from
Adam. The inspired penman of these books must live after the return of
the Jews from the Babylonish captivity, since he carries down the
genealogy of the kings and princes of Judah beyond that time,
\\#1Ch 3:17-19 9:1\\. It is generally thought by the Jews and Christians
that Ezra was the writer of them, with which agrees the age in which he
lived; and as it may seem, from the last of these books ending with the
same words with which that under his name begins: so the Talmudists
{d} say, that Ezra wrote his own book, and the genealogy of the
chronicles unto his own, or unto Velo, "and he had brethren",
\\#2Ch 21:2\\ and Jarchi affirms that he wrote them by the hand or
means of Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, inspired prophets; though some
Jewish writers {e} suppose they were written partly by him, and partly
by Nehemiah; that all to \\#2Ch 21:2\\ were written by Ezra, and the
rest by Nehemiah. Kimchi thinks that Ezra was not the first author and
writer of these books, but that the books of Chronicles and Annals of
the kings of Judah, and of the kings of Israel, were separately written
before him; but that he only revised them, and with the men of the great
synagogue added the genealogies, and put them into the canon of the
Scriptures {f}. Spinosa {g} fancies they were written after Judas
Maccabaeus had restored the temple, since the historian tells what
families dwelt in Jerusalem in the times of Ezra, \\#1Ch 9:1\\ and
speaks of the porters, \\#1Ch 9:17\\ two of which are mentioned,
\\#Ne 11:19\\ as if Ezra could not describe the families that lived when
he did, or name the porters of the temple, since it was finished and
dedicated in his time, \\#Ezr 6:15\\, but however there is no doubt to be
made of the authenticity of these books, since not only they have
always been acknowledged by the Jews as a part of the canonical
Scripture, and by ancient Christians, as appears by the catalogues of
Melito {h} and Origen {i}; but there are plain references to them in
the New Testament. The genealogy of Christ, by the evangelists, is
formed out of them; the doxology in \\#Re 5:12\\ as some have observed,
comes very near to what is used by David, \\#1Ch 29:11\\ and the passages
in \\#Ac 7:48 17:24\\ contain the sense of what is expressed in
\\#2Ch 2:5,6 6:18\\. The use and design of these books are chiefly to
give a larger account of the kingdom of Judah, especially after the
division of it from the ten tribes, and of the kings thereof, than what
is given in the preceding books, as in the last of these books; and
particularly they ascertain the genealogy of Christ, that it might be
clear and plain of what tribe and family the Messiah came, that he
descended from the tribe of Judah, and from the kings of the house of
David, as in this first book. They both contain an history from Adam,
to the deliverance of the Jews from their captivity in Babylon. The
first of these books reaches, according to Hottinger {k}, to A. M. 2985,
and the latter is an history of four hundred and seventy two years.
According to Bishop Usher {l} the former contains a course of 2990
years, and the latter of four hundred and seventy eight.

{a} Apud Eusch. Eccl. Hist. l. 6. c. 25.
{b} Ad Dominionem, tom. 3. fol. 7. C.
{c} Hieron. Praefat. in lib. Reg. tom. 3. fol. 6. B.
{d} T. Bab. Bava Bathra, fol. 15. 1.
{e} Shalssalet Hakabala, Abarbinel in Josuam, fol. 3. 3.
{f} Vid. Buxtorf. de Punct. Antiqu. par. 1. p. 182.
{g} Tract. Theolog. Politic. c. 10. p. 184.
{h} Apud Euseb. Eccl. Hist. l. 4. c. 26.
{i} Apud ib. l. 6. c. 25.
{k} Thesaur. Philolog. l. 2. c. 1. p. 514, 515.
{l} Annal. Vet. Test. p. 56.
{m} Tiberias, c. 14.


This chapter gives us the genealogy of the patriarchs from Adam to
Noah, \\#1Ch 1:1-4\\ of the sons of Noah, and their posterity, to
Abraham, \\#1Ch 1:5-27\\ of the sons of Abraham and their posterity,
\\#1Ch 1:28-34\\ and of the sons of Esau, \\#1Ch 1:35-42\\ and of the
kings and dukes that reigned in Edom, \\#1Ch 1:43-54\\.

with the account of the antediluvian patriarchs in \\#Ge 5:1-32\\, the
first letter in Adam is larger than usual, as a memorial, as Buxtorf
{m} observes, of the first and only man, from whence mankind had their
beginning, and whose history the author had undertaken to write.