Did Asa take away the high places? - BibelCenter [apparent] contradictions
Did Asa take away the high places?
von Wolfgang Schneider

2Ch 14:1–3 — Asa took away the high places and altars
1Ki 15:11-14 — Asa did not remove the high places

These records about king Asa of Judah seem to contain contradictory information in reference to his endeavors to get rid of the idolatrous worship. This apparent contradiction can be solved when reading carefully what these records say and by including another important scripture which also speaks about king Asa's steps against idolatry.

Asa was king of Judah, the southern part of the kingdom which had been parted after Solomon. 2Ch 14:1-4 tell what Asa did within his kingdom in order to instruct the people and lead them back to a true worship and to turn them away from their idolatrous practises. Part of his endeavors was the removal of the altars to the strange gods and the high places as well as to order and command the people to seek the LORD and to serve Him. Asa's steps concerned his kingdom, the kingdom of Judah, over which he reigned as king.

In 1Ki 15:11-14, we can also read about Asa's steps against idolatry in Judah, in addition there are references to other steps which had not been mentioned in 2Ch 14 – the removal of the queen mother, and what else Asa did in connection with that. In the context of this matter it then states that Asa did not remove the high places. Now, the question is, which high places and altars is this speaking of? Before, we learned that he did remove the high places and altars to strange gods which were located in Judah.

Which high places Asa did not remove, we can learn from a passage in 2Ch 15:16–17: „And also concerning Maachah the mother of Asa the king, he removed her from being queen, because she had made an idol in a grove: and Asa cut down her idol, and stamped it, and burnt it at the brook Kidron. But the high places were not taken away out of Israel: nevertheless the heart of Asa was perfect all his days." Here we read of the removal of Maachah and what Asa did at the time. And we learn more precisely which high places Asa did not remove – the high places in ISRAEL, i.e. the high places located in the northern kingdom, in the kingdom if Israel where Asa did not reign and where he therefore could not very well remove them.

Asa did take away the high places and he removed idolatry – where? In his kingdom, the kingdom of Judah, where he reigned as king. When he removed his mother Maachah, who worshipped idols, he destroyed the image and idol which she had made, but he could not remove the high places in Israel because they were not located within his jurisdiction.

Again we recognize how accurate and absolutely reliable the Word of God is in its statements. Here we have an example where an apparent contradiction between two statements is solved by a third statement which gives some additional information by which the problem can be quickly solved.

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Copyright © 2009 by Wolfgang Schneider
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Last changed: 10.02.2009