Although Ezra is often credited as the writer of the books of the Chronicles, there is no certainty to that claim. Let’s read 1 Chronicles 6:15, “And Jehozadak went into captivity, when the LORD carried away Judah and Jerusalem by the hand of Nebuchadnezzar.” Let’s compare that with 2 Chronicles 36:22-23, “Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD spoken by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the LORD God of heaven given me; and he hath charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The LORD his God be with him, and let him go up.” From reading these two portions, we see that the books were written AFTER the Babylonian captivity of Judah.

According to the dictionary, a chronicle is “a factual written account of important or historical events in the order of their occurrence.” The books of the Chronicles recap the history of the Lord’s dealing with man from the time of Adam. In 1 Chronicles 1:1 we read, “Adam, Sheth, Enosh.” Thus begins this genealogy, going all the way back to the first man, Adam. Thus these books give the history of the Lord’s people, the rulers, wars, religious events, economic cycles, all starting with the beginning of mankind. Many people find these books hard to read. 1 Chronicles begins with a detailed genealogy that runs from chapter one through chapter nine. That is a lot of names, many of which we know little or nothing about, but the Lord has seen fit to write these names. We do well to spend some time in looking at and considering the people in this genealogy.

Although it would be impossible to give a practical outline of the 65 chapters that make up these two books, here is a quick and extremely brief outline of the books of the Chronicles:

  • From Adam to David (1 Chronicles 1–9)
  • David rules and unites Israel (1 Chronicles 10–29)
  • Solomon builds the temple (2 Chronicles 1–9)
  • David’s line rules in Jerusalem (2 Chronicles 10–35)
  • From Jerusalem to Babylon (2 Chronicles 36)

Although we do not know for sure who wrote these books, we can rest assured that the real author is the Lord Himself. He tells us in 2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” There is much profit in studying the Chronicles. You may find the reading to be a little difficult, but there are blessings when we earnest study God’s Word with a desire to know Him more. (298.2)