2 Chronicles 22

2 CHRONICLES CHAPTER 22

Judah’s King Ahaziah (22:1-9)

      • ESV Study Bible writes, “The Chronicler’s account of Ahaziah’s brief reign (842-841 BC) is adapted from 2 Kings 8:24-29; 9:21, 28; 10:13-14). The main interest lies with the malignant influence of the house of Ahab over the young and ineffectual king. Ahaziah’s mother Athaliah is a daughter of Ahab…and his counselor in doing wickedly (the Chronicler’s addition to the text). As queen mother, she held an official position in the court as a royal advisor. Her role was supplemented by other officials from the house of Ahab, who were Ahaziah’s counselors, to his undoing (v. 4b, the Chronicler’s addition).”

    • The residents of Jerusalem made Jehoram’s youngest son, Ahaziah, king in his place because the raiders who came with the Arabs into the camp had killed all his older sons. So Jehoram’s son Ahaziah became Judah’s king. Ahaziah was 22 years old when he became king and he ruled in Jerusalem for one year. His mother was Athaliah, and she was Omri’s granddaughter. He also followed the way of Ahab’s family because his mother gave him evil advice. He did what was evil in Yahweh’s eyes just as Ahab’s family had done because after his father’s death, they were his counselors, which led to his ruin. He followed their advice and went with Ahab’s son, Israel’s King Joram, to fight against Syria’s King Hazael at Ramoth Gilead. When the Syrians wounded Joram at this battle, he returned to Jezreel to recover from his wounds. Jehoram’s son, Judah’s King Ahaziah, went down to Jezreel to visit Ahab’s son, Israel’s King Joram, because he had been wounded.

      • NET Bible points out that both kings, Israel’s and Judah’s have the same name which can be spelled alternately. So, for clarity, the names are spelled differently here. “Jehoram and Joram are alternate spellings of the Israelite king’s name (also in vv. 6-7). The shorter form is used in these verses to avoid confusion with King Jehoram of Judah, father of Azariah.”

      • The same source notes a discrepancy in Ahaziah’s age in the Masoretic text here, “Heb ‘forty-two,’ but some mss of the LXX and the Syriac along with the parallel passage in 2 Kgs 8:26 read ‘twenty-two.’”

      • ESV Study Bible, “Ahaziah’s decision to join Jehoram (a variant spelling of Joram), king of Israel, in his bid to recapture Ramoth-gilead from Hazael, king of Syria, comes at the behest of his ‘Ahabite’ counselors. Some years previously, Jehoshaphat had allied himself with Joram’s father Ahab in an identical mission, ending in Ahab’s death (ch. 18). Joram was wounded at Ramoth-gilead, and withdrew to Jezreel to recuperate. Ahaziah came to visit his ally there, only to fall into the hands of Jehu, Joram’s commander, whom God had chosen to destroy the house of Ahab (see 1 Kgs 19:15-17). Jehu’s violent coup is described in detail in 2 Kings 9:1-28. The Chronicler assumes his readers’ acquaintance with this narrative and focuses instead on Ahaziah’s fate, which he remarks was ordained by God (see 2 Chron 10:15; 24:20). Ahaziah falls under the same judgment as the house of Ahab, insofar as he followed the ways of that apostate dynasty.”

    • Ahaziah’s downfall through his visit to Joram was ordained by God. When Ahaziah arrived, he went out with Joram to meet Nimshi’s son Jehu, whom Yahweh had anointed to destroy Ahab’s family. While Jehu was executing judgment on Ahab’s family, he discovered the officials of Judah and the sons of Ahaziah’s relatives who were serving Ahaziah, and he killed them. Then he went in search of Ahaziah, and his men captured him while he was hiding in Samaria. They brought him to Jehu and executed him. They buried him because they reasoned, “He is Jehoshaphat’s son and Jehoshaphat sought Yahweh with all his heart.” There was no one in Ahaziah’s family who was capable of the kingdom.

      • Guzik says, “Jehu was one of the more interesting men of the Old Testament. God raised him up to bring judgment against the dynasty of Omri that ruled the northern kingdom of Israel (2 Kings 9:1-26). In the course of fulfilling that divine commission, he also came against Ahaziah, king of Judah. Jehu had no direct command or commission from God to bring judgment upon the King of Judah, but he did anyway. Consciously or unconsciously, he was guided by God and he killed Ahaziah…When Ahaziah was killed in battle, they gave him a dignified burial – not for his own sake, but only because his ancestor Jehoshaphat was a godly man.”

Judah’s King Joash (22:10 – 24:27)

Athaliah Usurps the Throne

      • When Ahaziah’s mother, Athaliah, saw that her son was dead she proceeded to annihilate the entire royal family of the house of Judah. So King Jehoram’s daughter Jehosheba took Ahaziah’s son, Joash, and stole him away from the rest of king’s sons who were to be executed. She hid him and his nurse in a bedroom. Now, Jehosheba was King Jehoram’s daughter, Ahaziah’s sister, and her husband was Jehoiada the priest. She hid him from Athaliah so she couldn’t execute him. Joash remained in hiding with them in the house of God for 6 years while Athaliah ruled over the land.

        • NET Bible points out that, “Jehoshabeath is a variant spelling of the name Jehosheba (2 Kgs 11:2).” I have sided with the translations that opt to refer to Jehosheba with the same spelling that occurs in the 2 Kings parallel for the sake of clarity.

        • ESV Study Bible writes, “Athaliah is nothing more than a violent usurper who attempts to secure the throne for herself by massacring rivals from the royal family, including her own relatives. Like Jehoram (21:4), she brings the Davidic dynasty to the brink of destruction. But while she rules the land for six years (probably 841-835 BC), she does so without legitimacy; no statements at the beginning or end of her rule make her reign official. The contrasting figure to her is Ahaziah’s sister Jehoshabeath, who courageously conceals the infant heir Joash throughout those years. The Chronicler adds the comment that Jehoshabeath is the wife of Jehoiada the high priest, which helps explain how the child could be concealed in the temple buildings throughout Athaliah’s rule. Mention of Jehoiada here also prepares the way for the following account of Athaliah’s overthrow by the high priest.”

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