21:1 Jehoshaphat passed away 1 and was buried with his ancestors 2 in the City of David. 3 His son Jehoram 4 replaced him as king.
21:2 His brothers, Jehoshaphat’s sons, were Azariah, Jechiel, Zechariah, Azariahu, Michael, and Shephatiah. All of these were sons of King Jehoshaphat of Israel. 5 21:3 Their father gave them many presents, including silver, gold, and other precious items, along with fortified cities in Judah. But he gave the kingdom to Jehoram because he was the firstborn.
21:4 Jehoram took control of his father’s kingdom and became powerful. 6 Then he killed all his brothers, 7 as well as some of the officials of Israel. 21:5 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king and he reigned for eight years in Jerusalem. 8 21:6 He followed in the footsteps of the kings of Israel, just as Ahab’s dynasty had done, for he married Ahab’s daughter. 9 He did evil in the sight of 10 the Lord. 21:7 But the Lord was unwilling to destroy David’s dynasty 11 because of the promise 12 he had made to give David a perpetual dynasty. 13
21:8 During Jehoram’s 14 reign Edom freed themselves from Judah’s control and set up their own king. 15 21:9 Jehoram crossed over to Zair with his officers and all his chariots. The Edomites, who had surrounded him, attacked at night and defeated him and his chariot officers. 16 21:10 So Edom has remained free from Judah’s control to this very day. 17 At that same time Libnah also rebelled and freed themselves from Judah’s control 18 because Jehoram 19 rejected the Lord God of his ancestors. 21:11 He also built high places on the hills of Judah; he encouraged the residents of Jerusalem to be unfaithful to the Lord 20 and led Judah away from the Lord. 21
21:12 Jehoram 22 received this letter from Elijah the prophet: “This is what the Lord God of your ancestor David says: ‘You 23 have not followed in the footsteps 24 of your father Jehoshaphat and of 25 King Asa of Judah, 21:13 but have instead followed in the footsteps of the kings of Israel. You encouraged the people of Judah and the residents of Jerusalem to be unfaithful to the Lord, just as the family of Ahab does in Israel. 26 You also killed your brothers, members of your father’s family, 27 who were better than you. 21:14 So look, the Lord is about to severely afflict 28 your people, your sons, your wives, and all you own. 21:15 And you will get a serious, chronic intestinal disease which will cause your intestines to come out.” 29
21:16 The Lord stirred up against Jehoram the Philistines 30 and the Arabs who lived beside the Cushites. 21:17 They attacked Judah and swept through it. 31 They carried off everything they found in the royal palace, 32 including his sons and wives. None of his sons was left, except for his youngest, Ahaziah. 21:18 After all this happened, the Lord afflicted him with an incurable intestinal disease. 33 21:19 After about two years his intestines came out because of the disease, so that he died a very painful death. 34 His people did not make a bonfire to honor him, as they had done for his ancestors. 35
21:20 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king and he reigned eight years in Jerusalem. No one regretted his death; 36 he was buried in the City of David, 37 but not in the royal tombs.
22:1 The residents of Jerusalem 38 made his youngest son Ahaziah king in his place, for the raiding party that invaded the city with the Arabs had killed all the older sons. 39 So Ahaziah son of Jehoram became king of Judah. 22:2 Ahaziah was twenty-two 40 years old when he became king and he reigned for one year in Jerusalem. His mother was Athaliah, the granddaughter 41 of Omri. 22:3 He followed in the footsteps of Ahab’s dynasty, 42 for his mother gave him evil advice. 43 22:4 He did evil in the sight of 44 the Lord like Ahab’s dynasty because, after his father’s death, they 45 gave him advice that led to his destruction. 22:5 He followed their advice and joined Ahab’s son King Joram 46 of Israel in a battle against King Hazael of Syria 47 at Ramoth Gilead in which the Syrians defeated Joram. 22:6 Joram 48 returned to Jezreel to recover from the wounds he received from the Syrians 49 in Ramah when he fought against King Hazael of Syria. Ahaziah 50 son of King Jehoram of Judah went down to visit Joram son of Ahab in Jezreel, because he had been wounded. 51
22:7 God brought about Ahaziah’s downfall through his visit to Joram. 52 When Ahaziah 53 arrived, he went out with Joram to meet Jehu son of Nimshi, whom the Lord had commissioned 54 to wipe out Ahab’s family. 55 22:8 While Jehu was dishing out punishment to Ahab’s family, he discovered the officials of Judah and the sons of Ahaziah’s relatives who were serving Ahaziah and killed them. 22:9 He looked for Ahaziah, who was captured while hiding in Samaria. 56 They brought him to Jehu and then executed him. They did give him a burial, for they reasoned, 57 “He is the son of Jehoshaphat, who sought the Lord with his whole heart.” There was no one in Ahaziah’s family strong enough to rule in his place. 58
Athaliah is Eliminated
22:10 When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she was determined to destroy the entire royal line 59 of Judah. 60 22:11 So Jehoshabeath, 61 the daughter of King Jehoram, 62 took Ahaziah’s son Joash and sneaked him away 63 from the rest of the royal descendants who were to be executed. She hid him and his nurse in the room where the bed covers were stored. So Jehoshabeath the daughter of King Jehoram, wife of Jehoiada the priest and sister of Ahaziah, hid him from Athaliah so she could not execute him. 22:12 He remained in hiding in God’s temple 64 for six years, while Athaliah was ruling over the land.