Amaziah Reigns in Judah
14 In the second year of Joash the son of Joahaz, king of Israel, Amaziah the son of Joash, king of Judah, began to reign. He was twenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jehoaddin of Jerusalem. And he did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, yet not like David his father. He did in all things as Joash his father had done. But the high places were not removed; the people still sacrificed and made offerings on the high places. And as soon as the royal power was firmly in his hand, he struck down his servants who had struck down the king his father. But he did not put to death the children of the murderers, according to what is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, where the LORD commanded, “Fathers shall not be put to death because of their children, nor shall children be put to death because of their fathers. But each one shall die for his own sin.”
He struck down ten thousand Edomites in the Valley of Salt and took Sela by storm, and called it Joktheel, which is its name to this day.
Then Amaziah sent messengers to Jehoash the son of Jehoahaz, son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, “Come, let us look one another in the face.” And Jehoash king of Israel sent word to Amaziah king of Judah, “A thistle on Lebanon sent to a cedar on Lebanon, saying, ‘Give your daughter to my son for a wife,’ and a wild beast of Lebanon passed by and trampled down the thistle. You have indeed struck down Edom, and your heart has lifted you up. Be content with your glory, and stay at home, for why should you provoke trouble so that you fall, you and Judah with you?”
But Amaziah would not listen. So Jehoash king of Israel went up, and he and Amaziah king of Judah faced one another in battle at Beth-shemesh, which belongs to Judah. And Judah was defeated by Israel, and every man fled to his home. And Jehoash king of Israel captured Amaziah king of Judah, the son of Jehoash, son of Ahaziah, at Beth-shemesh, and came to Jerusalem and broke down the wall of Jerusalem for four hundred cubits, from the Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate. And he seized all the gold and silver, and all the vessels that were found in the house of the LORD and in the treasuries of the king’s house, also hostages, and he returned to Samaria.
Now the rest of the acts of Jehoash that he did, and his might, and how he fought with Amaziah king of Judah, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? And Jehoash slept with his fathers and was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel, and Jeroboam his son reigned in his place.
Amaziah the son of Joash, king of Judah, lived fifteen years after the death of Jehoash son of Jehoahaz, king of Israel. Now the rest of the deeds of Amaziah, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? And they made a conspiracy against him in Jerusalem, and he fled to Lachish. But they sent after him to Lachish and put him to death there. And they brought him on horses; and he was buried in Jerusalem with his fathers in the city of David. And all the people of Judah took Azariah, who was sixteen years old, and made him king instead of his father Amaziah. He built Elath and restored it to Judah, after the king slept with his fathers.
Jeroboam II Reigns in Israel
In the fifteenth year of Amaziah the son of Joash, king of Judah, Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel, began to reign in Samaria, and he reigned forty-one years. And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD. He did not depart from all the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which he made Israel to sin. He restored the border of Israel from Lebo-hamath as far as the Sea of the Arabah, according to the word of the LORD, the God of Israel, which he spoke by his servant Jonah the son of Amittai, the prophet, who was from Gath-hepher. For the LORD saw that the affliction of Israel was very bitter, for there was none left, bond or free, and there was none to help Israel. But the LORD had not said that he would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven, so he saved them by the hand of Jeroboam the son of Joash.
Now the rest of the acts of Jeroboam and all that he did, and his might, how he fought, and how he restored Damascus and Hamath to Judah in Israel, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel? And Jeroboam slept with his fathers, the kings of Israel, and Zechariah his son reigned in his place.
2 Kings 14 Commentary
by Hank Workman
Sometimes it’s easy to get lost in the lineage of king after king through this book. Yes, it’s tough to push through and find something to grasp that’s relevant to our lives. Amaziah took the throne of Judah at 25 years old. He started off so well but as the writer states, he did not follow completely in the ways of David. Meaning, he left the high places which were a constant snare to the people in putting a wedge between themselves and God.
That said, militarily he conquered the Edomites, who had been a thorn in the people’s side. This was a major feat as the Edomites boasted over 10,000 and where one of the places they live is modern-day Petra, a fortress that was an incredible stronghold. This win would go to Amaziah’s head as pride took over. He decided to take on his ‘brother’ King Jehoash of the northern kingdom.
Although Jehoash used much wisdom in his initial response to Amaziah, calling him out actually for his foolishness of pride – he warned him he would win. Amaziah was too far gone in thought and attacked – and lost. And not only did he defeat this proud king, he drove down and broke down the wall of Jerusalem, leaving it exposed; he ransacked the gold of Judah from the Temple and palace, also taking hostages.
It’s all pretty grim, is it not? The infighting, the senseless war between the two, the continued seeking of their own ways and not God’s led to such turmoil.
The thing to consider through this though is God was still reaching and still attempting to turn His people back to Him. During this period of history, prophets like Hosea, Amos, Jonah, Micah, and Isaiah were contemporaries who called out to the people to repent of their ways. They called things for what they were. And although the people continued to do as they wanted the significance of this was God was still at work.
For in time, both nations would be taken into captivity. In time, God would go silent as it’s called the silent years between our Old and New Testaments, where not one word of the Lord would be heard. These years marched on for 400. This would make the coming of Jesus all the more significant. This would make God using John the Baptist to proclaim the Word of the Lord so intriguing and people were made ready to receive what God had next.
Even in political upheaval, when man is driven by their own ways and ruthlessly attempt to do what they want – we must not forget God is still in control, He is still reaching out and yes, preparing things for the ultimate return of His Son.
2 Kings 14 Commentary
by Brad Boyles
What I am struck by in this 14th chapter of 2 Kings is just how much of an impact a single generation can have on all the generations that follow. Take these verses, for instance…
In the fifteenth year of Amaziah the son of Joash king of Judah, Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel became king in Samaria, and reigned forty-one years. 24 He did evil in the sight of the LORD; he did not depart from all the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which he made Israel sin.2 Kings 14:23-24 NASB
In this verse, we read of Jeroboam II who is crowned king. In a reflection all the way back to the original Jeroboam, we remember how this train became derailed in the first place. It would be the sins of Solomon and eventually Jeroboam that led the entire nation down this path of rebellion.
Did they know at the time that their choices would drastically affect so many generations to come? Not only are the sins of Jeroboam mentioned here in chapter 14, they are also referenced in chapter 13 and several others. When a king failed to lead, Scripture makes it very clear that the following generations continued down that same path that originated. In this case, it dates all the way back to when Israel and Judah split!
What does this mean for us today?
Do we realize that the way that we lead our families and the influence we have on others will affect many generations to come? Do we really think about that with each decision we make? What would Scripture say about us as followers of Jesus Christ? They are interesting questions to ponder.