Kings in the Line of Judah

Did you know the genealogy given in Matthew, from David to the exile, is not entirely accurate?

For some time now I have known the countings of 14 generations was off somehow, but I was not too clear as to how. However, I just discovered a few days ago that there are three whole generations missing between Joram and Uzziah, which I find very curious.

I’d like to share what I’ve found concerning this, giving Scriptural backup (typed in dark red), with the hope that those who read this will do their own homework and study this matter out for themselves. If I am found to be in error, I would sincerely appreciate correction. I understand that I have not arrived, but this is a snapshot of where I am at the time of this writing. Check this out.

According to Matthew

Here is what Matthew 1:6b-11 says…

Mat 1:6 …And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah,
Mat 1:7 and Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
and Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
and Abijah the father of Asaph,
Mat 1:8 and Asaph the father of Jehoshaphat,
and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram,
and Joram the father of Uzziah,
Mat 1:9 and Uzziah the father of Jotham,
and Jotham the father of Ahaz,
and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
Mat 1:10 and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
and Manasseh the father of Amos,
and Amos the father of Josiah,
Mat 1:11 and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon.

I have always understood this part of the lineage to be the kings that came to reign on David’s throne, so I assumed this was complete, but when I was studying out the kings of Judah, I discovered a series of three kings were missing from this lineage.

According to 1 Chronicles

EDIT 02/03/15: A concise list of the Kings of Judah from Solomon to Josiah can be found in 1 Chronicles 3:10-14. 

The son of Solomon was Rehoboam,
Abijah his son,
Asa his son,
Jehoshaphat his son,
Joram his son,   <—-
Ahaziah his son,
Joash his son,
Amaziah his son,
Azariah his son,
Jotham his son,   <—-
Ahaz his son,
Hezekiah his son,
Manasseh his son,
Amon his son,
Josiah his son. 

EDIT 07/18/16: Compared to this list, there appears to be a discrepancy between Joram and Jotham.

In Matthew, we’re told that Joram was the father of Uzziah, who was the father of Jotham.

But according to 1 Chronicles, Joram was the father of Ahaziah, who was the father of Joash, who was the father of Amaziah, who was the father of Azariah, who was the father of Jotham.

We don’t know if Uzziah is the same as Ahaziah or Azariah. If he is the same as one of them, then we still have the other name plus two additional to account for: Joash and Amaziah.

Let’s look at 1 & 2 Kings for more clarification.

According to 1 & 2 Kings

Here is a breakdown of the kings of Judah using excerpts from Matthew’s lineage followed by excerpts from the books of 1 & 2 Kings, with occasional commentary by me.

PART 1: From David to Joram

…and David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah (Bathsheba)…

Then King David answered, “Call Bathsheba to me.” So she came into the king’s presence and stood before the king. And the king swore, saying, “As the LORD lives, who has redeemed my soul out of every adversity, as I swore to you by the LORD, the God of Israel, saying, ‘Solomon your son shall reign after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place,’ even so will I do this day.” (1 Kings 1:28-30 ESV)

…and Solomon the father of Rehoboam…

Now Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city that the LORD had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite. (1 Kings 14:21 ESV)

…and Rehoboam the father of Abijah…

And Rehoboam slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite. And Abijam his son reigned in his place. (1 Kings 14:31 ESV)

In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, Abijah began to reign over Judah. (2 Chronicles 13:1 ESV)

Apparently “Abijam” may be another form of “Abijah”. It appears their sons line up…

…and Abijah the father of Asaph…

And Abijam slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place. (1 Kings 15:8 ESV)

Is “Asaph” another form of “Asa”? Again, let’s look to see if their sons line up…

…and Asaph the father of Jehoshaphat…

And Asa slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place. (1 Kings 15:24 ESV)

…and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram…

And Jehoshaphat slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Jehoram his son reigned in his place. (1 Kings 22:50 ESV)

Is “Jehoram” another form of “Joram”? Let’s look at their sons…

** This is where the big discrepancy begins. **

PART 2: From Joram to Jotham

…and Joram the father of Uzziah…

So Joram slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David, and Ahaziah his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 8:24 ESV)

Is “Uzziah” another form of “Ahaziah”?

…and Uzziah the father of Jotham…

Queen Athaliah’s Reign

Now when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal family. But Jehosheba, the daughter of King Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah and stole him away from among the king’s sons who were being put to death, and she put him and his nurse in a bedroom. Thus they hid him from Athaliah, so that he was not put to death.

And he remained with her six years, hidden in the house of the LORD, while Athaliah reigned over the land. But in the seventh year Jehoiada sent and brought the captains of the Carites and of the guards, and had them come to him in the house of the LORD. And he made a covenant with them and put them under oath in the house of the LORD, and he showed them the king’s son. And he commanded them, “This is the thing that you shall do: one third of you, those who come off duty on the Sabbath and guard the king’s house (another third being at the gate Sur and a third at the gate behind the guards) shall guard the palace. And the two divisions of you, which come on duty in force on the Sabbath and guard the house of the LORD on behalf of the king, shall surround the king, each with his weapons in his hand. And whoever approaches the ranks is to be put to death. Be with the king when he goes out and when he comes in.”

The captains did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded, and they each brought his men who were to go off duty on the Sabbath, with those who were to come on duty on the Sabbath, and came to Jehoiada the priest. And the priest gave to the captains the spears and shields that had been King David’s, which were in the house of the LORD. And the guards stood, every man with his weapons in his hand, from the south side of the house to the north side of the house, around the altar and the house on behalf of the king. Then he brought out the king’s son and put the crown on him and gave him the testimony. And they proclaimed him king and anointed him, and they clapped their hands and said, “Long live the king!”

When Athaliah heard the noise of the guard and of the people, she went into the house of the LORD to the people. And when she looked, there was the king standing by the pillar, according to the custom, and the captains and the trumpeters beside the king, and all the people of the land rejoicing and blowing trumpets. And Athaliah tore her clothes and cried, “Treason! Treason!”

Then Jehoiada the priest commanded the captains who were set over the army, “Bring her out between the ranks, and put to death with the sword anyone who follows her.” For the priest said, “Let her not be put to death in the house of the LORD.” So they laid hands on her; and she went through the horses’ entrance to the king’s house, and there she was put to death.

And Jehoiada made a covenant between the LORD and the king and people, that they should be the LORD’s people, and also between the king and the people. Then all the people of the land went to the house of Baal and tore it down; his altars and his images they broke in pieces, and they killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars. And the priest posted watchmen over the house of the LORD. And he took the captains, the Carites, the guards, and all the people of the land, and they brought the king down from the house of the LORD, marching through the gate of the guards to the king’s house. And he took his seat on the throne of the kings. So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet after Athaliah had been put to death with the sword at the king’s house. Jehoash was seven years old when he began to reign. (2 Kings 11:1-21 ESV)

So Ahaziah had a son named Joash. But Matthew 1:9 says Uzziah had a son named Jotham.

Now the rest of the acts of Joash and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? His servants arose and made a conspiracy and struck down Joash in the house of Millo, on the way that goes down to Silla. It was Jozacar the son of Shimeath and Jehozabad the son of Shomer, his servants, who struck him down, so that he died. And they buried him with his fathers in the city of David, and Amaziah his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 12:19-21 ESV)

We see here that Joash had a son named Amaziah.

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. (2 Kings 14:18-21 ESV)

Amaziah had a son named Azariah. And this is where Matthew 1:9 picks back up again.

…and Uzziah the father of Jotham…

And Azariah slept with his fathers, and they buried him with his fathers in the city of David, and Jotham his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 15:7 ESV)

It appears that “Azariah” is another form of “Uzziah” according to 2 Kings 15:8,13,17…

  • In the thirty-eighth year of Azariah king of Judah, Zechariah the son of Jeroboam reigned over Israel in Samaria six months. (2 Kings 15:8 ESV)
  • Shallum the son of Jabesh began to reign in the thirty-ninth year of Uzziah king of Judah, and he reigned one month in Samaria. (2 Kings 15:13 ESV)
  • In the thirty-ninth year of Azariah king of Judah, Menahem the son of Gadi began to reign over Israel, and he reigned ten years in Samaria. (2 Kings 15:17 ESV)

EDIT 07/18/16: So it appears that we have reconciled the discrepancy between Matthew and 1 Chronicles from Joram to Jotham.

Joram was the father of Ahaziah (not to be confused with “Uzziah”), who was the father of Joash, who was the father of Amaziah, who was the father of Azariah (also known as “Uzziah”), who was the father of Jotham.

PART3: From Jotham to Josiah

…and Jotham the father of Ahaz…

Jotham slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David his father, and Ahaz his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 15:38 ESV)

…and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah…

And Ahaz slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David, and Hezekiah his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 16:20 ESV)

…and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh…

And Hezekiah slept with his fathers, and Manasseh his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 20:21 ESV)

…and Manasseh the father of Amos…

And Manasseh slept with his fathers and was buried in the garden of his house, in the garden of Uzza, and Amon his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 21:18 ESV)

Is “Amos” another form of “Amon”? Let’s look at their sons…

…and Amos the father of Josiah…

Now the rest of the acts of Amon that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? And he was buried in his tomb in the garden of Uzza, and Josiah his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 21:25-26 ESV)

PART 4: Josiah the Father of Jechoniah

…and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon.

In his days Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt went up to the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates. King Josiah went to meet him, and Pharaoh Neco killed him at Megiddo, as soon as he saw him. And his servants carried him dead in a chariot from Megiddo and brought him to Jerusalem and buried him in his own tomb. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father’s place. (2 Kings 23:29-30 ESV)

Is “Jechoniah” another form of “Jehoahaz”? I don’t believe so. Apparently Josiah had more than one son

Jehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his fathers had done. And Pharaoh Neco put him in bonds at Riblah in the land of Hamath, that he might not reign in Jerusalem, and laid on the land a tribute of a hundred talents of silver and a talent of gold. And Pharaoh Neco made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in the place of Josiah his father, and changed his name to Jehoiakim. But he took Jehoahaz away, and he came to Egypt and died there. (2 Kings 23:31-34 ESV)

Jehoahaz was taken away to Egypt and died there, and another son of Josiah was made king: Eliakim, whose name was changed to Jehoiakim.

Is “Jechoniah” another form of “Jehoaikim”? Let’s look at who his son is. According to Matthew 1:12…

And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Shealtiel…

Now the rest of the deeds of Jehoiakim and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? So Jehoiakim slept with his fathers, and Jehoiachin his son reigned in his place. (2 Kings 24:5-6 ESV)

According to Matthew, the son of Jechoniah is “Shealtiel”, but according to 2 Kings, the son of Eliakim/Jehoiakim is “Jehoiachin”. So it appears that this Eliakim/Jehoiachin is not the “Jechoniah” referenced in Matthew. Did Josiah have more than two sons? According to 1 Chronicles 3:15, Josiah had four sons.

The sons of Josiah: Johanan the firstborn, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum. (1 Chronicles 3:15 ESV)

I do not see “Jehoahaz” listed here. Is it possible his name was changed to one of the names on this list, since it appears that Eliakim’s name was changed to Jehoiakim and that name is listed as the second son of Josiah? If so, which one?

Moving on in the narrative of 2 Kings, we see…

Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he became king, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Nehushta the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem. And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father had done. At that time the servants of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up to Jerusalem, and the city was besieged. And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to the city while his servants were besieging it, and Jehoiachin the king of Judah gave himself up to the king of Babylon, himself and his mother and his servants and his officials and his palace officials. The king of Babylon took him prisoner in the eighth year of his reign and carried off all the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the king’s house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold in the temple of the LORD, which Solomon king of Israel had made, as the LORD had foretold. He carried away all Jerusalem and all the officials and all the mighty men of valor, 10,000 captives, and all the craftsmen and the smiths. None remained, except the poorest people of the land. And he carried away Jehoiachin to Babylon. The king’s mother, the king’s wives, his officials, and the chief men of the land he took into captivity from Jerusalem to Babylon. And the king of Babylon brought captive to Babylon all the men of valor, 7,000, and the craftsmen and the metal workers, 1,000, all of them strong and fit for war. And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, king in his place, and changed his name to Zedekiah. (2 Kings 24:8-17 ESV)

Jehoiachin is the son of Eliakim/Jehoiakim (the second son of Josiah), making him the grandson of Josiah. The king of Babylon replaced him with his uncle Mattaniah, and changed Mattaniah’s name to “Zedekiah”. Looking at the list of Josiah’s sons, we see Zedekiah listed as the third son. So this is what we have so far…

The sons of Josiah: Johanan the firstborn, the second Jehoiakim [aka Eliakim], the third Zedekiah [aka Mattaniah], the fourth Shallum. (1 Chronicles 3:15 ESV)

We learn in 2 Kings 25 that Mattaniah/Zedekiah was captured, his sons were slaughtered and his eyes were put out, and he was taken to Babylon.

And in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, on the tenth day of the month, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came with all his army against Jerusalem and laid siege to it. And they built siegeworks all around it. So the city was besieged till the eleventh year of King Zedekiah. On the ninth day of the fourth month the famine was so severe in the city that there was no food for the people of the land. Then a breach was made in the city, and all the men of war fled by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, by the king’s garden, and the Chaldeans were around the city. And they went in the direction of the Arabah. But the army of the Chaldeans pursued the king and overtook him in the plains of Jericho, and all his army was scattered from him. Then they captured the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah, and they passed sentence on him. They slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes, and put out the eyes of Zedekiah and bound him in chains and took him to Babylon. (2 Kings 25:1-7 ESV)

Eventually Jehoiachin, son of Eliakim/Jehoiakim, (aka the grandson of Josiah) was released from prison and allowed to dine at the table of the Evil-merodach King of Babylon. So who are Johanan and Shallum? According to the book of Jeremiah, we are told “Shallum the son of Josiah” reigned instead of his father and went away from the palace in Judah.

For thus says the LORD concerning Shallum the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, and who went away from this place: “He shall return here no more, but in the place where they have carried him captive, there shall he die, and he shall never see this land again.” (Jeremiam 22:11-12)

This must be referring to Jehoahaz, which we learned earlier was carried off to Egypt and died there. So it appears that Jehoahaz would have been the fourth son of Josiah. This leaves one son unaccounted for: the firstborn, Johanan.

In Conclusion

EDIT 07/18/16: The Lineage given in Matthew is missing three generations between Joram and Uzziah: (1) Ahaziah, (2) Joash, (3) Amaziah. More can be read about these kings and the surrounding circumstances in 2 Kings 11-12.

Furthermore, It seems to me that the “Jechoniah” referenced in Matthew 1:11-12 is likely the same person as the firstborn Johanan of Josiah, the only son who did not sit on David’s throne.

 

About Messyanic

Homesteading Wife, Homeschooling Mom and perpetual Bible student, continually taking the road less traveled. (@messyanic)
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