Category:7th-century BC biblical rulers
This category has the following 2 subcategories, out of 2 total.
This category has the following 2 subcategories, out of 2 total.
1. Hezekiah – Hezekiah was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the son of Ahaz and the 13th king of Judah. Archaeologist Edwin Thiele has concluded that his reign was between c.715 and 686 BC and he is considered a very righteous king by the author of the Book of Kings. He is also one of the most prominent kings of Judah mentioned in the Hebrew Bible and is one of the mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew. Hezekiah enacted sweeping reforms, including a strict mandate for the sole worship of Yahweh. Isaiah and Micah prophesied during his reign, Hezekiah, more properly transliterated as Ḥizkiyyahu, or Ḥizkiyyah. It also spawns a number of nouns, including חוֹזֶק, חָזְקָה, חֶזְקָה strength, as well as the adjectives חָזָק, חָזֵק strong. Accordingly, חִזְקִיָּהוּ Ḥizkiyyahu can be said to mean something like Strengthened by Yahweh, the main account of Hezekiahs reign is found in 2 Kings 18–20, Isaiah 36–39, and 2 Chronicles 29–32 of the Hebrew Bible. Proverbs 25,1 mentions that it is a collection of King Solomons proverbs that were copied by the officials of King Hezekiah of Judah and his reign is also referred to in the books of the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Hosea, and Micah. The books of Hosea and Micah record that their prophecies were made during Hezekiah’s reign, Hezekiah was the son of King Ahaz and Abijah. His mother, Abijah, was a daughter of the high priest Zechariah, based on Thieles dating, Hezekiah was born in c.741 BC. He died from natural causes at the age of 54 in c.687 BC, according to the Hebrew Bible, Hezekiah assumed the throne of Judah at the age of 25 and reigned for 29 years. Some writers have proposed that Hezekiah served as coregent with his father Ahaz for about 14 years and his sole reign is dated by William F. Albright as 715–687 BC, and by Edwin R. Thiele as 716–687 BC. Hezekiah purified and repaired the Temple, purged its idols, in an effort to abolish what he considered idolatry from his kingdom, he destroyed the high places and bronze serpent, recorded as being made by Moses, which became objects of idolatrous worship. In place of this, he centralized the worship of God at the Jerusalem Temple, Hezekiah also resumed the Passover pilgrimage and the tradition of inviting the scattered tribes of Israel to take part in a Passover festival. He sent messengers to Ephraim and Manasseh inviting them to Jerusalem for the celebration of the Passover, the messengers, however, were not only not listened to, but were even laughed at, only a few men of Asher, Manasseh, and Zebulun came to Jerusalem. Nevertheless, the Passover was celebrated with solemnity and such rejoicing as had not been in Jerusalem since the days of Solomon. Hezekiah is portrayed by the Hebrew Bible as a great and good king, when Sargon II, the king of Assyria, died in 705 BC, states, including Judah, that were subject to Assyria saw an opportunity to throw off their subservience to the Assyrian kings. Hezekiah ceased to pay the tribute imposed on his father, in 703 BC Sennacherib, Sargons son and successor, began a series of major campaigns to quash opposition to Assyrian rule
2. Josiah – Josiah or Yoshiyahu was a king of Judah, who according to the Hebrew Bible, instituted major religious changes. Josiah is credited by most historians with having established or compiled important Hebrew Scriptures during the Deuteronomic reform that occurred during his rule. Josiah became king of Judah at the age of eight, after the assassination of his father, King Amon, and reigned for thirty-one years, from 641/640 to 610/609 BCE. He is described as a righteous king, a king who walked in all the way of David his father. He is also one of the mentioned in one of the two divergent genealogies of Jesus in the New Testament. Josiah is known only from biblical texts, no reference to him exists in surviving texts of the period from Egypt or Babylon, and no clear archaeological evidence, such as inscriptions bearing his name, has ever been found. According to the Bible, Josiah was the son of King Amon and Jedidah and his grandfather Manasseh was one of the kings blamed for turning away from the worship of Yahweh. Manasseh adapted the Temple for idolatrous worship, Josiahs great-grandfather was King Hezekiah, a noted reformer. Josiah had four sons, Johanan, and Eliakim by Zebudah the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah, Eliakim had his name changed by Pharaoh Necho of Egypt to Jehoiakim. Shallum succeeded Josiah as king of Judah, under the name Jehoahaz, Shallum was succeeded by Eliakim, under the name Jehoiakim, who was succeeded by his own son Jeconiah, then, Jeconiah was succeeded to the throne by Mattanyahu, under the name Zedekiah. Zedekiah was the last king of Judah before the kingdom was conquered by Babylon, according to the Hebrew Bible, in the eighteenth year of his rule, Josiah ordered the High Priest Hilkiah to use the tax money which had been collected over the years to renovate the temple. It was during this time that Hilkiah discovered the Book of the Law, while Hilkiah was clearing the treasure room of the Temple he discovered a scroll described as the book of the Law or as the book of the law of Yahweh by the hand of Moses. The phrase the book of the Torah in 2 Kings 22,8 is identical to the used in Joshua 1,8 and 8,34 to describe the sacred writings that Joshua had received from Moses. The book is not identified in the text as the Torah, however it has been noted that the story of the repairs to the Temple is based on those ordered by Joash an earlier Judean king in 2 Kings 12. Hilkiah brought this scroll to Josiahs attention, an assembly of the elders of Judah and Jerusalem and of all the people was called, and Josiah then encouraged the exclusive worship of Yahweh, forbidding all other forms of worship. The instruments and emblems of the worship of Baal and the host of heaven, were removed from the Jerusalem Temple, local sanctuaries, or High Places, were destroyed, from Beer-sheba in the south to Beth-el and the cities of Samaria in the north. Josiah had pagan priests executed and even had the bones of the priests of Bethel exhumed from their graves. Josiah also reinstituted the Passover celebrations, and the only exception to this destruction was for the grave of an unnamed prophet he found in Bethel, who had foretold that these religious sites Jeroboam erected would one day be destroyed
3. Nebuchadnezzar II – Nebuchadnezzar II was a Chaldean king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, who reigned c.605 BCE – c.562 BCE. Both the construction of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and the destruction of Jerusalems temple are ascribed to him and he is featured in the Book of Daniel and is mentioned in several other books of the Bible. The Akkadian name,
4. Jehoiakim – Jehoiakim was a king of Judah from 608 to 598 BC. He was the eldest son of king Josiah by Zebidah, the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah, after Josiahs death, Jehoiakims younger brother Jehoahaz was proclaimed king, but after three months pharaoh Necho II deposed him, making Eliakim king in his place. When placed on the throne, his name was changed to Jehoiakim, Jehoiakim reigned for eleven years, until 598 BC and was succeeded by his son Jeconiah, who reigned for only three months. Jehoiakim was appointed king by Necho II, king of Egypt, in 608 BC, after Nechos return from the battle in Haran, Necho deposed Jehoiakims younger brother Jehoahaz after a reign of only three months and took him to Egypt, where he died. Jehoiakim ruled originally as a vassal of the Egyptians, paying a heavy tribute, to raise the money he taxed the land and exacted the silver and gold from the people of the land according to their assessments. He paid tribute from the treasury in Jerusalem, some temple artifacts, rabbinical literature describes Jehoiakim as a godless tyrant who committed atrocious sins and crimes. He is portrayed as living in incestuous relations with his mother, daughter-in-law, and stepmother and he also had tattooed his body. Jeremiah criticised the policies, insisting on repentance and strict adherence to the law. Another prophet, Uriah ben Shemaiah, proclaimed a similar message, Jehoiakim continued for three years as a vassal to the Babylonians, until the failure of an invasion of Egypt in 601 BC undermined their control of the area. Jehoiakim switched allegiance back to the Egyptians, in late 598 BC, the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II invaded Judah and again laid siege to Jerusalem, which lasted three months. Jehoiakim died before the siege ended and he was succeeded by his son Jeconiah. Nebuchadnezzar deposed Jeconiah and installed Zedekiah, Jehoiakims younger brother, as king in his place, Jeconiah, his household, and much of Judahs population were exiled to Babylon. According to the Babylonian Chronicles, Jerusalem fell on 2 Adar 597 BC, the Chronicles state, The seventh year in the month Chislev the king of Babylon assembled his army, and after he had invaded the land of Hatti he laid siege to the city of Judah. On the second day of the month of Adar he conquered the city and he installed in his place a king of his own choice, and after he had received rich tribute, he sent forth to Babylon. King, Philip J. Jeremiah, An Archaeological Companion
5. Manasseh of Judah – Manasseh was a king of the Kingdom of Judah. He was the son of Hezekiah with Hephzibah. He became king at the age of 12 and reigned for 55 years, edwin Thiele has concluded that he commenced his reign as co-regent with his father Hezekiah in 697/696 BC, with his sole reign beginning in 687/686 BC and continuing until his death in 643/642 BC. William F. Albright has dated his reign from 687–642 BC, Manasseh was the first king of Judah who would not have had a direct experience with the Kingdom of Israel, which had been destroyed by the Assyrians in c.720 BC with much of its population deported. He re-instituted polytheistic worship and reversed the changes made by his father Hezekiah. He was married to Meshullemeth, daughter of Haruz of Jotbah, and they had a son Amon, the biblical account of Manasseh is found in II Kings 21, 1–18 and II Chronicles 32, 33–33,20. He is also mentioned in Jeremiah 15,4, when Manassehs reign began, Sennacherib was king of Assyria, who reigned until 681 BC. Manasseh is mentioned in Assyrian records as a contemporary and loyal vassal of Sennacheribs son and successor, Assyrian records list Manasseh among twenty-two kings required to provide materials for Esarhaddons building projects. Esarhaddon died in 669 BC and was succeeded by his son, Ashurbanipal, the Assyrian records are consistent with archaeological evidence of demographic trends and settlement patterns suggesting a period of stability in Judah during Manassehs reign. Apparent devastation of the fertile Shephelah, coupled with growth of the population of the highlands, olive oil production and export played a big role in the economy of the time. Theres evidence in the Gaza area of trade, and an apparently flourishing olive oil industry at Ekron. However, Finkelstein and Silberman argue that the trade led to great disparities between rich and poor, which in turn gave rise to civil unrest. As a result, they speculate, the Deuteronomist author or editor of 2 Kings later reworked the traditions about Manasseh to portray his outward-looking involvement in trade as, effectively, apostasy. According to Kings, Manasseh reversed the reforms of his father Hezekiah. He restored polytheistic worship of Baal, and Asherah in the Temple, so zealous was he in his worship of the foreign gods, he even participated in the sacrificial cult of Moloch that consisted in sacrificing young children. His reign may be described as reactionary in relation to his fathers, during Manassehs half-century the popular worship was a medley of native and foreign cults, the influence of which was slow to disappear. Such a reaction involved the persecution of those who had condemned the popular syncretism. The prophets were put to the sword, innocent blood reddened the streets of Jerusalem
6. Jehoahaz of Judah – Jehoahaz or Joachaz in the Douay-Rheims and some other English translations was king of Judah and the third son of king Josiah whom he succeeded. His mother was Hamautal, daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah and he was born in 633/632 BC and his birth name was Shallum. In the spring or early summer of 609 BC, Necho II began his first campaign against Babylon, there he found his passage blocked at Megiddo by the Judean army led by Josiah, who sided with the Babylonians. After a fierce battle Josiah was killed, the Assyrians and their allies the Egyptians fought the Babylonians at Harran. The Babylonian Chronicle dates the battle from Tammuz to Elul of 609 BC, Josiah was therefore killed in the month of Tammuz,609 BC, or the month prior, when the Egyptians were on their way to Harran. Chronological considerations related to his successor limit the month in which Josiah was killed, although he was two years younger than his brother, Eliakim, he was elected to succeed his father on the throne at the age of twenty-three, under the name Jehoahaz. This fact attests the popularity of the man, and probably also his political affiliations or policy. He reigned for three months, before being deposed by the Egyptian Pharaoh Necho II and taken into Egyptian captivity. He disregarded the reforms of his father Josiah, both William F. Albright and E. R. Thiele dated his reign to 609 BC, making his birth in 633/632 BC. After the failed siege of Harran, Necho left a force behind. On his return march, he found that the Judeans had selected Jehoahaz to succeed his father Josiah, Necho brought Jehoahaz to Riblah and imprisoned him there. He then deposed Jehoahaz and replaced with his older brother Eliakim as king, changing his name to Jehoiakim, Jehoahaz had ruled for three months. Necho brought Jehoahaz back to Egypt as his prisoner, where Jehoahaz ended his days
7. Amon of Judah – Amon of Judah was a 7th-century BC King of Judah who, according to the biblical account, succeeded his father Manasseh of Judah. Although the date is unknown, the Hebrew Bible records that he married Jedidah, Amon began his reign of Judah at the age of 22, and reigned for two years. Biblical scholar and archeologist William F. Albright has dated his reign to 642 –640, thieles dates are tied to the reign of Amons son Josiah, whose death at the hands of Pharaoh Necho II occurred in the summer of 609. Josiahs death, which is confirmed in Egyptian history, places the end of Amons reign,31 years earlier, in 641 or 640. The Hebrew Bible records that Amon continued his father Manassehs practice of idolatry, II Kings states that Amon did that which was evil in the sight of YAWEH, as did Manasseh his father. And he walked in all the way that his father walked in, and served the idols that his father served, the Talmudic tradition recounts that Amon burnt the Torah, and allowed spider webs to cover the altar. Like other textual sources, Flavius Josephus too criticizes the reign of Amon, after reigning two years, Amon was assassinated by his servants, who conspired against him, and was succeeded by his son Josiah, who at the time was eight years old. After Amons assassination his murderers became unpopular with the people, and were ultimately killed, Amons reign was in the midst of a transitional time for the Levant and the entire Mesopotamian region. To the east of Judah, the Assyrian Empire was beginning to disintegrate while the Babylonian Empire had not yet risen to replace it, to the west, Egypt was still recovering under Psamtik I from its Assyrian occupation, transforming from a vassal state to an autonomous ally. In this power vacuum, many states such as Judah were able to govern themselves without foreign intervention from larger empires. Manasseh of Judah Josiah Kings of Judah Kingdom of Judah This article incorporates text from a now in the public domain, Singer, Isidore. New York, Funk & Wagnalls Company