Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 22

The record of Jehoshaphat’s death

1 Kings 22:50

For more than 60 years during the rules of Asa and Jehoshaphat, Judah’s king was a good man, who served God. So, at the end of Jehoshaphat’s rule, hardly anyone in Judah could remember a time when their king served a false god. Both Asa and Jehoshaphat had firmly opposed false and evil religions.

However, with the death of Jehoshaphat, the situation in Judah would change completely. Now the rulers of Judah – two kings and then a queen – would be wicked people. Great acts of cruelty would happen in Judah before the country again had a good king.

It was Jehoshaphat’s own unwise decisions that brought about this situation. He permitted his son, Jehoram, to marry Athaliah, the daughter of King Ahab. Jehoshaphat may have even encouraged that marriage for political reasons, because he wanted a peace agreement with Ahab (2 Chronicles 18:1). Perhaps Jehoshaphat considered that to be a good way to protect Judah from attacks by Ahab’s army. It may have protected Judah for a short time – however, in the end, the effect was to hand over Judah to Ahab’s family, its evil religions and its great cruelty.

Still, we must remember Jehoshaphat himself as a great and good king. He was loyal to the true God; and he encouraged the people whom he led to serve God too.

2 Kings 8:16 shows that Jehoram’s rule actually began before Jehoshaphat’s death. For some reason, Jehoshaphat arranged for his son to become king while Jehoshaphat was still living.

Next part: Ahaziah, son of Ahab (1 Kings 22:51-53)


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