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King Jehoram of Judah(A)

21 Jehoshaphat lay down in death with his ancestors and was buried with them in the City of David. His son Jehoram succeeded him as king. He had the following brothers, sons of Jehoshaphat: Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azariahu, Michael, and Shephatiah. All were the sons of King Jehoshaphat of Israel. Their father gave them many gifts: silver, gold, and other expensive things, along with fortified cities in Judah. But Jehoshaphat gave the kingdom to Jehoram, who was the firstborn.

After Jehoram had taken over his father’s kingdom, he strengthened his position and then executed all his brothers and some of the officials of Israel. Jehoram was 32 years old when he became king, and he ruled for 8 years in Jerusalem. He followed the ways of the kings of Israel, as Ahab’s family had done, because his wife was Ahab’s daughter. So he did what Yahweh considered evil. But Yahweh, recalling the promise[a] he had made to David, didn’t want to destroy David’s family. Yahweh had told David that he would always give him and his descendants a shining lamp.

Edom Wins Independence from Judah(B)

During Jehoram’s time Edom rebelled against Judah and chose its own king. Jehoram took all his chariot commanders to attack. The Edomites and their chariot commanders surrounded him, but he got up at night and broke through their lines. 10 So Edom rebelled against Judah’s rule and is still independent today. At the same time Edom rebelled, Libnah rebelled because Jehoram had abandoned Yahweh Elohim of his ancestors. 11 Jehoram made illegal places of worship in the hills of Judah. This caused the inhabitants of Jerusalem to chase after foreign gods as if they were prostitutes. So he led Judah astray.

12 Then a letter came to him from the prophet Elijah. It read, “This is what Yahweh Elohim of your ancestor David says: You haven’t followed the ways of your father Jehoshaphat or the ways of King Asa of Judah. 13 Instead, you have followed the ways of the kings of Israel. You, like Ahab’s family, have caused Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to chase after foreign gods as if they were prostitutes. You have killed your brothers, your father’s family. Your brothers were better than you. 14 Yahweh will strike a great blow to your people, your sons, your wives, and all your property because you did this. 15 You will suffer from a chronic intestinal disease until your intestines come out.”

16 Yahweh prompted the Philistines and the Arabs who lived near the people of Sudan to attack Jehoram. 17 They fought against Judah, broke into the country, and took away everything that could be found in the royal palace. They even took Jehoram’s sons and wives. The only son left was Ahaziah,[b] Jehoram’s youngest son. 18 After this, Yahweh struck Jehoram with an incurable intestinal disease. 19 Two years later, as his life was coming to an end, his intestines fell out because of his sickness. He died a painful death.

His people did not make a bonfire in his honor as they had done for his ancestors. 20 He was 32 years old when he became king, and he ruled for 8 years in Jerusalem. No one was sorry to see him die. He was buried in the City of David but not in the tombs of the kings.


  1. 2 Chronicles 21:7 Or “covenant.”
  2. 2 Chronicles 21:17 In the Masoretic Text this king of Judah is also called Jehoahaz, an alternate form of Ahaziah.