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Athaliah Reigns in Judah(A)

11 Now when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she rose up and destroyed all the royal descendants. But Jehosheba, the daughter of King Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash[a] the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king’s sons who were being murdered; and they hid him and his nurse in the bedroom, from Athaliah, so that he was not killed. He was with her, hidden in the house of the Lord for six years, while Athaliah reigned over the land.

Joash Anointed King of Judah

But in the seventh year Jehoiada sent word and took the captains of hundreds from the Carites and the guards and brought them to him in the house of the Lord. He made a covenant with them, put them under oath in the house of the Lord, and then showed them the king’s son. He commanded them, saying, “This is the thing that you shall do: One-third of your unit, those who come on duty on the Sabbath, will guard the king’s house. One-third will be at the gate of Sur, and one-third will be at the gate behind the guards. You will take turns guarding the house. Two of your companies from all who go out on the Sabbath will keep watch over the house of the Lord for the king. You will encircle the king, each man with his weapons in his hand, and the one that comes within the ranks must be killed. They must be with the king when he goes out and comes in.”

The captains of hundreds did according to everything that Jehoiada the priest commanded. Each took his men, those who came on duty on the Sabbath, with those that went off duty on the Sabbath, and came to Jehoiada the priest. 10 And the priest gave to the captains of hundreds spears and shields which belonged to King David that were in the house of the Lord. 11 The guards stood, each with his weapons in his hand, from the south side of the house to the north side of the house, along the altar and the house, surrounding the king.

12 Then he brought out the king’s son and put the crown on him and gave him the testimony. They made him king and anointed him. Then they clapped their hands and said, “Live, O king!”

The Death of Athaliah

13 Then Athaliah heard the sound of the guards and the people, so she came to the people in the house of the Lord. 14 Then she looked, and the king was standing by a pillar according to custom, the captains and the trumpeters by the king, and all the people of the land were rejoicing and blowing trumpets. So Athaliah tore her clothes and cried, “Conspiracy, conspiracy!”

15 But Jehoiada the priest commanded the captains of hundreds, those appointed over the forces, “Bring her out of the house to the ranks, and kill with the sword whoever follows her.” For the priest had said, “Let her not be killed in the house of the Lord.” 16 So they laid hands on her, and she came through the horses’ entrance into the king’s house. Then she was put to death there.

17 Jehoiada made a covenant between the Lord and the king and the people, that they should be the people of the Lord, and also between the king and the people. 18 Then all the people of the land entered the house of Baal and broke down its altars. His images they thoroughly broke in pieces, and they killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars.

The priest put appointees over the house of the Lord. 19 He took the captains of hundreds, the Carites, the guards, and all the people of the land. Then they brought down the king from the house of the Lord and marched through the gate of the guards to the king’s house. Then he sat on the throne of the kings. 20 All the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet. They had killed Athaliah with the sword at the king’s house.

21 Jehoash[b] was seven years old when he became king.


  1. 2 Kings 11:2 An alternate spelling of Jehoash.
  2. 2 Kings 11:21 An alternate spelling of Joash.