Queen Athaliah destroys the royal family (2 Kings 11:1-11:3)

“When Queen Athaliah, King Ahaziah’s mother, saw that her son was dead, she set about to destroyed all the royal family. But Jehosheba, King Jehoram’s daughter, King Ahaziah’s sister, took Joash son of King Ahaziah. She stole him away from among the king’s children who were about to be killed. She put him and his nurse in a bedroom. Thus she hid him from Queen Athaliah, so that he was not killed. He remained with her six years, hidden in the house of Yahweh, while Queen Athaliah reigned over the land.”

Queen Athaliah was the granddaughter of King Omri of Israel, the daughter of King Ahab and Jezebel. She had married King Jehoram of Judah. Their son, Ahaziah was the king of Judah, who had been killed by King Jehu. She decided to kill off all the heirs to the throne. This seems strange since this might include her own children and grandchildren. Jehosheba was the daughter of King Jehoram and thus the sister of King Ahaziah. There is speculation that her mother might not have been Queen Athaliah. However, she married a high priest, which was very unusual. She stole the young son of her brother, Joash with his nurse. She hid him in the temple of Yahweh, while Queen Athaliah ruled Judah.

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