The death of the prophet Uriah (Jer 26:21-26:23)

“When King Jehoiakim,

With all his warriors,

With all his officials,

Heard his words,

The king sought

To put him to death.

When Uriah heard this,

He was afraid.

He fled.

He escaped to Egypt.

Then King Jehoiakim sent

Elnathan,

The son of Achbor,

With other men with him,

To Egypt.

They took Uriah

From Egypt.

They brought him

To King Jehoiakim.

He struck him down

With the sword.

They threw his dead body

Into the burial place

Of the common people.”

King Jehoiakim or King Eliakim (609-598 BCE), the same king as when Jeremiah was prophesying, heard about the prophecies of Uriah. He had an immediate reaction as he with his warriors and officials wanted to kill Uriah for his prophecy about the demise of Judah and Jerusalem. This prophet Uriah then fled to Egypt. However, the king of Egypt had put King Jehoiakim on the throne. Elnathan, the son of Achbor, may have been the father-in-law of the king of Judah. Achbor had helped King Josiah in his religious reforms. Thus when he showed up with some men in Egypt, they were able to bring him back to the king of Judah. There they killed Uriah with a sword. Then they threw his dead body in the common burial place. Uriah did not have a happy ending. He was one of the few prophets to be killed.

King Hezekiah copies (Prov 25:1-25:1)

“These are other proverbs of Solomon

That the officials

Of King Hezekiah,

Of Judah copied.”

Now we are back to another collection of King Solomon’s proverbs. However, these are the ones found or copied by the officials of King Hezekiah of Judah. Who was King Hezekiah? King Hezekiah (735-687 BCE) was the 13th ruler of Judah, a descendant of David. During his reign, the northern Israelite kingdom fell. However, he enacted many religious reforms in Judah. The prophets Isaiah and Micah were around during his rule. More information about his rule can be found in 2 Kings, chapters 18-20, and 2 Chronicles, chapters 29-32. There are also a number of non-biblical sources about the reign of Hezekiah. He also had an influence on the book of Deuteronomy, and the codification of the Torah. Thus these proverbs might be older than the ones earlier. On the other hand, they might have been added to the collection as it seems here.