part 1: a nation is born, ISRAEL, only nation founded by God,
At the "burning bush", Moses asked God His name, for the Hebrews did not know what the name of their God was. They called Him "He who has no name". And, God told Moses "go tell them that "I AM" [= "Yah" + "Weh"] hath sent thee". The religious leaders of later times grew to believe that the name of God was so holy that no one should pronounce it, and they took out the vowels and left the consonants, "YHWH" ["JHVH"], called the "tetragrammaton", from which we get the name "Yahweh", and also the name "Jehovah" by using different vowel-points, and adding an extra vowel-point in between the "H" and the "W"["V"]. Thus, "Jehovah" is the name of God in the "King James" English translation of the "Old Testament", rather than "Yahweh".
Moses, a Hebrew Levite, confronted Pharaoh and demanded freedom for the Hebrew slaves. The "Ten Plagues" of Egypt were seen as miracles sent by God to pressure Pharaoh to give the Hebrews their freedom, and, end the "Egyptian Bondage". The Hebrews were not slaves the whole time of their sojourn in Egypt, but only the last 200 years of their 400-year-sojourn, that is, during Egypt's 17th, 18th, & 19th dynasties; for, the Hebrews [= Hyksos] gave [Lower] Egypt its 15th & 16th dynasties. [The names of the kings of the 15th Dynasty, the "Hyksos" [= "foreign", or "shepherd"], that is, the "Hebrews", are combined Semitic & Egyptian names. It looks like most of the Hebrew/Hyksos Kings added an Egyptian name to their own Semitic personal name. Very likely, the kings of the 15th Dynasty [Lower Egypt] were descendants of the Hebrew Joseph, the grand-vizier of the 12th-Dynasty Pharaoh Senwosret III, which were actually Hebrew tribal chiefs, which dynasty was contemporary with the native 14th-Dynasty [Upper Egypt]. The name of one 16th-Dynasty Pharaoh was Yakob-Hor [= Jacob, combined with the Egyptian name Hor]. The departure of the Hebrews from Egypt, "The Exodus", when God parted the Red Sea to give them safe passage to the Sinai Peninsula, was admittedly a miracle.
The "Exodus" is thought to have taken place in the mid-19th Dynasty, under the leadership of the Hebrew Levite, Moses. The Egyptians never admitted defeat and described the Hebrew Exodus as the "expulsion" of the Hyksos. The Bible calls Moses "the son of pharaohís daughter"; for, as a babe Moses was secretly adopted by the recently widowed sister of the reigning pharaoh, who represented Moses as her late husband's posthumous son. The phrase "son of pharaohís daughter" is significant because it refers to the system of succession in Ancient Egypt which was according to the female-line, which placed Moses in the line of succession to the Egyptian throne. That is, according to the matrilineal-principle of succession, the inheritance passed from "sisterís son" to "sisterís son", or from uterine brother to uterine brother, which is why the Egyptian pharaohs married their sisters, or aunts, or daughters, or nieces, to keep the throne in their family, for the mother of a pharaoh had to be a "throne-princess", hence, all pharaohs were related to each other through their mothers.
The present accepted chronology of the period that places "The Exodus" in the mid-19th-Dynasty, creates the necessity to compress Hebrew chronology during the period of "The Judges".
The former Hebrew slaves departed Egypt in a mass "Exodus" under the leadership of Moses, reckoned Israel's first governor [or, judge].
The God who had revealed Himself to Moses at the burning-bush, manifest Himself to the congregation of the Hebrews in the wilderness of the Sinai peninsula in a cloud of fire hovering above Mount Sinai amidst a terrible storm of thundering and lightning, when He founded the Hebrew Nation, which was called "Israel", meaning "Prince of God", so-called as Israel as "God's Son". There, at Mount Sinai, God made a covenant with the Hebrew tribes whereby they became a nation, His nation, Israel, destined to be the "chief" [= "greatest"] of all the other nations on earth. The so-called "Sinai Covenant" (Ex. 19:17-20:18ff); is also called "Jehovah's Covenant" (Deut. 4:13), for the name God gave Himself at the burning-bush; or sometimes called the "Mosaic Covenant" (Ex. 19:5,6) to commemorate their deliverance by God under Moses, whom God had appointed as the nation's first judge.
The covenant provided for a theocratic government with God Himself as the Hebrews' king, who gave them 613 laws [includes the "Ten Commandments"] pertaining to things civil, religious, and social, recorded by Moses in the "Torah", the nationís constitution. Provision was made in the "Torah" (Dt. 17:14-20) for the eventual establishment of a monarchy, for it was Godís intention to reign over His people directly represented by a dynasty of kings, referring to in a provision in the "Abrahamic Covenant" recorded in Genesis 17:6, which the Hebrews also claimed as their own.
The religion later called "Judaism", was instituted by the covenant. Here, God authorizes a religion. Judaism was symbolized by the "ark-of-the-covenant", housed first in a portable "tabernacle" in the wilderness, then, later in the Jewish "Temple" in Jerusalem.
Moses appointed his brother, Aaron, to be the nation's first High-Priest. In all, there were 83 high-priests: 13 in the tabernacle; 18 in the "1st" Temple; plus 52 more in "2nd" Temple. Aaron organized the Levites, his tribe, into an episcopate priesthood with a college and its own schools and classes to maintain the tabernacle, built to house "The Ark", the symbol of the nationís covenant with God, to offer daily-sacrifices to God on behalf of individuals and for the whole nation, and officiate in religious gatherings. The tribe of Levi became essentially a tribe of priests. They were not given land in the "Palestinian Covenant" like the other Hebrew tribes, for God declared that He was their heritage.
The "Ark" was a box, two cubits and a half in length, a cubit and a half in breadth, and a cubit and a half in height, made of acacia wood and overlaid with pure gold. The lid of the ark called "the mercy seat" (Ex 37:6) doubled both as an altar [onto which the High-Priest every year would pour the blood of a sacrifice (Heb 9:7) offered for the sins of the whole nation], and as God's Throne (Ex 25:22 cp Ps 99:1). The "Ark" had two cherubim one on each end facing each other looking downwards at the "mercy seat", their wings spread touching each other at their tips, with God manifest as a cloud hovering above the cherubim looking down at the "Ark" [which contained the "broken" law] through the blood of the sacrifice on the "mercy seat" (Ex 25:18-20; Ex 37:8; 1 Ki 8:7; Heb 37:8,9; Heb 9:5). The "Ark" contained the two tablets of stone, upon which were engraved the "Ten Commandments" [the broken law] (Deut 31:26; 1 Ki 8:9). The "Ark" was housed in a tabernacle, which had the design of the later temple: (1) the outer porch; (2) The Holy Place, where the sacrifices were made on an altar; and (3) the "inner sanctum", called "Holy-of-Holies", in which the "Ark", setting upon a foundation-stone, called "Jacobís Pillar", was its only piece of furniture.
Here at Mount Sinai was the birth of the Hebrew Nation, that is, Israel, as well as the nationís state-religion, Judaism, according to the "Mosiac" Covenant, and, by the "Palestinian Covenant" the Nation of Israel was given by God the land of Canaan/Palestine as the nationís homeland by promise, hence, Canaan/Palestine is called the "Promised Land" of Israel.
The provisions of the "Palestinian Covenant" are given in Gen. 15:18; Num. 34:1-12; Deut. 30:3ff. And, Ex. 15:14-16; 23:32-33; 34:11-12; Deut. 7:1-3; 20:16-17 records the commission God gave to the Hebrews to kill every member of the Canaanite [Palestinian] race, whether man, woman, or child, without mercy and seize their land for their own, and specifically warned the Hebrews that if they did not obey Him that the Palestinians would come to be "thorns" in their sides, nevertheless, not only the Hebrews disobeyed God by not destroying the idolatrous Palestinian culture, the Hebrews even adopted some of their abominable ways, today called "western civilization".
Meantime, the Hebrews were ruled by governors, called "judges", who received their orders directly from God, the first of whom was Moses, the first "judge" [governor], circa 1500/1250BC, who left an immense legacy. He founded a nation, Israel; wrote its constitution, the Torah; and founded its religion, Judaism.
part 2: the Hebrew Judges [governors], list
01. MOSES, [Levi] first "Judge" [governor] of Israel, formerly a "Prince of Egypt", led the Hebrews out of Egypt in the "Exodus" and ruled "the wilderness generation" of the former Hebrew slaves for 40 years, circa 1290BC. He died before the Hebrews crossed the Jordan River into the "Promised Land". Upon Moses' death, his designated successor, Joshua, was immediately accepted by the Hebrews as their new leader, or "governor", or "judge". It is surprising how indifferent the Hebrews were to Moses' descendants; and why his descendants did not succeed him as a dynasty of Hebrew kings. The same is also oddly true of the "Desposyni", i.e., descendants of the so-called "brothers" of Jesus, though for three centuries their descendants occupied church offices of the (so-called) "Christian Caliphate", which was founded by Jesus, who, after His Resurrection though before His Ascension, appointed Saint James [not St. Peter] as the first in an hereditary dynasty of supreme-pontiffs.
Moses =[bet] Neferteri, an Egyptian princess; =1 Ziporrah, daughter of Jethro "Raguel", the Midianite sheikh; =2 Tarbis, daughter of Perehu, the Kushite Emperor [called "Ethiopian", a generalized term, but were actually "Nubian"], and, of 1st wife begot:
(a) Gershom, ancestor of Jonathan, who apostatized, and became the first High-Priest of the Tribe of Dan, the ancestor of the Danite priesthood, which was a dynasty of hereditary high-priests. If the Hebrew tribe of Dan became the Greek tribe of Danaoi [ancestors of the Spartans] who established colonies in Northern Europe in Ireland, England, and Denmark, then, the druids of the Irish Tuatha-da-Danaan, as well as those of the Dumnonians of England, and those of the pagan Danes, were possibly all branches of Moses' descendants.
(b) Eliezar, ancestor of Shebuel, alive 1000BC, but his pedigree is lost, the father of Aibra, wife of Absessalom [son of Ahishai], and, parents of Ahimaaz, who married King Solomon's daughter, Basemath, begotten of his Egyptian wife, and themselves begot a daughter, Ana, the wife of the Jewish King Abijah (Abijam), through whom the descent-line of Moses enters into the blood-line of Jewish royalty; as well as Egyptian and other foreign royal descents. Shebuel, a Hebrew noble, appears to be the last male-line descendant of Moses of the Israelite branch of Moses' descendants. And, Moses,
of 2nd wife begot:
(c) Awawa, founder and 1st king of Nubia's 3rd-Dynasty, ancestors of Egypt's 25th-Dynasty, ancestors of Ethiopia's Zagwe-Dynasty: male-line descent traceable to the AD 1950s to the African Prince Abera, when public records cease in the English language; however, descent through a female-link is traceable to European royalty by way of the sister of the Ethiopian Emperor Lalibela, who married a Byzantine prince.
see https://www.angelfire.com/ego/et_deo/africa2europe.wps.htm, for Moses' descent-line
02. JOSHUA, [Judah] became "governor", circa 1250BC, and all Israel recognized the continuity of Godís rule over them in Joshua as Moses' successor. He led the second generation of the Hebrew Nation into the "Promised Land", which the Hebrews under his leadership conquered and settled, displacing the native inhabitants. The Hebrews under Joshua slew many of the native inhabitants, the Canaanites [or Palestinians], according to God's express command (Ex. 15:14-16;23:32-33;34:11-12; Deut.7:1-3;20:16-17), however, against God's warning spared scattered pockets of the natives. The "Hebrews" are mentioned by name in a letter from Canaanite [Palestinian] kings to the Egyptian Pharaoh Merenptah appealing for his help against the Hebrew conquerors. This is usually considered evidence that the conquest of Canaan/Palestine by the Hebrews took place during Merenptah's reign. The Hebrews replaced the native Canaanites/Palestinians as the people of Canaan/Palestine, which was re-named "Israel", which was their national name. After Joshuaís death, he was succeeded as "judge" ["governor"] of Israel by:
03. OTHNIEL, son of Menaz [Judah], c 1225-1215BC. He repulsed the Babylonians from Mesopotamia [Iraq], who had invaded the Middle East region.
04. EHUD, son of Bera [Benj.], 1215-1200BC. He fought and won victories over the Jordanese [Moabites, Ammonites, & Edomites], today's Jordan; the Amalekites of Arabia [Arabians]; and, the Syrians of Syria, and expelled them from all the Hebrew territories.
05. SHAMGAR, son of Anath, [Naph.] 1200-1175BC. He fought the Philistines [whence the name "Palestinians" derive] of Gaza, the only Palestinian state that ever was. The Philistines were originally Greek Sea-Peoples who expelled and replaced the native Canaanites in five cities along the Gaza strip, and became the Palestinians.
06. DEBORAH "The Prophetess", co-ruler 1175-50, fought beside her colleague in office, the Hebrew general Barak, against the Philistines/Palestinians, who fought a terrorist-war against the Hebrews.
07. BARAK, co-ruler, 1175-50, suppressed the rebellion of the settlements of the native Canaanites [Palestinians], who made an all-out effort to regain their country from the Hebrews that ended in failure.
08. GIDEON, son of Joash [Manasseh], c 1150BC. He fought the Midianites, once Israel's best ally, now Israel's bitter enemy, who had overrun Israel and severely oppressed the Hebrew people; and, with God's help drove the Midianites out of the country.
09. ABIMELECH, took the title "king" rather than "judge", and set up a short-lived Hebrew kingdom with Shechem as its capital-city, c 1145, which actions sparked a civil war among the Hebrew tribes between monarchists and republicans.
10. TOLA, son of Puah [Issachar], the next "judge", ended the civil war among the Hebrews and restored the "old constitution". He flourished circa 1135.
11. JAIR, his son, enjoyed a period of peace. He fl. c. 1125.
12. JEPHTATH, illegitimate son of Gilead [Manasseh], won a great victory over the Jordanese, circa 1115.
13. IBZAN, Sheikh of Bethlehem, pursued peace, intermarried with the Jordanese royal house, 1100.
14. ELON [Zebulon], fl. c. 1095.; pursued peace with his neighbors. The Philistines/Palestinians reappear in Hebrew History at this time, as God said they would if the Hebrews disobey His commands. It was a sign of things to come.
15. ABDON, son of Hillel [Ephraim], fell against the treacherous Philistines [or Palestinians] who overran the country, fl. c. 1085, and oppressed the Hebrews as their conquerors.
16. SAMSON [Dan], c. 1075, "the Hebrew Hercules", acts as a Hebrew judge during the interim following the death of Judge Abdon at the hands of the Philistines/Palestinians, and the victory of Eli, the High-Priest & Judge, over the Philistines/Palestinians in another battle. Samson fought the Philistines/Palestinians throughout his short career. He yielded to the temptations offered by Delilah, a Philistine/Palestinian woman, who betrayed him over to his enemies, the Philistines/Palestinians, who made him a slave pushing a huge mill-stone in a circle grinding meal for the remainder of his miserable life.
17. ELI [Levi], High-Priest & Judge, rallied Hebrew tribes against the nation's enemies, c. 1065, and, thus, acts as a Hebrew judge during this period of national emergency. The leaders of the Hebrew tribal militias reported to Eli, as they would have to a Hebrew judge, and, the Hebrew tribal-chiefs would gather in assembles officiated by Eli, the High-Priest, as they would have if summoned by a Hebrew judge. He appointed Samuel, his protégé, as his successor.
18. SAMUEL [Levite], priest, prophet, and last Hebrew Judge, c. 1055BC, was held in the utmost respect by the Hebrew people. He was recognized by all Hebrews as their nation's leader, and was given preferential treatment for that reason. He implemented certain neglected provisions of the nation's constitution and replaced the republic with a monarchy, thus, founding the Hebrew Monarchy, c 1050BC. He installed in office the first two Israeli kings, Saul and David; hence, it became traditional that the priests [or sometimes a prophet] inaugurate the Israeli/or Hebrew kings.
part 3: ancient Hebrew kings: various dynasties
The Hebrews during the administration of Samuel, "the Judge", complained over several long breaks between judges [governors], and, too, just like anyone else, the Hebrews were generally incapable of grasping the idea of an invisible king, and they eventually came to be dissatisfied with the system of the judges, and demanded that God give them a king; which offended God since He was their king. It was Godís intention anyway from the start to give Israel a monarchy as a "gift", and, a king, that is, Himself, come incarnate as Messiah [Christ], however, on His time-table. The Hebrews, however, were not wanting to wait any longer, and came to Samuel, the contemporary "judge", and demanded a king on their terms (1 Sam 8:5). God granted their request, and gave them kings [called "gods"] as visible symbols of His presence who sat on Godís throne. Though God complied with their desire, giving, Saul, David, Solomon, etc.; but, while appointing these, God merely allowed them to "represent" Him to the people. Therefore, the last "judge", Samuel, under Godís direction, founded the Israelite Monarchy, circa 1050BC. He inaugurated the first two kings, Saul and David.
In the Bible we find the Hebrew kings received the "Spirit of God" ["The Holy-Spirit"] (1 Ki. 311), which was symbolized by the rite of anointing the head of the king-designate with holy oil during his inauguration, or coronation service. The "Spirit of God", through the Hebrew kings, restored the rule of God in the earth, for it was through the Hebrew kings that God expressed His kingship. The Hebrew kings were themselves called gods, and so their power was compared to "the divine power". The king was called the "Son of God" (Ps. 2:7) as the visible symbol of the invisible God to the people, occupying Godís throne (Ps. 2:6), representing God to the people; while at the same-time the king was called the "Son of ManĒ (Dan. 7:13-14) as the corporate embodiment of the people representing the people to God. The throne upon which the Hebrew kings sat is said in the Bible (1 Chr. 29:23) to have been the very throne of God Himself, thus, here again we find the restoration of Godís Monarchy, or rule, over His creation through a dynasty of kings.
The Hebrew kings, like Moses and the judges, received their orders directly from God, but unlike Moses and the system of the judges, this time God spoke through the mediation of the prophets, whom God would raise up to advise the kings; or, to warn a misbehaving king to change his ways, and, of the consequences for misbehaving.
note: accuracy of dates; the reason that few history books agree on the dates of the Hebrew kings is due, in part, to different methods the authors used in counting regnal years. Here, the dates assigned to the Hebrew kings were tabulated keeping in mind the different systems of dating; too, sometimes parts of years were counted as whole years or not counted at all in rounding-off fractions of years to the nearest whole numbers [whether adding or subtracting]; the same year was sometimes reckoned twice, once to the father, then, to his son; and, there were double accessions, e.g., the associate-reign, or co-regency, or co-rulership of a prince, sometimes, not always, counted as part of his later reign as king; and, there were rivalries to account for; and interregnums both documented and those theorized were considered in working-out the chronology of the Hebrew kings, whose numbers were all harmonized to supply the dates for their reigns.
KINGS OF ISRAEL , regnal-list
01. SAUL, a Benjaminite, was Israelís first king. He reigned 40 years, circa 1050-1010 BC. He was chosen by lot in a national assembly at Mizpeh, for the result of the lot was to be regarded as a divine election. He established his capital at his home town Gibeah [Tell-el-Full], where he built a stone castle as his residence.
His genealogy is recorded in the Bible. Saul is said to be the son of Kish, a Benjaminite sheikh, the son of Neri, the son of Gibeon, the son of Jeiel [& wife, Maacah], the son of Ezbon, a descendant Bela, the son of Benjamin, one of the twelve patriarchs. Saul married Ahinoam, the daughter of Ahimaaz, a Judahite, and begot five sons and two daughters. His sons were Jonathan, Ishvi, Malchishua, Abinadab, and Ishbosheth [who changed his name to Eshbaal on his succession]; and his daughters were Merab and Michal. His son, Jonathan, the crown-prince, was the father of Meribbaal, the father of Micah, the father of several sons including Ahaz, the father of Jarah [Jehoaddah], the father of Alemeth, the father of Zimri, the father of Moza, the father of Binea, the father of Rephaiah [Rephah], the father of Eleasah, the father of Azel [whose brother Kais was the ancestor of the early Afghanistan kings], the father of Azrikam (1 Chr 9:44), whose daughter, Ahio, married King Jotham of Judah, 740-735, regent from 750, the mother of King Ahaz of Judah.
Saul expelled the Philistines [Palestinians] from Israel, who had overrun the country, and confined them to Gaza, the only Palestinian state that ever was. He gained victories over the Moabites, the Ammonites, and Edomites, three Trans-Jordanian Semitic tribes, now, the modern-day Jordanians, who had invaded the country, and, to settle an old score, attacked the Amalekites in Arabia, and overcame them. Later, Saul fell-out with his son, Jonathan, the crown-prince, and, with his son-in-law, David, an army-officer, and with the prophet Samuel, the ex-judge, and became mentally unbalanced and given over to rage. Saul was ruled by public opinion rather than by God, and God rejected him, and directed Samuel, the ex-judge, to consecrate another to be king whom He shall choose, namely, David, a shepherd-boy.
The popularity of David made King Saul jealous, and Saul sought to kill him. David took flight and thus became a deserter, a fugitive, and an outlaw. He found refuge in the wilderness and made the Cave of Adullam his hide-out. There he was joined by outcasts, malcontents, and hoodlums, whom David trained, disciplined, and molded into his own private army. David thus became a freebooter at the head of his own war-band of mounted warriors, and spent several years wandering in the wilderness with his band of followers successfully evading King Saulís efforts to capture him. Meantime, the Philistines [Palestinians] from Gaza continued to harass the country with raids made on Israelís cities.
Full-scale war broke-out with the Philistines [Palestinians], and this time the Hebrews were defeated and routed in battle on Mount Gilboa. King Saul, mortally wounded, committed suicide so that he would not be captured alive. His death left the Hebrew kingdom in disarray. There followed a five-year interregnum, during which the Philistines [Palestinians] overran the country, however, met resistance from isolated pockets of the remnants of the Hebrew Army under their own commanders, who fought to recover their country from the Gaza invaders.
02. ESHBAAL (ISHBOSHETH), the only surviving of King Saulís sons, was set up as his fatherís successor by Abner, his great-uncle, who had been Saulís army-commander, five years after his fatherís death. The country east of the Jordan River was overrun by Philistines [Palestinians], so, Abner, therefore, took Eshbaal beyond the Jordan River to the city of Mahanaim, and set-up the royal-court there. He reigned for two years, 1005-3 (2 Sam 2:10). He was recognized by all the Hebrew tribes except the Tribe of Judah, which had already made David, its favorite son, its king. This sparked civil war among the Hebrews between Saulís House and Davidís House. Abner, after suffering several defeats, began to realize the inevitability of Davidís eventual victory in the civil war. He fell-out with Eshbaal and opened negotiations with David to turn the kingdom over to him, while he could still bargain from a position of strength. Too, there was already significant momentum among the tribal chiefs of Israel toward shifting their allegiance to David. Abner, during a parlee with DavidĎs representatives, was murdered by Joab, one of Davidís generals. The news of Abnerís death back home signaled the murder of King Eshbaal by two of his soldiers, Rechab and Baanah, who took his head to King David in the hope to obtain a reward, but David had them executed for their crime. This left David as the only logical choice for king, and he was invited to the Israelite Throne by all the Hebrew tribal chiefs.
3/1. DAVID reigned at Hebron as Judahís first king for seven years, 1010-1003, then, reigned at Jerusalem for thirty-three years, 1003-970BC (2 Sam 5:5), as Israelís third or second king depending on if one counts Eshbaal, who usually is not numbered in official regnal-lists. David was the greatest and most revered of Israelís national heroes.
David, an athletic, charismatic, and handsome young teenager, slew a giant [Golaith], which made him instantly very popular among the people. [note: "the giants" in the Bible the Greeks say were the remnants of the survivors of the "great deluge".] King Saul summoned the lad and made him a captain in the army, whereupon, David enters his countryís service. He distinguishes himself in clashes fighting his countryís enemies, which greatly enhances his reputation with his countrymen. Earlier, Samuel, the countryís last "judge", who was a prophet and a priest, upon Godís instructions, had secretly anointed David with holy oil as king-elect, that is, to be King Saulís successor, whom he eventually succeeded on Israelís throne.David began his reign as King of Israel by the capture of the Jebusite city of Salem, which was renamed "Jerusalem", which he made Israelís capital-city. The city, situated on five hills, was centrally located among the Hebrew tribes and was acceptable as their national capital and center of government. Here, David set in place a new administration and established an officialdom based partly on the model of Egyptís national government. To establish the city as the nationís religious centre, David brought the Ark-of-the-Covenant there and placed it in the tabernacle which he had reassembled on the present site of the Temple-Mount, called Mount Moriah, one of the cityís five hills, the same mount a thousand years earlier on which Abraham built an altar and offered to God his son. Davidís son [Solomon] later replaced the tabernacle with a grandiose temple in which to house "The Ark". "The Ark", usually kept at Shiloh, had been hidden for some time at an obscure retreat to prevent its capture by the country's enemies. "The Ark", a holy relic, contained the stone tablets on which the "Ten Commandments" had been inscribed by Moses; and, at the same-time its lid [the "mercy seat"] doubled both as the templeís high-altar onto which the blood of "the paschal lamb" was poured (Lev. 16:14,15) and also as Godís earthly throne (Ps. 99:1). Thus, Jerusalem became the centre of Jehovah-worship. The city also became the seat of Davidís royal house. David renovated a Bronze Age stone hill-fort or castle in Jerusalem on Mount Zion, one of the cityís five hills, and later his son [Solomon] remodeled and enlarged it into a palace. The Bible says that Mount Zion was Godís foundation stone, and the later kingdom of MESSIAH is said to be "founded on Mount Zion". Jerusalem thus served three purposes: (1) as the seat of Davidís royal house; (2) as the centre of government of all the Hebrew tribes; and (3) as a new religious centre, replacing Shiloh, as the site of Yahweh/Jehovah-worship. David, thus, transformed the Hebrews from a rude confederacy of twelve tribes into a national-state. And, by his conquests of the remaining Canaanite [Palestinian] city-states in Israel did David give the Hebrews a period of peace.
David built a substantial empire for Israel by subjugating all the neighboring states. He made his tributaries the Philistines [Palestinians] of Gaza, the Jordanese [Moabites, Ammonites, and Edomites] of Trans-Jordan, and the Phoenicians of Lebanon. He conquered Syria and stationed a garrison of Hebrew troops in its capital city, Damascus. He also took a yearly tribute from the Amalekites of Arabia which also became one of David's vassal-states. David, thus, took an insignificant nation, and, within a few years, built it into a mighty empire. The recent translation of some ancient script reveals that King David of Israel also defeated the mighty Assyrians in battle, who thereafter left him alone.
The doctrine of the "divine right of kings", which doctrine became the ideology of the Davidic Dynasty, was introduced by the covenant God made with David, which was the origin of the "Davidic Dynasty Tradition", that is, "royal Zionist theology", which tied the dynasty to the messianic prophecies of earlier times, and was the basis of the messianism of later times, which made the Davidic Dynasty a part of Israelís religion, Judaism, and later of Christianity also.
The covenant with David, paralleling Godís covenant with Israel, that God would channel His blessings to Israel through the chosen dynasty of David, made Yahweh/Jehovah the tutelary God or patron deity of Davidís House, which thus became a "divine dynasty" (so to speak). This new status brought with it the inviolability of the person of the king, called "The Lordís Anointed", and gave rise to a court rhetoric in which the king was styled the "Son of God" (Ps 2:7) as the visible symbol of the invisible God, occupying Godís throne (Ps 2:6), representing God to the people; while at the same-time the king was called the "Son of Man" (Dan 7:13-14) as the corporate embodiment of the people representing them to God. The king was answerable to God alone, and was responsible to Him for the care of the people, as the "politique" father ["parens patriae"] of a large family, his people. Too, the king was likened to a shepherd duty-bound to watch over his flock and provide for all its needs, which were (a) to feed, clothe, and shelter his people [= public funding for "soup kitchens", "special services", and, "homeless shelters"]; (b) to heal his people, i.e., "the royal touch" [= free health care]; and (c) to defend his people [= police and military functions], and his people in return would attend upon the king as his servants and give him worship.
Not all of the Hebrew People accepted the idea of an everlasting union of their nation, religion, and the Davidic Dynasty; and, later, in the time of his grandson [Rehoboam, Solomonís son], ten of the twelve Hebrew tribes rebelled against Davidís House, called "Jeroboam's Rebellion", which caused the disruption of the Hebrew kingdom; and, Jeroboam founded Israelís third dynasty.
King David was age 70 on his death. His tomb in Jerusalem, which became the official sepulchre of the Kings of Judah, was still in existence 1000 years later in Jesus' time. King Hurkinos looted the tomb of its treasures, which he gave to King Antiochus Epiphanes. Later, King Herod stole whatever Hurkinos had left. Today it contains the mangled bones of the ancient Jewish kings.
see "Davidic Dynasty" athttps://www.angelfire.com/ego/et_deo/davidicdynasty.wps.htm
4/2. SOLOMON (SCHLOMO) reigned as king in Jerusalem for forty years, 970-930 (1 Ki 11:42). His name originally was Jedidiah which he changed upon his succession. He was the favorite son of King Davidís favorite wife Bathsheba. He became king at age 18, reigned 40 tears, and died at age 58.
The kingdom that Solomon inherited from his father, King David, was perhaps the most powerful country then existent in the world at that time. The great empires during King Solomonís reign, Egypt, Babylonia, Assyria, were in eclipse, and the Hittite Empire was long gone, so that King Solomon could rule over a sizable empire of his own with the splendor attributed to him in the Bible. The country was remarkably prosperous, and with this wealth King Solomon sought to make Jerusalem, the capital city, the most magnificent city in the world, and undertook great building projects. He built a grandiose temple to replace the tabernacle on the Temple-Mount; built a great palace on Mt Zion; and built many public works [the countryís intra-structure]. The country was at peace and King Solomon took advantage of the favorable conditions for trade expansion. He monopolized the entire caravan trade in the Middle East and thus was able to collect enormous revenue from merchants seeking passage through his territories. King Solomon built a merchant-fleet which made long-distance voyages to far-away places and brought back exotic merchandise from Ophir (Africa), India, and China.
Solomon had a harem of 1000 secondary-wives: 700 wives and 300 concubines. He had only one primary wife, or queen, at a time. They were: =1 Abishag of Shunem, the un-named Shulamite woman of his youth, the love of his life, about whom he wrote about in the Bible book "Song of Solomon" ["Canticles"]; =2 Nicaule [Tashere] of Egypt, the daughter /or sister of Psusennes II [or Psusennes III] [note: the myth that she was Shishak's daughter is chronologically impossible]; =3 Bilqis, Queen of Arabia, according to Arabic tradition; =4 [name unknown], daughter of Hamath, King of Lebanon; =5 [name unknown], daughter of King Rezon [I] of Syria; =6 Makeda, Queen of Sheba, according to Ethiopian tradition; =7 Nabah (Naamah) "the Ammonite", daughter of King Hanun of Jordan; and had issue:
In contrast to his father, King David, a man of war, King Solomon was instead a man of peace. He was renown for his wealth, power, and wisdom. His reign was an era of great prosperity and abundance, and was described as glorious. The splendor of Solomonís reign was looked back to by the Jews of later generations as Israelís "Golden Age". Towards the end of Solomonís reign, his vassals abroad had begun to look for an opportunity to free themselves of Israeli domination; while, at home, the heavy burden of taxation for the upkeep of the grandiose royal court and the high costs of the grand-style monarchy was arousing discontent among his subjects. This discontentment surfaced as open rebellion after Solomonís death.
The delegates of the twelve Hebrew tribes gathered in an assembly to crown Rehoboam, however, due to Rehoboamís arrogance, instead of a coronation the assembly turned itself into a "constitutional convention" which rejected Rehoboam as king and elected another candidate, Jeroboam, an Ephraimite, as king, who founded Israelís third dynasty; and, the challenge of the Hebrew People to Davidís Dynasty was: "now, see to thine own house" (v. 16). There are many comparisons between "this" generation of Hebrews and the 1776 generation of American colonists, who rebelled against King George, a direct-descendant of King David, who had a "divine mandate".
The election of Jeroboam as King of Israel precipitated a crisis in the political history of the Hebrew People. It was the kingdom of Israel, not part of it, which was rent from Davidís House, and, it is the part, one tribe, Judah [the Jews], which God left to Davidís heir "for Davidís sake". It is written that none followed Davidís House, but the tribe of Judah only, however, reference is made to not one tribe but three, that is, the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi [which provided the priests], which remained loyal to the royal Davidic heir, Rehoboam, King Solomonís son, and ceded from Israel to do so, establishing or re-founding the Kingdom of Judah.
There, then, existed two Hebrew kingdoms, the northern kingdom, called Israel, composed of ten tribes, with Samaria as its capital city, claimed to represent the "true" kingdom; and the southern kingdom, called Judah, composed of one tribe, with Jerusalem as its capital city, claimed its dynasty was Israelís only legitimate royal house. There was a mass migration to Judah at this time of individuals from the other Hebrew tribes whose sympathies laid with Davidís House, so that all twelve Hebrew tribes were represented in the Judahite kingdom. The throne of the northern kingdom, Israel, was seized by usurpers nine times during its existence, for the dynastic principle was not acknowledged as essential by the northern kingdom, while, the throne of the southern kingdom, Judah, was occupied solely by Davidís House [dynasty] during its existence.
05. JEROBOAM I reigned 22 years, 930-909 (1 Ki 14:20). He was given a divine mandate by the prophet Ahijah "the Shilomite" (1 Ki 11:29-39) separate from that which God had given to David, and unlike Davidís mandate it was conditional, thus, as human-nature would have it Jeroboam broke the conditions which invalidated his mandate (1 Ki 14:6-16). Jeroboam was the son of Nebat, an Ephraimite noble, and his first wife, Sariya "The Harlot". He may have been illegitimate, and Sariya may have not been Nebat's wife but rather his mistress. His step-mother, his fatherís [Nebatís] second wife, Zeruiah, was one of King Davidís half-sisters. Zeruiah and her sister Abigail are specified as "sisters of the son[s] of Jesse" (1 Chr 2:16), while it is also stated that they were the daughters of Nahash "the Ammonite", King of Jordan (2 Sam 17:25). Hence, the probability is that Zeruiah and Abigail were not King Davidís full-sisters but his half-sisters, that is, the daughters of Davidís mother by Nahash and not by Jesse. The ancestry of Jeroboam is preserved in the Bible. His father, Nebat, and his uncle, Oshea, were the sons of Azaziah, the tribal chief of the tribe of Ephraim. His pedigree from Ephraim [brother of Manasseh, the sons of Joseph] reads: Ephraim, begot Shuthelah, who begot Eran, whose descendants were called the Eranites, who begot Ammihud, who begot Elishama, who begot Shiphtan, who begot Kemuel, then, there is a gap in the pedigree until Azaziah, his descendant and heir, the father of Nebat and Oshea, who, also, was an ancestor of Israelís kings. In fact, its last king, [H]oshea, the son of Elah, the son of King Pekahiah, the son of King Menahem, the son of Gadi, was a direct descendant of King Jeroboamís uncle Oshea, "the Ephramite".
The usurper Jeroboam had been raised in King David's Court. He began his career by raising a rebellion during King Solomonís reign, which was put down, and Jeroboam fled to Egypt where he found refuge. After Solomonís death, Jeroboam returned to Israel and led the opposition against King Solomonís son Rehoboam, and presented himself as a candidate for the kingship. He became the leader of a democratic movement aiming to retain the charismatic monarchy provided for by the constitution written by Israelís last "Judge", Samuel, over the newly founded hereditary monarchy provided for by the "Davidic Covenant" which Nathan "The Prophet" added to the nationís constitution. Jeroboam was elected King of Israel in a national assembly by the chiefs and elders of the Hebrew tribes instead of Rehoboam. The delegates of the Tribe of Judah walked out of the assembly-convention and accompanied Rehoboam back to Jerusalem, who was crowned as a rival king there. The tribe of Judah remained loyal to Davidís House and accepted Rehoboam as its king; but in order to do so had to secede from "The Hebrew Union" of the twelve Hebrew tribes and became a separate nation, and had to fight a civil war with the other Hebrew tribes to establish its independence and existence. Jeroboam, thus, founded Israelís third dynasty.
The capital city of Israel was transferred by Jeroboam from Jerusalem to Shechem, but later the seat of government was moved to Tirzah [Tell el-Faríah]. The capital was eventually moved to Samaria, which remained the capital city of Israel until its later conquest and destruction by Assyria. Jeroboam brought about not only a political but also a religious disruption of the Hebrew kingdom. He united the pontificate to the crown and instituted a non-Levitical priesthood, the Mosaic [descended from the Danite priesthood, whose priests descended from Moses, Aaron's brother]. The Shilonite priest, Ahijah, called a prophet, who moved Jeroboam to seize power, in the hope for a revival of the Shiloh cultic centre, was disappointed when Jeroboam built a temple at Bethel on the site where the earlier Hebrew patriarch Jacob had a dream of a ladder that reached from the earth to Heaven with angels ascending and descending upon it. [note: Jesus said (John 1:51) that He was that ladder, meaning that He linked Heaven to earth.] The name "Bethel" means "gate of God", for that is what Jacob called the place after he awoke from his dream. The last we hear of Ahijah, the Shilonite priest, is his denunciation of Jeroboam and his curse upon Jeroboamís House (1 Ki 11:29&39;13,14). Jeroboam re-emphasized the cultic sites associated with the original twelve Hebrew patriarchs, which had been de-emphasized under King David and King Solomon in deference to that of Jerusalem. King Jeroboam, too, introduced idolatry and revived the "golden-calf" episode recorded in Exodus 32:4, which calf-idol was modeled on the image of the Egyptian bull-god Apis. He had the "golden-calf" put in the temple at Bethel to represent the deity, or perhaps as a throne upon which the deity sat; just like the "mercy-seat" between the angels [cherubim] on top of the "Ark-of-the-Covenant", which was called Godís throne (Ps 99:1). Jeroboam spent his whole reign raising barriers against the reunion of the Hebrew nation with the tribe of Judah, as well as the acceptance of a "state-religion" in a "secularized" state.
There was war between Jeroboam and Rehoboam "all their days" (1 Ki 14:30). Jeroboam had an alliance with Egypt from the start, which in support of King Jeroboam attacked Rehoboam in the fifth year of his reign. For, Jeroboam, during his exile in Egypt married the daughter of King Shishak [I] of Egypt, Karamat. She was the mother of at least three of his sons, namely, Abijah, Nadab, and Shilhi. The eldest, Abijah, the crown-prince, died young, thus, Nadab succeeded his father upon his death. Shilhi was murdered in the massacre of the royal house on Baasha's orders, however, his daughter, Azuba, escaped the massacre, and found refuge in the royal court of Judah whose king, Asa, married her.
06. NADAB reigned parts of two years, 909-908 (compare 1 Ki 15:25,33). He continued his fatherís [Jeroboamís] policies. Later, while at war with the Philistines [Palestinians], a conspiracy broke out in the army, and Nadab was murdered by one of his generals, Baasha, who then seized the throne.
note: The dynastic principle was not acknowledged as essential by the "northern kingdom", whose kings attained the throne by a variety of means, by lots, by election, by popular acclamation, by force of arms, so it was taken that Godís rejection of one dynasty and His elevation of another, was always claimed by every usurper to legitimize themselves.
07. BAASHA reigned 24 years, 908-886 (1 Ki 15:33). 1 Ki 15:28 says he began his reign in the 3rd year of King Asa of Judah. The critics agree that in 2 Chr 15:19; 16:1, where it says that King Baasha of Israel warred with King Asa of Judah in his "35th" and "36th" years, are a scribeís mistake for either "15th" and "16th" or "25th" and "26th", since Baasha died in Asaís 26th year (1 Ki 16:6,8). Baasha was the son of Ahijah "the Issacharite". He founded another of Israelís dynasties, its fourth. Baasha was of humble origin, as the prophet Jehu spoke of him as being "exalted out of the dust". He slew all of the relatives of the late king Jeroboam he could get his hands on, in order to secure himself on the throne [see Ahijahís curse, 1 Ki 15:29ff]. He was antagonistic towards the Judahite kingdom, and warred with Judah off-and-on throughout his reign. And, he was succeeded on his death by Elah, his son.
08. ELAH reigned parts of 2 years, 886-885 (compare 1 Ki 16:8,10). 1 Ki 16:8 says he began his reign in the 26th year of King Asa of Judah, and reigned two years; while, 1 Ki 16:10 says he began his reign in the 27th-year of King Asa of Judah, and reigned one year. He was a debauchee. King Elah was murdered while drunk by Zimri, one of his top army-officers, in the house of his steward, Azra, who was probably an accomplice.
09. ZIMRI reigned only 7 days, 885BC, in the 27th year of King Asa of Judah (1 Ki 16:15), representing Israelís Fifth-Dynasty. He was the son of Ginath, an Ephraimite, the grandson of Oshea [the brother of Nebat, King Jeroboamís father], the son of Azaziah, the chief/sheikh of the tribe of Ephraim. Zimri is called the captain of half of the armyís chariots. The Army, under Omri, its commander, which at the time was besieging a Philistine city, when it heard of King Elahís murder and Zimriís usurpation, proclaimed its own general Omri as king. Omri immediately broke siege and marched on the capital, then at Tirzah, and took the city. Zimri in despair shut himself up in the royal castle, set it on fire, and burnt to death in the flames.
10(A) TIBNI, rival king, the brother of Zimri, asserting himself as his brotherís successor, is usually not numbered in the king-list. He proclaimed himself king following Zimriís death, and was recognized by half the country. He reigned 4 years, 885-881 (1 Ki 16:21,22), during which there was civil war between he and King Omri, who eventually defeated and killed him in battle, which left Omri as sole king.
10(B) OMRI reigned 12 years, 885-874. 1 Ki 16:15,16 says he began his reign in the 27th year of King Asa of Judah; while, 1 Ki 16:23 says he began his reign in the 31st year of King Asa of Judah; that is, he began, at the first date to reign over "half" the country, and, at the second date [on the elimination of Tibni, his rival] to reign over the "whole" nation. Omri was an Issacharite from Jezreel, his home town. His parentage is not given in the Bible. Omri, is the founder of Israels' Omride Dynasty, its Sixth-Dynasty. He transferred the capital to Samaria, strategically located on an hitherto uninhabited hill, which he heavily fortified with massive defensive walls. Omri was anxious to strengthen his position which he did so by alliances with foreign countries. He made an alliance with Ethbaal, King of Tyre [Phoenicia], who gave his daughter, Jezebel, in marriage to Omriís son, Ahab, the crown-prince. Omri made a treaty with King Ben-Hadad of Syria, and admitted into Samaria a resident Syrian ambassador. He made overtures to the trans-jordanian tribes, and when rebuffed by the Moabites he attacked and defeated them and made them his tributaries. Omri also sought to normalize relations with the Judahite kingdom, the first Israelite king to do so. He was succeeded on his death by Ahab, his son, the crown-prince.
11. AHAB reigned 22 years, 874-853 (1 Ki 16:29). 1 Ki 16:29 says he began his reign in the 38th year of King Asa of Judah. He remodeled his fatherís castle at Samaria and made it into a palace. His queen, Jezebel, strong-willed and energetic, acquired control over her husband and became the power behind the throne. She introduced Baal-worship which the prophet Elijah vigorously denounced, and she tried to kill him. King Ahab defeated Syria twice. Then, he allied himself with Syria to resist Assyria. After the threat of Assyria had passed, the alliance with Syria ended, and King Ahab reopened hostilities with Syria. He invited King Jehoshaphat of Judah to join him in the forthcoming campaign against Syria. His third Syrian campaign proved disastrous. King Ahab was mortally wounded in battle by a stray arrow, and, although he stayed up in his chariot, he died at sunset. When his body was brought back to Samaria by his bodyguard, the dogs licked his blood as a servant was washing the chariot, thus, fulfilling one of Elijahís prophecies. He was succeeded by Ahaziah, his son.
12. AHAZIAH reigned parts of 2 years, 853-852 (compare 1 Ki 22:51; 2 Ki 3:1). 1 Ki 22:51 says that he began his reign in the 17th year of King Jehoshaphat of Judah. He was dominated by his strong-willed mother, Queen Jezebel, who introduced heathen practices and foreign ways in Israel, comparable to today's "western culture". He failed in his attempt to put down the rebellion of the trans-jordanian tribes, which his father had made his vassals, and they regained their independence. His attempt to revive the countryís maritime trade failed with the wreck of the merchant-marine fleet. King Ahaziah was injured by falling from the roof-gallery of his palace. The "lattice" of the Bible text was probably a balustrade. He never recovered from his injuries, and never rose from his bed after the accident. The queen-mother, Jezebel, took charge of affairs while he laid in bed. He died unmarried and childless, and was succeeded by Jehoram (Joram), his brother.
13. JEHORAM reigned 12 years, 852-841 (2 Ki 3:1). 2 Ki 3:1 says he began his reign in the 18th year of King Jehoshaphat of Judah, however, 2 Ki 1:17 says Jehoram of Israel began his reign in the 2nd year of Jehoram of Judah, while, 2 Ki 8:16 says Jehoram of Judah began his reign in the 5th year of Jehoram of Israel. To reconcile these apparent discrepancies it has been suggested that Jehoram of Israel began his reign in the 2nd year of the joint-rule of Jehoram of Judah with his father, Jehoshaphat, and then in the 5th year of Jehoram of Israel that Jehoshaphat died and Jehoram of Judah began his sole reign. King Jehoram repulsed an invasion by the Syrians. Later, during a new invasion by Syria, this time King Jehoram was defeated and the Syrians besieged him in his capital at Samaria. The deliverance of the city is narrated in the Bible (2 Ki 7:1ff). Then, sometime afterwards in a third war with Syria, King Jehoram was wounded in battle. He retired to the nearby town of Jezreel to recover from his wounds. He left the army under the command of his general Jehu to continue the campaign. While he lay at Jezreel, Jehu, with the army under his command, revolted, and rode to Jezreel and there slew King Jehoram. He thereupon proclaimed himself as king. Jehu then marched on Samaria. Jezebel, the queen-mother, appeared at a palace window to see what the commotion was, when Jehu shouted, "who is on my side?" Then two palace servants appeared, and at his command they threw Queen Jezebel from the window. She fell to her death onto the pavement below, where she was eaten by a pack of dogs, as according to Elijahís prophecy.
14. JEHU reigned 28 years, 841-814 (2 Ki 10:36). He was an Ephraimite, the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, the son of Tibni, the earlier rival-king. Thus, his descent-line had already given Israel its 3rd & 5th dynasties, and now it gave the countryís its 7th dynasty, that is, the House of Jehu. Jehu sent letters to the mayors of Israelís cities announcing his accession; and ordered them to come to Samaria to meet with him. He, on this occasion, executed those who he thought would most likely give him trouble. Jehu, after eliminating all political rivals, set about to eradicate "baalism" [comparable to modern "western culture"]. The prophet Elisha commissioned him to do this. Jehu demolished the temple of Baal, slew all the priests of Baal, and exterminated all Baal-worshippers. He thereupon reintroduced the old idolatry which King Jeroboam had instituted long before. The change in dynasty in Israel encouraged Syria to open negotiations with the new Israeli administration to make peace, but instead King Jehu made an alliance with Assyria, the "superpower" of that time. He gave tribute to Assyria in the 18th year of King Shalmaneser IIIís reign, or Year 841, and came under vassalage to Assyria. This bought Israel a period of peace, for the Syrians dared not attack under the threat of Assyriaís retaliation. The Syrians, however, in the last few years of King Jehuís reign renewed hostilities and began making raids on Israelís cities. It was under these conditions, Jehu died, and was succeeded by Jehoahaz, his son.
15. JEHOAHAZ reigned 17 years, 814-798 (2 Ki 13:1). 2 Ki 13:1 says he began his reign in the 23rd year of King Jehoash of Judah. 2 Ki 13:9,10 says he died and was succeeded by his son [Jehoash] in the 37th year of King Jehoash of Judah, which makes his reign 14 years rather than 17 years, which discrepancy is explained by Bible scholars in various ways. He was associated in the reign of his father for at least three years before his fatherís demise. Jehoahaz was defeated by the Syrians, who besieged him in Samaria. The Syrians, however, withdrew on the approach of the Assyrians, with whom Jehoahazís father, the late-king Jehu, had made an alliance. He died, and was succeeded by Jehoash (Joash), his son.
16. JEHOASH reigned 16 years, 798-782 (2 Ki 13:10). 2 Ki 13:10 says he began his reign in the 37th year of King Jehoash of Judah. He was associated in the reign of his father for several years before his fatherís demise. Jehoash defeated the Syrians in three successive battles, and recovered lost border cities that had previously been taken from Israel by Syria. His success made King Amaziah of Judah jealous, who, intoxicated by his own recent military successes, sought a quarrel with him. When King Jehoash of Israel reluctantly accepted the challenge of Judah's King Amaziah to battle, in 793, he made Jeroboam his son regent during his absence. King Jehoash defeated King Amaziah in battle, in 792, captured him, and took him back to his own capital at Jerusalem a prisoner. His army broke down a portion of the cityís walls, entered Jerusalem, and plundered the city of its treasures. King Jehoash took hostages to ensure the future good behavior of Amaziah, who was released and restored to his kingdom. The hostages would certainly have included members of the royal family, and probably also Uzziah, the crown-prince. Jehoash died, and was succeeded by Jeroboam II, his son.
17. JEROBOAM II, associate-king from 793BC, reigned 41 years, 793-753 (2 Ki 14:23). 2 Ki 14:23 says he began his reign in the 15th year of King Amaziah of Judah. He released the Judahite crown-prince, Uzziah, to his father, the King of Judah. He continued his fatherís wars against Syria and won several battles. He restored to the Hebrew trans-jordanian tribes their territory, re-establishing Israelís traditional eastern border, and brought the country to its greatest extent since Solomonís reign, even making Syria a vassal-state. His reign saw an era of prosperity that may have contributed to the corruption and heathenism of the people which was denounced by the prophets. Some regard the prophecy of Amos (7:11) that Jeroboam II should die by the sword a failure, since he died a natural death. The probability rather is that Amaziah, Israelís High-Priest, who reported the prophecy to the king, gave an unduly specific and offensive turn to the words of Amos in order to inflame Israel's King Jeroboam against him. He was succeeded by Zechariah, his son.
18. ZECHARIAH reigned 6 months, 753-752 (2 Ki 15:8). 2 Ki 15:8 says he began his reign in the 38th year of Azariah (Uzziah) of Judah. He had longtime been the country's crown-prince. He was murdered by Shallum, an army-officer, who thereupon seized the throne.
19. SHALLUM reigned only 1 month, 752BC (2 Ki 15:13). 2 Ki 15:13 says he began his reign in the 39th year of Azariah (Uzziah) of Judah. He was the son of Jabesh "the Manassehite", the Gileadite sheikh, and represents Israelís 8th-Dynasty. He was motivated by Gileadite aspirations for royal power in Israel at that time. He murdered his predecessor, usurped the throne, and then in turn shortly after was himself murdered by his successor.
20. MENAHEM, reigned 10 years, 752-742 (2 Ki 15:17). 2 Ki 15:17 says he began his reign in the 39th year of King Azariah (Uzziah) of Judah. He was the son of Gadi, an Ephraimite, and, thus, related to the 3rd, 5th, and 7th Israelite dynasties, and, founds Israelís 9th-Dynasty. Menahem was one of King Zechariahís generals. When he heard of the murder of King Zechariah and Shallumís usurpation, he went from Tirzah, where he then was, to Samaria, slew Shallum, and then seized the throne for himself, igniting a brutal civil war.
The country was in chaos by this time, and civil war broke-out between Menahem and another of King Zechariah's army-officers, Pekah, who proclaimed himself king in opposition to him. It split the country in twain. The two rivals eventually came to terms, by which they ruled as co-kings, that is, Pekah was recognized as king over the Trans-Jordanian Hebrew tribes, and Menahem was recognized as king over the tribe of Ephraim, the largest tribe. Here, we have three Hebrew kingdoms, that is, Israel, Ephraim, and Judah (Hos. 5:5; 11:12). Menahem bought-off the Assyrians when they appeared on his border, and the Assyrians turned back. He levied an immense tax to pay a yearly tribute to Assyria which impoverished the country. He was succeeded by Pekahiah, his son.
21. PEKAHIAH reigned 2 years, 742-741 (2 Ki 15:23). 2 Ki 15:23 says he began his reign in the 50th year of King Azariah (Uzziah) of Judah. He attempted a reconciliation with the trans-jordanian Hebrew tribes under Pekah, and offered him a prominent military post under him, however, it backfired and he was murdered in a coup by Pekah, his colleague, who, with his bodyguard of 50 Gileadites, marched into the palace and slew him.
22. PEKAH reigned 20 years, 752-732 (2 Ki 15:27), reckoned Israelís 22nd king, and, represents Israelís 10th-Dynasty. 2 Ki 15:27 says he began his reign in the 52nd year of King Azariah (Uzziah) of Judah, which refers to his succession as sole ruler, though the 20 years refers to the number of years of his whole reign. That is, Pekah reigned 20 years, of which 12 years was as co-ruler alongside Menahem and Pekahiah, Israelís 9th-Dynasty. He reunited Ephraim and Israel back into one country. Pekah was the son of Remaliah, a Gileadite. He renounced Israelís vassalage to Assyria, and stopped the yearly payments of tribute. Israel made an alliance with Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, against Assyria, and tried to persuade Judah to join them, but King Ahaz of Judah would not join their alliance. Their plans for a coalition of the regional states against Assyria was in danger of collapse by the refusal of King Ahaz to join their alliance, therefore, their persuasion turned to aggressive coercion, and they moved against Judah. Their plan was to set another Judahite prince on the throne who was sympathetic to their cause. In panic King Ahaz of Judah, after rejecting Isaiahís advice (Isaiah 7) called on King Tiglath-pileser III of Assyria for help. The Assyrians finally moved against their rebellious vassal states, and subjugated Syria, Israel, and Jordan [Moab, Ammon, and Edom]. Pekah was despoiled of at least half his kingdom, and Israel again became subject to Assyria. It is no surprise the catastrophic results of his policies made Pekah unpopular, and soon afterwards he was murdered in a popular coup by Hoshea, who succeeded him as king.
23. HOSHEA reigned 9 years, 732-723 [or 730-721] (2 Ki 17:1). 2 Ki 15:30 says he began his reign in the 20th year of King Jotham of Judah: deduced from 750, which gives the 730 date; however, 2 Ki 17:1 says he began his reign in the 12th year of King Ahaz of Judah: deduced from 743, which gives the 732 date. Hoshea was the son of Elah, the son of King Pekahiah, the son of King Menahem, the son of Gadi, an Ephraimite. Thus, he either represents a restoration of Israelís [previous] 9th-Dynasty, or is reckoned as Israel's 11th-Dynasty. He conspired against King Pekah and slew him, and seized the throne. He was Israelís last king, that is, until the Maccabee Dynasty later established itself as Israelís Twelfth-Dynasty, which preceded the Herodian Dynasty, the 13th-Dynasty, and, "thirteen" is deemed an unlucky number in nearly every culture. King Hoshea found himself the ruler of a kingdom much diminished in size and under vassalage to Assyria. He, on his accession dispatched an embassy to Assyria to assure the Assyrian king of his loyalty and to acknowledge his vassalage. Hoshea, however, on Tiglath-pileserís death, rebelled against his successsor, Shalmaneser V, by defaulting in tribute payments. In response King Shalmaneser of Assyria invaded Israel and besieged Samaria. King Hoshea surrendered and opened the gates to the Assyrian king. King Hoshea was imprisoned at Nineveh, the capital of Assyria, and later released upon the payment of an enormous ransom. A second revolt a few years later by King Hoshea prompted Shalmaneser to again invade Israel, and once more laid siege to Samaria. The siege began in 723BC, however, the next year Shalmaneser died while besieging the city, and was succeeded by Sargon II who continued the siege and eventually took the city and conquered the Israelite kingdom. Samaria, the capital city of Israel, fell to Assyria in 721BC following a three yearsí siege. The city was sacked, pillaged, and destroyed, and left in ruins. It was the end of the kingdom. Hoshea was carried away captive to Assyria, and the population of Israel was deported in mass by Assyria and resettled in Media, and the former kingdom of Israel became an Assyrian province (2 Ki 17:6). The purpose of the mass deportation of a whole countryís population was to dilute nationalistic feeling and so make revolt less likely to occur. The collapse of the Assyrian Empire in 609BC freed the Israelites from "The Assyrian Captivity", however, without a royal family to hold them together, the Hebrew population in Media where Assyria had resettled them, dispersed, and lost their identity vanishing into memory as the "Ten Lost Tribes". There are numerous theories and identifications made of the "ten lost Hebrew tribes", for example: British-Israelism.
POSTSCRIPT: THE TEN LOST TRIBE
Israel, fell to the Assyrians in 722/721BC, and ten Hebrew tribes were deported to other lands. One, or more, of the ten "lost" Hebrew tribes of Israel had already established themselves in the British Isles by the time the Jewish refugees under Prince Johanan came, about a century after Israelís dispersal and the migrations of its tribes to different lands. Israel, unlike Judah, was culturally "gentilized" during its captivity by Assyria and lost its identity. Following the conquest of Assyria by the Scythians, Medes, and Chaldeans, circa 612BC, the ten Hebrew tribes scattered and migrated to various lands. The tribe of Ephraim established a settlement north of the Black Sea, however, under pressure of the Scythians, migrated from there across Europe, the movements of which have erroneously been identified by historians as those of the Scythians, and "went ... to a place called Arzareth", which name is a contraction of the words "erez" and "aheret" meaning "the other land", into which The Lord says He "will cast them" (Deut. 29:28), which appears to have been the British Isles. For, Isaiah 41:1,8 reads: "...O islands, thou Israel...". This verse located the "Ten Lost Tribes" of Israel in "the isles, which are in the sea". And, Jeremiah 31:9-10 reads: "...I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my first-born. Hear the word of The Lord, O ye nations, and declare it to the isles afar off...".
This is a subject that is partially based upon authenticated and documented historical fact; partially upon written religious tradition and partially upon extreme speculation. There is no specific source that can be relied upon for a complete answer.
Today, scholars continue to labor under the difficulty in regard to the continued existence of the "Ten Lost [Hebrew] Tribes". If the Ten Tribes, Israel, have disappeared, the literal fulfillment of certain prophecies in the Bible would be impossible; if they however have not disappeared then obviously they must exist under different names, which gave rise to numerous theories, including "British Israelism", which is the theory that the British People represent at least one of the "Ten Lost Tribes". The main arguments of this theory is that the British satisfy the conditions of the Bible regarding Israel in so far as they live in a far-off isle, that they speak a strange tongue, and that they have colonies all over the world (Gen. 48:19).
The Irish Erinioi were either Hebrews, or Armenians, or Scythians. Most likely, the Irish Erinioi may be identified with the Ephraimite "Eranites", which was the ruling-clan of the Hebrew tribe of Ephraim, and, if so, represented "Lost Israel" or rather one of the ten lost Hebrew tribes. The Erin[ioi] [variants: Erainn; Ereinn; Eireans; Erneans], came to Ireland about 600BC and gave Ireland its name "Eire" [Ierne]. Legend says that the Erin came to Ireland along with the Laigin and the Feni; and that the Laigin were accompanied by the Domnainn and the Gailioin. The Erin[ioi] settled in Ulster and founded the Kingdom of Ierne. Emain Macha [Navan Fort] was made the capital-city of Ierne by one of its later kings, in 346BC [traditional date]. The chiefs/kings of the Erinioi, that is, Ephraimite Eranites, probably descended from Israel's last king, [H]osea, who was an Ephraimite. The chiefs of the Erinioi were also the Kings of Ierne, a local Irish kingdom, from 600BC to AD300.The regional-kingdom of Ierne was conquered and its capital-city of Emain Macha was destroyed by the Milesians, who drove the Erinioi/Eireans from their traditional lands in Ireland into County Antrim, Ulster, where they split into two groups, the Dal-Reti and the Dal-Fiatach, and established separate kingdoms. The Dal-Reti migrated later to Scotland where they re-established their kingdom under their old royal house, circa AD475/500, which kingdom grew and eventually took over the whole of Scotland and gave the country a new monarchy, circa AD875; while the Dal-Fiatach gave Ulster a dynasty of kings.There are other (so-called) "lost" Hebrew tribes which have been identified with contemporary peoples, among whom are (a) the Yezidis of Iraq; (b) the Karaites of Russia; (c) the inhabitants of Dagestan in the Trans-Caucasus; (d) some Afghans, e.g., the Pashtun; among the Yusmarg [Handwara] of Pakistan there lives a group which to this day calls itself "B'nei Israel"; (e) the Asheriya tribe of Kashmir; (f) the B'nei Menashe tribe of India; (g) the Kareens of Burma; (h) the Chiang tribe of China; and, (i) possibly the Shindai of Japan. The (j) Masai tribe of Central Africa, (k) the Lemba of Africa, and (l) the Zagwe and (m) the Falashas of Ethiopia are also said to be descended from Hebrews.
David Hughes, 2006,RdavidH218@AOL.com