10 Ahab had seventy sons living in Samaria. 1 So Jehu wrote letters and sent them to Samaria to the leading officials of Jezreel and to the guardians of Ahab’s dynasty. This is what the letters said, 2 2 “You have with you the sons of your master, chariots and horses, a fortified city, and weapons. So when this letter arrives, 3 3 pick the best and most capable 4 of your master’s sons, place him on his father’s throne, and defend 5 your master’s dynasty.”
4 They were absolutely terrified 6 and said, “Look, two kings could not stop him! 7 How can we?” 8 5 So the palace supervisor, 9 the city commissioner, 10 the leaders, 11 and the guardians sent this message to Jehu, “We are your subjects! 12 Whatever you say, we will do. We will not make anyone king. Do what you consider proper.” 13
6 He wrote them a second letter, saying, “If you are really on my side and are willing to obey me, 14 then take the heads of your master’s sons and come to me in Jezreel at this time tomorrow.” 15 Now the king had seventy sons, and the prominent 16 men of the city were raising them. 7 When they received the letter, they seized the king’s sons and executed all seventy of them. 17 They put their heads in baskets and sent them to him in Jezreel. 8 The messenger came and told Jehu, 18 “They have brought the heads of the king’s sons.” Jehu 19 said, “Stack them in two piles at the entrance of the city gate until morning.” 9 In the morning he went out and stood there. Then he said to all the people, “You are innocent. I conspired against my master and killed him. But who struck down all of these men? 10 Therefore take note that not one of the judgments the Lord announced against Ahab’s dynasty has failed to materialize. The Lord had done what he announced through his servant Elijah.” 20 11 Then Jehu killed all who were left of Ahab’s family in Jezreel, and all his nobles, close friends, and priests. He left no survivors.
12 Jehu then left there and set out for Samaria. 21 While he was traveling through Beth Eked of the Shepherds, 13 Jehu encountered 22 the relatives 23 of King Ahaziah of Judah. He asked, “Who are you?” They replied, “We are Ahaziah’s relatives. We have come down to see how 24 the king’s sons and the queen mother’s sons are doing.” 14 He said, “Capture them alive!” So they captured them alive and then executed all forty-two of them in the cistern at Beth Eked. He left no survivors.
15 When he left there, he met 25 Jehonadab, son of Rekab, who had been looking for him. 26 Jehu greeted him and asked, 27 “Are you as committed to me as I am to you?” 28 Jehonadab answered, “I am!” Jehu replied, “If so, give me your hand.” 29 So he offered his hand and Jehu 30 pulled him up into the chariot. 16 Jehu 31 said, “Come with me and see how zealous I am for the Lord’s cause.” 32 So he 33 took him along in his chariot. 17 He went to Samaria and exterminated all the members of Ahab’s family who were still alive in Samaria, 34 just as the Lord had announced to Elijah. 35
18 Jehu assembled all the people and said to them, “Ahab worshiped 36 Baal a little; Jehu will worship 37 him with great devotion. 38 19 So now, bring to me all the prophets of Baal, as well as all his servants and priests. 39 None of them must be absent, for I am offering a great sacrifice to Baal. Any of them who fail to appear will lose their lives.” But Jehu was tricking them 40 so he could destroy the servants of Baal. 20 Then Jehu ordered, “Make arrangements for 41 a celebration for Baal.” So they announced it. 21 Jehu sent invitations throughout Israel, and all the servants of Baal came; not one was absent. They arrived at the temple of Baal and filled it up from end to end. 42 22 Jehu ordered the one who was in charge of the wardrobe, 43 “Bring out robes for all the servants of Baal.” So he brought out robes for them. 23 Then Jehu and Jehonadab son of Rekab went to the temple of Baal. Jehu 44 said to the servants of Baal, “Make sure there are no servants of the Lord here with you; there must be only servants of Baal.” 45 24 They went inside to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had stationed eighty men outside. He had told them, “If any of the men inside get away, you will pay with your lives!” 46
25 When he finished offering the burnt sacrifice, Jehu ordered the royal guard 47 and officers, “Come in and strike them down! Don’t let any escape!” So the royal guard and officers struck them down with the sword and left their bodies lying there. 48 Then they entered the inner sanctuary of the temple of Baal. 49 26 They hauled out the sacred pillar of the temple of Baal and burned it. 27 They demolished 50 the sacred pillar of Baal and 51 the temple of Baal; it is used as 52 a latrine 53 to this very day. 28 So Jehu eradicated Baal worship 54 from Israel.
29 However, Jehu did not repudiate the sins which Jeroboam son of Nebat had encouraged Israel to commit; the golden calves remained in Bethel 55 and Dan. 56 30 The Lord said to Jehu, “You have done well. You have accomplished my will and carried out my wishes with regard to Ahab’s dynasty. Therefore four generations of your descendants will rule over Israel.” 57 31 But Jehu did not carefully and wholeheartedly obey the law of the Lord God of Israel. 58 He did not repudiate the sins which Jeroboam had encouraged Israel to commit. 59
32 In those days the Lord began to reduce the size of Israel’s territory. 60 Hazael attacked their eastern border. 61 33 He conquered all the land of Gilead, including the territory of Gad, Reuben, and Manasseh, extending all the way from the Aroer in the Arnon Valley through Gilead to Bashan. 62
34 The rest of the events of Jehu’s reign, including all his accomplishments and successes, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Israel. 63 35 Jehu passed away 64 and was buried in Samaria. 65 His son Jehoahaz replaced him as king. 36 Jehu reigned over Israel for twenty-eight years in Samaria.
11 When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she was determined to destroy the entire royal line. 1 2 So Jehosheba, the daughter of King Joram and sister of Ahaziah, took Ahaziah’s son Joash and sneaked 2 him away from the rest of the royal descendants who were to be executed. She hid him and his nurse in the room where the bed covers were stored. 3 So he was hidden from Athaliah and escaped execution. 4 3 He hid out with his nurse in the Lord’s temple 5 for six years, while Athaliah was ruling over the land.
4 In the seventh year Jehoiada summoned 6 the officers of the units of hundreds of the Carians 7 and the royal bodyguard. 8 He met with them 9 in the Lord’s temple. He made an agreement 10 with them and made them swear an oath of allegiance in the Lord’s temple. Then he showed them the king’s son. 5 He ordered them, “This is what you must do. One third of the unit that is on duty during the Sabbath will guard the royal palace. 6 Another third of you will be stationed at the Foundation 11 Gate. Still another third of you will be stationed at the gate behind the royal guard. 12 You will take turns guarding the palace. 13 7 The two units who are off duty on the Sabbath will guard the Lord’s temple and protect the king. 14 8 You must surround the king. Each of you must hold his weapon in his hand. Whoever approaches your ranks must be killed. You must accompany the king wherever he goes.” 15
9 The officers of the units of hundreds did just as 16 Jehoiada the priest ordered. Each of them took his men, those who were on duty during the Sabbath as well as those who were off duty on the Sabbath, and reported 17 to Jehoiada the priest. 10 The priest gave to the officers of the units of hundreds King David’s spears and the shields that were kept in the Lord’s temple. 11 The royal bodyguard 18 took their stations, each holding his weapon in his hand. They lined up from the south side of the temple to the north side and stood near the altar and the temple, surrounding the king. 19 12 Jehoiada 20 led out the king’s son and placed on him the crown and the royal insignia. 21 They proclaimed him king and poured olive oil on his head. 22 They clapped their hands and cried out, “Long live the king!”
13 When Athaliah heard the royal guard 23 shout, she joined the crowd 24 at the Lord’s temple. 14 Then she saw 25 the king standing by the pillar, according to custom. The officers stood beside the king with their trumpets and all the people of the land were celebrating and blowing trumpets. Athaliah tore her clothes and screamed, “Treason, treason!” 26 15 Jehoiada the priest ordered the officers of the units of hundreds, who were in charge of the army, 27 “Bring her outside the temple to the guards. 28 Put the sword to anyone who follows her.” The priest gave this order because he had decided she should not be executed in the Lord’s temple. 29 16 They seized her and took her into the precincts of the royal palace through the horses’ entrance. 30 There she was executed.
17 Jehoiada then drew up a covenant between the Lord and the king and people, stipulating that they should be loyal to the Lord. 31 18 All the people of the land went and demolished 32 the temple of Baal. They smashed its altars and idols 33 to bits. 34 They killed Mattan the priest of Baal in front of the altar. Jehoiada the priest 35 then placed guards at the Lord’s temple. 19 He took the officers of the units of hundreds, the Carians, the royal bodyguard, and all the people of land, and together they led the king down from the Lord’s temple. They entered the royal palace through the Gate of the Royal Bodyguard, 36 and the king 37 sat down on the royal throne. 20 All the people of the land celebrated, for the city had rest now that they had killed Athaliah with the sword in the royal palace.
21 38 Jehoash 39 was seven years old when he began to reign.