King of Judah
His Rise to Reign
Joash, Amaziah's father and predecessor, was assassinated. At the tender age of 25, Amaziah was called to rule as the King of Judah.
The Path of Good Intentions
Avenging Joash's Assassination
As his first act as king, Amaziah had his fathers murderers killed. However, though tradition held that the murderers children should also lose their lives, Amaziah refrained from having them slaughtered. This is in accordance with a passage in Deuteronomy which states, "Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall children be put to death for their fathers; a person shall be put to death for his own sin.” (Deuteronomy 24:16)
Strengthening the Military
Next on Amaziah's to-do list was to build up the moral and defense of his kingdom, as the kings before him had allowed to go by the wayside. He had 300 thousand fine young men, but felt he needed more. He worked out a deal with Joash, King of Israel, to pay him for another hundred thousand soldiers. Things were looking up for the Judean military, but a prophet came to Amaziah and told him that it was not in accordance with God to have such close relations with Israel. Amaziah believed, and sent the mercenary soldiers back to Israel. Upset that they had been rejected by the King of Judah, the Israelite soldiers left a trail of destruction on their way back home.
The Turning Point
The Defeat of Edom
When he had contented himself with his well-trained three hundred thousand men, Amaziah decided to take up arms against Judea's longtime enemy, Edom. He had his army attack, and they secured the capital city of Edom, Sela. Amaziah was drunk on pride and conceit and ordered his army to raid the entire land of Edom. Innocent lives were taken, and the land fell to Amaziah's rule. Priests and prophets began to warn Amaziah of his growing confidence, prophesying that there would be retribution for his sins.
Walking Away from the LORD
Following the conquering of Edom, Amaziah had his army rob the worship places of Edom and take their idols back home. He burned incense and bowed to false idols, which was evil in the sight of the LORD.
Amaziah received word that Israelites were attacking Judean cities. He wrote Joash, king of Israel, inviting him to war. Joash attempted to dissuade Amaziah, telling him that his arrogance had gotten out of hand and that it would be in his best interest to avoid entering into battle with Israel. Amaziah insisted on conflict, and suffered a humiliating loss at the battle of Bethshemesh.
Although Amaziah survived Joash by fifteen years, they were unhappy years indeed. The people of Judah held a hefty grudge against their king for his over confident measures in attacking Israel. He heard rumors that his people were conspiring to kill him, so he fled and came to Lachish where he was killed. His son, Uzziah, took his place as king of Judah.
My name is Maison Ervin and I'm a high school student in Smalltown, North Carolina. I plan to earn my doctorate in business communications and teach art in a small Native American reserve in Iowa. I hope to birth eight children and name them all Kathy Joseph Kerns. At the frail age of 284, I plan to pass away peacefully from a gunshot wound to the thigh.