Zechariah and Shallum (2 Kings 15:8 – 16; 2 Chronicles 26 – 27)

After Jeroboam II died, his son Zechariah reigned in his place for six months in Israel (Samaria).  He was evil just like his father and other ancestors.  Shallum conspired against him and killed him in front of the people and reigned in his place.  Jehu had been promised that four generations would follow him on the throne in Israel.  Zechariah was the fourth.  So Shallum’s reign coincided with the reign of Uzziah(aka, Azariah) in Judah.  Shallum reigned only six months.  Menahem killed him and reigned in his place.  Menahem was a violent and ruthless man, killing people in cities, even ripping open women with child.  He was an evil king.

The short terms of the leaders of Samaria were a direct result of their sinfulness and disregard for God.  Although some kings who were evil reigned longer, I seems that this was a situation where God’s protective covering just was not present, and both Zechariah and Shallum were done in by their own countrymen.  When God does not rule a nation, violence and subterfuge abound, and rulers become worse and worse until God sends a deliverer.  Israel was in great need of a deliverer in this period of time!  Pray that God will send a deliverer to our world today, or at least that we will call upon the ultimate deliverer!

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