2. Book of Kings

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Nevi'im (prophets) of the Tanakh
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Old Testament history books

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: Deuterocanonical (Catholic and Orthodox) or Apocrypha (Protestant)

The second book of kings is a book of the Jewish Tanakh or the Christian Old Testament . It has been divided into 25 chapters since the Middle Ages . In the Septuagint (and consequently in the Eastern Christian churches ) it is called the 4th Book of Kingdoms.

Originally both books of kings formed only one book, compare the final Masora ( 2 Kings 25,30  EU ).

The division of the books according to 1 Kings 22.54  EU - in the middle of the history of Ahaziah of Israel - is objectively not justified. The division into two books comes from the tradition of the Septuagint, where it was probably due to the manageable length of a scroll - Greek texts take up much more space than Hebrew due to the structure of the Greek language (long words) and script (many vowels) Texts (short words, no vowels) with the same content. It was handed down in the Vulgate and was incorporated back into the Hebrew Bible in the late Middle Ages.

The second book of kings continues the story of the separate kingdoms of Israel and Judah (Israelite division of the empire 926 BC) up to the fall of Samaria in 2 Kings 17. This is followed by the story of Judah up to the fall of Jerusalem and the later pardon of Jehoiachin.


(based on the Elberfeld Bible ; the first part of this structure can be found in the article: 1. Book of Kings )

2. History of the Separate Kingdoms (continued) (1 Kings 12: 1 - 2 Kings 17.41)

chapter Headline (based on the Elberfeld Bible)
1.1-18 ELB Ahaziah of Israel - His idolatry, Elias threat of judgment, Ahaziah's death
2.1-18 ELB Elijah and Elisha - Elijah's Ascension
2.19-25 ELB Miracles of Elisha: Help in Jericho , judgment in Bethel
3.1-27 ELB Joram of Israel - War against the Moabites - Help from Elisha
4.1-7 ELB Elisha and the widow's oil jar
4.8-37 ELB Elisha and the son of the Shunemite woman
4.38-44 ELB Elisha and the poisoned food - Elisha and the hungry
5.1-27 ELB Elisha and the healing of Naaman - judgment on Gehazi
6.1 to 7 ELB -16.7 ELB Elisa and the floating iron
6.8-23 ELB Elisha thwarts the Arameans' war intentions
6.24 ELB -7.1-20 ELB Famine in besieged Samaria - Elisha's prophecy - Samaria's rescue
8.1 to 6 ELB Elisa and the Schunemiterin
8.7 to 15 ELB Elisha and Hazael of Damascus
8.16-24 ELB Joram of Judah
8.25-29 ELB Ahaziah of Judah
9.1-13 ELB Jehu of Israel: anointing to the king
9.14-37 ELB Jehu's revolt: death of Joram of Israel, Ahaziah of Judah and Jezebel
10.1-17 ELB Jehu exterminated the house of Ahab
10.18-36 ELB Jehu's eradication of Baal ministry
11.1-20 ELB Rule of Atalja in Jerusalem - conspiracy of the priest Jojada against them - installation of Joasch as king
12.1-17 ELB Joasch of Judah - mending the temple
12.18-22 ELB Delivery of the temple treasures to the Arameans by Joasch - his murder
13.1-9 ELB Jehoahaz of Israel
13.10-25 ELB Joasch of Israel - Elisha's last prophecy and death
14.1-22 ELB Amaziah of Judah - his war with Joasch of Israel - end of Joasch and Amaziah
14.23-29 ELB Jeroboam II of Israel
15.1-7 ELB Azariah of Judah
15.8-31 ELB Zechariah , Shallum , Menahem , Pekachiah and Pekach of Israel
15.32-39 ELB Iotam of Judah
16.1-20 ELB Ahaz of Judah - His submission to Assyria and his idolatry
17.1-6 ELB Hoshea , last king of Israel - route to Assur
17.7-23 ELB The guilt of Israel
17.24-41 ELB Origin of the Samaritan people

3. History of the kings of Judah (2 Kings 18: 1–25: 30)

chapter Headline (based on the Elberfeld Bible)
18.1-8 tbsp Hezekiah of Judah
18.9 to 12 ELB Hoshea of Israel - route to Assur
18.13-37 ELB Siege of Jerusalem by Assyria - The mockery of Rabshake
19.1-37 ELB The prophecy of Isaiah - Letter of the King of Assyria - Hezekiah's prayer and God's answer through Isaiah - Departure of the King of Assyria
20.1-11 ELB Hezekiah's illness and recovery
20.12-21 ELB Embassy from Babel at Hezekiah - His death
21.1-18 ELB Manasseh of Judah - His idolatry
21.19-26 ELB Amon of Judah
22.1-20 ELB -16.7 ELB Josiah of Judah: Finding the law book
23.1-30 ELB Josiah's reforms: federal renewal, abolition of idolatry, Passover - His death in the war against the Egyptians
23.31-35 ELB Jehoahaz of Judah
23.36 ELB -24.1–7 ELB - Jehoiakim of Judah
24.8-20 ELB Jehoiachin of Judah - First conquest of Jerusalem and first route to Babel
25.1-7 ELB And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon
25.8-21 ELB Destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple - Second route to Babel
25.22-26 ELB Governor Gedaliah
25.27-30 ELB Jojachin's pardon


  • The narrative circle about the prophets Elijah and Elisha
  • The end of the kingdom of Israel (722 BC)
  • The reform of King Josiah (622 BC)
  • The end of the kingdom of Judah (587 BC)

Exemplary focal points

2. Kings 18

  • The line connecting Hezekiah to David (v. 3) is surprising in that Hezekiah's good deeds are compared to David, who is said to have done "what is right," which is in tension with the other depictions of David who also know about his sins.
  • Classically, Hezekiah's good deeds include the destruction of high-altitude sanctuaries, mazebas and the Asherah (singular: Codex Leningradensis, alternatively also plural: Asheres). Atypical, however, is the mention of the dismemberment of the bronze serpent that Moses had made. Overall, it is not about the question of monotheism, because all of the elements mentioned can have references to Adonai. It is more about a religious policy that opposes images and worship in different places ("heights").
  • The theological interpretation of the deportation of the northern kingdom is that it was due to the sins - namely that they did not listen to God and broke the covenant (v.12).
  • Hebraistically valuable is the statement in v. 26 that there is apparently a dialect language that can be distinguished from Hebrew, which is called "Yehudit" (יְהוּדִית), thus probably a dialect specific to the southern empire, which according to the text also the 2nd highest man Assur (Rabschake) can speak.

People / important

See also


see 1st Book of Kings # Literature

Web links