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Outline of the Bible/Table of Kings of Israel

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Kings of Israel

The years in columns 2 & 3 are given for convenience only. No claim as to their historical accuracy is in any way implied. They should be regarded as a rough estimate at best.

An asterick before a name indicates that that king overthrew the previous king.

  1. In archaeology, Omri appears several times over the next century or so, beginning with the Mesha stele, which recounts one of his acts as king: the annexation of Moab. He is also mentioned in the contemporary Assyrian Black Obelisk which states that Jehu was the "son of Omri." Later, Israel would become identified in sources as the "House of Omri" (Bit-Humria), with the term "Israel" being used less and less as history progressed (the other defining term for "Israel" is "Samaria", beginning in the reign of Joash). Archaeologically speaking, it would appear that Omri is the founder of the Israelite Kingdom, but problems persist since he is not the first king of Israel to appear in sources; Ahab is. However, dating complications (arising from the fact that if he followed Ahab he would be given less than three years to rule, far too short for a king that was as powerful and influential as Omri) make it easier to put Omri first in Israel's internationally recognised line of kings, although this by no means firmly establishes that he was the first king of Israel according to these sources.
  2. 2 King 3 1Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.
  3. The Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III also refers to Jehu as son of Omri, rather than son of Jehoshaphat. Jehu destroyed the house of Omri rather than helping perpetuate it. By treating the Black Obelisk as historically accurate, and thus making Jehu a brother or half-brother to Ahab, it becomes much clearer why Jehu, who the Bible portrays as a son of the king of Judah, would become the head of a dynasty of kings over Israel. Jehu would in this situation be the wicked uncle who killed the rightful kings of Israel and Judah, attempting to usurp power, but only managing to hold onto Israel, to which he had an ancestral claim.
  4. 2 King 15 29In the days of Pekah king of Israel came Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, and took Ijon, and Abelbethmaachah, and Janoah, and Kedesh, and Hazor, and Gilead, and Galilee, all the land of Naphtali, and carried them captive to Assyria. 30And Hoshea the son of Elah made a conspiracy against Pekah the son of Remaliah, and smote him, and slew him, and reigned in his stead, in the twentieth year of Jotham the son of Uzziah.
  5. 2 King 17 1In the twelfth year of Ahaz king of Judah began Hoshea the son of Elah to reign in Samaria over Israel nine years.

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