Holy Mothers: Athaliah, Queen of Judah
Who is the worst grandma in the Bible? Assassination wins Queen Athaliah the crown.

Holy Mothers (and One Unholy Grandmother) -

Queen Athaliah of Judah


2 Kings 8:24-29, Alliance
2 Kings 11, Queen Athaliah

Other Mothers

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2 Kings 8:24-29, Alliance

For forty years after the division of the Davidic kingdom into Israel and Judah, the two kingdoms were at war.  King Jehoshaphat of Judah and King Omri of Israel, Ahab's father, made peace.  They cemented the treaty with the marriage of Jehoshaphat's grandson Ahaziah to Omri's daughter Athaliah.  So Jehoshaphat and Omri's son Ahab were kinsmen and allies. 

Now, I need to add something here. In the original email, and for about a year on this website, I said that Ahaziah was Jehoshaphat's son, not his grandson. You need to read the scripture for yourself. Don't take my word for what it says, because I make mistakes.

2 Kings 11, Queen Athaliah (6/27/2008)

Last quarter we learned that one of the standard methods of succession to the throne of the Kingdom of Israel was assassination.  In contrast, the heirs to the throne of Judah always waited for the old king to die on his own.  There was only one exception to this rule:  Athaliah. 

Athaliah was the Queen Mother during the reign of King Ahaziah of Judah.  She was from the royal family of Israel, however, so she had some funny ideas about succession.  When her son died, she decided to take over for herself, and she ordered the assassinations of everyone else in the family who might be in line to inherit, including her own children and grandchildren.  (She did miss one grandson, who succeeded to the throne at the age of seven after the death of Athaliah.) Clearly Athaliah was a bad grandma, although scripture doesn't comment on whether she was a good ruler or a bad ruler. The fact remains that for six years she was Queen and sole ruler of the Kingdom of Judah.

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Copyright 2008, 2011 by Regina L. Hunter.  All rights reserved.

Opinions expressed on this page are solely those of the author, Regina Hunter, and may or may not be shared by the sponsors or the Bible-study participants.  Thanks to the Holy Spirit for any useful ideas presented here, and thanks to all the readers for their support and enthusiasm.  All errors are, of course, the sole responsibility of the author.

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