Reign of Jotham
Jotham was a fairly good and successful king, following the positive example set by his father Uzziah and avoiding his father’s big mistake. But the wickedness of the people continued. Still, Jotham refortified Judah, as the Assyrians and other possible enemies were increasingly a threat. He reasserted control over Ammon, which had apparently broken free of its tributary status under Uzziah. And he became a “mighty” ruler. Finally, it is explicitly stated that God enabled all this because Jotham “prepared his ways before the Lord his God” (2 Chronicles 27:6 2 Chronicles 27:6So Jotham became mighty, because he prepared his ways before the LORD his God.
American King James Version×).
Jotham, we are told, reigned for 16 years (2 Kings 15:33 2 Kings 15:33Five and twenty years old was he when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok.
American King James Version×), including a 12-year coregency with his father Uzziah. Yet verse 30 mentions Jotham’s 20th year. So it would appear that Jotham, four years before that 20th year, turned the rule of the nation over to his son Ahaz, who would prove to be a wicked king. It was apparently sometime during these four years—when Ahaz was sole king even though Jotham was still alive—that God began to allow Syria under Rezin and Israel under Pekah to begin menacing Judah (2 Kings 15:37 2 Kings 15:37In those days the LORD began to send against Judah Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah.
American King James Version×), a turn of events we’ll see more about in an upcoming reading.