Timeline of the Kings

Creating a timeline of the kings of Israel and Judah is a bit of a tricky task.  While certain dates, events, and kingships historians are fairly certain about, there is some ambiguity about others.  This makes it virtually impossible to be 100% certain about exact dates even though the overall chronology is fairly sure.

The biggest difficulty with dating the length of any king’s rule pertains to what is known as a coregency.  This took place all throughout the ancient world and was not just something that happened in Israel.  When a king became old and could not fulfill the duties of the position – whether in battle or administratively – he would appoint his son as king.  That son would reign as king and make all decisions with the authority as king.  But his father also still remained the king until his death.  For this reason there is often an overlap in the reigns of king.  The father is still alive and is thus king but the son is also king at the same time.  There is a good example of this in Daniel 5.  When Daniel comes to King Belshazzar to read the writing on the wall, the king offers to make Daniel third highest in the kingdom.  King Belshazzar occupied the #2 position because his father was still living although ailing and not living in Babylon at the time.

Another difficulty in creating a timeline of the kings of Israel and Judah is simple dating.  Some kings refer to the first year of their reigns as year 1 while others count this as year 0.  The difference is like saying you’ve been married 4 years sometime after your fourth anniversary or saying that you’re in your fifth year of marriage.  Both are correct but are different ways of looking at things and counting them.  This method of counting sometimes throws timelines off by a year depending on who has compiled them.

Finally, there is difficulty just to compile a timeline of the kings because there are two kingdoms for much of this timespan.  The nation of Israel is united only under three kings.  For the next 200 years there are two separate kings – one for the northern and one for the southern kingdom.  This ends in 722 BC when the northern kingdom is destroyed and only the southern kingdom exists for more than a century.

  • King Saul – 1050-1010
  • King David – 1010-970
  • King Solomon – 970-931
  • (N) King Jeroboam – 931-910
  • (S) King Rehoboam – 931-913
  • (S) King Abijah – 913-910
  • (N) King Nadab – 910-909
  • (S) King Asa – 910-869
  • (N) King Baasha – 908-886
  • (N) King Elah – 886-885
  • (N) King Zimri – 885
  • (N) King Tibni – 885-880
  • (N) King Omri – 885-874
  • (N) King Ahab – 874-853
  • (S) King Jehoshphat – 872-848
  • (N) King Ahaziah – 853-852
  • (N) King Joram – 852-841
  • (S) King Jehoram – 848-841
  • (S) King Ahaziah – 841
  • (S) King Athaliah – 841-835
  • (N) King Jehu – 841-814
  • (S) King Joash – 835-796
  • (N) King Jehoahaz – 814-798
  • (N) King Joash – 798-782
  • (N) King Jeroboam II – 793-753
  • (S) King Amaziah – 792-767
  • (S) King Azariah – 792-740
  • (N) King Zechariah – 753
  • (N) King Shallum – 752
  • (N) King Menahem – 752-742
  • (N) King Pekah – 752-732
  • (S) King Jotham – 750-732
  • (N) King Pekahiah – 742-740
  • (N) King Hoshea – 732-722
  • (S) King Ahaz – 732-715
  • (S) King Hezekiah – 715-686
  • (S) King Manasseh – 697-642
  • (S) King Amon – 642-640
  • (S) King Josiah – 640-609
  • (S) King Jehoahaz – 609
  • (S) King Jehoiakim – 609-598
  • (S) King Jehoiachin – 598-597
  • (S) King Zedekiah – 597-586

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