Inductive Bible Studies,

[Copyright by W. R. HARPER, 1887.]

PREPARED BY PROFESSORS W. R. HARPER (Yale University), W. G. BALLANTINE (Oberlin Theol. Sem.), WILLIS J. BEECHER (Auburn Theol. Sem.), and G. S. BURROUGHS (Amherst College).


Twenty-First Study.—Israel and Judah in the Reigns of Jeroboam II. and Menahem.

[The material of this " study " is furnished by Professors Beecher and Harper. It is edited by Professor Harper.]



1. The period covered by this "study" is not nearly so rich in material as that of former "studies."

2. Let pains be taken to master the list of kings of each kingdom in their order. This knowledge is as necessary for a satisfactory study of the history as is the ability to repeat the alphabet in order, for looking up words in a dictionary.

3. Connect by some method with the name of each king the names also of the prophets who lived during his reign.

4. For reading and study, the following literature is suggested:

(1) commentaries in loco, especially Lange and Cambridge Bible for Schools;

(2) Geikie, " Hours with the Bible," vol. IV., chs. 7, 8 (pp. 176-231);

(3) Stanley, " History of the Jewish Church," 2d series, lectures XXXIII., XXXIV. (portions);

(4) Schrader, "The Cuneiform Inscriptions and the 0. T.," vol. I., pp. 208-251.

5. In a foot-note (see below1), there is given a list of the Assyriological literature which may be studied with advantage in this connection. It will be remembered that only a portion of the material is given, viz., that which is generally accessible. For the work in hand, a list of grammars, original texts, etc., would be out of place.


Prepare for recitation the contents of 2 Kgs. 14:17-15:22; 2 Chron. 25:25-26:21, in the order of the following topics:

1. Reign of Jeroboam II.

(1) 2 Kgs. 13:13; 14:16,23-29; 15:1,8.

(2) Hos. 1:1; Amos 1:1; 6:1-7,14; 7:9-17.

(3) Does 1 Chron. 5:17 necessarily mean that Jeroboam and Jotham were contemporaries?

2. The Remaining Years of Amaziah.

(1) 2 Kgs. 14:8-16, his defeat by Jehoash;

(2) 14:17-21, driven from Jerusalem; cf. 2 Chron. 25:23-28.

3. Azariah, otherwise called Uzziah.

(1) 2 Kgs. 14:21; 15:1-4,34; 2 Chron. 26:1-5, his accession and policy;

(2) 2 Chron. 26:6-8, his conquests;

(3) 2 Chron. 26:9-15, his greatness;

(4) 2 Kgs. 15:15; 2 Chron. 26:16-22, his leprosy;

(5) Zech. 14:5; Amos 1:1, the earthquake. For further particulars, see below, under 4. and 5.

4. Zechariah.

(1) 2 Kgs. 14:29, accession of Zechariah;

(2) 15:8-12, slain by Shallum.

5. Menahem.

(1) 2 Kgs. 15:13-15, Shallum slain;

(2) 15:16-22, Menahem becomes a vassal of Assyria.

6. The Literary Prophets of this Period.

(1) 2 Kgs. 14:25; Jonah 1:1; Amos 1:1; Hos. 1:1, in proof that the prophesying of Jonah, Amos, and Hosea belong to this period.

(2) Isa. 1:1; 6:1; 2 Chron. 26:22, etc., the earlier prophecies of Isaiah.

(3) The historical situation implied in Zech. chs. 9-14, compared

(a) with that implied in Joel, Obadiah, and the beginning of Amos (see last "study ");

(b) with that of the reign of Uzziah, Zech. 9: 1-8; 10:6,10-12; 14:1-5, etc.;

(c) with Joel 3; 2 Chron. 26:5-8, etc.

(4) Whatever be the date when Zech. 9-14 was written, do these chapters refer prominently to the history of Uzziah and his immediate predecessors?

7. The History as presented in the Prophetic Books. Does it agree with Kings and Chronicles,

(1) in regard to the extent of Jeroboam's kingdom? Zech. 9:2; Amos 6:14, etc.;

(2) in regard to the amicable relations of the two kingdoms? Amos 7:10-13; Zech. 10:6, etc.;

(3) in regard to prosperity as evidenced by luxury? Amos 6:3-6, etc.;

(4) in regard to the condition of Assyria? Jonah;

(5) dangers from Assyria, in Jeroboam's last years, and directly after? Amos 5:27; 6:2,7; 7:11,17; Zech. 10:9-11;

(6) Assyrian kings? Hos. 10:14; 5:13;

(7) Assyrian intrigues with Israel? Hos. 5:13; 7:11; 8:9; 9:3; 10:6; 11:11; 14:3.


[In each of the passages cited there is a word or expression which either (1) is obscure or (2) contains an historical allusion, or (3) refers to some ancient custom or institution, or (4) is for some particular reason worthy of special notice. Give these passages careful study.]

1. 2 Kgs. 14:17. Compare the numerals with those in 15:1;14;2,23. Was there an interregnum? Is there any other explanation?  

2. 14:19. "Lachish" in Hebrew history.  

3. 14:21. What may be inferred as to the part of the people of Judah in selecting their kings? Compare the accounts of accession of other kings.  

4. 14:21. With "Azariah" compare Uzziah (15:13,30,etc.); also Azareel (1 Chron. 25:18) and Uzziel (1 Chron. 25:4).  

5. 14:22,25,28. "Elath," "Hamath;" cf. 2 Chr. 26:2; Amos 6:14. Do the frontiers, and the history in general, indicate that Jeroboam and Uzziah were hostile, or that the two kingdoms were one, or what?  

6. 14:25. Who was this Jonah?  

7. 14:28. Former history of Damascus and Hamath.  

8. 15:4. Additions furnished at this point by Chronicles.  

9. 15:5. For what reason was he smitten? The law relating to lepers.  

10. 15:10. "Before the people;" compare the text of the Septuagint.


1. Kings of Israel and Judah.

(1) Names of those taken up in this lesson, with the length of reign;

(2) the list of kings of Judah from the beginning;

(3) the list of kings of Israel from the beginning.

2. The Accounts of Kings and Chronicles.

(1) Facts stated in one and not in the other;

(2) explanation of the variation.

3. Jeroboam II.

(1) Length of reign;

(2) his religious policy;

(3) consequences of the defeat of the Syrians;

(4) condition of the land during his reign, 13: 5; Amos 6:4-6; 3:15; Hos. 12:8;

(5) character of the people at this time (see Amos and Hosea).

4. Uzziah.

(1) Length of reign;

(2) his religious policy;

(3) condition of Judah during his reign;

(4) his leprosy.

5. Condition of Assyria. From the account in Kings and Chronicles, infer the relative condition of Assyria at the following dates:

(1) the reigns of Jehu and Jehoahaz;

(2) the time when Jeroboam was making his conquests;

(3) the times of Menahem.

6. Pul It is generally held that the Pul mentioned in the " study " was Tiglath-pileser, who invaded Israel in the days of Ahaz, 2 Kgs. 16:6, etc.

7. This History on the Assyrian Monuments.3 From " Records of the Past," vol. V., pp. 45-49; Smith's " Canon," pp. 117-120; Smith's " Assyrian Discoveries," pp. 275,276 seq., or from other sources at your command, verify and fill out the following statements: There are two or more fragmentary inscriptions, relating to the reign of Uzziah. They are commonly attributed to Tiglath-pileser; but in their present mutilated condition, at least, they do not contain his name. One of them apparently describes a great battle fought between the Assyrian chief and Azariah. Another represents that the whole region of Hamath and Lebanon had " turned to " Azariah, and that the Assyrian chieftain, apparently in his eighth year, reduced them to subjection, and took tribute from a long list of the kings of that region, including Menahem and the kings of Hamath, Damascus, and Tyre, but not including Azariah; and that he deported many people, including, possibly, some from the anti-Lebanon region, cf. 1 Chron. 5:23,26.

8. Agreement with Biblical Statements.3 Whatever else may be true of these inscriptions, how do they agree with the following points in the history, as given in the Bible?

(1) That Menahem paid tribute to Assyria;

(2) that he was contemporary with Uzziah;

(3) that the power of Israel, in the times of Jeroboam and Uzziah extended from Hamath southward;

(4) what the Bible implies as to the relations then existing between Israel and Judah;

(5) what is said in Chron. as to the military power of Uzziah;

(6) what is implied in the Bible as to the decadence and renewal of the power of Assyria;

(7) what is said in Hosea in regard to the chronic condition of intrigue between Israel, Assyria, and Egypt? The name Hadrach, Zech. 9:1, is frequent in these inscriptions.  



1) The Literature of Biblical Assyriology.—

1. ARTICLES on "Assyria," "Babylonia," "Chaldaea," "Cuneiform Inscriptions," "Tiglath-pileser," "Shalmaneser," "Sennacherib," "Esarhaddon," etc., in the various periodicals and books of reference. Among the best are the brief articles in the Schaff-Herzog "Encyclopaedia," "The American Encyclopaedia" and "Encyclopaedia Britannica" These give quite full lists from which the present list may be supplemented.

2. POPULAR WORKS. Of these there are many. Rawlinson's "Ancient Monarchies " is one of the earliest, fullest and best known. Compare also Geo. Smith, "Assyrian Eponym Canon." Geo. Smith, "Assyrian Discoveries." Geo. Smith, "Chaldean AccoUint of Genesis" (2d ed. by Sayce). Schrader, "Die Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament" (first volume translated). Schrader, "Die Keilinschriften und Geschichtsforschung." Schrader, "Die Assyrisch-babylonische Keilinschriften." Sayce, "History of Babylonia." Sayce "Babylonian Literature." Layard, "Babylon and Persepolis." Layard, "Discoveries in the Ruins of Nineveh and Babylon." Murdter, "Geschichte Babyloniens und Assyriens." Ragozin, "The Story of Assyria." Tiele, " Gescbichte Babyloniens und Assyriens." Sayce, "Hibbert Lectures," 1887. It is especially true of works of these two classes that they contain, not the evidence itself in the case, but men's opinions on the evidence. This statement applies equally to the men who find on the monuments wonderful confirmations of Bible history, and to those who find there proofs that the Bible is unhistorical, or its text corrupt.

3. INSCRIPTIONS. The evidence of the monuments consists, primarily, in the remains that have been discovered, especially those now in the great museums of the world. Practically, very few of the readers of the STUDENT have access to these.

More accessible are the inscriptions that have been published in books: e. g., Layard, "Inscriptions in the Cuneiform Character." Rawlinson (with the aid of Norris, George Smith and Pinches), "The Cuneiform Inscriptions of Western Asia," vols. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Pognon, " L'Inscription du Bavian." Lyon, " Sargontexte." Haupt, "Akkadische u. Sumerische Keilschrifttexte." Haupt, "Nimrodepos." Pinches, "Texts in the Babylonian Wedgewriting," etc.

Others will be found scattered through different journals and periodicals. The following are the principal journals in which Cuneiform Inscriptions are printed: Transactions of the Biblical Archceological Society, vols. i.-viii; Journal Asiatique; Zeitschrift fur die Assyriologie; Babylonian and Oriental Record; Hebraica. In the last named journal, Pinches has published several contracttablets: Craig, "The Throne Inscription of Shalmaneser;" O'Conor, "Variants of Nebuchadnezzar Inscriptions;" R. F. Harper, some hitherto unpublished Esarhaddon Inscriptions.

4. Most students, who use these "inductive studies," will be able to use only the translations of the inscriptions. These are confessedly imperfect, and otten conjectural, but are, at least, nearer the fountain of the evidence than are the popular volumes or the articles in the books of reference. Some of the translations are found in some of the popular works. Others are published with the texts, others by themselves in the various journals and periodicals, and still others in books. The following books in English cover the ground pretty well: "The Assyrian Canon," by George Smith, London, Samuel Bagster & Sons. " Assyrian Discoveries," by "George Smith, London, 1883. Records of the Past," vols. 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11. Samuel Bayster & Sons, 1874-1880.

Cf. also Lotz's "Tiglath-pileser," Lhotzky's "Asurnasirpal," Craig's "Shalmaneser" (Hebraica, July, '87). Hoerning's "Sanherib." Robert F. Harper's "Esarhaddon" (in Hebraica, Jan. '88). S. A. Smith's "Asurbanipal." Haupt's "Sindfluthbericht." Flemming's "Nebuchadnezzer" (also C. J. Ball in TSBA. vol. viii.). Latrille's "Nabonidus," Zimmern's "Babylonische Busspsalmen." Francis Brown's " Babylonian Poetry," in Presbyterian Review, Jan., '88. Bezold's "Achaemenideninschriften," etc., etc.

2) For some account of the Assyrian chronology, and of the different views held as to the chronology of the period we are now considering, see the twenty-sixth "study." The numbers found in the Bible seem, on their face, to give the following as the dates for the present "study:"

A. Di. 137-165, Amaziah's 29 years.

151-191, Jeroboam's 41 years.

166-176, Interregnum in Judah, 11 years.

177-228, Uzziah's 52 years.

192-213, Interregnum in Israel, 22 years.

214, Zechariah. 215, Shallum, Menahem's accession.

216-225, Menahem's 10 years.

The chronology of the marginal Bibles differs from this mainly in counting out the apparent interregnum between Amaziah and Uzziah.

Many eminent scholars hold, as we shall see in the twenty-sixth "study," that the true chronology is very different from this-that the biblical numerals are either incorrect, or else are to be very differently interpreted.—W. J. B.

3) By Professor Beecher.