Josaphatfor other meanings of the name.Jehoshaphat or Jehosaphat or Josaphat or Yehoshafat (Hebrew Name|יְהוֹשָׁפָט|Yəhošafat|Yəhôšāp̄āṭ|" Jehovahis the judge") was the successor of Asa, king of Judah. His children included Jehoram of Judah. The king is not connected with the Valley of Jehosaphat, where, according to Joel 3:2, the God of Israel will gather all nations for judgment.
Jehoshaphat took the throne at the age of thirty-five (
1 Kings22:42). William F. Albrighthas dated the reign of Jehoshaphat to 873 BC-849 BC, while E. R. Thieleoffers the dates 870 BC-848 BC.
Jehoshaphat spent the first years of his reign fortifying his kingdom against Israel (2 "Chronicles" 17:1, 2). The Bible lauds the king for the repression of sodomitic activity (1 "Kings" 22:46), and for destroying the
cult images or "idols" of Baalin the land (1 "Kings" 22:43). In the third year of his reign Jehoshaphat sent out priests and Levites over the land to instruct the people in the Law (2 Chr. 17:7-9). The author of "2 Chronicles" generally praises his reign, stating that the kingdom enjoyed a great measure of peace and prosperity, the blessing of God resting on the people "in their basket and their store."
Jehosaphat also pursued alliances with his contemporaries ruling the northern kingdom, the first being with
Ahab, which was based on marriage. This alliance led to much disgrace, and brought disaster on his kingdom ("1 Kings" 22:1-33) with the Battle of Ramoth-Gilead. While Jehoshaphat safely returned from this battle, he was confronted by the prophet Jehu, son of Hanni, (2 Chr. 19:1-3) about this alliance. We are told that Jehoshaphat repented, and returned to his former course of opposition to all idolatry, and promoting the worship of God and in the government of his people (2 Chr. 19:4-11).
Again he entered into an alliance with Ahaziah, the king of Israel, for the purpose of carrying on maritime commerce with
Ophir. But the fleet that was then equipped at Ezion-Geverwas immediately wrecked. A new fleet was fitted out without the cooperation of the king of Israel, and although it was successful, the trade was not prosecuted (2 Chr. 20:35-37; "1 Kings" 22:48-49).
He subsequently joined Jehoram, king of Israel, in a war against the
Moabites, who were under tribute to Israel. This war was successful. The Moabites were subdued; but seeing Mesha's act of offering his own son in a human sacrificeon the walls of Kir-hareshethfilled Jehoshaphat with horror, and he withdrew and returned to his own land ("2 Kings" 3:4-27).
Last notable event of his reign
The last notable event of his reign occurred when the Moabites formed a great and powerful confederacy with the surrounding nations, and marched against Jehoshaphat (2 Chr. 20). The allied forces were encamped at
Ein Gedi. The king and his people were filled with alarm, and betook themselves to God in prayer. The king prayed in the court of the temple, "O our God, will you not judge them? For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do; but our eyes are upon you." Amid the silence that followed, the voice of Jahazielthe Levite was heard announcing that the next day all this great host would be overthrown. So it was, for they quarrelled among themselves, and slew one another, leaving to the people of Judah only to gather the rich spoils of the slain. This was recognized as a great deliverance wrought for them by God (890 BC). Soon after this victory Jehoshaphat died after a reign of twenty-five years at the age of sixty ("1 Kings" 22:50). According to some sources (such as the Jewish commentator Rashi) he actually died two years later, but gave up his throne earlier for unknown reasons.
* [http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=204&letter=J "Jewish Encyclopedia":] "Jehoshaphat"
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Jehoshaphat — [ji häsh′ə fat΄, jihäs′ə fat΄] n. [Heb yehōshāphāt, lit., God has judged] Bible a king of Judah in the 9th cent. B.C.: 2 Chron. 17 21 … English World dictionary
Jehoshaphat — Jehovah judged. 1) One of David s body guard (1 Chr. 11:43). 2) One of the priests who accompanied the removal of the ark to Jerusalem (1 Chr. 15:24). 3) Son of Ahilud, recorder or annalist under David and Solomon (2 Sam. 8:16), a… … Easton's Bible Dictionary
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Jehoshaphat — /dʒəˈhoʊsəfæt/ (say juh hohsuhfat) noun 1. a king of Judah, son of Asa, who reigned in the 9th century BC. 1 Kings 22:41–50. –phrase 2. jumping Jehoshaphat, (an exclamation of astonishment, irritation, etc.) Also, Jehosaphat, Jehoshophat … Australian English dictionary
Jehoshaphat — noun Etymology: Hebrew Yĕhōshāphāṭ Date: circa 1500 a king of Judah who brought Judah into an alliance with the northern kingdom of Israel in the ninth century B.C … New Collegiate Dictionary
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