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   by Jacob Solomon

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King Jehoash summoned Jehoiada the priest, and the priests, and he said to them: "Why are you not carrying out the essential Temple repairs? From now on, do not take for yourselves money from the people who know you, but give it [to skilled workers] for Temple repairs." And the priests accepted (the proposal) (Kings II:12 8-9)

Guided Tour...

The setting of the Haftara is in a bright interval of stability between two very dark periods of Israelite history. The Holy Land had already been split into the Northern Kingdom of Israel and the Southern Kingdom of Judea since the death of King Solomon, about a century beforehand.

The events in the Haftara must be seen in the context of the preceding coups, intrigues, assassinations, and purges within both Israel and Judah. Jehu put an end to the House of Omri - the extremely powerful ruling dynasty of Israel whose members included King Ahab and his wife, Jezebel. Jehu's first actions in ridding Israel of Baal worship included the spectacular murder of that royal family. Jehu did not only dispose of all Ahab's descendants, but his activities crossed the frontier into Judea, where he managed to liquidate Ahaziah - the King of Judah - who is recorded to have allied himself with A