Verse 1 – Azariah was also known as Uzziah (2 Chronicles 26). Azariah’s devotion to God helped Judah enjoy peace and prosperity such as it had not experienced since the days of Solomon.
Verse 4 – Although Azariah accomplished a great deal, he failed to destroy the high places just as his father, Amaziah and grandfather Joash had failed to do.
Verse 5 – In one version of the Bible, it says the Lord struck Azariah with leprosy. In another, it says a skin disease. Either way, he was separated from others. Not until you read 2 Chronicles 26:16-19 will you see the cause for this and then we still don’t know for sure. Evidently, Azariah had become arrogant and performed a task that only the priests were allowed to do.
Verse – 8 – Zechariah was an evil king because he encouraged Israel to worship idols. Beware of causing others to sin. The consequences of our actions do affect those around us.
Verse 10 – Jehu’s dynasty was the longest of the northern dynasties. Shallum’s revolution was, formally, part of the record of Zechariah since it told of how Zechariah’s reign ended. The prophet Amos in Amos 7 spoke of this.
Verse13-16 – Shallum’s reign was short-lived–one month. Menahem had his own revolution going on and assassinated Shallum. Ancient historical documents say that Menahem was the commander-in-chief of Jeroboam’s army. This man was a big major evil. He ripped open the pregnant women when he ran-sacked Tiphsah.
Verse 18 – Leaders profoundly affect the people they serve. They can either encourage or discourage devotion to God by their example of how they live. Good leaders do not put up obstacles to faith in God or to right living.
Verses 19, 20 – King Pul of Assyria is also called Tiglath-Pileser in chapter 15 verse 29. The Assyrian empire was becoming a world power, and the nations Aram, Israel, and Judah were in decline. This was the first of three Assyrian invasions.
Verses 23-26 – Pekahiah, son of Menahem only reigns two years before he is assassinated. The leader of this next revolution is Pekah and then he makes himself king. Israel has run a-muck.
Verses 27, 28 – Pekah reigns twenty years, doing evil in the sight of the Lord. However, there is a storm, brooding with the Assyrian king wanting to invade Israel again.
Verse 30 – Hoshea was Israel’s last king.
Verse 32 – A year after Pekah became king, Uzziah (also called Azariah) of Judah died, and Isaiah the prophet had a vision of God’s holiness and Israel’s future destruction (Isaiah 6).
Verses 34, 35 – Much good can be said about Jotham’s reign over Judah. However, he didn’t destroy the high places, which had been commanded to be destroyed in Exodus 20:3. A true follower of God considers all his ways according to God’s precepts.