Verses 1, 2 – Jehoiada, the high priest waited patiently six years before he carried out a plan to overthrow Athaliah. He made sure he had military leaders on his side as well as the Levites and the prominent families.
Verses 4-7 – Jehoiada made it appear as though the priests and Levites were carrying on with their usual duties. At the same time, the other Levites were in the immediate vicinity, half of them at the nearby kings palace and half at one of the major gates. The armed troops were in the courtyards. The presence of the military would assure that nothing happened to Joash.
Verse 9 – The temple contained an arsenal of weapons that had been stored there since the time of David. So as soon as the military walked into the temple, they became armed.
Verse 11 – Then they brought out Joash and began to acclaim the child as king. The testimony that the scripture speaks of, may have been a copy of the Torah, Deuteronomy, or a copy of the agreement that Jehoiada had made with all the leaders acknowledging Joash as the rightful king.
Verse 13 – Athaliah didn’t recognize who Joash was because he had been hidden for six years. So when she saw the people celebrating, she assumed it was treason.
Verses 14-17 – Jehoiada would not desecrate the temple by killing Atlhalia there. They took her out by the Horses’ Gate and anyone who was with her and put her to death. Then the people went to the temple of Baal, killed Mattan, the priest of Baal, and tore it down.
Verses 18, 19 – Jehoiada restored order to the temple by following the outline David had put in place including the daily sacrifices and worship music.
Verses 20, 21 – Jehoiada and the people escorted the 7-year-old Joash to the royal palace and placed him on the throne. Then the land was at peace with no threats coming from anywhere. The wicked queen was dead!