1. The people of Jerusalem proclaimed his youngest son, Ahaziah, king in place of him, since the armed band that had broken into the camp with the Arabs had killed all the elder sons. So Ahaziah son of Jehoram became king of Judah.

2. Ahaziah was twenty years old when he became king and he reigned for one year in Jerusalem. His mother was Athaliah, daughter of Omri.

3. He too followed the example of Ahab's family, since his mother gave him wicked advice.

4. He sinned against Yahweh as Ahab's family had done, for they were his advisers after his father's death, and they led him to his downfall.

5. He also put their policies into practice and went with Jeroham son of Ahab, king of Israel, to fight against Hazael king of Aram at Ramoth-gilead. But the Aramaeans wounded Jeroham,

6. who returned to Jezreel to recover from the wounds that he had received at Ramoth, fighting against Hazael king of Aram. Ahaziah son of Jehoram, king of Judah, went down to Jezreel to visit Jehoram son of Ahab because he was ill.

7. Yahweh used this visit to Jeroham to bring about Ahaziah's downfall. On his arrival he went out with Jeroham against Jehu son of Nimshi whom Yahweh had chosen to destroy the family of Ahab.

8. While Jehu was busy carrying out God's sentence against Ahab's family, he came across the officials of Judah and the kinsmen of Ahaziah who were in the king's service and killed them.

9. He then went in search of Ahaziah who was captured while he tried to hide in Samaria. He was taken to Jehu who put him to death. But they gave him burial, for they said, "This was a son of Jehoshaphat who sought Yahweh with all his heart."

10. There was no one left in the royal family of Ahaziah strong enough to reign. As soon as Athaliah, the mother of Ahaziah, learned that her son was dead, she promptly gave orders for all the members of the royal family of Judah to be killed.

11. But Jehosheba, daughter of king Joram, secretly rescued Joash, her brother's son, from among the sons of the king who were being murdered, and put him with his nurse in the sleeping quarters; in this way Jehosheba the daughter of King Joram and wife of Jehoiada the priest (a sister, too, of Ahaziah) hid him from Athaliah, and prevented her from killing him.

12. He stayed with them for six years, hidden in the house of God, while Athaliah governed the country.

“Subamos sem nos cansarmos, sob a celeste vista do Salvador. Distanciemo-nos das afeições terrenas. Despojemo-nos do homem velho e vistamo-nos do homem novo. Aspiremos à felicidade que nos está reservada.” São Padre Pio de Pietrelcina