Once a king gives birth to
more than one child in the
Bible, the royal house becomes
split as any of the children could
become King after the demise of
their father. Oftentimes, the season
after the death of a king was the
most perilous for all the princes
and princesses as the one who
grabbed power first may decide to kill
all his brothers and sisters
to secure his throne.
It happened to the children of Gideon
in the book of Judges.
The Argument of Bathsheba and prophet
Nathan to David was that Adonijah
would kill them and Solomon if the
King did nothing while Adonijah crowned
himself king. A wise king would choose
his successor, as David did so that
the other members of the royal family
would settle down and accept the chosen
one as their king. That way a lot of
lives would be saved and the royal family
would not be butchered.
When Ahab ascended the throne with
his foreign wife (Jezebel) we saw a
shift in the dynamics.
Jezebel’s advisers were priests of Baal
and her orientation was quite alien to
that of Israel.
She didn’t understand the unique
relationship between God, the King
and the citizens of Israel.
Her husband wanted Naboth’s vineyard.
Naboth said No.
Jezekiel set Naboth up to be killed.
Ahab took over Naboth’s vineyard.
God sent Elijah to Ahab. Elijah told
Ahab that he and his wife would die
miserable deaths. He also promised
that their bloodline would be
eradicated from Israel.
Ahab and Jezebel had a daughter named
Athaliah. Athaliah had a son named
Elisha raised a man called Jehu with
a mandate to fulfill the prophecy Elijah
gave concerning Ahab and Jezebel.
Jehu went on a killing spree.
Ahab, Jezebel, and the entire royal
house of Ahab was slaughtered
Jehu killed all the prophets of Baal,
including Joram and Ahaziah.
When Athaliah heard that her son
had been killed, she seized power in
Judah and killed all the other members
of the royal house that had a claim
to the throne. Only Joash escaped due
to the diligence of his nurse.
Once Athaliah assumed all the
princes were dead, she settled into
her role as the Queen of Judah and
ruled with an iron fist.
Like her mother, she favored the
priests of baal and didn’t want
anything to do with God and His priests.
The Priests of God heard about the
young prince that was spared and
decided to crown him king when he
Jehoiada, the priest had groomed the
young man and prepared him for the
One day Athaliah went on a trip.
The priests crowned Joash King.
Ataliah returned to the palace
the coronation was taking place
and she screamed “Treason” but
the tide had turned.
She lost her life.
Joash had favorable reviews
with the priests because he
was a mere figurehead when
he became king.
Jehoiada the priest was the one who
really ruled over Judah. Joash was
a mere rubber stamp who did
whatever his mentor said.
Men, even as priests, cannot be
trusted with power. Jehoiada made
many decisions which he committed the
young king to but ultimately everything
he did favored only himself and his
fellow priests. He made Joash repair
the temple and ensured that the
priests got a lot of bread on their
Jehoiada the priest eventually grew
old and died, guess what, he was
buried in the tomb of KINGS!
He was not a king and had
never been crowned one but
he ruled the nation for almost
thirty years through the young
puppet king he installed.
After his death, the priests wanted
to continue their pseudo-rule by
surrounding Joash and advising him.
Joash refused. He chose his own
advisers and refused to be the
lackey of the priests.
He wanted to establish
his own legacy and rule without
anyone making him a rubber stamp
or a figurehead.
The priests hated that, Of course, it
was the “We made you syndrome”
They began to spread all sorts of
rumors about him and their record
of his deeds was coloured by their
feeling of betrayal and bitterness
towards him. Zechariah, Jehoiada’s
son came to him boldly to have a
Zechariah refused to
recognize that King Joash was no
longer his boyhood friend whom he
can talk to anyhow.
He practically warned the king that
he would come to a bad end if he
does not turn his course around
and return to the status quo.
Joash’s advisers killed Zachariah
They didn’t want to be under the
thumb of priests and they wanted to
send the other priests a message
that they should keep off the king
and mind their offices.
The priests took the death of Zachariah,
son of Jehoiada who grew up with
the king as the final straw.
They plotted and schemed until they
found servants within the palace who
could be compromised.
Joash servants piled
him with wine one evening until
he was drunk and then murdered
him in his bed.
As a final sign of dishonor to him,
the priests refuse to bury him in
the tomb of the Kings of Israel.
They did this to spite him for
daring to have a mind of his own
and not following their lead as
he did when he was a child.
This is what power does to people.
Either they wield it directly or
indirectly, power corrupts.
Nobody comes into power without
having vested interests to satisfy
or contend with.
There are power brokers, power blocks,
people of great influence and money
who could frustrate the reign of any
President. Somebody wrote a budget,
someone else padded it.
The writer protested.
The padder refused to pass the budget.
The people screamed that the writer
did not perform. The writer turned
to the people.
The people said, this is politics
not dictatorship, play by the rules
of the game. The writer conceded,
the budget and was passed, corruption
continued to flow like a river.
A group came into the house,
they had their Senate President and
House of Reps leadership mapped out.
They were the President’s men with
whom policies and other things can
be done easily.
They called for a meeting
at two different venues and another
group hijacked the leadership of both
Before you allow anyone place you
on a poster and shout your name
to the high heavens, please count
the cost. There is no messiah
that can save Nigeria, reality and
fantasy are two different things.
Democracy ties the hand of the evildoer
as well as the do-gooder together, It
ensures that nobody escapes unsoiled.
Are people not blaming the spare tyre
for whatever evil the main tyre did in
the past few years? Even though we
all know that the constitution does
not give the spare tyre the room to
do anything while the main tyre is
That is how democracy works.
Was it not Chinua Achebe that
wrote so beautifully in Anthills of
the Savannah that anyone who is willing
to have his head on the currency of any
country should be prepared to have
the head chopped off!
It will sound like heeding the Call
of duty until the people begin to
shout “Crucify him”