How old was Ahaziah when he began to rule over Jerusalem?


2 Kings 8:26 (KJV): Two and twenty years old


2 Chronicles 22:2 (KJV): Forty and two years old

  • since you're interested in contradictions between chronicles and kings in general, this article might shed some light on this age old problem bible.org/article/reliability-kings-and-chronicles
    – bach
    May 5, 2020 at 2:03
  • 1
    @Bach, I need the answer to the titled question May 5, 2020 at 2:27
  • 2
    my question is closed here - All Q&A sites on this particular domain have a strict policy of not allowing more than one (main) question per post.
    – Lucian
    May 5, 2020 at 17:10
  • Both? Perhaps he reigned twice.
    – David
    May 30, 2020 at 16:42

1 Answer 1


The simple answer to the question is: Ahaziah was 22 years old when he began to reign according to 2 Kings 8:26.

The Hebrew text has been corrupted in 2 Chron 22:2 by recording "42 years old" - this can be deduced from several lines of evidence:

  • The text of 2 Kings 8:26 differs
  • Ahaziah's father was only 40 years old when he died (2 Chron 21:5, 20) making his son's age of 42 at the beginning of his reign impossible
  • As listed in the footnotes of the NIV to 2 Chron 22:2, the Syriac say "22 years old", while the LXX has "20 years old".

Just why the Leningrad Codex (and thus the BHS) is corrupt at this point is unknown, perhaps by a copyist or transcriber. Many modern versions recognise this (eg, NIV, NLT, ESV, NASB, CSB, CEV, ISV, HCSB, etc) and make the obvious correction.

  • Ok, nice then the Chronicles version should be through out since 2 Chronicles 22:2 claimed the wrong answer ? May 5, 2020 at 13:49
  • Does all those contradictions corrupted by by a copyist or transcriber ? May 5, 2020 at 13:59
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    No - a very few are corruptions. Some are due to other things such as … let us answer those individually.
    – Dottard
    May 5, 2020 at 21:01
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    The Word of God is certain and pure. Some copyist have made errors in transmitting the text - that is not a problem for the original text. Not all the 101 errors you point out are due to corruptions - many are due to other features of the text that show that they are not contradictions at all.
    – Dottard
    May 5, 2020 at 21:13
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    On this site we can only deal with one question at a time. as has already been explained.
    – Dottard
    May 5, 2020 at 21:20

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