• Son of Deposed Jewish King
  • Born into Captivity in Babylon
  • Exilarch / King in Exile
  • Biblical figure

Biography

Shealtiel (Hebrew: שְׁאַלְתִּיאֵל‎, Shə’altî’ēl) or Greek-derived variant Salathiel (Greek: Σαλαθιηλ, Salăthiēl) was the son of Jeconiah, king of Judah. (1 Chronicles 3:17–18) The Gospels Matthew 1:12 also list Shealtiel as the son of Jeconiah (line of Solomon), while Luke 3:27–28 lists him as the son of an otherwise unknown man named Neri (line of Nathan). Jeconiah, Shealtiel as well as the most of the royal house and elite of Judah were exiled to Babylon by order of Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon after the first siege of Jerusalem in 597 BC. During the Babylonian captivity, Shealtiel was regarded as the second Exilarch (or king-in-exile), following his father.[1]

In Hebrew, the name Shealtiel means, Shə’altî ’Ēl, "I asked El (for this child)". The name acknowledges that the son is an answer to the parents' prayer to God (El) to help them conceive and birth a child. Many Hebrew names similarly express the importance of, difficulty of, and thankfulness for a successful pregnancy.

Shealtiel is a significant but problematic member in the genealogies of the House of David and of the genealogy of Jesus. There is conflicting text in the Hebrew Bible, though not the Septuagint (1 Chronicles 3:19), as to whether Zerubbabel is the son of Shealtiel or of Shealtiel's brother, Pedaiah. Though both genealogies of Jesus list Zerubbabel as the son of Shealtiel, they differ as to Shealtiel's paternity with Matthew agreeing with 1 Chronicles that Jeconiah was Shealtiel's father, while Luke lists Shealtiel's father as an unknown man named Neri.

The author of the Deuterocanonical apocalyptic work 2 Esdras describes himself as "I, Salathiel, who am also called Ezra" (3:1). For this reason, the work is also sometimes known as Ezra Shealtiel. However, this Ezra is not the Shealtiel of the royal genealogies nor the priestly prophet Ezra, whose lineage is given in Book of Ezra 7:1–5 and in 2 Esdras 1:1 (Latin version), which agree that the prophet Ezra was the son of Seraiah, and a Levite.

Narrative 2 Kings

Marriage and Family

2 Kings Narrative


8 Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he began to reign, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months. And his mother’s name was Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem.
9 And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his father had done.
10 ¶ At that time the servants of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up against Jerusalem, and the city was besieged.
11 And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came against the city, and his servants did besiege it.
12 And Jehoiachin the king of Judah went out to the king of Babylon, he, and his mother, and his servants, and his princes, and his officers: and the king of Babylon took him in the eighth year of his reign.
13 And he carried out thence all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king’s house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of the Lord, as the Lord had said.
14 And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty men of valour, even ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the poorest sort of the people of the land.
15 And he carried away Jehoiachin to Babylon, and the king’s mother, and the king’s wives, and his officers, and the mighty of the land, those carried he into captivity from Jerusalem to Babylon.
16 And all the men of might, even seven thousand, and craftsmen and smiths a thousand, all that were strong and apt for war, even them the king of Babylon brought captive to Babylon.
17 ¶ And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah his father’s brother king in his stead, and changed his name to Zedekiah.
2 Kings 24:8-17 - KJV Translation

Jeconiah reigned three months and ten days, beginning December 9, 598. He succeeded Jehoiakim as king of Judah after raiders from surrounding lands invaded Jerusalem and killed his father.[5] It is likely that the king of Babylon was behind this effort, as a response to Jehoiakim's revolt, starting sometime after 601 BC. Three months and ten days after Jeconiah became king, the armies of Nebuchadnezzar II seized Jerusalem. The intention was to take high class Judahite captives and assimilate them into Babylonian society. On March 15/16th, 597 BC, Jeconiah, his entire household and three thousand Jews, were exiled to Babylon.[6][7][8]:217

The Masoretic Text of 2 Chronicles states that Jeconiah's rule began at the age of eight, while in 2 Kings 24:8 Jeconiah is said to have come to the throne at eighteen.[9][10] Modern scholars have treated the difference between "eight" and "eighteen" as reflecting a copying error on one side or the other of the question.[11]


Living in Exile

After Jeconiah was deposed as king, Jeconiah's uncle, Zedekiah,[2Ki.24:17] was appointed by Nebuchadnezzar to rule Judah. Zedekiah was the son of Josiah.[12] Jeconiah would later be regarded as the first of the exilarchs. In the Book of Ezekiel, the author refers to Jeconiah as king and dates certain events by the number of years he was in exile. The author identifies himself as Ezekiel, a contemporary of Jeconiah, and he never mentions Zedekiah by name.

Release from Captivity


27 ¶ And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the seven and twentieth day of the month, that Evil-merodach king of Babylon in the year that he began to reign did lift up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah out of prison;
28 And he spake kindly to him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings that were with him in Babylon;
29 And changed his prison garments: and he did eat bread continually before him all the days of his life.
30 And his allowance was a continual allowance given him of the king, a daily rate for every day, all the days of his life.
2 Kings 25:27-30 - KJV Translation

According to 2 Kings 25:27-30, Jeconiah was released from prison "in the 37th year of the exile", in the year that Amel-Marduk (Evil-Merodach) came to the throne, and given a prestigious position at court. Jeconiah's release in Babylon brings to a close the Books of Kings and the Deuteronomistic history. Babylonian records show that Amel-Marduk began his reign in October 562 BC.[14] According to 2 Kings 25:27, Jeconiah was released from prison "on the 27th day of the twelfth month": this indicates the first year of captivity to be 598/597 BC, according to Judah's Tishri-based calendar. The 37th year of captivity was thus, by Judean reckoning, the year that began in Tishri of 562, consistent with the synchronism to the accession year of Amel-Marduk given in Babylonian records.


Royal Succession

His son Shallum succeeded Josiah as king of Judah, under the name Jehoahaz. Shallum was succeeded by Eliakim, under the name Jehoiakim, who was succeeded by his own son Jeconiah; then, Jeconiah was succeeded to the throne by Mattanyahu, under the name Zedekiah. Zedekiah was the last king of Judah before the kingdom was conquered by Babylon and the people exiled.

After the failed siege of Harran, Necho left a sizable force behind, but returned himself to Egypt. On his return march, he found that the Judeans had selected Jehoahaz to succeed his father Josiah. Necho brought Jehoahaz to Riblah and imprisoned him there. He then deposed Jehoahaz and replaced with his older brother Eliakim as king, changing his name to Jehoiakim. Jehoahaz had ruled for three months. Necho brought Jehoahaz back to Egypt as his prisoner, where Jehoahaz ended his days.

Genealogy

Jeconiah was the son of Jehoiakim with Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem. He had seven children: Shealtiel, Malkiram, Pedaiah, Shenazzar, Jekamiah, Hoshama and Nedabiah. (1 Chronicles 3:17–18). Jeconiah is also mentioned in the first book of Chronicles as the father of Pedaiah, who in turn is the father of Zerubbabel. A list of his descendants is given in 1 Chronicles 3:17–24.

In listing the genealogy of Jesus Christ, Matthew 1:11 records Jeconiah as an ancestor of Joseph, the husband of Mary.

Zedekiah's Curse

Jeremiah (22:28–30) cursed Jeconiah that none of his immediate descendants would ever sit on the throne of Israel:

This is what the LORD says: 'Record this man as if childless, a man who will not prosper in his lifetime, for none of his offspring will prosper, none will sit on the throne of David or rule anymore in Judah.'" -- Jeremiah 22:30, NIV



Children



Offspring of Salathiel or Shealtiel and unknown parent
Name Birth Death Joined with
Zorobabel ben Salathiel (c555 BC-) 555 Babylon, Babylonia










Siblings

References



Footnotes (including sources)

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