Fausset's Bible Dictionary 
1. Son of Hanani who reproved Asa ( 2 Chronicles 16:7-9) of Judah; prophetically denounced Baasha for all the evil he did in the sight of Jehovah, like the house of Jeroboam, and for killing "him" (the last representative of Jeroboam): 1 Kings 16:7; 1 Kings 15:27-29; 1 Kings 14:10-14. Though Baasha thus fulfilled the word of Jehovah by Ahijah, yet as not this but his own bloody minded ambition was his motive; he should be punished ( Hosea 1:4). His following Jeroboam's sins showed that his destruction of Jeroboam's house was not from zeal for God. Thirty years later Jehu reproved Jehoshaphat, "shouldest thou help the ungodly, and love them that hate the Lord? therefore is wrath upon thee from the Lord," etc. ( 2 Chronicles 19:2-3). Jehoshaphat's "acts, first and last, were written in the book of Jehu" ( 2 Chronicles 20:34).
2. Son of Jehoshaphat, son of Nimshi, from whom, as better known, Jehu is sometimes called "son of Nimshi." In youth he had ridden behind Ahab as one of his guards, when that bad king went down to Jezreel to take possession of the vineyard obtained by false accusation and murder, and treasured in memory Elijah's prophecy again st him on that occasion, "in the place where dogs licked the blood of Naboth shall dogs lick thy blood even thine" ( 1 Kings 21:19). Bidkar (Bar ("son of") Dakar) was then his comrade in the king's guard; and it was a striking retribution that these two witnesses of Ahab's sin should be the executioners of God's righteous vengeance. Jehovah had directed Elijah at Horeb to anoint him as future king, a commission which the prophet executed through his successor Elisha, whose ministry was the continuation of his own. The impulsive vehemence of his character betrayed itself even at a distance in his "furious" driving, which was notorious ( 2 Kings 9:20 margin).
During the absence at Jezreel, owing to wounds, of Jehoram king of Israel, Jehu as commander in chief was holding Ramoth Gilead against Hazael and the Syrians, when a pupil of the prophets, sent by Elisha, suddenly appeared amidst the captains assembled in the court, saying "I have an errand to thee, O captain"; Jehu went into the innermost of the surrounding chambers, and there the young prophet in the name of Jehovah God of Israel anointed him with the sacred oil (Josephus, Ant. 9:6, section 1) as Israel's king, and commissioned him to avenge the blood of Jehovah's prophets and servants ( 1 Kings 18:4; 1 Kings 19:10) on Ahab's whole house. On going out Jehu was asked," Wherefore came this mad ( Jeremiah 29:26; John 10:20; Acts 26:24) fellow to thee?" Jehu replied, "Ye know the man and his muttering" (ecstatic utterances), i.e., that he says nothing rational.
But the captains elicited from Jehu the truth; then, fired with enthusiasm and weary of the reigning dynasty, they made an extempore throne of the bore steps of the staircase, spreading their outer wrappers ( Beged ) as the carpet, to do homage to Jehu ( Matthew 21:7-8), and proclaimed with sound of trumpets, "Jehu is king." The prophet's few words sufficed to act on Jehu's excitable, impetuous, and ambitious character. Without a prayer for guidance, and without further precaution, Jehu set out on a journey of 30 miles, crossing the Jordan with a band of horsemen, and Bidkar whom he had made captain of the host, and being himself the first messenger of the revolution to Jezreel, having secured that none else should leave Ramoth Gilead. One messenger on horseback after another, sent out by Joram, asked "Is it peace?" and received the reply "What hast thou to do with peace?" i.e., trouble not thyself about peace: "follow me."
At last Joram himself, with Ahaziah, each in his chariot, went forth. To Joram's inquiry Jehu replied, "What peace so long as the whoredoms (spiritual) of thy mother Jezebel, and her witchcrafts (usually associated with idolatry), are so many?" ( Deuteronomy 18:10, etc.) On Joram turning to flee Jehu drove an arrow through the back and shoulders, so as to come out at his heart, and made Bidkar cast the body upon Naboth's ground, "as Jehovah laid this burden (pronounced this prophetic threat; Massa ) upon him," for "the blood of Naboth and of his sons" (this passage supplies the latter particular, which 1 Kings 21:13-14 omits as being a matter of course, Ahab's object being to cut off all heirs to the confiscated vineyard). Jehu smote Ahaziah too. (See Ahaz lAH.)
Fleeing by the way of the garden house (Hebrew: Βethgan , Εngannim ) he first hid in Samaria where his lives were ( 2 Kings 10:3), moreover Samaria was the direct road from Jezreel to Jerusalem; then was brought to Jehu, and was mortally wounded in his chariot at the ascent to Gur by Ibleam, so that when he got on to Megiddo he died there ( 2 Chronicles 22:8-9; 2 Kings 9:27). On Jehu's approach to Jezreel, Jezebel in oriental fashion painted her eyebrows and eyelashes with black antimony, to heighten the splendour of the dark eyes, and so to present an imposing appearance to Jehu and die as a queen; not to charm him, for she compared him to "Zimri who slew his master," and warned him that the same fate awaited him as overtook Zimri. Without deigning to answer her Jehu desired the eunuchs to throw her down. After eating and drinking, when Jehu commanded her burial, her skull, palms, and feet were all that the ravenous dogs had left of her carcass, in fulfillment of 1 Kings 21:23.
Next he directed the rulers of the city, and the elders or magistrates, and the tutors of Ahab's 70 sons (including grandsons) at Samaria, to send him the heads of the 70 in baskets to Jezreel. Jehu in the morning went out of the city gate before the two heaps of heads, and addressing the assembled people, as if they were slain without his interfering, he attributed their slaughter to Jehovah's decree, in order to justify his conspiracy in the eyes of the people. So the people offered no resistance when he proceeded to slay all the survivors of Ahab's house at Jezreel, "all his great men, his acquaintances (or adherents), and court priests." Then he set out for Samaria.
On his way, at the house of shepherds binding sheep to shear them (where the shepherds used to meet on the road from Jezreel to Samaria), he caused 42 brethren of Ahaziah, who were about to visit their royal relations, Joram's sons and his mother Jezebel's sons, to be slain at the cistern of the binding or shearing house. Ahaziah's actual brothers had been carried off by the Arabs, etc., "so that there was never a son left Jehoram save Jehoahaz," Ahaziah ( 2 Chronicles 21:17); his "brethren" then mean his stepbrother's, Joram's sons by concubines, and his nephews or cousins. Next, Jehu met and took with him the ascetic (See Jehonadab , held in universal repute, in order to have his countenance in the wholesale slaughter by subtlety of Baal's worshippers which followed, and so to stand well with the people. Jehu said, "come, see my zeal for the Lord"; but it was really zeal for self, which he was glad to find capable of bearing a religious color.
When God's work fell in with his own ambition he did it with his wonted impetuosity. But if his had been real zeal for the Lord he would have rooted out the calf worship, Jeroboam's state policy, as well as Baal worship ( 2 Chronicles 10:29). His haste was not real faith ( Isaiah 28:16); his religious zeal was the blaze of natural impetuosity soon going out ( Matthew 25:8). When religious principle required self sacrifice, then he chose the praise of men not that of God ( 2 Kings 10:31; John 12:43). The Baal worshippers upheld Ahab's dynasty; by killing them he got rid of political opponents, and gained to his side the worshippers of Jehovah. Religion was with him but a tool to serve his ends ( 1 Timothy 6:5). The assuming of Baal vestments by that full assembly (as was usual at the time of worship) in Ahab's grand temple ( 1 Kings 16:32) seemed at the time politic, but proved the seal of the wearers' destruction.
"As soon as he (the priest; not Jehu, as Smith's Bible Dictionary) had made an end of offering the burnt offering," Jehu gave the word for their slaughter. "The city of Baal," to which next the guard and captains went, was the temple citadel, the true temple house; thence they brought the wooden standing columns or statues ( Matseebot assessors of Baal, worshipped with him), and burnt them, and broke in pieces the central column of Baal himself, a conical stone. Jehovah rewarded this removal of Baal idolatry, and execution of the divine vengeance on Ahab's house, by promising Jehu, "thy children of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel." Among them was Jeroboam II, the most prosperous of the Israelite kings; and the dynasty lasted the longest of all that ruled the northern kingdom.
But this religious reformation, a fruit of Elijah's and Elisha's labours, through Jehu's "not taking heed to walk in the law of Jehovah with all his heart," went only half way. So, Israel's day of grace now commencing to wane, Jehovah began to cut Israel short, Hazael smiting them from Jordan eastward. Jehu and Hazael are mentioned on "the black obelisk"; Jehu ( Jahua ) is called "son of Omri" ( Κhumri ), a natural mistake for the Assyrians to make, as knowing Omri to have formed a powerful dynasty and as knowing Samaria by the name "the house of Omri." (See Hazael .)
Jehu at this time, according to the inscription, sent gold and silver tribute to Shalmaneser I Stern, ruthless, impetuous, yet a master of profound dissimulation (as in his consummate hypocrisy toward the Baal worshippers), he never discovered that wholeheartedness for God is the truest policy, and that blood shed in external obedience to God's command, where yet the motive is self, brings guilt on the blood shedder: Hosea 1:4, "I will avenge the blood of Jezreel on the house of Jehu," though temporarily he was rewarded for his measure of outward obedience. Zachariah his great grandson, the fourth from Jehu, after a six months' reign, was slain by Shallum ( 2 Kings 15:8-12). Jehu's paying tribute to Assyria to secure the throne which God gave him accords with his half believing character, using all means secular or religious to gain his end. He died and was buried in Samaria after a 28 years' reign.
3. 1 Chronicles 2:38.
4. 1 Chronicles 4:35-43. 1 Chronicles 4:5. The Antothite, i.e. of Anathoth ( 1 Chronicles 12:1-3).
Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary 
the son of Jehoshaphat, and grandson of Nimshi, captain of the troops of Joram the king of Israel, was appointed by God to reign over Israel, and to avenge the sins committed by the house of Ahab, 1 Kings 19:16 . The Prophet Elisha received a commission to anoint him; but the order does not appear to have been executed until more than twenty years afterward, and then it was done by one of the sons of the prophets, 2 Kings 9:1-3 . Jehu was then at the siege of Ramoth-Gilead, commanding the army of Joram, the king of Israel, when a young prophet appeared, who took him aside from the officers of the army, in the midst of whom he was sitting, and, when alone in a chamber, poured oil on his head, and said to him, "Thus saith the Lord, I have anointed thee king over Israel; thou shalt smite the house of Ahab, and avenge the blood of the prophets which hath been shed by Jezebel. For the whole house of Ahab shall perish, and I will make it as that of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, and that of Baasha, the son of Ahijah. Jezebel shall be eaten by the dogs in the fields of Jezreel, and there shall be none to bury her," 2 Kings 9:1-10 . No sooner had the prophet delivered his message, than, to avoid being known, he instantly withdrew; and Jehu, returning to the company of his brother officers, was by them interrogated respecting what had taken place. He informed them that a prophet had been sent from God to anoint him to the kingly office; on which they all rose up, and each taking his cloak, they made a kind of throne for Jehu, and then sounding the trumpets, cried out, "Jehu is king." Joram, who at that time reigned over the kingdom of Israel, was then at Jezreel in a state of indisposition, having been wounded at the siege of Ramoth-Gilead. Jehu, intending to surprise him, immediately gave orders that no one should be permitted to depart out of the city of Ramoth, and himself set off for Jezreel. As he approached that city, a centinel gave notice that he saw a troop coming in great haste; on which Joram despatched an officer to discover who it was: but Jehu, without giving the latter any answer, ordered him to follow in his rear. Joram sent a second, and Jehu laid upon him the same command. Finding that neither of them returned, Joram himself, accompanied by Ahaziah, king of Judah, proceeded in his chariot toward Jehu, whom they met in the field of Naboth the Jezreelite. Joram inquired, "Is it peace, Jehu?" To which the latter replied, "How can there be peace so long as the whoredoms of thy mother Jezebel, and her witchcrafts, are so many?" Joram instantly took the alarm, and, turning to Ahaziah, said, "We are betrayed." At the same time Jehu drew his bow, and smote Joram between his shoulders, so that the arrow pierced his heart, and he died in his chariot. Jehu then gave orders that his body should be cast out into the field of Naboth the Jezreelite, thus fulfilling the prediction of the Prophet Elijah, 2 Kings 9:11-26 .
Jehu next proceeded to Jezreel, where Jezebel herself at that time resided. As he rode through the streets of the city, Jezebel, who was standing at her window and looking at him, exclaimed, "Can he who has killed his master hope for peace?" Jehu, lifting up his head and seeing her, commanded her servants instantly to throw her out at the window; which they did and she was immediately trampled to death under the horses' feet as they traversed the city. To complete her destiny, and fulfil the threatenings of Elijah, the dogs came and devoured her corpse; so that when Jehu sent to have her buried, her bones only were found, 2 Kings 9:27-37 . After this, Jehu sent to inform the inhabitants of Samaria, who had the bringing up of Ahab's seventy children, that they might select which of them they thought proper to place upon the throne of Israel. But overwhelmed with fear, they replied that they were Jehu's servants, and would in all things obey him. He then commanded them to put to death all the king's children, and send their heads to him; which was accordingly done on the following day. Jehu also caused to be put to death all Ahab's relatives and friends, the officers of his court, and the priests whom he had entertained at Jezreel, 2 Kings 10:1-11 . After this, Jehu proceeded to Samaria, and on his way thither met the friends of Ahaziah king of Judah, who were going to Jezreel to salute the children of Ahab's family, with the death of whom they were as yet unacquainted. They were forty-two in number; but Jehu gave orders to have them apprehended and put to death. Soon after this, he met with Jonathan, the son of Rechab; and taking him up into his chariot, "Come with me," said he, "and see my zeal for the Lord." And when he was come to Samaria he extirpated every remaining branch of Ahab's family, without sparing an individual. Then convening the people of Samaria, he said, "Ahab paid some honours to Baal, but I will pay him greater. Send now and gather together all the ministers, priests, and prophets of Baal." When they were all assembled in Baal's temple, Jehu commanded to give each of them a particular habit, to distinguish them; at the same time directing that no stranger should mingle with them; and then ordered his people to put them all to the sword, not sparing one of them; the image of Baal was also pulled down, broken to pieces, and burned, the temple itself destroyed, and the place where it stood reduced to a dunghill, 2 Kings 10:12-28 .
Such were the sanguinary exploits of Jehu toward the idolatrous house of Ahab; but he acted agreeably to divine direction, and the Lord in these instances so far approved his conduct, as to promise him that his children should sit upon the throne of Israel to the fourth generation. Yet, though Jehu had been the instrument in the hand of God for taking vengeance on the profane house of Ahab, we find him accused in Scripture of not entirely forsaking the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin in worshipping the golden calves, 2 Kings 10:29; 2 Kings 10:31 . It appears also that, in executing the divine indignation on the wicked house of Ahab, he was actuated more by the spirit of ambition and animosity than the fear of God, or a regard to the purity of his worship. And thus it is that God, in the course of his providence, makes use of tyrants and wicked men, as his instruments to execute his righteous judgments in the earth. After a reign of eight-and-twenty years over Israel, Jehu died, and was succeeded by his son, Jehoahaz; but his reign was embittered by the war which Hazael, king of Syria, long waged against him, 2 Kings 10:32-36 . His four descendants, who succeeded him in the throne, were Jehoahaz, Joash, Jeroboam II, and Zechariah.
Morrish Bible Dictionary 
1. Son of Jehoshaphat, a son of Nimshi: tenth king of Israel and founder of the fifth dynasty: he reigned from B.C. 884 to 856. Jehu was captain of Jehoram, and was stationed at Ramoth-gilead to keep in check the Syrians on the east of the Jordan. A young man of the prophets, who had been sent by Elisha, arrived at the camp and said he had a message for Jehu. On retiring into the house he anointed Jehu to be king over Israel, with instructions to smite the whole house of Ahab. The prophet opened the door and fled. On Jehu relating what had happened, his companions in arms at once proclaimed him king of Israel. 2 Kings 9:1-13 .
Jehu lost no time in fulfilling his mission; entering his chariot, he proceeded with some followers in haste to Jezreel, whither king Jehoram, being wounded, had gone to be healed. Jehu and his company were seen by the watchman of the city, and a horseman was despatched to meet him, and to ask if it was peace. Jehu detained him, and likewise a second messenger that was sent. The watchman now discerned that it was Jehu who was in the chariot, by his furious driving. Jehoram and Ahaziah king of Judah (who had come to visit the wounded king) at once each in his own chariot issued forth to meet Jehu. Jehoram, being repulsed by Jehu, called out 'Treachery,' and attempted to flee, but an arrow from Jehu pierced his heart and he fell dead. His body was thrown into the field of Naboth the Jezreelite, which Ahab had gained by murder: cf. 1 Kings 21:19-29 . The king of Judah escaped after being wounded, but died of his wound. 2 Kings 9:14-27 .
As Jehu entered Jezreel, Jezebel taunted him; but she was thrown down from the window and her body was consumed by dogs, according to the word of the Lord. Jehu then caused the death of seventy of the sons of Jehoram and forty-two of the 'brethren of Ahaziah' who came to salute the royal family; and slew all that remained to Ahab, his great men and his priests. Meeting Jehonadab, he took him up in his chariot, saying, "Come with me, and see my zeal for the Lord." He then in craft gathered together all the priests and worshippers of Baal, for a great sacrifice, completely filling the house of Baal. At his command all were slain, the images burned, and the house destroyed. 2 Kings 9:30 - 2 Kings 10:28 .
Jehu was commended for carrying out the will of God in exterminating the house of Ahab, and Jehovah said to him that his children to the fourth generation should sit upon the throne. 2 Kings 15:12 . But he took no heed to walk in the law of the Lord with all his heart. He did not remove the golden calves, and he departed not from the sins of Jeroboam who made Israel to sin. Therefore God began to cut Israel short by the king of Syria. 2 Kings 10:29-36; Hosea 1:4 .
The history of Jehu shows how one may have great zeal as far as outward activity goes without a heart set upon serving the Lord.
2. Son of Hanani and a prophet of Judah: he announced the judgement of God against Baasha and rebuked Jehoshaphat. 1 Kings 16:1,7,12; 2 Chronicles 19:2; 2 Chronicles 20:34 .
3. Son of Obed, and father of Azariah. 1 Chronicles 2:38 .
4. Son of Josibiah, of the tribe of Simeon. 1 Chronicles 4:35 .
5. An Antothite who joined David at Ziklag. 1 Chronicles 12:3 .
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary 
After Jezebel of Phoenicia had married King Ahab of Israel, she set about establishing her Phoenician Baalism as Israel’s official religion. God foretold through the prophet Elijah that Jehu would be his instrument to wipe out their dynasty and their Baalism ( 1 Kings 19:15-18; see Baal ).
Some years later, when Ahab’s son had become king and Jehu had risen in rank to become Israel’s army commander, a prophet anointed Jehu and declared him the new king ( 2 Kings 9:1-10). At that time Syria was attacking Israel, and Jehu was commanding Israel’s army on its eastern border at Ramoth-gilead. However, he did not hesitate to leave the battle and head west for Jezreel, where the Israelite king Jehoram (or Joram) was recovering from wounds received in battle ( 2 Kings 8:28-29; 2 Kings 9:1-2; 2 Kings 9:14; 2 Kings 9:16).
Joram’s mother Jezebel was with him at Jezreel; so was Judah’s king Ahaziah, who was a grandson of Ahab and Jezebel and a nephew of Joram. Swiftly and mercilessly Jehu killed them all ( 2 Kings 9:17-37). He ordered the execution of seventy other descendants of Ahab, and displayed their heads as a warning that the wrath of God would fall on any who opposed him ( 2 Kings 10:1-11). He also killed some relatives of Ahaziah whom he happened to meet ( 2 Kings 19:12-14). The climax of his anti-Baal activity was the cold-blooded massacre of any others he suspected of being Baal worshippers ( 2 Kings 10:15-27).
In wiping out the dynasty of Ahab, Jehu was driven more by his desire for power than by his devotion to God; for he himself still worshipped at the idol shrines that Jeroboam had earlier set up ( 2 Kings 10:29; 2 Kings 10:31). In spite of this he received God’s reward for ridding Israel of Jezebel’s Baalism. In fulfilment of God’s promise, his dynasty lasted longer than any other in Israel. But people never forgot his butchery, and his dynasty was doomed to end, as it had begun, with violence ( 2 Kings 10:30; Hosea 1:4).
Jehu’s massacre of all the chief administrators left Israel’s government weak and unstable ( 2 Kings 10:11). His withdrawal from the eastern border left Israel open to attack from the Syrians ( 2 Kings 9:4-5; 2 Kings 9:14-16). Hazael of Syria quickly overran most of Israel’s eastern territory, and continued to trouble Israel throughout Jehu’s reign ( 2 Kings 10:32-35; cf. 2 Kings 8:12; 1 Kings 19:17).
Another man named Jehu was a prophet who announced God’s judgment upon an earlier Israelite king, Baasha ( 1 Kings 16:1; 1 Kings 16:7; 1 Kings 16:12). Later this same prophet brought God’s message to the Judean king Jehoshaphat. He also wrote the court record of Jehoshaphat’s reign ( 2 Chronicles 19:2; 2 Chronicles 20:34).
Easton's Bible Dictionary 
Notwithstanding all this apparent zeal for the worship of Jehovah, Jehu yet tolerated the worship of the golden calves at Dan and Bethel. For this the divine displeasure rested upon him, and his kingdom suffered disaster in war with the Syrians ( 2 Kings 10:29-33 ). He died after a reign of twenty-eight years (B.C. 884-856), and was buried in Samaria (10:34-36). "He was one of those decisive, terrible, and ambitious, yet prudent, calculating, and passionless men whom God from time to time raises up to change the fate of empires and execute his judgments on the earth." He was the first Jewish king who came in contact with the Assyrian power in the time of Shalmaneser II.
Bibliography Information Easton, Matthew George. Entry for 'Jehu'. Easton's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/ebd/j/jehu.html. 1897.
Smith's Bible Dictionary 
Je'hu. (The Living).
1. The founder of the fifth dynasty, of the kingdom of Israel, son of Jehoshaphat. 2 Kings 9:2. He reigned over Israel 28 years, B.C. 884-856. His first appearance in history is, when he heard the warning of Elijah, against the murderer of Naboth. 2 Kings 9:25. In the reigns of Ahaziah and Jehoram, Jehu rose to importance. He was, under the last-named king, captain of the host in the siege of Ramoth-gilead.
During this siege, he was anointed by Elisha's servant, and told that he was appointed to be king of Israel, and destroyer of the house of Ahab. 2 Kings 9:12. The army, at once, ordained him king, and he set off full speed for Jezreel. Jehoram, who was lying ill in Jezreel, came out to meet him, as it happened on the fatal field of Naboth. 2 Kings 9:21-24. Jehu seized his opportunity, and shot him through the heart. 2 Kings 9:24. Jehu himself advanced to the gates of Jezreel, and fulfilled the divine warning on Jezebel, as already on Jehoram. He then entered on a work of extermination, hitherto, unparalleled in the history of the Jewish monarchy.
All the descendants of Ahab that remained in Jezreel, together with the officers of the court and the hierarchy of Eastward, were swept away. His next step was to secure Samaria. For the pretended purpose of inaugurating anew the worship of Baal, he called all the Bailouts together at Samaria. The vast temple raised by Ahab, 1 Kings 16:32, was crowded from end to end. The chief sacrifice was offered, as if in the excess of his zeal, by Jehu himself. As soon as it was ascertained that all, and none but, the idolaters were there, the signal was given to eighty trusted guards, and sweeping massacre removed, at one blow, the whole heathen population of the kingdom of Israel. This is the last public act recorded of Jehu.
The remaining twenty-seven years of his long reign are passed over in a few words, in which two points only are material: - He did not destroy the calf-worship of Jeroboam: - The TransJordanic tribes suffered much from the ravages of Hazael. 2 Kings 10:29-33 He was buried in state in Samaria, and was succeeded by his son, Jehoahaz. 2 Kings 10:35. His name is the first of the Israelite kings which appears in the Assyrian monuments.
2. Jehu, son of Hanani; a prophet of Judah, but whose ministrations were chiefly directed to Israel. His father was probably, the seer who attacked Asa. 2 Chronicles 16:7. He must have begun his career as a prophet, when very young. He first denounced Baasha, 1 Kings 16:1; 1 Kings 16:7, and then, after an interval of thirty years, reappeared to denounce Jehoshaphat, for his alliance with Ahab. 2 Chronicles 19:2-3. He survived Jehoshaphat and wrote his life. 2 Chronicles 20:34.
3. A man of Judah, of the house of Hezron. 1 Chronicles 2:38.
4. A Simeonite, son of Josibiah. 1 Chronicles 4:35.
5. Jehu, the Antothite, was one of the chief of the heroes of Benjamin, who joined David at Ziklag. 1 Chronicles 12:3.
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible 
JEHU. 1. A prophet, the son of Hanani ( 1 Kings 16:1 etc.). 2. A Judahite ( 1 Chronicles 2:38 ). 3. A Simeonite ( 1 Chronicles 4:35 ). 4. One of David’s heroes ( 1 Chronicles 12:3 ). 5. A king of Israel. Like the other founders of dynasties in that country, he obtained the throne by the murder of his monarch. It is evident that a considerable party in Israel bad long been dissatisfied with the house of Ahab. This was partly on account of its religious policy, but perhaps even more for its oppression of its subjects, so emphatically illustrated by the story of Naboth. The leader of the opposition was Elijah, and after him Elisha. Jehu, when in attendance upon Ahab, had heard Elijah’s denunciation of the murder of Naboth ( 2 Kings 9:25 f.). Later he was general of the army, and commanded in the operations at Ramoth-gilead in the absence of king Jehoram. The latter had gone to Jezreel on account of wounds he had received. Elisha saw this to be the favourable moment to start the long-planned revolt. His disciple anointed the general, and the assent of the army was easily obtained. The vivid narrative of Jehu’s prompt action is familiar to every reader of the OT. The king was taken completely by surprise, and he and his mother were slain at once ( 2 Kings 9:1-37; 2 Kings 10:1-36 ).
The extermination of Ahab’s house was a foregone conclusion. The skill of Jehu is seen in his making the chief men in the kingdom partners in the crime. The extermination of the royal house in Judah seems uncalled for, but was perhaps excused by the times on account of the close relationship with the family of Ahab. It has been suggested that Jehu purposed to put an end to the independence of Judah, and to incorporate it fully with his own kingdom. But we have no direct evidence on this head. Hosea saw that the blood of Jezreel rested upon the house of Jehu, and that it would be avenged ( Hosea 1:4 ).
Elisha’s activity extended through the reign of Jehu, but the narrative of the prophet’s life tells us little of the king. From another source the Assyrian inscriptions we learn that Jehu paid tribute to Shalmaneser in the year 842 b.c., which must have been the year of his accession. He probably hoped to secure the great king’s protection against Damascus. But he was disappointed in this, for after a single expedition to the West in 839 the Assyrians were occupied in the East. The latter portion of Jehu’s reign was therefore a time of misfortune for Israel.
H. P. Smith.
People's Dictionary of the Bible 
Jehu ( Jç'Hu ), Jehovah Is Hebrews 1:1-14. The son of Jehoshaphat, king over Israel. 1 Kings 19:16-17. Haying been proclaimed king in the presence of the whole army, he proceeded towards Jezreel, and executed the predicted judgments upon the house of Ahab. He slew Jorum, the reigning king, and mortally wounded Ahaziah, king of Judah, who was with him. 2 Kings 9:24. Jehu then entered Jezreel, and had Jezebel thrown out of the window of the palace, and her body was trodden under foot, fulfilling another prophecy. Jehu then secured possession of Samaria, and slew all that remained unto Ahab, till he had extirpated him, according to the word of the Lord. 2 Kings 10:1-17. He then, at a great festival, exterminated all the idolatrous priests and prophets of Baal, as traitors to King Jehovah, and turned the temple of Baal into a draughthouse. 2 Kings 10:18-28. For his services he received a divine promise, that his descendants, for four generations, should possess the throne. Jehu, himself, was a decisive, terrible, and ambitious man. He erred in allowing the golden calves at Dan and Bethel to remain. He reigned 28 years. 2 Kings 10:29-36. The name of Jehu occurs on the black obelisk, in the British Museum: "Yaua, the son of Khumri," I.E., Jehu, the successor of Omri, the founder of Samaria. 1 Kings 16:23-24. 2. A descendant of Judah. 1 Chronicles 2:38. 3. A descendant of Simeon. 1 Chronicles 4:35. 4. One of David's distinguished officers. 1 Chronicles 12:3. 5. The son of Hanani, a prophet of Samaria. 1 Kings 16:1-12; 2 Chronicles 19:1-3. He wrote the annals of Jehoshaphat. 2 Chronicles 20:34.
Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary 
A well-known king in Israel, raised up in this office to punish the house of Ahab. His name is emphatical, signifing, himself: from pronoun Hua, and this also seems to be from Havah, to be. (See 2 Kings 9:1-36. See also 1 Kings 19:15-18)
It is a remarkable feature concerning Jehu, that the appointment of Jehu, and his becoming king, occupied a period of more than twenty-two years; which will be seen by comparing the dates of those two Scriptures. There was another Jehu a prophet, the son of Hanani, who flourished in the reign of Baasha king of Israel. (See 1 Kings 15:7. See also 2 Chronicles 19:1-3) It should seem, that this Jehu, was a faithful servant of the Lord, in thus reproving both the kings of Judah and Israel. In 2 Chronicles 2:18, it is said, that this prophet wrote the records of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah. There are two other Jehus mentioned in Scripture, Jehu the fourth son of Rehoboam, king of Judah, ( 2 Chronicles 11:19) and Jehu the son of Obed. ( 1 Chronicles 2:38)
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary 
The son of Hanani, a prophet, sent with messages from God to Baasha king of Israel, and many years afterwards, to Jehoshaphat king of Judah, 1 Kings 16:1-7 2 Chronicles 19:1-3 20:34 .
The "son" of Jehoshaphat and grandson of Nimshi, (compare 1 Kings 19:16 2 Kings 9:2 ) a general of the army of Joram, slew his master, and usurped the throne of Israel, B. C. 884. He reigned twentyeight years. See his history in 1 Kings 19:16,17 2 Kings 9:1-10:36 . He fulfilled the divine purpose in extirpating the family of the impious Ahab, and zealously destroyed the priests of Baal and many other friends of Ahab. But his heart was not right with God. The Syrians possessed themselves of his eastern frontier, and his dynasty was cut short in the fourth generation.
Holman Bible Dictionary 
2 Kings 9:1-10 2 Kings 10:28IsraelElijah
2. A prophet who proclaimed God's judgment on King Baasha of Israel ( 1 Kings 16:1-12 ). He warned King Jehoshaphat of Judah ( 2 Chronicles 19:2 ) and recorded the acts of Jehoshaphat in a record to which the Chronicler referred his readers ( 2 Chronicles 20:34 ).
Webster's Dictionary 
(n.) A coachman; a driver; especially, one who drives furiously.
Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature 
(Heb. Yehu', יֵהוּא , according to Gesenius for יְהֵיהוּא , i.q. יְהוֹהוּא , Jehovah is He ; but according to F Ü rst from הָוָא = הָיה , to Live , q.d. the Living; Sept. Ι᾿Ού , Ι᾿Ηού but Ι᾿Ούδα in Hosea 1:4), the name of five men.
1. Son of Obed and father of Azariah, of the tribe of Judah ( 1 Chronicles 2:38). B.C. post. 1612.
2. An Antothite, one of the Benjamite slingers that joined David's band at Ziklag ( 1 Chronicles 12:3). B.C. 1055.
3. The son of Hanani, a prophet (Josephus Ιηοῦς , Ant . 8, 12, 3) of Judah, but whose ministrations were chiefly directed to Israel. His father was probably the seer who suffered for having rebuked Asa ( 2 Chronicles 16:7). He must have begun his career as a prophet when very young. He first denounced upon Baasha, king of Israel, and his house the same awful doom which had been already executed upon the house of Jeroboam ( 1 Kings 16:1; 1 Kings 16:7); a sentence which was literally fulfilled (Kings 16:12). The same prophet was, many years after, commissioned to reprove Jehoshaphat for his dangerous connection with the house of Ahab ( 2 Chronicles 19:2). He appears to have been the public chronicler during the entire reign of Jehoshaphat and a volume of his records is expressly referred to ( 2 Chronicles 20:34). B.C. 928-886.
4. The eleventh king of the separate throne of Israel (Josephus Ι᾿Ηοῦς , Ant . 8, 13, 7), and founder of its fourth dynasty; he reigned twenty-eight years, B.C. 883-855 ( 2 Kings 9:10; 2 Chronicles 22:7-9). His history was told in the lost "Chronicles of the Kings of Israel" ( 2 Kings 10:34). His father's name was Jehoshaphat ( 2 Kings 9:2); his grandfather's (which, as being better known was sometimes affixed to his own — 2 Kings 9) was Nimshi. In his youth he had been one of the guards of Ahab. His first appearance in history is when, with a comrade in arms, Bidkar, or Bar- Dakar (Ephraem Syrus, Opp . 4, 540), he rode (either in a separate chariot, Sept., or on the same seat, Josephus) behind Ahab on the fatal journey from Samaria to Jezreel, and heard, and laid up in his heart, the warning of Elijah against the murderer of Naboth ( 2 Kings 9:25). But he had already, as it would seem, been known to Elijah as a youth of promise, and, accordingly, in the vision at Horeb he is mentioned as the future king of Israel, whom Elijah is to anoint as the minister of vengeance on Israel ( 1 Kings 19:16-17). This injunction, for reasons unknown to us, Elijah never fulfilled. It was reserved long afterwards for his successor Elisha. (See Ahab).
Jehu meantime, in the reigns of Ahaziah and Jehoram, had risen to importance. The same activity and vehemence which had fitted him for his earlier distinctions still continued and he was known far and wide as a charioteer whose rapid driving, as if of a madman ( 2 Kings 9:21), could be distinguished even from a distance. Accordingly, in the reign of Jehoram, Jehu held a command in the Israelitish army posted at Ramoth- gilead to hold in check the Syrians, who of late years had made strenuous efforts to extend their frontier to the Jordan and had possessed themselves of much of the territory of the Israelites east of that river. The contest was, in fact, still carried on which had begun many years before in the reign of Ahab, Jehoram's father, who had lost his life in battle before this very Ramoth-gilead. Ahaziah, king of Judah, had taken part with Jehoram, king of Israel, in this war; and as the latter had been severely wounded in a recent action, and had gone to Jezreel to be healed of his wounds, Ahaziah had also gone thither on a visit of sympathy to him ( 2 Kings 8:28-29). B.C. 883. According to Ephraem Syrus (who omits the words "saith the Lord" in 2 Kings 9:26, and makes "I" refer to Jehu), he had, in a dream the night before, seen the blood of Naboth and his sons (Ephr. Syr. Opp. 4, 540). In this state of affairs, a council of war was held among the military commanders in camp, when, very unexpectedly, a youth of wild appearance ( 2 Kings 9:11), known by his garb to be one of the disciples of the prophets, appeared at the door of the tent, and called forth Jehu, declaring that he had a message to deliver to him ( 2 Kings 9:15).
They retired into a secret chamber. The youth uncovered a vial of the sacred oil (Josephus, Ant . 9, 6, 1) which he had brought with him, poured it over Jehu's head, and after announcing to him the message from Elisha, that he was appointed to be king of Israel and destroyer of the house of Ahab, rushed out of the house and disappeared ( 2 Kings 9:7-8). Surprising as this message must have been, and awful the duty which it imposed, Jehu was fully equal to the task and the occasion. He returned to the council, probably with an altered air, for he was asked what had been the communication of the young prophet to him. He tried at first to evade their questions, but then revealed the situation in which he had found himself placed by the prophetic call. In a moment the enthusiasm of the army took fire. They threw their garments — the large square beged similar to a wrapper or plaid — under his feet, so as to form a rough carpet of state, placed him on the top of the stairs (q.v.), as on an extempore throne, blew the royal salute on their trumpets, and thus ordained him king ( 2 Kings 9:11-14). Jehu was not a man to lose any advantage through remissness. He immediately cut off all communication between Ramoth-gilead and Jezreel and then set off at full speed with his ancient comrade Bidkar, whom he made captain of the host in his place and a band of horsemen. From the tower of Jezreel a watchman saw the cloud of dust raised by the advancing party and announced his coming ( 2 Kings 9:17). The messengers that were sent out to him he detained, on the same principle of secrecy which had guided all his movements. It was not till he had almost reached the city, and was identified by the watchman, that apprehension was felt. But even then it seems as if the two kings in Jezreel anticipated news from the Syrian war rather than a revolution at home. Jehoram went forth himself to meet him and was accompanied by the king of Judah. They met in the field of Naboth, so fatal to the house of Ahab. The king saluted him with the question, "Is it peace, Jehu?" and received the answer, "What peace, so long as the whoredoms (idolatries) of thy mother Jezebel and her witchcrafts are so many?" This completely opened the eyes of Jehoram, who exclaimed to the king of Judah, "There is treachery, O Ahaziah!" and turned to flee. But Jehu felt no infirmity of purpose, and knew that the slightest wavering might be fatal to him. He therefore seized his opportunity, and taking full aim at Jehoram, with the bow which, as captain of the host, was always with him, shot him through the heart ( 2 Kings 9:24). Jehu caused the body to be thrown back into the field of Naboth, out of which he had passed in his attempt at flight, and grimly remarked to Bidkar, his captain, "Remember how that, when I and thou rode together after Ahab his father, the Lord laid this burden upon him." The king of Judah endeavored to escape, but Jehu's soldiers pursued and inflicted upon him at Beth-gan (A.V. "the garden house"), probably Engannim, a wound of which he afterwards died at Megiddo. (See Ahaziah).
Jehu himself entered the city, whither the news of this transaction had already preceded him. As he passed under the walls of the palace, Jezebel herself, studiously arrayed for effect, appeared at one of the windows and saluted him with a question such as might have shaken a man of weaker nerves, "Had Zimri peace, who slew his master?" But Jehu was unmoved, and, instead of answering her, called out, "Who is on my side — who?" when several eunuchs made their appearance at the window, to whom he cried, "Throw her down!" and immediately this proud and guilty woman lay a blood- stained corpse in the road and was trodden under foot by the horses. (See Jezebel).
Jehu then went in and took possession of the palace ( 2 Kings 9:16-37). He was now master of Jezreel, which was, next to Samaria, the chief town of the kingdom; but he could not feel secure while the capital itself was in the hands of the royal family, and of those who might be supposed to feel strong attachment to the house of Ahab. The force of the blow which he had struck was, however, felt even in Samaria. When, therefore, he wrote to the persons in authority there the somewhat ironical but designedly intimidating counsel, to set up one of the young princes in Samaria as king and fight out the matter which lay between them, they sent a very submissive answer, giving in their adhesion, and professing their readiness to obey in all things his commands. A second letter from Jehu tested this profession in a truly horrid and exceedingly Oriental manner, requiring them to appear before him on the morrow, bringing with them the heads of all the royal princes in Samaria. A fallen house meets with little pity in the East; and when the new king left his palace the next morning, he found seventy human heads piled up in two heaps at his gate. There, in the sight of these heaps, Jehu took occasion to explain his conduct, declaring that he must be regarded as the appointed minister of the divine decrees, pronounced long since against the house of Ahab by the prophets, not one of whose words should fall to the ground. He then continued his proscriptions by exterminating in Jezreel not only all in whose veins the blood of the condemned race flowed, but also — by a considerable stretch of his commission — those officers, ministers, and creatures of the late government who, if suffered to live, would most likely be disturbers of his own reign. He next proceeded to Samaria. So rapid had been these proceedings, that on his way, at "the shearinghouse" (or Betheked), he encountered forty-two sons or nephews ( 2 Chronicles 20:8) of the late king of Judah, and therefore connected by marriage with Ahab, on a visit of compliment to their relatives, of whose fall, seemingly, they had not heard. These also were put to the sword at the fatal well, as, in the later history, of Mizpah, and, in our own days, of Cawnpore ( 2 Kings 10:14). (See Kitto's Daily Bible Illust. ad loc.) As he drove on he encountered a strange figure, such as might have reminded him of the great Elijah. It was Jehonadab, the austere Arab sectary, the son of Rechab. In him his keen eye discovered a ready ally. The austere virtue and respected character of the Rechabite would, as he felt, go far to hallow his proceedings in the eyes of the multitude. He took him into his chariot, and they concocted their schemes as they entered Samaria ( 2 Kings 10:15-16). (See Jehonadab).
In that capital Jehu continued the extirpation of the persons more intimately connected with the late government. This, far from being in any way singular, is a common circumstance in Eastern revolutions. But the great stroke was yet to come; and it was conceived and executed with that union of intrepid daring and profound secrecy which marks the whole career of Jehu. His main object was to exterminate the ministers and more devoted adherents of Baal, who had been so much encouraged by Jezebel. There was even a temple to this idol in Samaria; and Jehu, never scrupulous about the means of reaching objects which he believed to be good, laid a snare by which he hoped to cut off the main body of Baal's ministers at one blow. He professed to be a more zealous servant of Baal than Ahab had been, and proclaimed a great festival in his honor, at which none but his true servants were to be present. The prophets, priests, and officers of Baal assembled from all parts for this great sacrifice, and sacerdotal vestments were given to them, that none of Jehovah's worshippers might be taken for them. Soldiers were posted so that none might escape. The vast temple at Samaria raised by Ahab ( 1 Kings 16:32; Josephus, Ant. 10, 7, 6) was crowded from end to end. The chief sacrifice was offered, as if in the excess of his zeal, by Jehu himself. Jehonadab joined in the deception. There was some apprehension lest worshippers of Jehovah might be found in the temple; such, it seems, had been the intermixture of the two religions. As soon, however, as it was ascertained that all, and none but the idolaters were there, the signal was given to eighty trusted guards, and a sweeping massacre removed at one blow the whole heathen population of the kingdom of Israel. The innermost sanctuary of the temple (translated in the A.V. "the city of the house of Baal") was stormed, the great stone statue of Baal was demolished, the wooden figures of the inferior divinities sitting round him were torn from their places and burnt (Ewald, Gesch. 3, 526), and the site of the sanctuary itself became the public resort of the inhabitants of the city for the basest uses (2 Kings 10). Notwithstanding this zeal of Jehu in exterminating the grosser idolatries which had grown up under his immediate predecessors, he was not prepared to subvert the policy which had led Jeroboam and his successors to maintain the schismatic establishment of the golden calves in Dan and Beth-el. (See Jeroboam).
This was, however, a crime in him — the worship rendered to the golden calves being plainly contrary to the law; and he should have felt that he who had appointed him to the throne would have maintained him in it, notwithstanding the apparent dangers which might seem likely to ensue from permitting his subjects to repair at the great festivals to the metropolis of the rival kingdom, which was the center of the theocratical worship and of sacerdotal service. Here Jehu fell short: and this very policy, apparently so prudent and farsighted, by which he hoped to secure the stability and independence of his kingdom, was that on account of which the term of rule granted to his dynasty was shortened. For this it was foretold that his dynasty should extend only to four generations; and for this the divine aid was withheld from him in his wars with the Syrians under Hazael on the eastern frontier. Hence the war was disastrous to him, and the Syrians were able to maintain themselves in the possession of a great part of his territories beyond the Jordan ( 2 Kings 10:29-33). He died in quiet, and was buried in Samaria, leaving the throne to his son Jehoahaz ( 2 Kings 10:34-36). B.C. 855. His name is thought to be the first of the Israelitish kings which appears in the Assyrian monuments. It seems to be found on the black obelisk discovered at Nimr Û d (Layard, Nineveh , 1, 396), and now in the British Museum, among the names of kings who are bringing tribute (in this case gold and silver, and articles manufactured in gold) to Shalmaneser I. His name is given as "Jehu" (or "Yahua"), "the son of Khumri" (Omri). This substitution of the name of Omri for that of his own father may be accounted for either by the importance which Omri had assumed as the second founder of the northern kingdom, or by the name of "Beth-Khumri," only given to Samaria in these monuments as "the House or Capital of Omri" (Layard, Nineveh and Babylon, p. 643; Rawlinson's Herodot. 1, 465; Meth. Rev. 1888, p. 711).
There is nothing difficult to understand in the character of Jehu. He was one of those decisive, terrible, and ambitious, yet prudent calculating, and passionless men whom God from time to time raises up to change the fate of empires and execute his judgments on the earth. He boasted of his zeal — "Come and see my zeal for the Lord" — but at the bottom it was zeal for Jehu. His zeal was great so long as it led to acts which squared with his own interests, but it cooled marvelously when required to take a direction in his judgment less favorable to them. Even his zeal in extirpating the idolatry of Baal is not free from suspicion. The altar of Baal was that which Ahab had associated with his throne, and in overturning the latter he could not prudently let the former stand, surrounded as it was by attached adherents of the house which he had extirpated. He must be regarded, like many others in history, as an instrument for accomplishing great purposes rather than as great or good in himself. In the long period during which his destiny — though known to others and perhaps to himself — lay dormant; in the suddenness of his rise to power; in the ruthlessness with which he carried out his purposes; in the union of profound silence and dissimulation with a stern, fanatic, wayward zeal, he has not been without his likenesses in modern times.
The Scripture narrative, although it fixes our attention on the services which he rendered to the cause of religion by the extermination of a worthless dynasty and a degrading worship, yet, on the whole, leaves the sense that it was a reign barren in great results. His dynasty, indeed, was firmly seated on the throne longer than any other royal house of Israel (2 Kings 10), and under Jeroboam II it acquired a high name among the Oriental nations. But Elisha, who had raised him to power, as far as we know, never saw him. In other respects it was a failure; the original sin of Jeroboam's worship continued; and in the prophet Hosea there seems to be a retribution exacted for the bloodshed by which he had mounted the throne: "I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu" ( Hosea 1:4), as in the similar condemnation of Baasha ( 1 Kings 16:2). See a striking poem to this effect on the character of Jehu in the Lyra Apostolica. (See Kingdom Of Israel).
5. Son of Josibiah, apparently one of the chief Simeonites who migrated to the valley of Gedor in quest of pasturage during the reign of Hezekiah, and expelled the aboriginal Hagarites ( 1 Chronicles 4:35). B.C. cir. 711.
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia 
jē´hū ( יהוּא , yēhū ); meaning uncertain, perhaps "Yahweh is he"; 1 Kings 19:16 , 1 Kings 19:17; 2 Ki 9; 10; Εἰού , Eioú ): Son of Jehoshaphat, and descendant of Nimshi, hence, commonly called "the son of Nimshi"; 10th king of Israel, and founder of its 4th Dynasty. Jehu reign for 28 years. His accession may be reckoned at circa 752 bc (some date a few years later).
1. Officer of Ahab
A soldier of fortune, Jehu appears first as an officer in the body-guard of Ahab. To himself we owe the information that he was present at the judicial murder of Naboth, and that Naboth's sons were put to death with their father ( 2 Kings 9:26 ). He was in attendance when Ahab drove from Samaria to inspect his new possession in Jezreel, and was witness of the dramatic encounter at the vineyard between the king and the prophet Elijah (compare 1 Kings 21:16 ). Years after, Jehu reminded Bidkar, his captain (literally, "thirdsman," in chariot), of the doom they had there heard pronounced upon Ahab and his house ( 2 Kings 9:25 ). It was in fulfillment of this doom that Jehu at that time ordered the body of the slain Jehoram to be thrown into the enclosure which had once been Naboth's ( 2 Kings 9:26 ). Ahab's temporary repentance averted the punishment from himself for a few years ( 1 Kings 21:27-29 ), but the blow fell at the battle of Ramoth-gilead, and Jehu would not be unmindful of the prophet's words as he beheld the dogs licking Ahab's blood as they washed his chariot "by the pool of Samaria" ( 1 Kings 22:38 ).
2. Jehoram at Ramoth-Gilead and Jezreel
A different fate awaited Ahab's two sons. The elder, Ahaziah, died, after a short reign, from the effects of an accident ( 2 Kings 1 ). He was succeeded by his brother Jehoram, who toward the close of his reign of 12 years ( 2 Kings 3:1 ) determined on an attempt to recover Ramoth-gilead, where his father had been fatally stricken, from Hazael, of Syria. Ramoth-gilead was taken ( 2 Kings 9:14 ), but in the attack the Israelite king was severely wounded, and was taken to Jezreel to be healed of his wounds ( 2 Kings 9:15 ). The city meanwhile was left in charge of Jehu and his fellow-captains. At Jezreel he was visited by Ahaziah, of Judah, who had taken part with him in the war ( 2 Kings 8:28 , 2 Kings 8:29; 2 Kings 9:16 ).
3. The Anointing of Jehu
The time was now ripe for the execution of the predicted vengeance on the house of Ahab, and to Elisha the prophet, the successor of Elijah, it fell to take the decisive step which precipitated the crisis. Hazael and Jehu had already been named to Elijah as the persons who were to execute the Divine judgment, the one as king of Syria, the other as king of Israel ( 1 Kings 19:15-17 ). Elijah was doubtless aware of this commission, which it was now his part, as respected Jehu, to fulfill. A messenger was hastily dispatched to Ramoth-gilead, with instructions to seek out Jehu, take him apart, anoint him king of Israel in Yahweh's name, and charge him with the task of utterly destroying the house of Ahab in punishment for the righteous blood shed by Ahab and Jezebel. The messenger was then to flee. This was done, and Jehu, the sacred oil poured on his head, found himself alone with this appalling trust committed to him ( 2 Kings 9:1-10 ).
4. The Revolution - D eath of Jehoram
Events now moved rapidly. Jehu's companions were naturally eager to know what had happened, and on learning that Jehu had been anointed king, they at once improvised a throne by throwing their garments on the top of some steps, blew the trumpet, and proclaimed, "Jehu is king." Not a moment was lost. No one was permitted to leave the city to carry forth tidings, and Jehu himself, with characteristic impetuosity, set out, with a small body of horsemen, in his chariot to Jezreel. Bidkar was there as charioteer ( 2 Kings 9:25 ). As they came within sight of the city, a watchman reported their advance, and messengers were sent to inquire as to their errand. These were ordered to fall into the rear. This conduct awakened suspicion, and Jehoram and Ahaziah - who was still with his invalided kinsman - ordered their chariots, and proceeded in person to meet Jehu. The companies met at the ill-omened field of Naboth, and there the first stroke of vengeance fell. The anxious query, "Is it peace?" was answered by a storm of denunciation from Jehu, and on Jehoram turning to flee, an arrow from Jehu's powerful bow shot him through the heart, and he sank dead in his chariot. Ahaziah likewise was pursued, and smitten "at the ascent of Gur, which is by Ibleam." He died at Megiddo, and was taken to Jerusalem for burial in the sepulcher of the kings (2 Ki 9:11-28). A somewhat variant account of Ahaziah's death is given in 2 Chronicles 22:9 . It is possible that Jehu came to Megiddo or its neighborhood, and had to do with his end there.
5. Death of Jezebel
The slaughter of Jehoram was at once followed by that of the chief instigator of all the crimes for which the house of Ahab suffered - the queen-mother Jezebel. Hot from the pursuit of Ahaziah, Jehu pressed on Jezreel. Jezebel, now an aged woman, but still defiant, had painted and attired herself, and, looking from her window, met him as he drove into the palace court, with the insulting question, "Is it peace, thou Zimri, thy master's murderer?" (compare 1 Kings 16:9-12 ). Jehu's answer was an appeal for aid from those within. Two or three eunuchs of the palace gave signs of their concurrence. These, at Jehu's bidding, threw Jezebel down into the courtyard, where, lying in her blood, she was trodden under foot by the chariot horses. When, a little later, her remains were sought for burial, she was found to have been almost wholly devoured by the dogs - a lurid commentary on Elijah's earlier threatening, which was now recalled ( 2 Kings 9:30-37 ). Jehu was an intrepid minister of judgment, but the pitiless zeal, needless cruelty, and, afterward, deceit, with which he executed his mission, withdraw our sympathy from him, as it did that of a later prophet ( Hosea 1:4 ).
6. Slaughter of Ahab's Descendants
The next acts of Jehu reveal yet more clearly his thoroughness of purpose and promptitude of action, while they afford fresh exhibitions of his ruthlessness and unscrupulousness of spirit. Samaria was the capital of the kingdom, and headquarters of the Baal-worship introduced by Jezebel, though it is recorded of Jehoram that he had removed, at least temporarily, an obelisk of Baal which his father had set up ( 2 Kings 3:2; compare 2 Kings 10:26 ). The city was still held for the house of Ahab, and 70 of Ahab's "son" - to be taken here in the large sense of male descendants - resided in it ( 2 Kings 10:1 , 2 Kings 10:6 ). Jehu here adopted a bold and astute policy. He sent letters to Samaria challenging those in authority to set up one of their master's sons as king, and fight for the city and the kingdom. The governors knew well that they could make no effective resistance to Jehu, and at once humbly tendered their submission. Jehu, in a second message, bade them prove their sincerity by delivering to him the heads of the 70 princes of Ahab's house in baskets. This they did, by their act irrevocably committing themselves to Jehu's cause ( 2 Kings 10:9 ). The ghastly relics were piled up in two heaps at the gate of Jezreel - a horrible object lesson to any still inclined to hesitate in their allegiance. Friends and partisans of the royal house shared the fate of its members ( 2 Kings 10:11 ).
7. Slaughter of Ahaziah's Brethren
Apart from the faultiness in the agent's motive, the deeds now recounted fell within the letter of Jehu's commission. As much cannot be said of the deeds of blood that follow. Jehu had killed Ahaziah, king of Judah. Now, on his way to Samaria, he met a company of 42 persons, described as "brethren of Ahaziah" - evidently blood-relations of various degrees, as Ahaziah's own brethren had been earlier slain by the Arabians ( 2 Chronicles 21:17; 2 Chronicles 22:1 ) - and, on learning who they were, and of their purpose to visit their kinsfolk at Jezreel, gave orders that they be slain on the spot, and their bodies ignominiously thrown into the pit (or "cistern") of the shearing-house where he had encountered them. It was a cruel excess for which no sufficient justification can be pleaded ( 2 Kings 10:12-14 ).
8. Massacre of the Worshippers of Baal
Still less can the craft and violence be condoned by which, when he reached Samaria, Jehu evinced his "zeal for Yahweh" ( 2 Kings 10:16 ) in the extirpation of the worshippers of Baal. Jehu had secured on his side the support of a notable man - J ehonadab the son of Rechab ( 2 Kings 10:15 , 2 Kings 10:16; compare Jeremiah 35:6-19 ) - and his entrance into Samaria was signalized by further slaying of all adherents of Ahab. Then, doubtless to the amazement of many, Jehu proclaimed himself an enthusiastic follower of Baal. A great festival was organized, to which all prophets, worshippers, and priests of Baal were invited from every part of Israel. Jehu himself took the leading part in the sacrifice ( 2 Kings 10:25 ). Vestments were distributed to distinguish the true worshippers of Baal from others. Then when all were safely gathered into "the house of Baal," the gates were closed, and 80 soldiers were sent in to massacre the whole deluded company in cold blood. None escaped. The temple of Baal was broken up. Thus, indeed, "Jehu destroyed Baal out of Israel" ( 2 Kings 10:28 ), but at what a frightful cost of falsehood and treacherous dealing! ( 2 Kings 10:18-28 ).
9. Wars with Hazael
The history of Jehu in the Bible is chiefly the history of his revolution as now narrated. His reign itself is summed up in a few verses, chiefly occupied with the attacks made by Hazael, king of Syria, on the trans-Jordanic territories of Israel ( 2 Kings 10:32 , 2 Kings 10:33 ). These districts were overrun, and remained lost to Israel till the reign of Jehu's great-grandson, Jeroboam Ii ( 2 Kings 14:28 ).
10. Assyrian Notices
It is in another direction, namely, to the annals of Assyria, we have to look for any further information we possess on the reign of Jehu In these annals, fortunately, some interesting notices are preserved. In 854 bc was fought the great battle of Ḳarḳar (a place between Aleppo and Hamath), when Shalmaneser II, king of Assyria, defeated a powerful combination formed against him (Damascus, Hamath, Philistia Ammon, etc.). Among the allies on this occasion is mentioned " Aḥabbu of Sir'ilâa ," who took the third place with 2,000 chariots and 10,000 footmen. There is a difficulty in supposing Ahab to have been still reigning as late as 854, and Wellhausen, Kamphausen and others have suggested that Ahab's name has been confused with that of his successor Jehoram in the Assyrian annals. Kittel, in his History of the Hebrews (II, 233, English translation) is disposed to accept this view. G. Smith, in his Assyrian Eponym Canon (179), is of the opinion that the tribute lists were often carelessly compiled and in error as to names. The point of interest is that from this time Israel was evidently a tributary of Assyria.
11. Tribute of Jehu
With this accord the further notices of Israel in the inscriptions of Shalmaneser II, two in number. Both belong to the year 842 bc and relate to Jehu. On Shalmaneser's Black Obelisk is a pictorial representation of "the tribute of Jehu, son of Omri." An ambassador kneels before the conqueror, and presents his gifts. They include silver, gold, a gold cup, gold vessels, a golden ladle, lead, a staff for the king's hand, scepters. An allusion to the same event occurs in the annals of Shalmaneser's campaign against Hazael of Syria in this year. "At that time I received the tribute of the Tyrians, Sidonians, of Jehu, son of Omri."
There are some indications that in his latter years, which were clouded with misfortune, Jehu associated with himself his son Jehoahaz in the government (compare 2 Kings 13:1 , 2 Kings 13:10 , where Jehoahaz comes to the throne in the 23rd, and dies in the 37th year of Jehoash of Judah - 14 years - yet has a total reign of 17 years). Jehu is not mentioned in Chronicles, except incidentally in connection with the death of Ahaziah ( 2 Chronicles 22:9 ), and as the grandfather of Jehoash ( 2 Chronicles 25:17 ).
The character of Jehu is apparent from the acts recorded of him. His energy, determination, promptitude, and zeal fitted him for the work he had to do. It was rough work, and was executed with relentless thoroughness. Probably gentler measures would have failed to eradicate Baal-worship from Israel. His impetuosity was evinced in his furious driving ( 2 Kings 9:20 ). He was bold, daring, unscrupulous, and masterful and astute in his policy. But one seeks in vain in his character for any touch of magnanimity, or of the finer qualities of the ruler. His "zeal for Yahweh" was too largely a cloak for merely worldly ambition. The bloodshed in which his rule was rounded early provoked a reaction, and his closing years were dark with trouble. He is specially condemned for tolerating the worship of the golden calves ( 2 Kings 10:29-31 ). Nevertheless the throne was secured to his dynasty for four generations ( 2 Kings 10:30; compare 2 Kings 15:12 ).
Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature 
Je´hu (Godsis), tenth king of Israel, and founder of its fourth dynasty, who began to reign in B.C. 884, and reigned twenty-eight years.
Jehu held a command in the Israelite army posted at Ramoth-Gilead to hold in check the Syrians, who of late years had made strenuous efforts to extend their frontier to the Jordan, and had possessed themselves of much of the territory of the Israelites east of that river. Ahaziah, king of Judah, had taken part with Joram, king of Israel, in this war; and as the latter had been severely wounded in a recent action, and had gone to Jezreel to be healed of his wounds. Ahaziah had also gone thither on a visit of sympathy to him.
In this state of affairs a council of war was held among the military commanders in camp, when very unexpectedly one of the disciples of the prophets, known for such by his garb, appeared at the door of the tent, and called forth Jehu, declaring that he had a message to deliver to him. He had been sent by Elisha the prophet, in discharge of a duty which long before had been confided by the Lord to Elijah , and from him had devolved on his successor. When they were alone the young man drew forth a horn of oil and poured it upon Jehu's head, with the words, 'Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I have anointed thee king over the people of the Lord, even over Israel. And thou shalt smite the house of Ahab thy master, that I may avenge the blood of my servants the prophets, and the blood of all the servants of the Lord, at the hand of Jezebel' . Jehu returned to the council, probably with an altered air, for he was asked what had been the communication of the young prophet to him. He told them plainly; and they were obviously ripe for defection from the house of Ahab, for immediately taking him in triumph to 'the top of the stairs,' they spread their mantles beneath his feet, and proclaimed him king by sound of trumpet in the presence of all the troops.
Jehu was not a man to lose any advantage through remissness. He immediately entered his chariot, in order that his presence at Jezreel should be the first announcement which Joram could receive of this revolution.
As soon as the advance of Jehu and his party was seen in the distance by the watchmen upon the palace-tower in Jezreel, two messengers were successively sent forth to meet him, and were commanded by Jehu to follow in his rear. But when the watchman reported that he could now recognize the furious driving of Jehu, Joram went forth himself to meet him, and was accompanied by the king of Judah. They met in the field of Naboth, so fatal to the house of Ahab. The king saluted him with 'Is it peace, Jehu?' and received the answer, 'What peace, so long as the whoredoms (idolatries) of thy mother Jezebel and her witchcrafts are so many?' This completely opened the eyes of Joram, who exclaimed to the king of Judah, 'There is treachery, O Ahaziah!' and turned to flee. But Jehu immediately drew a bow with his full strength and sent forth an arrow which passed through the king's heart. He then caused the body to be thrown back into the field of Naboth, out of which he had passed in his attempt at flight. The king of Judah contrived to escape, but not without a wound, of which he afterwards died at Megiddo [AHAZIAH]. Jehu then entered the city, whither the news of this transaction had already preceded him. As he passed under the walls of the palace Jezebel herself, studiously arrayed for effect, appeared at one of the windows, and saluted him with a question such as might have shaken a man of weaker nerves, 'Had Zimri peace, who slew his master?' But Jehu was unmoved, and instead of answering her, called out, 'Who is on my side, who?' when several eunuchs made their appearance at the window, to whom he cried, 'Throw her down!' and immediately this proud and guilty woman lay a blood-stained corpse in the road, and was trodden under foot by the horses [JEZEBEL]. Jehu then went in and took possession of the palace.
He was now master of Jezreel, which was, next to Samaria, the chief town of the kingdom; but he could not feel secure while the capital itself was in the hands of the royal family, and of those who might be supposed to feel strong attachment to the house of Ahab. The force of the blow which he had struck was, however, felt even in Samaria. When therefore he wrote to the persons in authority there the somewhat ironical but designedly intimidating counsel, to set up one of the young princes in Samaria as king and fight out the matter which lay between them, they sent a very submissive answer, giving in their adhesion, and professing their readiness to obey in all things his commands. A second letter from Jehu tested this profession in a truly horrid and exceedingly Oriental manner, requiring them to appear before him on the morrow, bringing with them the heads of all the royal princes in Samaria. A fallen house meets with little pity in the East; and when the new king left his palace the next morning, he found seventy human heads piled up in two heaps at his gate. There, in the sight of these heaps, Jehu took occasion to explain his conduct, declaring that he must be regarded as the appointed minister of the divine decrees, pronounced long since against the house of Ahab by the prophets, not one of whose words should fall to the ground. He then continued his proscriptions by exterminating in Jezreel not only all in whose veins the blood of the condemned race flowed, but also—by a considerable stretch of his commission—those officers, ministers, and creatures of the late government, who, if suffered to live, would most likely be disturbers of his own reign. He then proceeded to Samaria. So rapid had been these proceedings that he met some of the nephews of the king of Judah, who were going to join their uncle at Jezreel, and had as yet heard nothing of the revolution which had taken place. These also perished under Jehu's now fully awakened thirst for blood, to the number of forty-two persons.
On the way he took up into his chariot the pious Jehonadab the Rechabite, whose austere virtue and respected character would, as he felt, go far to hallow his proceedings in the eyes of the multitude. At Samaria he continued the extirpation of the persons more intimately connected with the late government. This, far from being in any way singular, is a common circumstance in Eastern revolutions. But the great object of Jehu was to exterminate the ministers and more devoted adherents of Baal, who had been much encouraged by Jezebel. There was even a temple to this idol in Samaria; and Jehu, never scrupulous about the means of reaching objects which he believed to be good, laid a snare by which he hoped to cut off the main body of Baal's ministers at one blow. He professed to be a more zealous servant of Baal than Ahab had been, and proclaimed a great festival in his honor, at which none but his true servants were to be present. The prophets, priests, and officers of Baal assembled from all parts for this great sacrifice, and sacerdotal vestments were given to them, that none of Jehovah's worshippers might be taken for them. When the temple was full, soldiers were posted so that none might escape; and so soon as the sacrifice had been offered, the word was given by the king, the soldiers entered the temple, and put all the worshippers to the sword. The temple itself was then demolished, the images overthrown, and the site turned into a common jakes.
Notwithstanding this zeal of Jehu in exterminating the grosser idolatries which had grown up under his immediate predecessors, he was not prepared to subvert the policy which had led Jeroboam and his successors to maintain the schismatic establishment of the golden calves in Dan and Bethel. Here Jehu fell short: and this very policy, apparently so prudent and far-sighted, by which he hoped to secure the stability and independence of his kingdom, was that on account of which the term of rule granted to his dynasty was shorted. For this, it was foretold that his dynasty should extend only to four generations; and for this, the divine aid was withheld from him in his wars with the Syrians under Hazael on the eastern frontier. Hence the war was disastrous to him, and the Syrians were able to maintain themselves in the possession of a great part of his territories beyond the Jordan. He died in B.C. 856, and was buried in Samaria, leaving the throne to his son Jehoahaz.
Jehu, son of Hanani, a prophet, who was sent to pronounce upon Baasha, king of Israel, and his house, the same awful doom which had been already executed upon the house of Jeroboam . The same prophet was, many years after, commissioned to reprove Jehoshaphat for his dangerous connection with the house of Ahab .
- Jehu from Fausset's Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary
- Jehu from Morrish Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Bridgeway Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Easton's Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Smith's Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible
- Jehu from People's Dictionary of the Bible
- Jehu from Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary
- Jehu from American Tract Society Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Holman Bible Dictionary
- Jehu from Webster's Dictionary
- Jehu from Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature
- Jehu from International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
- Jehu from Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature