Hazael took control of Damascus in a coup, Assyrian records call him "son of nobody". The Bible claims that the prophet Elisha had a role in commissioning him (2 Kgs 8:7-15), however Hazael was an aggressive opponent of Israel, almost from the beginning of his reign.
An action of Hazael's in Gilead (see 2 Kgs 8:28–29), wounded Joram and stimulated Jehu's revolt an so the end of the Omride dynasty (2 Kings 9). However, soon after Hazael's accession the coalition of Levantine states led by Aram and Hamath fell apart and Shalmaneser invaded, but failed to capture Damascus. Hazael seems to have made both Israel, Judah and the Philistine cities into vassal states, and managed to defeat the Assyrian army several times over the next few years.
This page is part of the Hypertext Bible Commentary - Amos,
© Tim Bulkeley, 1996-2005, Tim Bulkeley. All rights reserved.