Matthew 1:9—Did Matthew make a mistake concerning the father of Jotham?

Problem: In 2 Kings 15:1–7, the Bible mentions the father of Jotham as Azariah, and in 2 Kings 15:32 and 34, Jotham’s father is named Uzziah. Some have concluded that the Bible made a mistake by listing two different people as the father of Jotham.

Solution: These are two different names for the same person. For different reasons, the Bible occasionally gives two different names for one individual. For example, Paul was also named Saul (Acts 13:9). Also, in Judges, Gideon receives the second name, Jerubbaal (6:32; 7:1). Jehoiakim’s son Jehoiachin is also known as Jeconiah (cf. 2 Kings 24:6 and 1 Chron. 3:16). Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah were all given new names. They are Belteshazzar, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego (Daniel 1:7). Also, some of Jesus’ disciples had two names, for example, Simon (Peter) and Lebbaeus (Thaddaeus) (Matt. 10:2–3).

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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.