Philistine Wars with Jews Timeline

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Philistine Wars with Israel Series
Who Are the Philistines?  -  The Greatest Enemy?
Early Philistine Wars   -   David Fights Philistines
This timeline is the fifth and last in a series of five articles discussing the Philistines and their battles with ancient Israel. This timeline primarily lists the wars between the Kingdom of Judah (the Jews) and the Philistines after 930 B.C.

Both Kings Saul and David, prior to Israel splitting, greatly weaken the ability of the Philistines to make war. Their military strength is brought to such an all-time low that during Solomon's rule they end up paying him tribute money during his entire reign (1Kings 4:21, 2Chronicles 9:26)!

After Solomon dies in 930, however, and the kingdom splits, the Philistines begin to recover their military strength and will to fight the Jews. They will eventually rise, yet again, from the ashes of defeat to wage two invasions of Judah!

Gibbethon Attacked
1Kings 25 - 27

Nadab, the son of Jeroboam, reigned over the Kingdom of Israel for only two years. In 908, he lays siege to the Philistine controlled city of Gibbethon that lies a short distance from Ekron. While he is attacking the city a man named Baasha, who had conspired against the king, kills him during the attack. Baasha becomes the third ruler over Israel and the siege of Gibbethon stops.

Gerar Plundered
2Chronicles 14:8 - 15

Asa, the great-grandson of Solomon, rules over the Kingdom of Judah (Jews) from 910 to 869. In the fifteenth year of his reign (2Chronicles 15:10) he is invaded by a huge military force led by Zerah. Meeting the enemy at Mareshah, he cries out to the Lord for help. The Lord hears his cries and delivers Zerah's forces into his hands.

King Asa chases Zerah's army to the Philistine city of Gerar. He then takes the opportunity not only to attack Gerar but also the surrounding villages. A great deal of plunder is taken from the area by the Jews.

c. 843
Kingdom of Judah Invaded!
2Chronicles 21:16 - 19

Jehoram, one of the worse monarchs over God's people, reigned over the Jews from 853 to 841. His behavior is so repulsive to the Lord that he inspires Elijah the prophet, who was still alive (he wasn't in heaven), to send him a prophetic letter (2Chronicles 21:12 - 15). The letter not only delineates his many sins but also declares the Eternal's punishment coming his way.

God stirs up the Philistines against him roughly two years before his death. The enemy, along with their Arab allies, enters Judah's territory and battle their way to Jerusalem. Once the allies storm their way into Judah's capital they ransack the king's palace. They also take all the king's wives and all his sons (except one) as prisoner.

792 - 740
Gath, Ashdod Destroyed
2Chronicles 26:6 - 7

Azariah (Uzziah), who assumed the throne at age sixteen, was monarch of the Kingdom of Judah from 792 to 740. He is blessed with military successes since he follows the Lord like his father Amaziah.

One of Azariah's greatest victories was over the cities of Gath and Ashdod. He not only overcame the enemy but also tore down both of the cities' walls. In order to secure his control of the area he also constructed garrisons scattered throughout Philistine territory.

735 - 715
Judah Invaded Again!
2Chronicles 28:18

The Jews, during Ahaz's reign (735 to 715), becomes preoccupied with military threats coming from Israel, the Edomites, the Syrians and others. The Philistines, taking advantage of Judah's distractions, launch an invasion of its southern territory. They capture the cities of Beth-shemesh, Gizmo, Soco and several others, repopulating them with their own people.

701 - 686
The Jews take Territory
2Kings 18:8

Righteous King Hezekiah reigns over the Jews from 715 to 686. Like Azariah, he is blessed in his military endeavors because he follows the Lord with his whole heart.

He successfully goes to war against the Philistines (likely after the Lord's decimation of Assyrian forces in 701) and defeats them as far south as Gaza. He also takes back all the Judean cities occupied by the enemy at the time of King Ahaz. This is the last recorded Biblical battle involving Israel's longest (roughly 700 years), fiercest and greatest foe.

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