Jehoi'ada (Hebrew Yehôyada', יהוֹיָדָע Jehovah known; Sept. Ι᾿ωιαδά, Ι᾿ωιαδέ, Ι᾿ωδαέ), the name of two or more priests.
1. The father of Benaiah, which latter was one of David's chief warriors (2Sa 8:18; 2Sa 20:23; 2Sa 23:20,22; 1 Kings 1:8, 26, 32, 36, 38, 44; 2:25. 29, 34, 35, 16; 4:4; 1Ch 11:22,24; 1Ch 18:17; 1Ch 27:5). B.C. ante 1046. He is probably the same mentioned as assisting David at Hebron as leader (נָגַיד) of 3700 armed Aaronites (1Ch 12:27); Josephus, who calls him Ι᾿ώδαμος, says 4700 Levites (Ant. 7, 2, 3). In 1Ch 27:34, his name seems to have been erroneously transposed with that of his son.
2. The high priest at the time of Athaliah's usurpation of the throne of Judah (B.C. 883-877) and during the most of the reign of Jehoash. It does not appear when he first became high priest, but it may have been as early as the latter part of Jehoshaphat's reign. He married Jehosheba or Jehoshabeath, daughter of king Jehoram and sister of king Ahaziah (2Ch 22:11); and when Athaliah slew all the royal family of Judah after Ahaziah had been put to death by Jehul, he and his wife stole Jehoash from amongst the king's sons and hid him for six years in the Temple and eventually replaced him on the throne of his ancestors. SEE ATHALIAH. In effecting this happy revolution, by which both the throne of David and the worship of the true God according to the law of Moses were rescued from imminent danger of destruction, Jehoiada displayed great ability and prudence. Waiting patiently till the tyranny of Athaliah and, we may presume, her foreign practices and preferences had produced disgust in the land, he at length, in the 7th year of her reign, entered into secret alliance with all the chief partisans of the house of David and of the true religion. He also collected at Jerusalem the Levites from the different cities of Judah and Israel, probably under cover of providing for the Temple services, and then concentrated a large and concealed force in the Temple by the expedient of not dismissing the old courses of priests and Levites when their successors came to relieve them on the Sabbath. By means of the consecrated shields and spears which David had taken in his wars, and which were preserved in the treasury of the Temple (comp. 1Ch 18:7-11; 1Ch 26:20-28; 1Ki 14:26-27), he supplied the captains of hundreds with arms for their men. Having then divided the priests and Levites into three bands, which were posted at the principal entrances, and filled the courts with people favorable to the cause, he produced the young king before the whole assembly, and crowned and anointed him, and presented to him a copy of the Law according to De 17:18-20. SEE HILKIAH. The excitement of the moment did not make him forget the sanctity of God's house. None but the priests and ministering Levites were permitted by him to enter the Temple and he gave strict orders that Athaliah should be carried without its precincts before she was put to death. In the same spirit he inaugurated the new reign by a solemn covenant between himself as high priest, and the people and the king, to renounce the Baal worship which had been introduced by the house of Ahab and to serve Jehovah. This was followed up by the immediate destruction of the altar and temple of Baal and the death of Mattan, his priest. He then gave orders for the due celebration of the Temple service, and, at the same time, for the perfect reestablishment of the monarchy, all which seems to have been effected with great vigor and success, and without any cruelty or violence. The young king himself, under this wise and virtuous counsellor, ruled his kingdom well and prosperously and was forward in works of piety during the lifetime of Jehoiada. The reparation of the Temple, in the 23d year of his reign, of which a full and interesting account is given in 2 Kings 12 and 2 Chronicles 24 was one of the most important works at this period. At length, however, Jehoiada died and for his signal services to his God, his king, and his country, which have earned him a place amongst the very foremost well doers in Israel, he had the unique honor of burial amongst the kings of Judah in the city of David. — Smith. His decease, though at an advanced age, yet occurred too soon for the welfare of the nation and of Jehoash, who thereupon immediately fell into idolatry, and was even guilty of the most cruel ingratitude towards the family of Jehoiada. SEE JEHOASH, 1. His age at his death is stated (2Ch 24:15) to have been 130 years, which Hervey (Genealogy of our Lord, p. 304) proposes to change to 103, in order to lessen the presumed disparity between Jehoiada's age and that of his wife, as well as on the ground that a man of 90 could hardly have exhibited such energy as he displayed in displacing Athaliah; but the change is wholly arbitrary and unnecessary. Josephus, in his history (Ant. 9, 7, 1, where he Graecizes the name, Ι᾿ώδαος), follows the Bible account; but in his list of the high priests (Ant. 10, 8, 6), the corresponding name seems to be Axioramus (Α᾿ξεώραμος, perhaps by corruption for "Joram"). In the Jewish chronicle (Seder Olam), however, it correctly appears as Jehoiadah and with a date tolerably answering to the scriptural requirements. In both authorities, many of the adjoining names are additional to those mentioned in the O.T. SEE HIGH PRIEST. It is probably this Jehoiada who is alluded to in Jer 29:26 as a preeminent incumbent of the office (see Rosenmüller and Hitzig, ad loc.), and he is doubtless the same with the BERECHIAH (Βαραχίας) of Mt 23:25. SEE ZEDEKIAH.
3. (Ne 3:6). SEE JOIADA.