King Rezin of Aram (// or //) or Rasin of Syria in DRB (Hebrew: רְצִין, Modern rěṣîn, Tiberian răṣîn; Akkadian: Ra-ḫi-a-nu / Ra-qi-a-nu; Aramaic: probably Raḍyan; Latin: Rasin) ruled from Damascus during the 8th century BC. During his reign, he was a tributary of King Tiglath-pileser III of Assyria.
Rezin conspired with a number of Levantine kings (e.g., Hiram II of Tyre) to rebel against Tiglath-Pileser III. Rezin's reign ended in 733 BC, when Tiglath-Pileser III sacked Damascus and annexed Aram:
In order to save his life, he (Raḫiānu) fled alone and entered the gate of his city [like] a mongoose. I [im]paled his foremost men alive while making (the people of) his land watch. For forty-five days I set up my camp [aro]und his city and confined him (there) like a bird in a cage. I cut down his plantations, [...] ..., (and) orchards, which were without number; I did not leave a single one (standing). I surrounded (and) captured [the city ...]ḫādara, the ancestral home of Raḫiānu (Rezin) of the land Damascus, [the pl]ace where he was born. I carried off 800 people, with their possessions, their oxen, (and) their sheep and goats. I carried off 750 captives from the cities Kuruṣṣâ (and) Samāya, (as well as) 550 captives from the city Metuna. Like tell(s) after the Deluge, I destroyed 591 cities of 16 districts of the land Damascus. (RINAP 1, Tiglath-Pileser III 20, l. 8’-17’)
Assyrian inscriptions indicate that Tiglath-pileser made a three year campaign in the Levant from 734-732 BC. In the first year he attacked the coastal cities of Tyre and Sidon. In the second year he devastated Aram and the Trans-Jordan and slew King Rezin. In the third year he destroyed and leveled the villages in Northern Israel. He slew King Pekah and installed Hoshea on the throne. Only the fortified capital of Samaria remained, and the entire land was brought low.
According to the Bible, the sack of Damascus was instigated by King Ahaz of Judah and ended in Rezin's execution (2 Kings 16:7-9). The execution of Rezin is neither confirmed nor disconfirmed by independent evidence.
According to 2 Kings Rezin allied with Pekah, son of Remaliah, against Ahaz. The defeat of both kings is promised to Ahaz in the Immanuel prophecy Isaiah 7:14, linked to the birth of a child who will be an infant, possibly Ahaz' royal heir Hezekiah, when this takes place.
|King of Aram-Damascus
792 BC–733 BC
- LDS.org: "Book of Mormon Pronunciation Guide" (retrieved 2012-02-25), IPA-ified from «»
- Lester L. Grabbe, Ancient Israel: What Do We Know and How Do We Know It? (New York: T&T Clark, 2007): p.134
- Hayim Tadmor and Shigeo Yamada, The Royal Inscriptions of Tiglath-pileser III (744-727 BC) and Shalmaneser V (726-722 BC), Kings of Assyria. (The Royal Inscriptions of the Neo-Assyrian Period 1; Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2011).
- Grabbe, Ancient Israel, p.149
- Whittaker, H. A. Isaiah Biblia, Cannock