Did Coniah have children or not?

Jeremiah 22:28-30 and Matthew 1:12

  1. Childless (Jeremiah 22:28-30) - “Is this man Coniah a despised, shattered jar? Or is he an undesirable vessel? Why have he and his descendants been hurled out And cast into a land that they had not known? 29“O land, land, land, Hear the word of the Lord! 30“Thus says the Lord, ‘Write this man down childless, A man who will not prosper in his days; For no man of his descendants will prosper Sitting on the throne of David Or ruling again in Judah.’”

  2. Had a son (Matthew 1:12) - "And after the deportation to Babylon, to Jeconiah was born Shealtiel; and to Shealtiel, Zerubbabel."

Coniah is a shortened form of the spelling of Jehoachin who is also called "Joiachin, Jeconiah, Jechoniah, and Coniah), one of the last two kings of Judah."1 Matthew 1:12 states that Jeconiah bore Shealtiel.  If Jeremiah 22:30 is true, then how could a childless man have a child?

Quite simply, the context tells us what is meant by Jeremiah's term "childless."  He tells us that none of his descendants will have proper sitting on the throne of David.  In Matthew's genealogy, Joconiah is included.  But, Matthew gives the legal line through Solomon down to Joseph.  Luke gives the biological lineage from Mary through Nathan, brother of Solomon, upwards.  Therefore, no descendent of Coniah (Jeconiah) has ever sat on the throne of David.


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  • 1. Achtemeier, Paul J., Harper’s Bible Dictionary, San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1985.

About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.