King Yaw Bowing

In the British Museum is displayed the ‘black obelisk’, an imposing stone monument erected by Shalmaneser III, King of Assyria. It records the various items of tribute he received from lesser kings. Of interest to we Christians is the line Ia-ú-a mar Hu-um-ri-I, or Yaw Son of Omri. Omri was an ancient king of Israel, and Yaw is likely to be the Assyrian name for Israelite kings Joram (son of Ahab and Jezebel, descendant of Omri) or Jehu, whom Elisha anointed to succeed him. 

Joram was not a good king, being unfaithful to Israel’s God; Jehu, though appointed by God to replace Joram and Omri’s wicked line, showed little evidence of spiritual life. Indeed, the blood shed in the city of Jezreel during his reign is cited by the prophet Hosea (1:4) as a reason for Israel’s destruction 

I will avenge the bloodshed of Jezreel on the house of Jehu,

And bring an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.

Two kings, one a wicked idolater, the other a grudgingly faithful thug who delighted to murder Ahab’s children and Ahazaiah’s brothers. Essentially, we have two kings who failed to love and obey the Lord. Little wonder, one of them is seen on the obelisk bowing before Assyria offering tribute:

 “The tribute of Yaw, son of Omri: I received from him silver, gold, a golden bowl, a golden vase with pointed bottom, golden tumblers, golden buckets, tin, a staff for a king [and] spears."

King Yaw is given a foretaste of the day when the great Assyrians would destroy Israel, by passing them his treasures and submitting physically. Those who reject the sovereign kingship of heaven will often bow before an earthly tyrant instead.  

And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

Rev 13:8

Top image: mine.
Bottom image: Steven G. Johnson (Own work), CC BY-SA 3.0