(Ja·az·a·niʹah) [Jehovah Has Given Ear].
Toward the end of the kingdom of Judah it seems that this was a rather common name; all four men mentioned in the Bible by this name lived within the same short period of time. The name has also been found in Lachish Letter number I, and on a seal found at Tell en-Nasbeh the words “Yaʼazanyahu, servant [officer] of the king” appear. (The Biblical Archaeologist, 1947, p. 71) There is no direct evidence, however, that such an inscription identifies any of the following persons.
1. A leader of the Rechabites whom the prophet Jeremiah tested, at Jehovah’s command, by bringing them into one of the dining rooms of the temple and offering them wine to drink. They refused, in obedience to the command that had been laid upon them more than two centuries previously by their forefather Jonadab (Jehonadab) the son of Rechab. For this, Jehovah promised: “There will not be cut off from Jonadab the son of Rechab a man to stand before me always.” Jaazaniah was the son of another Jeremiah.—Jer 35:1-10, 19.
3. Son of Azzur; one of the 25 men seen in Ezekiel’s vision standing at the eastern gate of Jehovah’s temple. Jaazaniah and his companions were “scheming hurtfulness and advising bad counsel against this city,” and Ezekiel was commanded to prophesy against them.—Eze 11:1-4.
4. A military chief of Judah in the brief period immediately following the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians. Jaazaniah (Jezaniah, as his name was sometimes spelled) was one of several who readily supported the appointment of Governor Gedaliah. (2Ki 25:23; Jer 40:7, 8) He was presumably included when “all the chiefs of the military forces” warned Gedaliah of Ishmael’s threat on his life and, after Ishmael did assassinate Gedaliah, pursued Ishmael and recovered those he had taken prisoner. (Jer 40:13, 14; 41:11-16) Jezaniah was among those leaders who inquired of Jeremiah concerning what to do then, but rather than follow his advice, they led the few remaining ones down to Egypt. (2Ki 25:26; Jer 42:1-3, 8; 43:1-5) “Azariah the son of Hoshaiah” is possibly a brother of, but more likely the same as, Jaazaniah.—Jer 43:2.