2 Kings 15 forms a chiastic structure along its paragraph divisions:
2 Kin 15:1-38
1A: 2 Kin 15:1-7, Reign of Azariah king of Judah (52 yrs);
1B: 2 Kin 15:8-12, Reign of Zechariah king of Israel (6 mos.), killed by conspiracy;
1C: 2 Kin 15:13-16, Reign of Shallum king of Israel (1 month), killed by conspiracy;
CENTRAL AXIS: 2 Kin 15:17-22, Reign of Menaham king of Israel (10 yrs), treaty with Assyria;
2C: 2 Kin 15:23-26, Reign of Pekahiah king of Israel (2 yrs), killed by conspiracy;
2B: 2 Kin 15:27-31, Reign of Pekah king of Israel (20 yrs), killed by conspiracy;
2A: 2 Kin 15:32-38, Reign of Jotham king of Judah (16 yrs).
The interesting thing about this, is the length and stability of the kingdom of Judah, who is doing right in the eyes of the LORD, and the brevity and instability of the kingdom of Israel, who is doing evil in the eyes of the LORD. The son of David is still sitting on the throne of Judah (by grace, because the LORD promised it, rather than by the righteousness of the kings of Judah). There have only been two men anointed by the LORD’s prophet to sit on the throne of Israel: Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who caused Israel to sin, and Jehu, who killed the house of Ahab. All the rest have been conspirators, traitors, and usurpers.
Out of the conspirators, the only one who is not himself killed by conspiracy, is Menaham. He first established his reign by terror, because of his harsh treatment of a town that would not submit to his rule, and then by treaty with the king of Assyria. in fact, the treaty with the king of Assyria was designed to prevent from happening to him — being killed by conspiracy — what he himself had done to the king before him.
But acting shrewdly and making for himself friends by unrighteous mammon only got him so far, since he did not have for his friend the LORD, Creator of heaven and earth. Menaham for all his shrewdness was not able to establish a dynasty as David had, and his son only reigned 2 years before he himself was killed by conspiracy.
Because Israel’s covenant was with men, and not God, soon we see the same man who was supposed to be Israel’s benefactor begin to take over Israel’s territory and take her people away captive to Assyria. Because Israel had forsaken her covenant with the living God, she was being removed from her covenant land, just as God through Moses prophesied would happen (Deu 28:15-68).
However, Ahaz, the new king of Judah, did not learn from the example of his forefathers to walk in righteousness, or from the example of the kings of Israel, to not walk in wickedness, but did evil in the sight of the LORD, even beyond the kings of Israel. He offered his own son as a burnt offering to idols, as the Canaanites had done in the land before Israel.
Ahaz forsook his covenant with the LORD his God, in favor of a covenant with the king of Assyria, as Israel had done. He did not learn from Israel’s example that God is faithful but men can not be trusted as God; men can be unfaithful. So we are predicting that the king of Assyria, just as he had been unfaithful to Israel, will also prove to be unfaithful to Judah.
“Therefore know that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;” Deu 7:9
He even keeps His word to our hurt when we disobey Him, because He is the faithful God of His word. Actually, that He keeps His word even when we disobey Him, is not to our hurt, even though consequences for sin come upon us. It is for our blessing and benefit, because it is better for us to learn, through the things which we suffer, that it benefits us to obey God, than to continue to walk in sin which leads to destruction and death.