May 22
     2 Chronicles 23:1 — 25:28

23 And in the seventh year Jehoiada showed himself courageous and proceeded to take the chiefs of hundreds, namely, Azariah the son of Jeroham, and Ishmael the son of Jehohanan and Azariah the son of Obed and Maaseiah the son of Adaiah and Elishaphat the son of Zichri, with him into the covenant. 2 Afterward they went around throughout Judah and collected together the Levites from all the cities of Judah and the heads of the paternal houses of Israel. So they came to Jerusalem. 3 Then all the congregation concluded a covenant with the king in the house of the [true] God, after which he said to them:

“Look! The son of the king himself will reign, just as Jehovah promised concerning the sons of David. 4 This is the thing that YOU will do: one third of YOU who are coming in on the sabbath, of the priests and of the Levites, will be for doorkeepers; 5 and one third will be at the house of the king; and one third will be at the Gate of the Foundation; and all the people will be in the courtyards of the house of Jehovah. 6 And do not let anyone enter the house of Jehovah but the priests and those of the Levites ministering. These are the ones that will enter, because they are a holy group, and all the people themselves will keep the obligation to Jehovah. 7 And the Levites must encircle the king all around, each one with his weapons in his hands; and as for anyone coming into the house, he should be put to death. And continue with the king when he comes in and when he goes out.”

8 And the Levites and all Judah proceeded to do according to all that Jehoiada the priest had commanded. So they took each one his men that were coming in on the sabbath together with those going out on the sabbath, for Jehoiada the priest had not set the divisions free from duty. 9 Further, Jehoiada the priest gave the chiefs of hundreds the spears and the shields and the circular shields that had belonged to King David, which were in the house of the [true] God. 10 And he went on to station all the people, even each one with his missile in his hand, from the right side of the house clear to the left side of the house, by the altar and by the house, all around near the king. 11 Then they brought the king’s son out and put upon him the diadem and the Testimony and made him king, and so Jehoiada and his sons anointed him and said: “Let the king live!”

12 When Athaliah heard the sound of the people running and praising the king, she at once came to the people at the house of Jehovah. 13 Then she saw, and there was the king standing by his pillar at the entry, and the princes and the trumpets by the king, and all the people of the land were rejoicing and blowing the trumpets, and the singers with the instruments of song and those giving the signal for offering praise. Immediately Athaliah ripped her garments apart and said: “Conspiracy! Conspiracy!” 14 But Jehoiada the priest brought out the chiefs of hundreds, the appointed ones of the military force, and said to them: “Take her out from inside the rows; and as for anyone coming after her, he should be put to death with the sword!” For the priest had said: “YOU must not put her to death at the house of Jehovah.” 15 So they laid their hands upon her. When she came to the entry of the horse gate of the king’s house, they at once put her to death there.

16 Then Jehoiada concluded a covenant between himself and all the people and the king that they would continue as the people of Jehovah. 17 After that all the people came to the house of Baal and pulled it down; and his altars and his images they broke up, and Mattan the priest of Baal they killed before the altars. 18 Further, Jehoiada put the offices of the house of Jehovah in the hand of the priests [and] the Levites, whom David had put in divisions over the house of Jehovah to offer up the burnt sacrifices of Jehovah according to what is written in the law of Moses, with rejoicing and with song by the hands of David. 19 So he stationed the gatekeepers by the gates of the house of Jehovah that no one unclean in any respect might enter. 20 He now took the chiefs of hundreds and the lordly ones and the rulers over the people and all the people of the land and brought the king down from the house of Jehovah. Then they came right through the upper gate to the king’s house and seated the king upon the throne of the kingdom. 21 And all the people of the land continued to rejoice; and the city itself had no disturbance, and Athaliah they had put to death with the sword.

24 Seven years old was Jehoash when he began to reign, and for forty years he reigned in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Zibiah from Beer-sheba. 2 And Jehoash kept doing what was right in Jehovah’s eyes all the days of Jehoiada the priest. 3 And Jehoiada proceeded to get two wives for him, and he came to be father to sons and daughters.

4 Now it occurred afterward that it became close to the heart of Jehoash to renovate the house of Jehovah. 5 Accordingly he collected the priests and the Levites together and said to them: “Go out to the cities of Judah and collect money from all Israel to repair the house of YOUR God from year to year; and YOU, for YOUR part, should act quickly in the matter.” And the Levites did not act quickly. 6 So the king called Jehoiada the head and said to him: “Why is it that you have not required an account of the Levites for bringing in from Judah and Jerusalem the sacred tax ordered by Moses the servant of Jehovah, even that of the congregation of Israel, for the tent of the Testimony? 7 For as regards Athaliah the wicked woman, her sons themselves had broken into the house of the [true] God, and even all the holy things of the house of Jehovah they had rendered up to the Baals.” 8 Then the king said [the word], and so they made a chest and put it outside at the gate of the house of Jehovah. 9 After that they issued a call throughout Judah and Jerusalem to bring to Jehovah the sacred tax ordered by Moses the servant of the [true] God upon Israel in the wilderness. 10 And all the princes and all the people began to rejoice, and they kept bringing and casting it into the chest until they all had given.

11 And it came about at the proper time he would bring the chest to the care of the king by the hand of the Levites, and, as soon as they saw that there was plenty of money, the secretary of the king and the commissioner of the chief priest came and then emptied the chest and lifted it up and returned it to its place. That was the way they did from day to day, so that they gathered money in abundance. 12 Then the king and Jehoiada would give it to the doers of the work of the service of Jehovah’s house, and they came to be hirers of the stonecutters and of the craftsmen for renovating Jehovah’s house, and also of the workers in iron and copper for repairing Jehovah’s house. 13 And the doers of the work began operations, and the repair work kept advancing by their hand, and finally they made the house of the [true] God stand as it structurally should and made it strong. 14 And as soon as they had finished they brought before the king and Jehoiada the rest of the money, and they proceeded to make utensils for the house of Jehovah, utensils for the ministry and for making offerings and cups and utensils of gold and of silver; and they came to be offerers of burnt sacrifices in the house of Jehovah constantly all the days of Jehoiada.

15 And Jehoiada got to be old and satisfied with years and gradually died, being a hundred and thirty years old at his death. 16 So they buried him in the City of David along with the kings, because he had done good in Israel and with the [true] God and His house.

17 And after Jehoiada’s death the princes of Judah came in and proceeded to bow down to the king. At that time the king listened to them. 18 And gradually they left the house of Jehovah the God of their forefathers and began serving the sacred poles and the idols, so that there came to be indignation against Judah and Jerusalem because of this guilt of theirs. 19 And he kept sending prophets among them to bring them back to Jehovah; and they kept bearing witness against them, but they did not give ear.

20 And God’s spirit itself enveloped Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, so that he stood up above the people and said to them: “This is what the [true] God has said, ‘Why are YOU overstepping the commandments of Jehovah, so that YOU cannot prove successful? Because YOU have left Jehovah, he will, in turn, leave YOU.’” 21 Finally they conspired against him and pelted him with stones at the king’s commandment in the courtyard of Jehovah’s house. 22 And Jehoash the king did not remember the loving-kindness that Jehoiada his father had exercised toward him, so that he killed his son, who, when he was at the point of dying, said: “Let Jehovah see to it and ask it back.”

23 And it came about at the turn of the year a military force of Syria came up against him, and they began to invade Judah and Jerusalem. Then they brought all the princes of the people to ruin from among the people, and all their spoil they sent to the king of Damascus. 24 For it was with a small number of men that the military force of the Syrians made an invasion, and Jehovah himself gave into their hand a military force of very great number, because they had left Jehovah the God of their forefathers; and upon Jehoash they executed acts of judgment. 25 And when they went away from him (for they left him with many diseases), his own servants conspired against him because of the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest; and they got to kill him upon his own couch, so that he died. Then they buried him in the City of David, but they did not bury him in the burial places of the kings.

26 And these were the conspirators against him: Zabad the son of Shimeath the Ammonitess and Jehozabad the son of Shimrith the Moabitess. 27 As for his sons and the abundance of the pronouncement against him and the founding of the house of the [true] God, there they are written in the exposition of the Book of the Kings. And Amaziah his son began to reign in place of him.

25 At the age of twenty-five years Amaziah became king, and for twenty-nine years he reigned in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem. 2 And he continued to do what was right in Jehovah’s eyes, only not with a complete heart. 3 And it came about that as soon as the kingdom had become strong upon him, he promptly killed his servants who had struck down the king his father. 4 And their sons he did not put to death, but [did] according to what is written in the law, in the book of Moses, that Jehovah commanded, saying: “Fathers should not die for sons, neither should sons themselves die for fathers; but it is each one for his own sin that they should die.”

5 And Amaziah proceeded to collect Judah together and to have them stand according to the house of the forefathers, by the chiefs of thousands and by the chiefs of hundreds for all Judah and Benjamin; and he went on to register them from twenty years of age upward, and finally he found them [to be] three hundred thousand choice men going out to the army, handling lance and large shield. 6 Further, he hired from Israel a hundred thousand valiant, mighty men for a hundred silver talents. 7 And a certain man of the [true] God came to him, saying: “O king, do not let the army of Israel come with you, for Jehovah is not with Israel, [that is,] all the sons of Ephraim. 8 But come you yourself, act, be courageous for the war. The [true] God could cause you to stumble before an enemy; for there exists power with God to help and to cause stumbling.” 9 At this Amaziah said to the man of the [true] God: “But what is there to do about the hundred talents that I have given to the troops of Israel?” To this the man of the [true] God said: “There exists with Jehovah the means to give you much more than this.” 10 Accordingly Amaziah separated them, namely, the troops that had come to him from Ephraim, to go to their own place. However, their anger got very hot against Judah, so that they returned to their own place in the heat of anger.

11 And Amaziah, for his part, took courage and proceeded to lead his own people and go to the Valley of Salt; and he went striking down the sons of Seir, ten thousand [of them]. 12 And there were ten thousand that the sons of Judah captured alive. So they brought them to the top of the crag, and proceeded to throw them from the top of the crag; and they, one and all, burst apart. 13 As for the members of the troop whom Amaziah had sent back from going with him to the war, they began making raids upon the cities of Judah, from Samaria clear to Beth-horon, and went striking down three thousand of them and taking a great plunder.

14 But it occurred after Amaziah came from striking down the Edomites that he now brought the gods of the sons of Seir and set them up for himself as gods, and before them he began to bow down, and to them he began to make sacrificial smoke. 15 Consequently Jehovah’s anger became hot against Amaziah, and so he sent a prophet to him and said to him: “Why have you searched for the people’s gods that did not deliver their own people out of your hand?” 16 And it came about when he spoke to him that [the king] immediately said to him: “Was it a counselor of the king that we constituted you? Quit for your own sake. Why should they strike you down?” Accordingly the prophet quit, but he said: “I certainly know that God has resolved to bring you to ruin, because you have done this and you have not listened to my counsel.”

17 Then Amaziah the king of Judah took counsel and sent to Jehoash the son of Jehoahaz the son of Jehu the king of Israel, saying: “Come! Let us look each other in the face.” 18 At that Jehoash the king of Israel sent to Amaziah the king of Judah, saying: “The thorny weed itself that was in Lebanon sent to the cedar that was in Lebanon, saying, ‘Do give your daughter to my son as a wife.’ However, a wild beast of the field that was in Lebanon passed by and trampled the thorny weed down. 19 You have said to yourself, Here you have struck down Edom. And your heart has lifted you up to be glorified. Now do keep dwelling in your own house. Why should you engage in strife in a bad position and have to fall, you and Judah with you?”

20 But Amaziah did not listen; for it was from the [true] God for the purpose of giving them into his hand, because they had searched for the gods of Edom. 21 So Jehoash the king of Israel went up, and they proceeded to look each other in the face, he and Amaziah the king of Judah, at Beth-shemesh, which belongs to Judah. 22 And Judah came to be defeated before Israel, so that they took to flight each one to his tent. 23 And it was Amaziah the king of Judah, the son of Jehoash the son of Jehoahaz, that Jehoash the king of Israel seized at Beth-shemesh, after which he brought him to Jerusalem and made a breach in the wall of Jerusalem, from the Gate of Ephraim clear to the Corner Gate, four hundred cubits. 24 And [he took] all the gold and the silver and all the articles that were to be found in the house of the [true] God with Obed-edom and the treasures of the king’s house and the hostages, and then returned to Samaria.

25 And Amaziah the son of Jehoash the king of Judah continued to live after the death of Jehoash the son of Jehoahaz the king of Israel fifteen years. 26 As for the rest of the affairs of Amaziah, the first and the last, look! are they not written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel? 27 And from the time that Amaziah turned aside from following Jehovah, they proceeded to form a conspiracy against him in Jerusalem. At length he fled to Lachish; but they sent after him to Lachish and put him to death there. 28 So they carried him upon horses and buried him with his forefathers in the city of Judah.