2 Chronicles Chapter 15 to 17 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Asa’s Changes

15 The Spirit of God came on Azariah. Azariah was Obed’s son. 2Azariah went to meet Asa. Azariah said, “Listen to me Asa, and all you people of Judah and Benjamin! The Lord is with you when you are with him. If you look for the Lord, you will find him. But if you leave him, he will leave you. 3For a long time Israel was without the true God. And they were without a teaching priest, and without the law. 4But when the people of Israel had trouble, they turned to the Lord God again. He is the God of Israel. They looked for the Lord and they found him. 5In those times of trouble, no person could travel safely. There was much trouble in all the nations. 6One nation would destroy another nation and one city would destroy another city. This was happening because God troubled them with all kinds of trouble. 7But Asa, you and the people of Judah and Benjamin, be strong. Don’t be weak, don’t give up because you will get a reward for your good work!” 8Asa felt encouraged when he heard these words and the message from Obed the prophet. Then he removed the hated idols from the whole area of Judah and Benjamin. Asa also removed those hated idols from the towns he had captured in the hill country of Ephraim. And he repaired the Lord’s altar* that was in front of the porch of the Lord’s temple.* 9Then Asa gathered all the people from Judah and Benjamin. He also gathered the people from the family groups of Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who had moved from the country of Israel to live in the country of Judah. A great many of those people came to Judah because they saw that the Lord, Asa’s God, was with Asa. 10Asa and those people gathered together in Jerusalem on the third month in the 15th year of Asa’s rule. 11At that time they sacrificed* 700 bulls and 7,000 sheep and goats to the Lord. Asa’s army had taken those animals and other valuable things from their enemies. 12Then they made an agreement to serve the Lord God with all their heart and with all their soul. He is the God their ancestors* served. 13Any person that refused to serve the Lord God was to be killed. It did not matter if that person was important or not important or if that person was a man or woman. 14Then Asa and the people made an oath* to the Lord. They shouted out with a loud voice. They also blew on trumpets and rams’ horns. 15All the people of Judah were happy about the oath, because they had promised with all their heart. They followed God with all their heart. They looked for God and found him. So the Lord gave them peace in all the country. 16King Asa also removed Maacah, his mother, from being queen mother. Asa did this because she had set up one of those awful poles to honor the goddess Asherah. Asa cut down that Asherah pole* and smashed it into small pieces. Then he burned the pieces in the Kidron Valley. 17The high places* were not removed from Judah, but Asa’s heart was faithful to the Lord all of Asa’s life. 18And Asa put the holy gifts that he and his father had given into the temple* of God. Those things were made of silver and gold. 19There was no more war until the 35th year of Asa’s rule.*

altar(s) A stone table or a stand for offering sacrifices. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. sacrifice(d) To kill a special animal and offer it on an altar as a gift to God. ancestors Literally, “fathers,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. oath A very strong promise. Asherah pole(s) Poles used to honor the goddess Asherah. People thought she could help them have many children. high places Places for worshiping God or false gods. These places were often on the hills and mountains. 35th year of Asa’s rule About the year 880 B.C.

Asa’s Last Years

16 In Asa’s 36th year as king,* Baasha attacked the country of Judah. Baasha was the king of Israel. He went to the town of Ramah and made it into a fortress.* Baasha used the town of Ramah as a place to stop people from going in or coming out to King Asa of Judah. 2Asa took silver and gold out of the storehouses in the Lord’s temple.* And he took silver and gold out of the king’s house. Then Asa sent messengers to Ben Hadad. Ben Hadad was the king of Aram and he was living in the town of Damascus. Asa’s message said: 3“Ben Hadad let there be an agreement between you and me. Let’s make it like the agreement your father and my father had. See, I am sending you silver and gold. Now, break your agreement with Baasha, king of Israel, so he will leave me alone and stop bothering me.” 4Ben Hadad agreed with King Asa. Ben Hadad sent the commanders of his armies to attack the towns of Israel. Those commanders attacked the towns of Ijon, Dan, and Abel Maim. They also attacked all the towns in the area of Naphtali where treasures were stored. 5Baasha heard about the attacks on the towns of Israel. So he stopped building the town of Ramah into a fortress,* and he left his work. 6Then King Asa called all the men of Judah together. They went to the town of Ramah and took away the rocks and wood that Baasha used to make the fortress. Asa and the men of Judah used the rocks and wood to make the towns of Geba and Mizpah stronger. 7At that time Hanani the seer* came to Asa, king of Judah. Hanani said to him, “Asa, you depended on the king of Aram to help you and not the Lord your God. You should have depended on the Lord. But, because you did not depend on the Lord for help, the king of Aram’s army escaped from you. 8The Ethiopians and the Libyans had a very large and powerful army. They had many chariots* and chariot drivers. But Asa, you depended on the Lord to help you defeat that large powerful army, and the Lord let you defeat them. 9The eyes of the Lord go around looking in all the earth for people who are faithful to him so he can make those people strong. Asa, you did a foolish thing. So from now on you will have wars.” 10Asa was angry with Hanani because of what he said. Asa was so mad that he put Hanani in prison. Asa was very mean and rough with some of the people at that same time. 11The things that Asa did, from the beginning to the end, are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Judah and Israel. 12Asa’s feet became diseased in his 39th year as king.* His disease was very bad, but he did not look for help from the Lord. Asa looked for help from the doctors. 13Asa died in the 41st year as king.* And so Asa rested with his ancestors.* 14The people buried Asa in his own tomb that he made for himself in David’s City. The people laid him in a bed that was filled with spices and different kinds of mixed perfumes. The people made a large fire to honor Asa.*

36th year as king About the year 879 B.C. fortress A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship.  seer This is another name for a prophet. See 1 Sam. 9:9–11.  chariot(s) A small wagon used in war. 39th year as king About the year 875 B.C. 41st year as king About the year 873 B.C. ancestor Literally, “father,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. The people … Asa This probably means the people burned spices in honor of Asa, but it could also mean they burned his body.

Jehoshaphat King of Judah

17 Jehoshaphat was the new king of Judah in Asa’s place. Jehoshaphat was Asa’s son. Jehoshaphat made Judah strong so they could fight against Israel. 2He put groups of soldiers in all the towns of Judah that were made into fortresses.* Jehoshaphat built fortresses in Judah and in the towns of Ephraim that his father Asa captured. 3The Lord was with Jehoshaphat because in Jehoshaphat’s young life he did the good things his ancestor* David did. Jehoshaphat did not follow the Baal idols. 4Jehoshaphat looked for the God his ancestors followed. He followed God’s commands. He did not live the same way the people of Israel lived. 5The Lord made Jehoshaphat a strong king over Judah. All the people of Judah brought gifts to Jehoshaphat. So Jehoshaphat had much wealth and honor. 6Jehoshaphat’s heart found pleasure in the ways of the Lord. He took away the high places,* and the Asherah poles* out of the country of Judah. 7Jehoshaphat sent his leaders to teach in the towns of Judah. That happened in the third year of Jehoshaphat’s rule.* Those leaders were Ben Hail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Micaiah. 8Jehoshaphat also sent Levites with these leaders. These Levites were Shemaiah, Nethaniah, Zebadiah, Asahel, Shemiramoth, Jehonathan, Adonijah, and Tobijah. Jehoshaphat also sent the priests Elishama and Jehoram. 9Those leaders and Levites and priests taught the people in Judah. They had the Book of the Law of the Lord with them. They went through all the towns of Judah and taught the people. 10The nations near Judah were afraid of the Lord. That is why they did not start a war against Jehoshaphat. 11Some of the Philistine people brought gifts to Jehoshaphat. They also brought silver to Jehoshaphat because they knew he was a very powerful king. Some Arabian people brought flocks to Jehoshaphat. They brought 7,700 rams and 7,700 goats to him.12Jehoshaphat became more and more powerful. He built fortresses* and storage towns in the country of Judah. 13He kept many supplies in the storage towns. And Jehoshaphat kept trained soldiers in Jerusalem. 14Those soldiers were listed in their family groups. This is the list of those soldiers in Jerusalem: From the family group of Judah, these were the generals: Adnah was the general of 300,000 soldiers. 15Jehohanan was the general of 280,000 soldiers. 16Amasiah was the general of 200,000 soldiers. Amasiah was Zicri’s son. Amasiah was happy to give himself to serve the Lord. 17From the family group of Benjamin these were the generals: Eliada had 200,000 soldiers who used bows, arrows, and shields. Eliada was a very brave soldier. 18Jehozabad had 180,000 men ready for war. 19All those soldiers served King Jehoshaphat. The king also had other men in the fortresses* in all the country of Judah.

fortress(es) A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. ancestor Literally, “father,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. high places Places of worship. Asherah poles Poles used to honor the goddess Asherah. People thought she could help them have many children. third year of Jehoshaphat’s rule About the year 871 B.C.

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