2 Chronicles Chapter 21 to 23 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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21 Then Jehoshaphat died and was buried with his ancestors.* He was buried in David’s City. Jehoram was the new king in Jehoshaphat’s place. Jehoram was Jehoshaphat’s son. 2Jehoram’s brothers were Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azariah, Michael, and Shephatiah. Those men were Jehoshaphat’s sons. Jehoshaphat was the king of Judah.* 3Jehoshaphat gave his sons many gifts of silver, gold, and precious things. He also gave them strong fortresses* in Judah. But Jehoshaphat gave the kingdom to Jehoram because Jehoram was his oldest son.

Jehoram King of Judah

4Jehoram took over his father’s kingdom and made himself strong. Then he used a sword to kill all his brothers. He also killed some of the leaders of Israel. 5Jehoram was 32 years old when he began to rule. He ruled eight years in Jerusalem. 6He lived the same way the kings of Israel lived. He lived the same way Ahab’s family lived. This was because Jehoram married Ahab’s daughter. And Jehoram did evil in the Lord’s sight. 7But the Lord would not destroy David’s family because of the agreement the Lord made with David. The Lord had promised to keep a lamp burning for David and his children forever.* 8In Jehoram’s time, Edom broke away from under Judah’s authority. The people of Edom chose their own king. 9So Jehoram went to Edom with all his commanders and chariots.* The Edomite army surrounded Jehoram and his chariot* commanders. But Jehoram fought his way out at night. 10Since that time and until now the country of Edom has been rebellious against Judah. The people from the town of Libnah also turned against Jehoram. This happened because Jehoram left the Lord God. He is the God Jehoram’s ancestors* followed. 11Jehoram also built high places* on the hills in Judah. Jehoram caused the people of Jerusalem to stop doing what God wanted. He led the people of Judah away from the Lord. 12Jehoram got a message from Elijah the prophet. This is what the message said: “This is what the Lord God says. He is the God your father David followed. The Lord says, ‘Jehoram, you have not lived the way your father Jehoshaphat lived. You have not lived the way Asa king of Judah lived. 13But you have lived the way the kings of Israel lived. You have caused the people of Judah and Jerusalem to stop doing what God wants. That is what Ahab and his family did. They were unfaithful to God. You have killed your brothers. Your brothers were better than you. 14So now, the Lord will soon punish your people with much punishment. The Lord will punish your children, wives, and all your property. 15You will have a terrible sickness in your bowels. It will become worse every day. Then your bowels will come out because of your terrible sickness.’” 16The Lord caused the Philistine people and the Arab people living near the Ethiopian people to be angry at Jehoram. 17Those people attacked the country of Judah. They took away all the wealth that belonged to the king’s house and took away Jehoram’s sons and wives. Only Jehoram’s youngest son was left. Jehoram’s youngest son was named Jehoahaz.* 18After those things happened, the Lord made Jehoram sick in his bowels with a sickness that could not be cured. 19Then Jehoram’s bowels fell out two years later because of his sickness. He died in very bad pain. The people did not make a large fire to honor Jehoram like they did for his father. 20Jehoram was 32 years old when he became king. He ruled eight years in Jerusalem. No person was sad when Jehoram died. The people buried Jehoram in David’s city, but not in the graves where the kings are buried.

ancestors Literally, “fathers,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. Judah Literally, “Israel.” fortress(es) A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. The Lord … his children forever Here the writer means that one of David’s descendants would always rule. chariot(s) A small wagon used in war. high places Places for worshiping God or false gods. These places were often on the hills and mountains. Jehoahaz Also spelled “Ahaziah”.

Ahaziah King of Judah

22 The people of Jerusalem chose Ahaziah* to be the new king in Jehoram’s place. Ahaziah was Jehoram’s youngest son. The people that came with the Arab people to attack Jehoram’s camp killed all of Jehoram’s older sons. So Ahaziah began to rule in Judah. 2Ahaziah was 22 years old when he began to rule.* Ahaziah ruled one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Athaliah. Athaliah’s father’s name was Omri. 3Ahaziah also lived the way Ahab’s family lived. He lived that way because his mother encouraged him to do wrong things. 4Ahaziah did evil things in the Lord’s sight. That is what Ahab’s family did. Ahab’s family gave advice to Ahaziah after Ahaziah’s father died. They gave Ahaziah bad advice. That bad advice led to his death. 5Ahaziah followed the advice Ahab’s family gave him. Ahaziah went with King Joram to fight against King Hazael from Aram at the town of Ramoth Gilead. Joram’s father’s name was Ahab, the king of Israel. But the Arameans wounded Joram in the battle. 6Joram went back to the town of Jezreel to get well. He was wounded at Ramoth when he fought against Hazael, king of Aram. Then Ahaziah* went to the town of Jezreel to visit Joram. Ahaziah’s father’s name was Jehoram, the king of Judah. Joram’s father’s name was Ahab. Joram was in the town of Jezreel because he was wounded. 7God caused Ahaziah’s* death when he went to visit Joram. Ahaziah arrived and went out with Joram to meet Jehu. Jehu’s father’s name was Nimshi. The Lord chose Jehu to destroy Ahab’s family. 8Jehu was punishing Ahab’s family. Jehu found the leaders of Judah and Ahaziah’s relatives that served Ahaziah. Jehu killed those leaders of Judah and Ahaziah’s relatives. 9Then Jehu looked for Ahaziah. Jehu’s men caught him when he tried to hide in the town of Samaria. They brought Ahaziah to Jehu. They killed Ahaziah and buried him. They said, “Ahaziah is the descendant* of Jehoshaphat. Jehoshaphat followed the Lord with all his heart.” Ahaziah’s family had no power to hold the kingdom of Judah together.

Queen Athaliah

10Athaliah was Ahaziah’s* mother. When she saw that her son was dead, she killed all the king’s children in Judah. 11But Jehosheba took Ahaziah’s son Joash and hid him. Jehosheba put Joash and his nurse in the inside bedroom. Jehosheba was King Jehoram’s daughter. She was also Jehoiada’s wife. Jehoiada was a priest. And Jehosheba was Ahaziah’s sister. Athaliah did not kill Joash, because Jehosheba hid him. 12Joash was hidden with the priests in God’s temple* for six years. During that time, Athaliah ruled over the land as queen.

Ahaziah Also spelled “Jehoahaz”. Ahaziah was … rule Some old copies say “42 years old.” 2 Kings 8:26 says Ahaziah was 22 years old when he began to rule. descendant(s) A person’s children and their future families. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship.

Priest Jehoiada and King Joash

23 After six years, Jehoiada showed his strength. He made an agreement with the captains. Those captains were: Azariah son of Jeroham, Ishmael son of Jehohanan, Azariah son of Obed, Maaseiah son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat son of Zicri. 2They went around in Judah and gathered the Levites from all the towns of Judah. They also gathered the leaders of the families of Israel. Then they went to Jerusalem. 3All the people meeting together made an agreement with the king in God’s temple.* Jehoiada said to those people, “The king’s son will rule. That is what the Lord promised about David’s descendants.* 4Now, this is what you must do: One-third of you priests and Levites who go on duty on the Sabbath will guard the doors. 5And one-third of you will be at the king’s house. And one-third of you will be at the Foundation Gate. But all the other people will stay in the yards of the Lord’s temple.* 6Don’t let any person come into the Lord’s temple. Only the priest and Levites who serve are permitted to come into the Lord’s temple because they are holy. But all the other men must do the job the Lord has given them. 7The Levites must stay near the king. Every man must have his sword with him. If any person tries to enter the temple, kill that person. You must stay with the king everywhere he goes.” 8The Levites and all the people of Judah obeyed all that Jehoiada the priest commanded. Jehoiada the priest did not excuse any person from the groups of the priests. So each captain and all his men came in on the Sabbath with those who went out on the Sabbath. 9Jehoiada the priest gave the spears and the large and small shields that belonged to King David to the officers. Those weapons were kept in God’s temple.* 10Then Jehoiada told the men where to stand. Every man had his weapon in his hand. The men stood all the way from the right side of the temple to the left side of the temple. They stood near the altar* and the temple, and near the king. 11They brought the king’s son out and put the crown on him. They gave him a copy of the Law.* Then they made Joash king. Jehoiada and his sons anointed* Joash. They said, “Let the king live a long time!” 12Athaliah heard the noise of the people running to the temple* and praising the king. She came into the Lord’s temple to the people. 13She looked and saw the king. The king was standing by the king’s column at the front entrance. The officers and the men who blew trumpets were near the king. The people of the land were happy and blowing trumpets. The singers were playing on instruments of music. The singers led the people in singing praises. Then Athaliah tore her clothes* and said, “Treason! Treason!”* 14Jehoiada the priest brought out the army captains. He said to them, “Take Athaliah outside among the army. Use your swords to kill any person that follows her.” Then the priest warned the soldiers, “Don’t kill Athaliah in the Lord’s temple.*” 15Then those men grabbed Athaliah when she came to the entrance of the Horse Gate at the king’s house. Then they killed her there at that place. 16Then Jehoiada made an agreement with all the people, and the king. They all agreed that they all would be the Lord’s people. 17All the people went into the temple of the idol Baal and tore it down. They also broke the altars and idols that were in Baal’s temple. They killed Mattan the priest of Baal in front of the altars of Baal. 18Then Jehoiada chose the priests to be responsible for the Lord’s temple.* Those priests were Levites, and David had given them the job of being responsible for the Lord’s temple. Those priests were to offer the burnt offerings* to the Lord the way the Law of Moses commanded. They offered the sacrifices* with much joy and singing the way David commanded. 19Jehoiada put guards at the gates of the Lord’s temple so that a person who was not clean in anything could not enter the temple. 20Jehoiada took the army captains, the leaders, the rulers of the people, and all the people of the land with him. Then Jehoiada took the king out of the Lord’s temple,* and they went through the Upper Gate to the king’s house. In that place they put the king on the throne. 21All the people of Judah were very happy and the city Jerusalem had peace because Athaliah was killed with a sword.

temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. descendants A person���s children and their future families. altar(s) A stone table or a stand for offering sacrifices. They gave him … Law The Hebrew reads, “They gave him testimony.” Here the word means a copy of the Law that the king had to obey. See Deut. 17:18. anoint(ed) To pour olive oil on things or people to show that they were chosen by God for a special work or purpose. tore her clothes A way to show she was very upset. Treason Turning against the government. Here Athaliah was blaming the people for turning against her government.  burnt offering(s) Gifts to God. Usually these were animals that were killed and completely burned on the altar. sacrifice(s) A gift to God. Usually, it was a special animal that was killed and burned on an altar.

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