19[1-3] Jehoshaphat, the ruler of Judah, went back to his house in peace to Jerusalem. Jehu of Hanani the preacher went out to meet him, saying to ruler Jehoshaphat, “Should you help the sinful, and love those who hate Yahweh? Yahweh is angry at you for this. But there are good things found in you, in that you’ve put away the Asheroth (Astarte, Canaanite goddess of fortune and happiness, the supposed consort of Baal) out of the land, and have set your heart to worship God.
[4-7] So Jehoshaphat lived at Jerusalem; and he went out again among the people from Beersheba to the hill country of Ephraim, and brought them back to Yahweh, the God of their ancestors. He set judges in the land throughout all the protected cities of Judah, city by city, saying to the judges, “Think about what you do because you don’t judge for human beings, but for Yahweh, who is with you in the judgment. So now, show respect to Yahweh; be careful and do it because there’s no sin with Yahweh our God, nor respect of persons, nor taking of bribes.”
[8-11] Besides, Jehoshaphat put the Levites, the preachers, and the heads of the ancestors’ houses of Israel, for the judgment of Yahweh, and for settling disagreements in Jerusalem. So they went back to Jerusalem. He told them, “You’ll do this in respect of Yahweh, faithfully, and with a good conscious.” Whenever any disagreement comes to you from your family who live in their cities, between blood kin, between the law and the Word of God, laws and rules, you’ll warn them, that they not be guilty towards Yahweh, and so let anger come on you and on your family; do this, and you won’t be guilty. See, Amariah the leading preacher is over you in all matters of Yahweh; and Zebadiah of Ishmael, the ruler of the house of Judah, in all the ruler’s matters; also the Levites will be officers before you. Do this bravely, and may Yahweh be with the good.
20[1-4] After this, the people of Moab and Ammon, and others besides the Ammonites with them, came against Jehoshaphat to fight. Then some people came who told Jehoshaphat, “A great number of people are coming against you from beyond the sea from Syria; and see, they’re in Hazazon Tamar,” (which is En Gedi). Jehoshaphat was afraid, and prayed to Yahweh; and he called for all Judah to go without food to pray to God. The people of Judah gathered together, to ask for help from Yahweh; they came to pray to Yahweh out of all the cities of Judah.
[5-12] Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the Place of Worship of Yahweh, before the new court; and he said, “Yahweh, God of our ancestors, aren’t You God in heaven? and aren’t You ruler over all the rulers of the nations? and in Your hand is power and strength, so that no one is able to withstand you. Didn’t You, our God, drive out the people of this land before Your people Israel, and give it to the descendants of Abraham, Your friend, forever? They lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary in it for Your Name, saying, ‘If evil comes on us, either war, judgment, disease, or famine, we’ll turn to this house, and come before You, (for Your Name is in this house), and cry to You in our trouble, and You’ll hear and save us. Now, see, the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, whom You wouldn’t let Israel invade, when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned aside from them, and didn’t destroy them; see, how they reward us, to come to throw us out of Your possession, which You’ve given us to inherit. Our God, Won’t You judge them? We have no strength against this great army that comes against us; nor do we know what to do; but our eyes are on You.”
[13-17] All Judah stood before Yahweh, with their babies, their wives, and their children. Then the Spirit of Yahweh came on Jahaziel of Zechariah, of Benaiah, of Jeiel, of Mattaniah, the Levite, of the descendants of Asaph, in the midst of the assembly; and he said, “Listen you people, all Judah, and you people of Jerusalem, and you, ruler Jehoshaphat; Yahweh says to you, Don’t be scared, nor be worried about this great army because the battle isn’t yours, but God’s. Tomorrow go down against them; see, they come up by the rise of Ziz; and you’ll find them at the end of the valley, before the countryside of Jeruel. You won’t need to fight in this battle; set yourselves in order, stand still, and see the saving grace of Yahweh with you, O Judah and Jerusalem; don’t be scared, nor be troubled; tomorrow, go out against them because Yahweh is with you.”
[18-22] Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground; and all Judah and the people of Jerusalem fell down before Yahweh, worshipping Yahweh. The Levites, of the people of the Kohathites and of the people of the Korahites, stood up to praise Yahweh, the God of Israel with a very loud voice. They got up early in the morning, and went to the countryside of Tekoa; and as they came, Jehoshaphat stood saying, “Hear me, Judah, and you people of Jerusalem; believe in Yahweh your God, so you’ll be set up; believe his preachers, so you’ll do well.” When he had talked with the people, he set up those who would sing to Yahweh, and give praise in their holy clothes, as they went out before the troops, and say, “Give thanks to Yahweh whose loving kindness lasts forever.” When they began to sing and to praise, Yahweh sent soldiers against the people of Ammon, Moab, and MountSeir, who had come against Judah; and they were overcome.
[23-26] For the people of Ammon and Moab stood up against the people of Mount Seir, and completely destroyed them; and when they had finished killing the people of Seir, they destroyed one another. When Judah came to the place overlooking the countryside, they looked at the troops and they were dead bodies fallen on the ground, and no one escaped. When Jehoshaphat and his people came to take the stuff on them, they found great riches and precious stones on the dead bodies, which they stripped off for themselves, more than they could carry away; and they spent three days taking the stuff, it was so much. On the fourth day they gathered themselves in the valley of Beracah, where they blessed Yahweh; so the name of that place was called The valley of Beracah to today.
[27-30] Then everyone went back, all those of Judah and Jerusalem, and Jehoshaphat in front of them, to go again to Jerusalem with great happiness because Yahweh had let them celebrate over their enemies. They came to Jerusalem with lyres, harps, and horns to the Place of Worship of Yahweh. The fear of God was on all the realms of the countries when they heard that Yahweh fought against the enemies of Israel. So the realm of Jehoshaphat was peaceful, whose God had given him rest all around.
[31-34] When Jehoshaphat ruled over Judah, he was 35 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled 25 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Azubah, the daughter of Shilhi. He walked in the way of Asa his father, and didn’t turn aside from it, doing what was right in the eyes of Yahweh. But the places of false worship weren’t taken away; nor as yet had the people set their hearts to worship the God of their ancestors. Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, from the first to the last, are written in The History of Jehu of Hanani, which is discussed in the book of The Rulers of Israel.
[35-37] After this, Jehoshaphat, ruler of Judah, joined up with Ahaziah, ruler of Israel, who was very evil; he joined with him to make ships to go to Tarshish; and they made the ships in Ezion Geber. Then Eliezer of Dodavahu of Mareshah preached against Jehoshaphat, saying, “Because you’ve joined up with Ahaziah, Yahweh has destroyed your works.” The ships were broken, so that they weren’t able to go to Tarshish.
21[1-4] Jehoshaphat died, and was buried with his ancestors in the city of David; and Jehoram his son ruled in his place. He had brothers, the descendants of Jehoshaphat; Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azariah, Michael, and Shephatiah; all these were the descendants of Jehoshaphat, ruler of Israel. Their father gave them great gifts of silver and gold, and of precious things, with protected cities in Judah; but he gave rule to Jehoram, because he was the firstborn. Now when Jehoram ruled over the countries of his father, and had strengthened himself, he killed all his family, and also various leaders of Israel.
[5-7] Jehoram was 32 years old when he began to rule; and he ruled eight years in Jerusalem. He walked in the way of the rulers of Israel, as did the house of Ahab because he had the daughter of Ahab as wife; and he did what was evil in the sight of Yahweh. But Yahweh wouldn’t destroy the house of David, because of the promised agreement God had made with David, and as God had promised to give a light to him and to his children always.
[8-11] In his days Edom revolted from the control of Judah, and made a ruler over themselves. Then Jehoram crossed over with his captains and all his war vehicles; and he went up by night, and fought the Edomites who surrounded him, along with the captains of the war vehicles. So Edom revolted from under the control of Judah to today; then Libnah revolted at the same time from his control, because he had left Yahweh, the God of his ancestors. Besides that, he made places of false worship in the mountains of Judah, and made the people of Jerusalem become sexually unfaithful, and led Judah astray.
[12-15] There came a letter to him from Elijah, the preacher, saying, “Yahweh, the God of David, your ancestor, says, ‘Because you haven’t walked in the ways of Jehoshaphat your father, nor in the ways of Asa ruler of Judah, but have walked in the way of the rulers of Israel, and have made Judah and the people of Jerusalem to be sexually unfaithful, like the house of Ahab did, and also have killed your family of your father’s house, who were better than yourself; see, Yahweh will punish your people with a horrible disease, along with your wives and children, and all your stuff; and you’ll be very sick by an intestinal disease, until your bowels fall out because of the sickness, a little each day.’”
[16-20] Then Yahweh stirred up the spirit of the Philistines against Jehoram, and of the Arabians who are beside the Ethiopians; and they came up against Judah, and broke into it, and carried away all the stuff that was found in the ruler’s house, and his son’s also, and his wives; so that there wasn’t a son left him, except Jehoahaz, the youngest of his sons. After all this, Yahweh punished him with an incurable intestinal disease in his bowels. At the end of two years, his bowels fell out because of his sickness, and he died in great pain. His people made no burning for him, like the burning of his ancestors. He was 32 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled in Jerusalem eight years; and he died without being missed; and they buried him in the city of David, but not in the graves of the rulers.
22[1-5] The people of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son ruler in his place because the band of men who came with the Arabians to the camp had killed all the oldest. So Ahaziah of Jehoram ruler of Judah ruled. Ahaziah was 42 years old when he began to rule; and he ruled one year in Jerusalem; and his mother’s name was Athaliah, the daughter of Omri. He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab because his mother taught him to do evil. He did what was evil in the sight of Yahweh, as did the house of Ahab because they were his counselors after the death of his father, to his destruction. He walked also after their counsel, and went with Jehoram, son of Ahab, ruler of Israel, to war against Hazael, ruler of Syria, at Ramoth Gilead; and the Syrians wounded Joram.
[6 -9] He went back to Jezreel to be healed of the wounds which they had given him at Ramah, when he fought against Hazael, ruler of Syria. Azariah, son of Jehoram, ruler of Judah, went down to see Jehoram, son of Ahab, in Jezreel, because he was sick. Now the destruction of Ahaziah was of God, in that he went to Joram because when he had come, he went out with Jehoram against Jehu of Nimshi, whom Yahweh had anointed to put an end to the house of Ahab. When Jehu was executing judgment on the house of Ahab, he found the leaders of Judah, and the descendants of the brothers of Ahaziah, ministering to Ahaziah, and killed them. He searched for Ahaziah, and they caught him (now he was hiding in Samaria), and they brought him to Jehu, who killed him; and they buried him, for they said, “He is of Jehoshaphat, who worshiped Yahweh with all his heart.” The house of Ahaziah had no one left in power to rule the nation.
[10-12] Now when Athaliah, the mother of Ahaziah, saw that her son was dead, she went up and killed all the royal descendants of the house of Judah. But Jehoshabeath, the daughter of the ruler, took Joash, son of Ahaziah, and hid him away from among the ruler’s sons who were killed, and put him and his nurse in the bedroom. So Jehoshabeath, the daughter of ruler Jehoram, the wife of Jehoiada, the preacher (for she was the sister of Ahaziah), hid him from Athaliah, so that she didn’t kill him. He was hid in the House of God with them six years; and Athaliah ruled over the land.
23[1-7] In the 7th year Jehoiada strengthened himself, and made an agreement with the captains of hundreds, Azariah, son of Jeroham, and Ishmael, of Jehohanan, and Azariah, of Obed, and Maaseiah, of Adaiah, and Elishaphat, of Zichri. They went around in Judah, and gathered the Levites out of all the cities of Judah, and the heads of ancestors’ houses of Israel, and they came to Jerusalem. All the assembly made an agreement with the ruler in the House of God. He said to them, “See, the ruler’s son will rule, as Yahweh has said about the descendants of David. This is what you’ll do; a third part of you, who come in on the Seventh Day, of the preachers and of the Levites, will be doorkeepers of the doorways; and a third part will be at the ruler’s house; and a third part at the gate of the foundation; and all the people will be in the courts of the Place of Worship of Yahweh. But let no one come into the Place of Worship of Yahweh, except the preachers, and those who minister of the Levites; they’ll come in, for they’re holy; but all the people will keep the charge of Yahweh. The Levites will surround the ruler all around, everyone with his weapons in his hand; and whoever comes into the house, let them be killed; and be with the ruler when he comes in, and when he goes out.”
[8 -11] So the Levites and all Judah did what Jehoiada the preacher told them; and they took all those who were to come in, along with those who were to go out, on the Seventh Day, because Jehoiada, the preacher, didn’t dismiss the shift. Jehoiada, the preacher, gave to the captains of hundreds all the weapons of war that had been ruler David’s, which were in the House of God. He set up all the people with their weapons in hand, from the right side to the left side of the house, along by the altar and the house, and all around the ruler. Then they brought out the ruler’s son, and put the crown on him, and gave him the Word of God, and made him ruler; and Jehoiada and his sons anointed him; and said, “Long live the ruler.”
[12-15] When Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the ruler, she came to the people into the Place of Worship of Yahweh; and she looked, and saw that the ruler stood by his pillar at the entrance, and the captains and the horns by the ruler; and all the people of the land were happy, and blew horns; the singers also played on instruments of music, and led the singing of praise. Then Athaliah tore her clothes, crying, Treason! treason! Jehoiada, the preacher, brought out the captains of hundreds, who were set over the troops, saying to them, “Bring her outside between the troops; and kill whoever follows her,” because the preacher said, “Don’t kill her in the Place of Worship of Yahweh.” So they made way for her; and she went to the entrance of the horse gate to the ruler’s house; and they killed her there.
[16-21] Jehoiada made an agreement between himself, and all the people, and the ruler, that they should be Yahweh’s people. All the people went to the place of Baal worship, and tore it down, and broke the altars and idols in pieces, and killed Mattan, the preacher of Baal before the altars. Jehoiada set the officers of the Place of Worship of Yahweh under the hand of the preachers, the Levites, whom David had put in the Place of Worship of Yahweh, to offer the burnt offerings of Yahweh, as it’s written in the Law of Moses, with rejoicing and singing, according to the order of David. He set the doorkeepers at the gates of the Place of Worship of Yahweh, so that no one who was unfit in any way could go in. He took the captains of hundreds, and the leaders, and the governors of the people, and all the people of the land, and brought down the ruler from the Place of Worship of Yahweh; and they came through the upper gate to the ruler’s house, and set the ruler on the throne to rule the land. So all the people of the land were happy, and the city was peaceful because they had killed Athaliah.
24[1 -5] Joash was seven years old when he began to rule; and he ruled 40 years in Jerusalem; and his mother’s name was Zibiah, of Beersheba. Joash did what was right in the eyes of Yahweh all the days of Jehoiada, the preacher. Jehoiada took for him two wives; and he had children. After this, Joash thought to repair the Place of Worship of Yahweh. He gathered together the preachers and the Levites, saying to them, “Go out to the cities of Judah, and gather of all Israel money to repair the house of your God from year to year; and see that you do it quickly.” But the Levites didn’t hurry.
[6 -10] The ruler called for Jehoiada, the leading preacher, saying to him, “Why haven’t you required of the Levites to bring in out of Judah and Jerusalem the tax of Moses, the follower of Yahweh, and of the assembly of Israel, for the House of God?” For the descendants of Athaliah, that sinful woman, had broken up the House of God; and also they had given all the dedicated things of the Place of Worship of Yahweh to the false Baal gods. So the ruler told them to make a chest, and set it outside at the gate of the Place of Worship of Yahweh. They made an announcement throughout all Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in for Yahweh the tax that Moses, the follower of God, put on Israel in the countryside. All the leaders and people were happy, and brought it in, and threw it into the chest, until they had collected it.
[11-14] Whenever the chest was brought to the ruler’s officers by the hand of the Levites, and when they saw that there was a lot of money, the ruler’s secretary and the leading preacher’s officer came and emptied the chest, and brought it back to its place again. They did this day by day, and gathered a good bit of money. The ruler and Jehoiada gave it to those who did the work for the Place of Worship of Yahweh; and they hired stonebuilders, woodworkers, and also those who worked in iron and brass to repair it. So the workers did the work, and the repairs were done as they were able, and they put up the House of God like it was before, and strengthened it. When they had finished, they brought the rest of the money before the ruler and Jehoiada, of which were made pots for the Place of Worship of Yahweh, the tools with which to minister and to make offerings, and spoons, and pots of gold and silver. They offered burnt offerings in the Place of Worship of Yahweh continually all the days of Jehoiada.
[15-18] But Jehoiada grew old and was at the end of his days, and he died; He was 130 years old when he died. They buried him in the city of David among the rulers, because he had done good in Israel, and toward God and God’s House. Now after the death of Jehoiada, the leaders of Judah came, and pledged allegiance to the ruler. Then the ruler listened to them. They left the Place of Worship of Yahweh, the God of their ancestors, and served the Asherim (wooden idol representing a fertility god) and the other false gods; and anger came on Judah and Jerusalem for their guiltiness.
[19-22] Still God sent preachers to them, to bring them back to Yahweh; and they testified against them; but they wouldn’t listen. Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah, son of Jehoiada, the preacher; and he stood above the people, saying to them, “God says, “Why do you disobey the words of Yahweh, so that you can’t do well? Because you’ve left Yahweh, God has also left you.” They acted together against him, and stoned him with stones at the word of the ruler in the court of the Place of Worship of Yahweh. Joash, the ruler, didn’t remember the kindness which Jehoiada, his father, had done to him, but killed his sons. When Zechariah died, he said, “Yahweh will look on it, and punish it.”
[23-27] At the end of the year, the troops of the Syrians came up against him; and they came to Judah and Jerusalem, and destroyed all the leaders from among the people, and sent all their stuff to the ruler of Damascus. The troops of the Syrians came with a small troop; and Yahweh gave a very great troop into their power, because they had left Yahweh, the God of their ancestors. So they executed judgment on Joash. When they had left from him (for they left him very sick), his own workers acted together against him for the blood of the descendants of Jehoiada, the preacher, and killed him on his bed, and he died; and they buried him in the city of David, but they didn’t bury him in the graves of the rulers. These are those who acted together against him; Zabad, of Shimeath, the Ammonitess, and Jehozabad, of Shimrith, the Moabitess. Now about his sons, and all the great acts he did, and the rebuilding of the House of God, they’re written in the words of the Book of the Rulers. Amaziah his son ruled in his place.