Asa began to rule over Judah in the twentieth year of Jeroboam's reign in Israel.
He reigned in Jerusalem forty-one years. His grandmother a was Maacah, the daughter of Absalom.
Asa did what was pleasing in the LORD's sight, as his ancestor David had done.
He banished the shrine prostitutes from the land and removed all the idols his ancestors had made.
He even deposed his grandmother Maacah from her position as queen mother because she had made an obscene Asherah pole. He cut down the pole and burned it in the Kidron Valley.
Although the pagan shrines were not completely removed, Asa remained faithful to the LORD throughout his life.
He brought into the Temple of the LORD the silver and gold and the utensils that he and his father had dedicated.
There was constant war between King Asa of Judah and King Baasha of Israel.
King Baasha of Israel invaded Judah and fortified Ramah in order to prevent anyone from entering or leaving King Asa's territory in Judah.
Asa responded by taking all the silver and gold that was left in the treasuries of the LORD's Temple and the royal palace. He sent it with some of his officials to Ben-hadad son of Tabrimmon and grandson of Hezion, the king of Aram, who was ruling in Damascus, along with this message:
"Let us renew the treaty that existed between your father and my father. See, I am sending you a gift of silver and gold. Break your treaty with King Baasha of Israel so that he will leave me alone."
Ben-hadad agreed to King Asa's request and sent his armies to attack Israel. They conquered the towns of Ijon, Dan, Abel-beth-maacah, and all Kinnereth, with all the land of Naphtali.
As soon as Baasha of Israel heard what was happening, he abandoned his project of fortifying Ramah and withdrew to Tirzah.
Then King Asa sent an order throughout Judah, requiring that everyone, without exception, help to carry away the building stones and timbers that Baasha had been using to fortify Ramah. Asa used these materials to fortify the town of Geba in Benjamin and the town of Mizpah.
The rest of the events in Asa's reign, the extent of his power, and the names of the cities he built are recorded in The Book of the History of the Kings of Judah. In his old age his feet became diseased.
When Asa died, he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. Then his son Jehoshaphat became the next king.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)