So he went out to meet Asa and said to him, "Asa and all Judah and Benjamin, hear me. The Lord is with you when you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you,a but if you abandon Him, He will abandon you.b3
For many years Israel has been without the true God, without a teaching priest, and without law,
but when they turned to the Lord God of Israel in their distress and sought Him, He was found by them.
In those times there was no peace for those who went about their daily activities because the residents of the lands had many conflicts.
Nation was crushed by nation and city by city, for God troubled them with every possible distress.
But as for you, be strong; don't be discouraged,c for your work has a reward."
When Asa heard these words and the prophecy of [Azariah son of] Oded the prophet, he took courage and removed the detestable idols from the whole land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities he had captured in the hill country of Ephraim. He renovated the altar of the Lord that was in front of the vestibule of the Lord's [temple].
Then he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, as well as those from [the tribes of] Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who had settled among them, for they had defected to him from Israel in great numbers when they saw that the Lord his God was with him.
They were gathered in Jerusalem in the third month of the fifteenth year of Asa's reign.
At that time they sacrificed to the Lord 700 cattle and 7,000 sheep from all the plunder they had brought.
Then they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their ancestors with all their mind and all their heart.