2 Chronicles 28; 2 Chronicles 29; John 17

1 Ahaz was 20 years old when he became king, and he ruled for sixteen years in Jerusalem. He didn't do what was right in the LORD's eyes, unlike his ancestor David. 2 Instead, he walked in the ways of Israel's kings, making images of the Baals 3 and burning incense in the Ben-hinnom Valley. He even burned his own sons alive, imitating the detestable practices of the nations the LORD had driven out before the Israelites. 4 He also sacrificed and burned incense at the shrines on every hill and beneath every shady tree. 5 So the LORD his God handed him over to Aram's king, who defeated him and carried off many prisoners, bringing them to Damascus. Ahaz was also handed over to Israel's king, who defeated him with a severe beating. 6 In Judah, Pekah, Remaliah's son, killed one hundred twenty thousand warriors in the course of a single day because they had abandoned the LORD, God of their ancestors. 7 An Ephraimite warrior named Zichri killed the king's son Maaseiah, the palace administrator Azrikam, and Elkanah, the king's second in command. 8 The Israelites took captive two hundred thousand women, boys, and girls from their Judean relatives and seized enormous amounts of plunder, which they took back to Samaria. 9 One of the LORD's prophets named Oded lived in Samaria. When the army arrived there, he went to meet them and said, "Don't you see that the LORD God of your ancestors was angry with Judah and let you defeat them? But look what you've done! Your merciless slaughter of them stinks to high heaven! 10 And now you think you can enslave the men and women of Judah and Jerusalem? What about your own guilt before the LORD your God? 11 Listen to me! Send back the captives you took from your relatives, because the LORD is furious with you." 12 At this, some of the Ephraimite leaders—Johanan's son Azariah, Meshillemoth's son Berechiah, Shallum's son Jehizkiah, and Hadlai's son Amasa—confronted those returning from battle. 13 "Don't bring the captives here," they told them. "Your plan will only add to our sin and guilt before the LORD. We're already guilty enough, and great anger is already directed at Israel." 14 So the warriors released the captives and brought the loot before the officers and the whole assembly. 15 Then people named for this task took charge of the captives and dressed everyone who was naked with items taken from the loot. They gave them clothing, sandals, food and drink, and bandaged their wounds. Everyone who couldn't walk they placed on donkeys, and they brought them to Jericho, Palm City, near their Judean relatives. Then they returned to Samaria. 16 At that time King Ahaz sent for help from the king of Assyria. 17 Once again, the Edomites had invaded Judah, defeating Judah and carrying off captives. 18 The Philistines had raided the towns in the lowlands and the arid southern plain of Judah, capturing Beth-shemesh, Aijalon, and Gederoth, along with Soco and its surrounding villages, Timnah and its surrounding villages, and Gimzo and its surrounding villages, and occupying all of these cities. 19 The LORD was humiliating Judah on account of Israel's King Ahaz, because he had exercised no restraint in Judah and had been utterly unfaithful to the LORD. 20 Assyria's King Tiglath-pileser came to Ahaz, but he brought trouble, not support. 21 Even though Ahaz took items from the LORD's temple, the royal palace, and the officials to buy off the king of Assyria, it was of no help. 22 It was during this troubled time that King Ahaz became even more unfaithful to the LORD 23 by sacrificing to the gods of Damascus, who had defeated him. "Since the gods of Aram's kings are helping them," he said, "I'll sacrifice to them too, so that they will help me." But they became the ruin of both him and all Israel. 24 Ahaz gathered the objects from God's temple, cut them up, shut the doors of the LORD's temple, and made himself altars on every corner in Jerusalem. 25 He made shrines in all the towns of Judah for burning incense to other gods. This made the LORD, the God of his ancestors, very angry. 26 The rest of Ahaz's deeds, from beginning to end, are written in the official records of Israel's and Judah's kings. 27 Ahaz lay down with his ancestors and was buried in the city, in Jerusalem, but not in the royal cemetery of Israel's kings. His son Hezekiah succeeded him as king.
1 Hezekiah became king when he was 25 years old, and he ruled for twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Abijah; she was Zechariah's daughter. 2 He did what was right in the LORD's eyes, just as his ancestor David had done. 3 In the very first year of his rule, during the first month, Hezekiah reopened the doors of the LORD's temple, having repaired them. 4 Then he brought in the priests and Levites and assembled them in the eastern square. 5 "Listen to me, you Levites!" he said. "Make yourselves holy so you can make holy the temple of the LORD God of your ancestors by removing from the sanctuary any impure thing. 6 Our ancestors were unfaithful and did what was evil in the LORD our God's eyes. They abandoned him, they ignored the LORD's dwelling, and they defied him. 7 They even closed the doors of the entrance hall, snuffed out the lamps, and stopped burning incense and offering entirely burned offerings in the sanctuary of the God of Israel. 8 This angered the LORD so much that he made Judah and Jerusalem an object of terror and horror, something people hiss at, as you can see with your own eyes. 9 That's why our ancestors died violent deaths, while our sons, daughters, and wives were taken captive. 10 But now I intend to make a covenant with the LORD, Israel's God, so God will no longer be angry with us. 11 Don't be careless, my sons! The LORD has chosen you to stand in his presence to serve him, so that you can be his servants and burn incense to him." 12 Then the following Levites got up: from the descendants of the Kohathites: Mahath, Amasai's son, and Joel, Azariah's son; from the descendants of Merari: Kish, Abdi's son, and Azariah, Jehallelel's son; from the Gershonites: Joah, Zimmah's son, and Eden, Joah's son; 13 from the descendants of Elizaphan: Shimri and Jeuel; from the descendants of Asaph: Zechariah and Mattaniah; 14 from the descendants of Heman: Jehuel and Shimei; and from the descendants of Jeduthun: Shemaiah and Uzziel. 15 These men gathered their relatives, made themselves holy, and went in to purify the LORD's temple by obeying the king's command as the LORD had told him. 16 The priests went in to purify the inner portion of the LORD's temple. They brought out to the courtyard of the LORD's temple all the impurities they discovered inside. Then the Levites took them out to the Kidron Valley. 17 They began to make things holy on the first day of the first month. On the eighth day of the month they reached the LORD's entrance hall. They made holy the LORD's temple for eight days, finishing on the sixteenth day of the first month. 18 Then they went before King Hezekiah. "We have purified the LORD's entire temple," they said, "and the altar for the entirely burned offering together with all its equipment, and the table for the stacks of bread together with all its equipment. 19 We have also restored and made holy all the items King Ahaz threw out during his rule in his unfaithfulness. They are now before the LORD's altar." 20 Early the next morning Hezekiah gathered the city leaders and went to the LORD's temple. 21 They brought seven bulls, seven rams, and seven lambs, along with seven male goats, for a purification offering on behalf of the kingdom, the sanctuary, and Judah. Hezekiah ordered the priests, Aaron's sons, to offer them up on the LORD's altar. 22 When they slaughtered the bulls, the priests took the blood and splashed it against the altar. Next they slaughtered the rams and splashed their blood against the altar, and also slaughtered the lambs, splashing their blood against the altar as well. 23 Finally, they brought the goats for the purification offering before the king and the assembly. After laying their hands on them, 24 the priests slaughtered them and smeared the blood on the altar as a purification offering to take away the sin of all Israel, because the king had specifically ordered that the entirely burned sacrifice and the purification offering should be on behalf of all Israel. 25 Hezekiah had the Levites stand in the LORD's temple with cymbals, harps, and zithers, just as the LORD had ordered through David, the king's seer Gad, and the prophet Nathan. 26 While the Levites took their places holding David's instruments, and the priests their trumpets, 27 Hezekiah ordered the entirely burned offering to be offered up on the altar. As they began to offer the entirely burned offering, the LORD's song also began, accompanied by the trumpets and the other instruments of Israel's King David. 28 The whole congregation worshipped with singing choirs and blaring trumpets until the end of the entirely burned offering. 29 After the entirely burned offering was complete, the king and all who were with him bowed down in worship. 30 Then King Hezekiah and the leaders ordered the Levites to praise the LORD by using the words of David and the seer Asaph. They did so joyously; then they bowed down in worship too. 31 "Now that you have dedicated yourselves to the LORD," King Hezekiah told them, "bring sacrificial thank offerings to the LORD's temple." So the assembly brought sacrificial thank offerings, with some people volunteering to provide entirely burned offerings. 32 All in all, the congregation brought seventy bulls, a hundred rams, and two hundred lambs as entirely burned offerings for the LORD, 33 as well as six hundred bulls and three thousand sheep as holy offerings. 34 Unfortunately, there weren't enough priests to skin all these entirely burned offerings. So their relatives the Levites (who had been more conscientious about preparing themselves than the priests) stepped in and helped them until the work was done or additional priests had made themselves holy. 35 In addition to the wealth of entirely burned offerings, there was the fat of the well-being sacrifices and drink offerings accompanying the entirely burned offerings. In this way, the service of the LORD's temple was restored, 36 and Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced at what God had done for them, since it had happened so quickly.
1 When Jesus finished saying these things, he looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, so that the Son can glorify you. 2 You gave him authority over everyone so that he could give eternal life to everyone you gave him. 3 This is eternal life: to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent. 4 I have glorified you on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. 5 Now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I shared with you before the world was created. 6 “I have revealed your name to the people you gave me from this world. They were yours and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7 Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8 This is because I gave them the words that you gave me, and they received them. They truly understood that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9 “I'm praying for them. I'm not praying for the world but for those you gave me, because they are yours. 10 Everything that is mine is yours and everything that is yours is mine; I have been glorified in them. 11 I'm no longer in the world, but they are in the world, even as I'm coming to you. Holy Father, watch over them in your name, the name you gave me, that they will be one just as we are one. 12 When I was with them, I watched over them in your name, the name you gave to me, and I kept them safe. None of them were lost, except the one who was destined for destruction, so that scripture would be fulfilled. 13 Now I'm coming to you and I say these things while I'm in the world so that they can share completely in my joy. 14 I gave your word to them and the world hated them, because they don't belong to this world, just as I don't belong to this world. 15 I'm not asking that you take them out of this world but that you keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They don't belong to this world, just as I don't belong to this world. 17 Make them holy in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 I made myself holy on their behalf so that they also would be made holy in the truth. 20 “I'm not praying only for them but also for those who believe in me because of their word. 21 I pray they will be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. I pray that they also will be in us, so that the world will believe that you sent me. 22 I've given them the glory that you gave me so that they can be one just as we are one. 23 I'm in them and you are in me so that they will be made perfectly one. Then the world will know that you sent me and that you have loved them just as you loved me. 24 “Father, I want those you gave me to be with me where I am. Then they can see my glory, which you gave me because you loved me before the creation of the world. 25 "Righteous Father, even the world didn't know you, but I've known you, and these believers know that you sent me. 26 I've made your name known to them and will continue to make it known so that your love for me will be in them, and I myself will be in them."
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