2 Chronicles 25; 2 Chronicles 26; 2 Chronicles 27; John 16

1 Amaziah became king at the age of twenty-five, and he ruled in Jerusalem for twenty-nine years. His mother was Jehoaddin from Jerusalem. 2 He did what was pleasing to the Lord, but did it reluctantly. 3 As soon as he was firmly in power, he executed the officials who had murdered his father. 4 He did not, however, execute their children, but followed what the Lord had commanded in the Law of Moses: "Parents are not to be put to death for crimes committed by their children, and children are not to be put to death for crimes committed by their parents; people are to be put to death only for crimes they themselves have committed." 5 King Amaziah organized all the men of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin into army units, according to the clans they belonged to, and placed officers in command of units of a thousand and units of a hundred. This included all men twenty years of age or older, 300,000 in all. They were picked troops, ready for battle, skilled in using spears and shields. 6 In addition, he hired 100,000 soldiers from Israel at a cost of about four tons of silver. 7 But a prophet went to the king and said to him, "Don't take these Israelite soldiers with you. The Lord is not with these people from the Northern Kingdom. 8 You may think that they will make you stronger in battle, but it is God who has the power to give victory or defeat, and he will let your enemies defeat you." 9 Amaziah asked the prophet, "But what about all that silver I have already paid for them?" The prophet replied, "The Lord can give you back more than that!" 10 So Amaziah sent the hired troops away and told them to go home. At this they went home, bitterly angry with the people of Judah. 11 Amaziah summoned up his courage and led his army to Salt Valley. There they fought and killed ten thousand Edomite soldiers 12 and captured another ten thousand. They took the prisoners to the top of the cliff at the city of Sela and threw them off, so that they were killed on the rocks below. 13 Meanwhile the Israelite soldiers that Amaziah had not allowed to go into battle with him attacked the Judean cities between Samaria and Beth Horon, killed three thousand men, and captured quantities of loot. 14 When Amaziah returned from defeating the Edomites, he brought their idols back with him, set them up, worshiped them, and burned incense to them. 15 This made the Lord angry, so he sent a prophet to Amaziah. The prophet demanded, "Why have you worshiped foreign gods that could not even save their own people from your power?" 16 "Since when," Amaziah interrupted, "have we made you adviser to the king? Stop talking, or I'll have you killed!" The prophet stopped, but not before saying, "Now I know that God has decided to destroy you because you have done all this and have ignored my advice." 17 King Amaziah of Judah and his advisers plotted against Israel. He then sent a message to King Jehoash of Israel, who was the son of Jehoahaz and grandson of Jehu, challenging him to fight. 18 Jehoash sent this answer to Amaziah: "Once a thorn bush in the Lebanon Mountains sent a message to a cedar: "Give your daughter in marriage to my son.' A wild animal passed by and trampled the bush down. 19 Now Amaziah, you boast that you have defeated the Edomites, but I advise you to stay at home. Why stir up trouble that will only bring disaster on you and your people?" 20 But Amaziah refused to listen. It was God's will for Amaziah to be defeated, because he had worshiped the Edomite idols. 21 So King Jehoash of Israel went into battle against King Amaziah of Judah. They met at Beth Shemesh in Judah, 22 the Judean army was defeated, and the soldiers fled to their homes. 23 Jehoash captured Amaziah and took him to Jerusalem. There he tore down the city wall from Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate, a distance of two hundred yards. 24 He took back to Samaria as loot all the gold and silver in the Temple, the Temple equipment guarded by the descendants of Obed Edom, and the palace treasures. He also took hostages with him. 25 King Amaziah of Judah outlived King Jehoash of Israel by fifteen years. 26 All the other things that Amaziah did from the beginning to the end of his reign are recorded in [The History of the Kings of Judah and Israel.] 27 Ever since the time when he rebelled against the Lord, there had been a plot against him in Jerusalem. Finally he fled to the city of Lachish, but his enemies followed him there and killed him. 28 His body was carried to Jerusalem on a horse, and he was buried in the royal tombs in David's City.
1 All the people of Judah chose Amaziah's sixteen-year-old son Uzziah to succeed his father as king 2 (It was after the death of Amaziah that Uzziah recaptured Elath and rebuilt the city.) 3 Uzziah became king at the age of sixteen, and he ruled in Jerusalem for fifty-two years. His mother was Jecoliah from Jerusalem. 4 Following the example of his father, he did what was pleasing to the Lord. 5 As long as Zechariah, his religious adviser, was living, he served the Lord faithfully, and God blessed him. 6 Uzziah went to war against the Philistines. He tore down the walls of the cities of Gath, Jamnia, and Ashdod, and built fortified cities near Ashdod and in the rest of Philistia. 7 God helped him defeat the Philistines, the Arabs living at Gurbaal, and the Meunites. 8 The Ammonites paid tribute to Uzziah, and he became so powerful that his fame spread even to Egypt. 9 Uzziah strengthened the fortifications of Jerusalem by building towers at the Corner Gate, at the Valley Gate, and where the wall turned. 10 He also built fortified towers in the open country and dug many cisterns, because he had large herds of livestock in the western foothills and plains. Because he loved farming, he encouraged the people to plant vineyards in the hill country and to farm the fertile land. 11 He had a large army ready for battle. Its records were kept by his secretaries Jeiel and Maaseiah under the supervision of Hananiah, a member of the king's staff. 12 The army was commanded by 2,600 officers. 13 Under them were 307,500 soldiers able to fight effectively for the king against his enemies. 14 Uzziah supplied the army with shields, spears, helmets, coats of armor, bows and arrows, and stones for slinging. 15 In Jerusalem his inventors made equipment for shooting arrows and for throwing large stones from the towers and corners of the city wall. His fame spread everywhere, and he became very powerful because of the help he received from God. 16 But when King Uzziah became strong, he grew arrogant, and that led to his downfall. He defied the Lord his God by going into the Temple to burn incense on the altar of incense. 17 Azariah the priest, accompanied by eighty strong and courageous priests, followed the king 18 to resist him. They said, "Uzziah! You have no right to burn incense to the Lord. Only the priests who are descended from Aaron have been consecrated to do this. Leave this holy place. You have offended the Lord God, and you no longer have his blessing." 19 Uzziah was standing there in the Temple beside the incense altar and was holding an incense burner. He became angry with the priests, and immediately a dreaded skin disease broke out on his forehead. 20 Azariah and the other priests stared at the king's forehead in horror and then forced him to leave the Temple. He hurried to get out, because the Lord had punished him. 21 For the rest of his life King Uzziah was ritually unclean because of his disease. Unable to enter the Temple again, he lived in his own house, relieved of all duties, while his son Jotham governed the country. 22 The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz recorded all the other things that King Uzziah did during his reign. 23 Uzziah died and was buried in the royal burial ground, but because of his disease he was not buried in the royal tombs. His son Jotham succeeded him as king.
1 Jotham became king at the age of twenty-five, and he ruled in Jerusalem for sixteen years. His mother was Jerushah, the daughter of Zadok. 2 He did what was pleasing to the Lord, just as his father had done; but unlike his father he did not sin by burning incense in the Temple. The people, however, went on sinning. 3 It was Jotham who built the North Gate of the Temple and did extensive work on the city wall in the area of Jerusalem called Ophel. 4 In the mountains of Judah he built cities, and in the forests he built forts and towers. 5 He fought against the king of Ammon and his army and defeated them. Then he forced the Ammonites to pay him the following tribute each year for three years: four tons of silver, fifty thousand bushels of wheat, and fifty thousand bushels of barley. 6 Jotham grew powerful because he faithfully obeyed the Lord his God. 7 The other events of Jotham's reign, his wars, and his policies, are all recorded in [The History of the Kings of Israel and Judah.] 8 Jotham was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he ruled in Jerusalem for sixteen years. 9 He died and was buried in David's City and his son Ahaz succeeded him as king.
1 "I have told you this, so that you will not give up your faith. 2 You will be expelled from the synagogues, and the time will come when those who kill you will think that by doing this they are serving God. 3 People will do these things to you because they have not known either the Father or me. 4 But I have told you this, so that when the time comes for them to do these things, you will remember what I told you. "I did not tell you these things at the beginning, for I was with you. 5 But now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me where I am going. 6 And now that I have told you, your hearts are full of sadness. 7 But I am telling you the truth: it is better for you that I go away, because if I do not go, the Helper will not come to you. But if I do go away, then I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will prove to the people of the world that they are wrong about sin and about what is right and about God's judgment. 9 They are wrong about sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 they are wrong about what is right, because I am going to the Father and you will not see me any more; 11 and they are wrong about judgment, because the ruler of this world has already been judged. 12 "I have much more to tell you, but now it would be too much for you to bear. 13 When, however, the Spirit comes, who reveals the truth about God, he will lead you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own authority, but he will speak of what he hears and will tell you of things to come. 14 He will give me glory, because he will take what I say and tell it to you. 15 All that my Father has is mine; that is why I said that the Spirit will take what I give him and tell it to you. 16 "In a little while you will not see me any more, and then a little while later you will see me." 17 Some of his disciples asked among themselves, "What does this mean? He tells us that in a little while we will not see him, and then a little while later we will see him; and he also says, "It is because I am going to the Father.' 18 What does this "a little while' mean? We don't know what he is talking about!" 19 Jesus knew that they wanted to question him, so he said to them, "I said, "In a little while you will not see me, and then a little while later you will see me.' Is this what you are asking about among yourselves? 20 I am telling you the truth: you will cry and weep, but the world will be glad; you will be sad, but your sadness will turn into gladness. 21 When a woman is about to give birth, she is sad because her hour of suffering has come; but when the baby is born, she forgets her suffering, because she is happy that a baby has been born into the world. 22 That is how it is with you: now you are sad, but I will see you again, and your hearts will be filled with gladness, the kind of gladness that no one can take away from you. 23 "When that day comes, you will not ask me for anything. I am telling you the truth: the Father will give you whatever you ask of him in my name. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your happiness may be complete. 25 "I have used figures of speech to tell you these things. But the time will come when I will not use figures of speech, but will speak to you plainly about the Father. 26 When that day comes, you will ask him in my name; and I do not say that I will ask him on your behalf, 27 for the Father himself loves you. He loves you because you love me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I did come from the Father, and I came into the world; and now I am leaving the world and going to the Father." 29 Then his disciples said to him, "Now you are speaking plainly, without using figures of speech. 30 We know now that you know everything; you do not need to have someone ask you questions. This makes us believe that you came from God." 31 Jesus answered them, "Do you believe now? 32 The time is coming, and is already here, when all of you will be scattered, each of you to your own home, and I will be left all alone. But I am not really alone, because the Father is with me. 33 I have told you this so that you will have peace by being united to me. The world will make you suffer. But be brave! I have defeated the world!"
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