2 Chronicles 22; 2 Chronicles 23; 2 Chronicles 24

1 The people of Jerusalem made Jehoram's youngest son Ahaziah king in his place, because the raiders who came to the camp with the Arabs had killed all the older sons. So Jehoram's son Ahaziah became king of Judah. 2 Ahaziah was 42 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled for one year in Jerusalem. His mother was Athaliah, the granddaughter of Omri. 3 Ahaziah also followed the ways of Ahab's family, because his mother gave him advice that led him to sin. 4 He did what the LORD considered evil, as Ahab's family had done. After his father died, they advised him to do what Ahab's family had done. They did this to destroy him. 5 Ahaziah followed their advice and went with Ahab's son King Joram of Israel to fight against King Hazael of Aram at Ramoth Gilead. There the Arameans wounded Joram. 6 Joram returned to Jezreel to let his wounds heal. (He had been wounded by the Arameans at Ramah when he fought against King Hazael of Aram.) Then Jehoram's son Ahaziah went to Jezreel to see Ahab's son Joram, who was sick. 7 God brought about Ahaziah's downfall when he went to Joram. He went with Joram to meet Jehu, grandson of Nimshi. (The LORD had anointed Jehu to destroy Ahab's family.) 8 When Jehu was executing judgment on Ahab's family, he found Judah's leaders (Ahaziah's nephews) who were serving Ahaziah, and he killed them. 9 He searched for Ahaziah, and Jehu's men captured him while he was hiding in Samaria. They brought him to Jehu and killed him. Then they buried him. They explained, "Ahaziah is Jehoshaphat's grandson. Jehoshaphat dedicated his life to serving the LORD with all his heart." But no one in Ahaziah's family was able to rule as king. 10 When Ahaziah's mother, Athaliah, saw that her son was dead, she began to destroy the entire royal family of the house of Judah. 11 But Jehoshebath, daughter of the king and sister of Ahaziah, took Ahaziah's son Joash. She saved him from being killed with the king's other sons, and she put him and his nurse in a bedroom. Jehoshebath was the daughter of King Jehoram and wife of Jehoiada the priest. Because she was also Ahaziah's sister, she hid Joash from Athaliah. So he wasn't killed. 12 Joash was with the priests. He was hidden in God's temple for six years while Athaliah ruled the country.
1 In the seventh year of Athaliah's reign, Jehoiada strengthened his position by making an agreement with the company commanders: Azariah, son of Jeroham, Ishmael, son of Jehohanan, Azariah, son of Obed, Maaseiah, son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat, son of Zichri. 2 They went around Judah, gathered the Levites from all the cities of Judah and the leaders of the families of Israel, and came to Jerusalem. 3 The whole assembly made an agreement with the king in God's temple. Then Jehoiada said to them, "Here is the king's son. He should be king, as the LORD said about David's descendants. 4 This is what you must do: One third of you, the priests and Levites who are on duty on the day of worship, must guard the gates 5 Another third must be at the royal palace. And another third must be at Foundation Gate. All the people must be in the courtyards of the LORD's temple. 6 No one should come into the LORD's temple except the priests and the Levites who are on duty with them. They may enter because they are holy, but all other people should follow the LORD's regulations. 7 The Levites should surround the king. Each man should have his weapon in his hand. Kill anyone who tries to come into the temple. Stay with the king wherever he goes." 8 So the Levites and all the Judeans did what the priest Jehoiada had ordered them. Each took his men who were coming on duty on the day of worship as well as those who were about to go off duty. Jehoiada had not dismissed the priestly divisions. 9 Jehoiada gave the commanders the spears and the small and large shields that had belonged to King David but were now in God's temple. 10 All the troops stood with their weapons drawn. They were stationed around the king and around the altar and the temple (from the south side to the north side of the temple). 11 Then they brought out the king's son, gave him the crown and the religious instructions, and Jehoiada and his sons made him king by anointing him. They said, "Long live the king!" 12 When Athaliah heard the people running and praising the king, she went into the LORD's temple, where the people were. 13 She looked, and the king was standing by the pillar at the entrance. The commanders and the trumpeters were by his side. All the people of the land were rejoicing and blowing trumpets. The singers were leading the celebration with songs accompanied by musical instruments. As Athaliah tore her clothes [in distress], she said, "Treason, treason!" 14 Then the priest Jehoiada brought the company commanders who were in charge of the army out [of the temple]. He said to them, "Take her out of the temple. Use your sword to kill anyone who follows her." (The priest had said, "Don't kill her in the LORD's temple." 15 So they arrested her as she entered Horse Gate of the royal palace, and they killed her there. 16 Jehoiada made a promise to the LORD on behalf of the king and his people that they would be the LORD's people. 17 Then all the people went to the temple of Baal and tore it down. They smashed Baal's altars and his statues and killed Mattan, the priest of Baal, in front of the altars. 18 Next, Jehoiada appointed officials to be in charge of the LORD's temple under the direction of the priests and Levites. (David had arranged them in divisions for the LORD's temple. They were appointed to sacrifice burnt offerings to the LORD as it is written in Moses' Teachings. They made these offerings with joy and singing as David had directed.) 19 Jehoiada appointed gatekeepers for the gates of the LORD's temple so that no one who was unclean for any reason could enter 20 He took the company commanders, the nobles, the people's governors, and all the people of the land, and they brought the king from the LORD's temple. They went through Upper Gate to the royal palace and seated the king on the royal throne. The nobles, the governors of the people, and 21 all the people of the land were celebrating. But the city was quiet because they had killed Athaliah with a sword
1 Joash was 7 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled for 40 years in Jerusalem. His mother was Zibiah from Beersheba. 2 Joash did what the LORD considered right, as long as the priest Jehoiada lived. 3 Jehoiada got Joash two wives, and Joash had sons and daughters. 4 After this, Joash wanted to renovate the LORD's temple. 5 He gathered the priests and the Levites and said to them, "Go to the cities of Judah, and collect money throughout Israel to repair the temple of your God every year. Do it immediately!" But the Levites didn't do it immediately. 6 So the king called for the chief priest Jehoiada and asked him, "Why didn't you require the Levites to bring the contributions from Judah and Jerusalem? The LORD's servant Moses and the assembly had required Israel to give contributions for the use of the tent containing the words of God's promise." 7 (The sons of that wicked woman Athaliah had broken into God's temple and used all the holy things of the LORD's temple [to worship] other gods--the Baals.) 8 The king issued an order, and they made a box and placed it outside the gate of the LORD's temple. 9 Then they issued a proclamation in Judah and Jerusalem that the contributions should be brought to the LORD. (In the desert the LORD's servant Moses had required Israel to make contributions.) 10 All the officials and all the people were overjoyed. They brought the money and dropped it into the box until it was full. 11 Whenever the Levites brought the box to the king's officers and they saw a lot of money, the king's scribe and the chief priest's officer would empty the box and put it back in its place. They would do this every day, so they collected a lot of money. 12 The king and Jehoiada would give the money to the foremen who were working on the LORD's temple, and they hired masons and carpenters to renovate the LORD's temple. They also hired men who worked with iron and bronze to repair the LORD's temple. 13 As the men worked, the project progressed under the foremen's guidance. They restored God's temple to its proper condition and reinforced it. 14 When they finished, they brought the rest of the money to the king and Jehoiada, who used it to make utensils for the LORD's temple. They made dishes and gold and silver utensils for the service and for the offerings. As long as Jehoiada lived, they sacrificed burnt offerings in the LORD's temple. 15 When Jehoiada was old and had lived out his years, he died. He was 130 years old when he died. 16 He was buried in the City of David with the kings because of the good he had done in Israel for God and the temple. 17 After he died, the officials of Judah bowed in front of the king with their faces touching the ground. Then the king listened to their advice. 18 They abandoned the temple of the LORD God of their ancestors and worshiped idols and the poles dedicated to the goddess Asherah. This offense of theirs brought God's anger upon Judah and Jerusalem. 19 The LORD sent them prophets to bring them back to himself. The prophets warned them, but they wouldn't listen. 20 God's Spirit gave Zechariah, son of the priest Jehoiada, strength. Zechariah stood in front of the people and said to them, "This is what God says: Why are you breaking the LORD's commands? You won't prosper that way! The LORD has abandoned you because you have abandoned him." 21 But they plotted against Zechariah, and by the king's order they stoned him to death in the courtyard of the LORD's temple. 22 King Joash did not remember how kind Zechariah's father, Jehoiada, had been to him. Instead, he killed Jehoiada's son. As Zechariah died, he said, "May the LORD see [this] and get revenge!" 23 At the end of the year, the Aramean army attacked Joash. They came to Judah and Jerusalem and destroyed all the people's leaders. The Arameans sent all the loot they took from Judah and Jerusalem to the king of Damascus. 24 The Aramean army had come with a small number of men, but the LORD handed Joash's large army over to them because Joash's soldiers had abandoned the LORD God of their ancestors. So the Arameans carried out [the LORD's] judgment on Joash. 25 When the Arameans withdrew, they left him suffering from many wounds. His own officials plotted against him for murdering the son of the priest Jehoiada. They killed Joash in his bed. When he died, they buried him in the City of David, but they didn't bury him in the tombs of the kings. 26 These were the men who conspired against him: Zabad, son of an Ammonite woman named Shimeath, and Jehozabad, son of a Moabite woman named Shimrith. 27 The record about his sons, the many divine revelations against him, and the rebuilding of God's temple is in the notes made in the Book of the Kings. His son Amaziah succeeded him as king.
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