2 CHRONICLES 15
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Asa’s Religious Reforms 15:1 The Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded,
2 and he went out to meet Asa and said to him, “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: The Lord is with you while you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.
3 For a long time Israel was without the true God, and without a teaching priest and without law,
4 but when in their distress they turned to the Lord, the God of Israel, and sought him, he was found by them.
5 In those times there was no peace to him who went out or to him who came in, for great disturbances afflicted all the inhabitants of the lands.
6 They were broken in pieces. Nation was crushed by nation and city by city, for God troubled them with every sort of distress.
7 But you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded.”
8 As soon as Asa heard these words, the prophecy of Azariah the son of Oded, he took courage and put away the detestable idols from all the land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities that he had taken in the hill country of Ephraim, and he repaired the altar of the Lord that was in front of the vestibule of the house of the Lord.
9 And he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, and those from Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon who were residing with them, for great numbers had deserted to him from Israel when they saw that the Lord his God was with him.
10 They were gathered at Jerusalem in the third month of the fifteenth year of the reign of Asa.
11 They sacrificed to the Lord on that day from the spoil that they had brought 700 oxen and 7,000 sheep.
12 And they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and with all their soul,
13 but that whoever would not seek the Lord, the God of Israel, should be put to death, whether young or old, man or woman.
14 They swore an oath to the Lord with a loud voice and with shouting and with trumpets and with horns.
15 And all Judah rejoiced over the oath, for they had sworn with all their heart and had sought him with their whole desire, and he was found by them, and the Lord gave them rest all around.
16 Even Maacah, his mother, King Asa removed from being queen mother because she had made a detestable image for Asherah. Asa cut down her image, crushed it, and burned it at the brook Kidron.
17 But the high places were not taken out of Israel. Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true all his days.
18 And he brought into the house of God the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts, silver, and gold, and vessels.
19 And there was no more war until the thirty-fifth year of the reign of Asa.
2 CHRONICLES 16
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Asa’s Last Years 16:1 In the thirty-sixth year of the reign of Asa, Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and built Ramah, that he might permit no one to go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.
2 Then Asa took silver and gold from the treasures of the house of the Lord and the king’s house and sent them to Ben-hadad king of Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying,
3 “There is a covenant between me and you, as there was between my father and your father. Behold, I am sending to you silver and gold. Go, break your covenant with Baasha king of Israel, that he may withdraw from me.”
4 And Ben-hadad listened to King Asa and sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel, and they conquered Ijon, Dan, Abel-maim, and all the store cities of Naphtali.
5 And when Baasha heard of it, he stopped building Ramah and let his work cease.
6 Then King Asa took all Judah, and they carried away the stones of Ramah and its timber, with which Baasha had been building, and with them he built Geba and Mizpah.
7 At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah and said to him, “Because you relied on the king of Syria, and did not rely on the Lord your God, the army of the king of Syria has escaped you.
8 Were not the Ethiopians and the Libyans a huge army with very many chariots and horsemen? Yet because you relied on the Lord, he gave them into your hand.
9 For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. You have done foolishly in this, for from now on you will have wars.”
10 Then Asa was angry with the seer and put him in the stocks in prison, for he was in a rage with him because of this. And Asa inflicted cruelties upon some of the people at the same time.
11 The acts of Asa, from first to last, are written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel.
12 In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was diseased in his feet, and his disease became severe. Yet even in his disease he did not seek the Lord, but sought help from physicians.
13 And Asa slept with his fathers, dying in the forty-first year of his reign.
14 They buried him in the tomb that he had cut for himself in the city of David. They laid him on a bier that had been filled with various kinds of spices prepared by the perfumer’s art, and they made a very great fire in his honor.
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The Way of Wisdom9:1 Wisdom has built her house;she has hewn her seven pillars.
2 She has slaughtered her beasts; she has mixed her wine;she has also set her table.
3 She has sent out her young women to callfrom the highest places in the town,
4 “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!”To him who lacks sense she says,
5 “Come, eat of my breadand drink of the wine I have mixed.
6 Leave your simple ways, and live,and walk in the way of insight.”
7 Whoever corrects a scoffer gets himself abuse,and he who reproves a wicked man incurs injury.
8 Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you;reprove a wise man, and he will love you.
9 Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.
11 For by me your days will be multiplied,and years will be added to your life.
12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself;if you scoff, you alone will bear it.
The Way of Folly13 The woman Folly is loud;she is seductive and knows nothing.
14 She sits at the door of her house;she takes a seat on the highest places of the town,
15 calling to those who pass by,who are going straight on their way,
16 “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!”And to him who lacks sense she says,
17 “Stolen water is sweet,and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.”
18 But he does not know that the dead are there,that her guests are in the depths of Sheol.
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4:1 Masters, treat your bondservants justly and fairly, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven.
Further Instructions2 Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.
3 At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison—
4 that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak.
5 Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.
6 Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
Final Greetings7 Tychicus will tell you all about my activities. He is a beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord.
8 I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are and that he may encourage your hearts,
9 and with him Onesimus, our faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will tell you of everything that has taken place here.
10 Aristarchus my fellow prisoner greets you, and Mark the cousin of Barnabas (concerning whom you have received instructions—if he comes to you, welcome him),
11 and Jesus who is called Justus. These are the only men of the circumcision among my fellow workers for the kingdom of God, and they have been a comfort to me.
12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you, always struggling on your behalf in his prayers, that you may stand mature and fully assured in all the will of God.
13 For I bear him witness that he has worked hard for you and for those in Laodicea and in Hierapolis.
14 Luke the beloved physician greets you, as does Demas.
15 Give my greetings to the brothers at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house.
16 And when this letter has been read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and see that you also read the letter from Laodicea.
17 And say to Archippus, “See that you fulfill the ministry that you have received in the Lord.”
18 I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.
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