The Reign of Abijam
15 1 Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, Abijam became king over Judah. 2 For three years he was king in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Maacah, the daughter of Abishalom. 3 And he did the same sins which his father had done before him: his heart was not completely true to the Lord his God, like the heart of David his father. 4 But because of David, the Lord gave him a light in Jerusalem, making his sons king after him, so that Jerusalem might be safe; 5 Because David did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and never in all his life went against his orders, but only in the question of Uriah the Hittite. 6 ... 7 Now the rest of the acts of Abijam, and all he did, are they not recorded in the book of the history of the kings of Judah? And there was war between Abijam and Jeroboam. 8 Then Abijam went to rest with his fathers, and they put him into the earth in the town of David: and Asa his son became king in his place.
The Reign of Asa
9 In the twentieth year that Jeroboam was king of Israel, Asa became king over Judah. 10 And he was king for forty-one years in Jerusalem; his mother's name was Maacah, the daughter of Abishalom. 11 Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as David his father did. 12 Those used for sex purposes in the worship of the gods he sent out of the country, and he took away all the images which his fathers had made. 13 And he would not let Maacah his mother be queen, because she had made a disgusting image for Asherah; and Asa had the image cut down and burned by the stream Kidron. 14 The high places, however, were not taken away: but still the heart of Asa was true to the Lord all his life. 15 He took into the house of the Lord all the things which his father had made holy, and those which he himself had made holy, silver and gold and vessels.
Asa's League with Ben-hadad
16 Now there was war between Asa and Baasha, king of Israel, all their days. 17 And Baasha, king of Israel, went up against Judah, building Ramah, so that no one was able to go out or in to Asa, king of Judah. 18 Then Asa took all the silver and gold which was still stored in the Lord's house, and in the king's house, and sent them, in the care of his servants, to Ben-hadad, son of Tabrimmon, son of Rezon, king of Aram, at Damascus, saying, 19 Let there be an agreement between me and you as there was between my father and your father: see, I have sent you an offering of silver and gold; go and put an end to your agreement with Baasha, king of Israel, so that he may give up attacking me. 20 So Ben-hadad did as King Asa said, and sent the captains of his armies against the towns of Israel, attacking Ijon and Dan and Abel-beth-maacah, and all Chinneroth as far as all the land of Naphtali. 21 And Baasha, hearing of it, put a stop to the building of Ramah, and was living in Tirzah. 22 Then King Asa got all Judah together, making every man come; and they took away the stones and the wood with which Baasha was building Ramah, and King Asa made use of them for building Geba in the land of Benjamin, and Mizpah. 23 Now the rest of the acts of Asa, and his power, and all he did, and the towns of which he was the builder, are they not recorded in the book of the history of the kings of Judah? But when he was old he had a disease of the feet. 24 So Asa went to rest with his fathers and was put into the earth in the town of David his father: and Jehoshaphat his son became king in his place.
The Reign of Abijah
13 1 In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, Abijah became king over Judah. 2 He was king in Jerusalem for three years; his mother's name was Maacah, the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah. And there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. 3 And Abijah went out to the fight with an army of men of war, four hundred thousand of his best men; and Jeroboam put his forces in line against him, eight hundred thousand of his best men of war. 4 And Abijah took up his position on Mount Zemaraim, in the hill-country of Ephraim, and said, Give ear to me, O Jeroboam and all Israel: 5 Is it not clear to you that the Lord, the God of Israel, gave the rule over Israel to David and to his sons for ever, by an agreement made with salt? 6 But Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon, the son of David, took up arms against his lord. 7 And certain foolish and good-for-nothing men were joined with him, and made themselves strong against Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, when he was young and untested and not able to keep them back. 8 And now it is your purpose to put yourselves against the authority which the Lord has put into the hands of the sons of David, and you are a very great number, and you have with you the gold oxen which Jeroboam made to be your gods. 9 And after driving out the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron and the Levites, have you not made priests for yourselves as the people of other lands do? so that anyone who comes to make himself priest by offering an ox or seven sheep, may be a priest of those who are no gods. 10 But as for us, the Lord is our God, and we have not been turned away from him; we have priests who do the work of the Lord, even the sons of Aaron and the Levites in their places; 11 By whom burned offerings and perfumes are sent up in smoke before the Lord every morning and every evening; and they put out the holy bread on its table and the gold support for the lights with its lights burning every evening; for we keep the orders given to us by the Lord our God, but you have gone away from him. 12 And now God is with us at our head, and his priests with their loud horns sounding against you. O children of Israel, do not make war on the Lord, the God of your fathers, for it will not go well for you.
13 But Jeroboam had put some of his men to make a surprise attack on them from the back, so some were facing Judah and others were stationed secretly at their back. 14 And Judah, turning their faces, saw that they were being attacked in front and at the back; and they gave a cry for help to the Lord, while the priests were sounding their horns. 15 And the men of Judah gave a loud cry; and at their cry, God put fear into Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah. 16 And the children of Israel went in flight before Judah, and God gave them up into their hands. 17 And Abijah and his people put them to death with great destruction: five hundred thousand of the best of Israel were put to the sword. 18 So at that time the children of Israel were overcome, and the children of Judah got the better of them, because they put their faith in the Lord, the God of their fathers. 19 And Abijah went after Jeroboam and took some of his towns, Beth-el with its small towns and Jeshanah with its small towns and Ephron with its small towns. 20 And Jeroboam did not get back his power again in the life-time of Abijah; and the Lord sent death on him. 21 But Abijah became great, and had fourteen wives, and became the father of twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters. 22 And the rest of the acts of Abijah, and his ways and his sayings, are recorded in the account of the prophet Iddo.
The Reign of Asa
14 1 So Abijah went to rest with his fathers, and they put him into the earth in the town of David, and Asa his son became king in his place; in his time the land was quiet for ten years. 2 And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God; 3 For he took away the altars of strange gods and the high places, and had the upright stones broken and the wood pillars cut down; 4 And he made Judah go after the Lord, the God of their fathers, and keep his laws and his orders. 5 And he took away the high places and the sun-images from all the towns of Judah; and the kingdom was quiet under his rule. 6 He made walled towns in Judah, for the land was quiet and there were no wars in those years, because the Lord had given him rest. 7 He said to Judah, Let us make these towns, building walls round them with towers and doors and locks. The land is still ours, because we have been true to the Lord our God; we have been true to him and he has given us rest on every side. So they went on building and all went well for them. 8 And Asa had an army of three hundred thousand men of Judah armed with body-covers and spears, and two hundred and eighty thousand of Benjamin armed with body-covers and bows; all these were men of war.
9 And Zerah the Ethiopian, with an army of a million, and three hundred war-carriages, came out against them to Mareshah. 10 And Asa went out against him, and they put their forces in position in the valley north of Mareshah. 11 And Asa made prayer to the Lord his God and said, Lord, you only are able to give help against the strong to him who has no strength; come to our help, O Lord our God, for our hope is in you, and in your name we have come out against this great army. O Lord, you are our God; let not man's power be greater than yours. 12 So the Lord sent fear on the Ethiopians before Asa and Judah; and the Ethiopians went in flight. 13 And Asa and the people who were with him went after them as far as Gerar; and so great was the destruction among the Ethiopians that they were not able to get their army together again, for they were broken before the Lord and before his army; and they took away a great amount of their goods. 14 And they overcame all the towns round Gerar, because the Lord sent fear on them; and they took away their goods from the towns, for there were stores of wealth in them. 15 And they made an attack on the tents of the owners of the cattle, and took away great numbers of sheep and camels and went back to Jerusalem.
15 1 And the spirit of God came on Azariah, the son of Oded; 2 And he came face to face with Asa and said to him, Give ear to me, Asa and all Judah and Benjamin: the Lord is with you while you are with him; if your heart's desire is for him, he will be near you, but if you give him up, he will give you up. 3 Now for a long time Israel has been without the true God, and without a teaching priest and without the law; 4 But when in their trouble they were turned to the Lord, the God of Israel, searching after him, he let their search be rewarded. 5 In those times there was no peace for him who went out or for him who came in, but great trouble was on all the people of the lands. 6 And they were broken by divisions, nation against nation and town against town, because God sent all sorts of trouble on them. 7 But be you strong and let not your hands be feeble, for your work will be rewarded.
8 And Asa, hearing these words of Azariah, the son of Oded the prophet, took heart and put away all the disgusting things out of all the land of Judah and Benjamin, and out of the towns which he had taken from the hill-country of Ephraim; and he made new again the altar of the Lord in front of the covered way of the Lord's house. 9 And he got together all Judah and Benjamin and those of Ephraim and Manasseh and Simeon who were living with them; for numbers of them came to him out of Israel when they saw that the Lord his God was with him. 10 So they came together at Jerusalem in the third month, in the fifteenth year of the rule of Asa. 11 And that day they made offerings to the Lord of the things they had taken in war, seven hundred oxen and seven thousand sheep. 12 And they made an agreement to be true to the Lord, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and all their soul; 13 And that anyone, small or great, man or woman, who was not true to the Lord, the God of Israel, would be put to death. 14 And they made an oath to the Lord, with a loud voice, sounding wind-instruments and horns. 15 And all Judah was glad because of the oath, for they had taken it with all their heart, turning to the Lord with all their desire; and he was with them and gave them rest on every side. 16 And Asa would not let Maacah, his mother, be queen, because she had made a disgusting image for Asherah; and Asa had her image cut down and broken up and burned by the stream Kidron. 17 But the high places were not taken away out of Israel; but still the heart of Asa was true to the Lord all his life. 18 He took into the house of God all the things which his father had made holy and those which he himself had made holy, silver and gold and vessels. 19 And there was no more war till the thirty-fifth year of the rule of Asa.
Asa's League with Ben-hadad
16 1 In the thirty-sixth year of the rule of Asa, Baasha, king of Israel, went up against Judah, building Ramah so that no one was able to go out or in to Asa, king of Judah. 2 Then Asa took silver and gold out of the stores of the Lord's house and of the king's store-house, and sent to Ben-hadad, king of Aram, at Damascus, saying, 3 Let there be an agreement between me and you as there was between my father and your father: see, I have sent you silver and gold; go and put an end to your agreement with Baasha, king of Israel, so that he may give up attacking me. 4 And Ben-hadad did as King Asa said, and sent the captains of his armies against the towns of Israel, attacking Ijon and Dan and Abel-maim, and all the store-towns of Naphtali. 5 Then Baasha, hearing of it, put a stop to the building of Ramah, and let his work come to an end. 6 Then King Asa, with all Judah, took away the stones and wood with which Baasha was building Ramah, and he made use of them for building Geba and Mizpah.
7 At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa, king of Judah, and said to him, Because you have put your faith in the king of Aram and not in the Lord your God, the army of the king of Aram has got away out of your hands. 8 Were not the Ethiopians and the Lubim a very great army, with war-carriages and horsemen more than might be numbered? but because your faith was in the Lord, he gave them up into your hands. 9 For the eyes of the Lord go this way and that, through all the earth, letting it be seen that he is the strong support of those whose hearts are true to him. In this you have done foolishly, for from now you will have wars. 10 Then Asa was angry with the seer, and put him in prison, burning with wrath against him because of this thing. And at the same time Asa was cruel to some of the people. 11 Now the acts of Asa, first and last, are recorded in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel. 12 In the thirty-ninth year of his rule, Asa had a very bad disease of the feet; but he did not go to the Lord for help in his disease, but to medical men. 13 So Asa went to rest with his fathers, and death came to him in the forty-first year of his rule. 14 And they put him into the resting-place which he had made for himself in the town of David, in a bed full of sweet perfumes of all sorts of spices, made by the perfumer's art, and they made a great burning for him.