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Asa Rules in Judah

Asa began to rule over Judah in the twentieth year of Jeroboam’s reign in Israel. 10 He reigned in Jerusalem forty-one years. His grandmother[a] was Maacah, the granddaughter of Absalom.

11 Asa did what was pleasing in the Lord’s sight, as his ancestor David had done. 12 He banished the male and female shrine prostitutes from the land and got rid of all the idols[b] his ancestors had made. 13 He even deposed his grandmother Maacah from her position as queen mother because she had made an obscene Asherah pole. He cut down her obscene pole and burned it in the Kidron Valley. 14 Although the pagan shrines were not removed, Asa’s heart remained completely faithful to the Lord throughout his life. 15 He brought into the Temple of the Lord the silver and gold and the various items that he and his father had dedicated.

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Footnotes

  1. 15:10 Or The queen mother; Hebrew reads His mother (also in 15:13); compare 15:2.
  2. 15:12 The Hebrew term (literally round things) probably alludes to dung.

Preparing to Move the Ark

15 David now built several buildings for himself in the City of David. He also prepared a place for the Ark of God and set up a special tent for it. Then he commanded, “No one except the Levites may carry the Ark of God. The Lord has chosen them to carry the Ark of the Lord and to serve him forever.”

Then David summoned all Israel to Jerusalem to bring the Ark of the Lord to the place he had prepared for it. This is the number of the descendants of Aaron (the priests) and the Levites who were called together:

From the clan of Kohath, 120, with Uriel as their leader.

From the clan of Merari, 220, with Asaiah as their leader.

From the clan of Gershon,[a] 130, with Joel as their leader.

From the descendants of Elizaphan, 200, with Shemaiah as their leader.

From the descendants of Hebron, 80, with Eliel as their leader.

10 From the descendants of Uzziel, 112, with Amminadab as their leader.

11 Then David summoned the priests, Zadok and Abiathar, and these Levite leaders: Uriel, Asaiah, Joel, Shemaiah, Eliel, and Amminadab. 12 He said to them, “You are the leaders of the Levite families. You must purify yourselves and all your fellow Levites, so you can bring the Ark of the Lord, the God of Israel, to the place I have prepared for it. 13 Because you Levites did not carry the Ark the first time, the anger of the Lord our God burst out against us. We failed to ask God how to move it properly.” 14 So the priests and the Levites purified themselves in order to bring the Ark of the Lord, the God of Israel, to Jerusalem. 15 Then the Levites carried the Ark of God on their shoulders with its carrying poles, just as the Lord had instructed Moses.

16 David also ordered the Levite leaders to appoint a choir of Levites who were singers and musicians to sing joyful songs to the accompaniment of harps, lyres, and cymbals. 17 So the Levites appointed Heman son of Joel along with his fellow Levites: Asaph son of Berekiah, and Ethan son of Kushaiah from the clan of Merari. 18 The following men were chosen as their assistants: Zechariah, Jaaziel,[b] Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, and the gatekeepers—Obed-edom and Jeiel.

19 The musicians Heman, Asaph, and Ethan were chosen to sound the bronze cymbals.

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Footnotes

  1. 15:7 Hebrew Gershom, a variant spelling of Gershon.
  2. 15:18 As in several Hebrew manuscripts and Greek version (see also parallel lists in 15:20; 16:5); Masoretic Text reads Zechariah ben Jaaziel.

11 Search for the Lord and for his strength;
    continually seek him.
12 Remember the wonders he has performed,
    his miracles, and the rulings he has given,
13 you children of his servant Israel,
    you descendants of Jacob, his chosen ones.

14 He is the Lord our God.
    His justice is seen throughout the land.

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