2 Chronicles 17-19
English Standard Version
Jehoshaphat Reigns in Judah
17 Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place and strengthened himself against Israel. 2 He placed forces in all the (A)fortified cities of Judah and set garrisons in the land of Judah, and in the cities of Ephraim (B)that Asa his father had captured. 3 The Lord was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the earlier ways of his father David. He did not seek the Baals, 4 but sought the God of his father and walked in his commandments, (C)and not according to the practices of Israel. 5 Therefore the Lord established the kingdom in his hand. And all Judah (D)brought tribute to Jehoshaphat, (E)and he had great riches and honor. 6 His heart was courageous in the ways of the Lord. And furthermore, (F)he took the high places and the Asherim out of Judah.
7 In the third year of his reign he sent his officials, Ben-hail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Micaiah, (G)to teach in the cities of Judah; 8 (H)and with them the Levites, Shemaiah, Nethaniah, Zebadiah, Asahel, Shemiramoth, Jehonathan, Adonijah, Tobijah, and Tobadonijah; and with these Levites, the priests Elishama and Jehoram. 9 And (I)they taught in Judah, having the Book of the Law of the Lord with them. They went about through all the cities of Judah and taught among the people.
10 (J)And the fear of the Lord fell upon all the kingdoms of the lands that were around Judah, and they made no war against Jehoshaphat. 11 Some of the Philistines (K)brought Jehoshaphat presents and silver for tribute, and the Arabians also brought him 7,700 rams and 7,700 goats. 12 And Jehoshaphat grew steadily greater. He built in Judah fortresses and store cities, 13 and he had large supplies in the cities of Judah. He had soldiers, mighty men of valor, in Jerusalem. 14 This was the muster of them by fathers' houses: Of Judah, the commanders of thousands: Adnah the commander, with 300,000 mighty men of valor; 15 and next to him Jehohanan the commander, with 280,000; 16 and next to him Amasiah the son of Zichri, (L)a volunteer for the service of the Lord, with 200,000 mighty men of valor. 17 Of Benjamin: Eliada, a mighty man of valor, with 200,000 men (M)armed with bow and shield; 18 and next to him Jehozabad with 180,000 armed for war. 19 These were in the service of the king, besides (N)those whom the king had placed in the fortified cities throughout all Judah.
Jehoshaphat Allies with Ahab
18 Now Jehoshaphat (O)had great riches and honor, (P)and he made a marriage alliance with Ahab. 2 (Q)After some years he went down to Ahab in Samaria. And Ahab killed an abundance of sheep and oxen for him and for the people who were with him, and induced him to go up against Ramoth-gilead. 3 Ahab king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat king of Judah, “Will you go with me to Ramoth-gilead?” He answered him, “I am as you are, my people as your people. We will be with you in the war.”
4 And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “Inquire first for the word of the Lord.” 5 Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, four hundred men, and said to them, “Shall we go to battle against Ramoth-gilead, or shall I refrain?” And they said, “Go up, for God will give it into the hand of the king.” 6 But Jehoshaphat said, “Is there not here another prophet of the Lord of whom we may inquire?” 7 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the Lord, Micaiah the son of Imlah; but I hate him, for he never prophesies good concerning me, but always evil.” And Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.” 8 Then the king of Israel summoned an officer and said, “Bring quickly Micaiah the son of Imlah.” 9 Now the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah were sitting on their thrones, arrayed in their robes. And they were sitting at the threshing floor (R)at the entrance of the gate of Samaria, and all the prophets were prophesying before them. 10 And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made for himself horns of iron and said, “Thus says the Lord, ‘With these you shall push the Syrians until they are destroyed.’” 11 And all the prophets prophesied so and said, “Go up to Ramoth-gilead and triumph. The Lord will give it into the hand of the king.”
12 And the messenger who went to summon Micaiah said to him, “Behold, the words of the prophets with one accord are favorable to the king. Let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak favorably.” 13 But Micaiah said, (S)“As the Lord lives, (T)what my God says, that I will speak.” 14 And when he had come to the king, the king said to him, “Micaiah, shall we go to Ramoth-gilead to battle, or shall I refrain?” And he answered, “Go up and triumph; they will be given into your hand.” 15 But the king said to him, “How many times shall I make you swear that you speak to me nothing but the truth in the name of the Lord?” 16 And he said, “I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, (U)as sheep that have no shepherd. And the Lord said, ‘These have no master; let each return to his home in peace.’” 17 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “Did I not tell you that he would not prophesy good concerning me, but evil?” 18 And Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of the Lord: (V)I saw the Lord sitting on his throne, and all the host of heaven standing on his right hand and on his left. 19 And the Lord said, ‘Who will entice Ahab the king of Israel, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?’ And one said one thing, and another said another. 20 Then a spirit came forward and stood before the Lord, saying, ‘I will entice him.’ And the Lord said to him, ‘By what means?’ 21 And he said, ‘I will go out, and will be (W)a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And he said, ‘You are to entice him, and you shall succeed; go out and do so.’ 22 Now therefore behold, the Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of these your prophets. The Lord has declared disaster concerning you.”
23 Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near (X)and struck Micaiah on the cheek and said, “Which way did the Spirit of the Lord go from me to speak to you?” 24 And Micaiah said, “Behold, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide yourself.” 25 And the king of Israel said, “Seize Micaiah and take him back to Amon (Y)the governor of the city and to Joash the king's son, 26 and say, ‘Thus says the king, (Z)Put this fellow in prison and feed him with meager rations of bread and water until I return in peace.’” 27 And Micaiah said, “If you return in peace, the Lord has not spoken by me.” And he said, (AA)“Hear, all you peoples!”
The Defeat and Death of Ahab
28 So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-gilead. 29 And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “I will disguise myself and go into battle, but you wear your robes.” And the king of Israel disguised himself, and they went into battle. 30 Now the king of Syria had commanded the captains of his chariots, “Fight with neither small nor great, but only with the king of Israel.” 31 As soon as the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, they said, “It is the king of Israel.” So they turned to fight against him. And Jehoshaphat cried out, and the Lord helped him; God drew them away from him. 32 For as soon as the captains of the chariots saw that it was not the king of Israel, they turned back from pursuing him. 33 But a certain man drew his bow at random[a] and struck the king of Israel between the scale armor and the breastplate. Therefore he said to the driver of his chariot, “Turn around and carry me out of the battle, for I am wounded.” 34 And the battle continued that day, and the king of Israel was propped up in his chariot facing the Syrians until evening. Then at sunset he died.
19 Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned in safety to his house in Jerusalem. 2 But (AB)Jehu the son of (AC)Hanani (AD)the seer went out to meet him and said to King Jehoshaphat, “Should you (AE)help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord? Because of this, (AF)wrath has gone out against you from the Lord. 3 Nevertheless, (AG)some good is found in you, for (AH)you destroyed the Asheroth out of the land, and have (AI)set your heart to seek God.”
4 Jehoshaphat lived at Jerusalem. And he went out again among the people, from Beersheba to (AJ)the hill country of Ephraim, and brought them back to the Lord, the God of their fathers. 5 He appointed (AK)judges in the land in all (AL)the fortified cities of Judah, city by city, 6 and said to the judges, “Consider what you do, (AM)for you judge not for man but for the Lord. He is with you in giving judgment. 7 Now then, let the fear of the Lord be upon you. Be careful what you do, for (AN)there is no injustice with the Lord our God, (AO)or partiality or taking bribes.”
8 Moreover, in Jerusalem Jehoshaphat (AP)appointed certain Levites and priests and heads of families of Israel, (AQ)to give judgment for the Lord and to decide disputed cases. They had their seat at Jerusalem. 9 And he charged them: (AR)“Thus you shall do in the fear of the Lord, in faithfulness, (AS)and with your whole heart: 10 (AT)whenever a case comes to you from your brothers who live in their cities, concerning bloodshed, law or commandment, statutes or rules, then you shall warn them, that they may not incur guilt before the Lord and (AU)wrath may not come upon you and your brothers. Thus you shall do, and you will not incur guilt. 11 And behold, Amariah the chief priest is over you (AV)in all matters of the Lord; and Zebadiah the son of Ishmael, the governor of the house of Judah, in all the king's matters, and the Levites will serve you as officers. (AW)Deal courageously, and may the Lord be with the upright!”[b]
English Standard Version
John the Baptist Prepares the Way
3 In the fifteenth year of the reign of (A)Tiberius Caesar, (B)Pontius Pilate (C)being governor of Judea, and (D)Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, 2 during (E)the high priesthood of Annas and (F)Caiaphas, (G)the word of God came to (H)John the son of Zechariah in (I)the wilderness. 3 And he went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming (J)a baptism of repentance (K)for the forgiveness of sins. 4 As it is written in (L)the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet,
(M)“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
(N)‘Prepare the way of the Lord,[a]
make his paths straight.
5 (O)Every valley shall be filled,
(P)and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
(Q)and the crooked shall become straight,
and the rough places shall become level ways,
6 (R)and all flesh shall see (S)the salvation of God.’”
7 He said therefore to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, (T)“You brood of (U)vipers! Who warned you to flee from (V)the wrath to come? 8 Bear fruits (W)in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, (X)‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you, God is able from (Y)these stones to raise up children for Abraham. 9 Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. (Z)Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”
10 And the crowds asked him, (AA)“What then shall we do?” 11 And he answered them, (AB)“Whoever has two tunics[b] is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise.” 12 (AC)Tax collectors also came to be baptized and said to him, “Teacher, (AD)what shall we do?” 13 And he said to them, (AE)“Collect no more than you are authorized to do.” 14 Soldiers also asked him, “And we, (AF)what shall we do?” And he said to them, (AG)“Do not extort money from anyone by threats or by false accusation, and be content with your (AH)wages.”
15 As the people were in expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, (AI)whether he might be (AJ)the Christ, 16 (AK)John answered them all, saying, “I baptize you with water, but (AL)he who is mightier than I is coming, (AM)the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you (AN)with the Holy Spirit and (AO)fire. 17 His (AP)winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to (AQ)gather the wheat into his barn, (AR)but the chaff he will burn with (AS)unquenchable fire.”
18 So (AT)with many other exhortations he preached good news to the people. 19 But (AU)Herod the tetrarch, who had been reproved by him for Herodias, his brother's wife, and for all the evil things that Herod had done, 20 added this to them all, that (AV)he locked up John in prison.
21 Now when all the people were baptized, and when (AW)Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, (AX)the heavens were opened, 22 and (AY)the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form, like a dove; and (AZ)a voice came from heaven, (BA)“You are my beloved Son;[c] with you I am well pleased.”[d]
The Genealogy of Jesus Christ
23 Jesus, (BB)when he began his ministry, was about (BC)thirty years of age, being (BD)the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli, 24 the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25 the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 26 the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27 the son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, (BE)the son of Zerubbabel, the son (BF)of Shealtiel,[e] the son of Neri, 28 the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 29 the son of Joshua, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 the son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 31 the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of (BG)Nathan, the son of David, 32 (BH)the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Sala, the son of Nahshon, 33 the son of Amminadab, the son of Admin, the son of Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34 (BI)the son of Jacob, (BJ)the son of Isaac, (BK)the son of Abraham, (BL)the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Cainan, 38 the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.