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Jehoshaphat’s Judicial Reforms

19 Then King Jehoshaphat of Judah returned safely to his palace in Jerusalem. Jehu son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him and said to King Jehoshaphat, “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate Adonai? Because of this, wrath from before Adonai is against you. Nevertheless, good things are found in you, for you have removed the Asherah poles out of the land and have set your heart to seek God.”

Jehoshaphat dwelt in Jerusalem and he went out again among the people from Beer-sheba over to the hill country of Ephraim and brought them back to Adonai, the God of their fathers. He also appointed judges in the land throughout all the fortified cities of Judah, city by city. He said to the judges. “Consider what you are doing, for you do not judge for man but for Adonai who is with you when you pass judgment. Now then, let the fear of Adonai be upon you. Be very careful what you do, for there is no injustice or favoritism or bribe-taking with Adonai Eloheinu.”

In Jerusalem also, Jehoshaphat appointed some of the Levites, kohanim and the leading patriarchs of Israel to render the judgment of Adonai and to settle disputes among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

He charged them saying, “This is how you shall act: in the fear of Adonai, faithfully and wholeheartedly. 10 When any dispute comes to you from your kinsmen who live in their cities, whether bloodshed, or concerning Torah, mitzvot, statutes or ordinances, you must warn them so that they will not be guilty before Adonai. Otherwise wrath will come upon you and your kinsmen. Act accordingly and you will not be guilty.

11 “Behold, Amariah the chief kohen will be over you in all matters pertaining to Adonai, and Zebadiah the son of Ishmael, the ruler of the House of Judah, in all the matters pertaining to the king. Also the Levites will serve as officials before you. Act courageously and may Adonai be with the good.”