17 Asa’s son Jehoshaphat succeeded him as king. Jehoshaphat strengthened himself to wage war against Israel. 2 He put troops in all the fortified cities of Judah and placed military posts in Judah and in the cities of Ephraim that his father Asa had captured.
3 The Lord was with Jehoshaphat, who lived in the old way like his ancestor David. Jehoshaphat didn’t dedicate his life to serving other gods—the Baals. 4 Instead, he dedicated his life to his ancestor’s God and lived by God’s commands. Jehoshaphat did not do what Israel was doing. 5 So the Lord established Jehoshaphat’s power over the kingdom. All the people of Judah gave gifts to Jehoshaphat, and he had a lot of riches and honor. 6 He had the confidence to live the way the Lord wanted him to live. He also got rid of the illegal places of worship and poles dedicated to the goddess Asherah in Judah.
7 In the third year of his reign, he sent his officers Ben Hail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Micaiah to teach in the cities of Judah. 8 With them were the Levites Shemaiah, Nethaniah, Zebadiah, Asahel, Shemiramoth, Jehonathan, Adonijah, Tobijah, Tob Adonijah, and the priests Elishama and Jehoram. 9 They taught in Judah. They had the Book of the Lord’s Teachings with them when they taught the people in all the cities of Judah.
10 Fear of the Lord came to all the kingdoms around Judah. As a result, they didn’t wage war against Jehoshaphat. 11 Some of the Philistines brought gifts and silver as taxes. The Arabs also brought him flocks: 7,700 rams and 7,700 male goats. 12 So Jehoshaphat became more and more powerful. He built fortresses and cities where supplies were stored in Judah. 13 He had large supplies of food in the cities of Judah and an army of professional soldiers with him in Jerusalem. 14 The following is a breakdown of these soldiers. They are listed by families. Judah’s regimental commanders were Commander Adnah (with 300,000 fighting men), 15 next to him Commander Jehohanan (with 280,000), 16 and next to him Amasiah, Zichri’s son, who volunteered to serve the Lord (with 200,000 fighting men). 17 From Benjamin there was the fighting man Eliada (with 200,000 armed men with bows and shields), 18 and next to him was Jehozabad (with him was an army of 180,000 armed men). 19 These were the men who served the king in addition to those whom the king put in the fortified cities throughout Judah.
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