19 Jehoshaphat king of Judah came back safely to his palace in Jerusalem. 2 Jehu son of Hanani went out to meet him. Jehu was a seer. He said to King Jehoshaphat, “Why did you help evil people? Why do you love those who hate the Lord? That is the reason the Lord is angry with you. 3 But there is some good in you. You took the Asherah idols out of this country. And you have wanted to obey God.”
Jehoshaphat Chooses Judges
4 Jehoshaphat lived in Jerusalem. He went out again to be with the people. He went from Beersheba to the mountains of Ephraim. He brought these people back to the Lord, the God their ancestors followed. 5 Jehoshaphat appointed judges in all the land. He appointed judges for each of the strong, walled cities of Judah. 6 Jehoshaphat said to them, “Be careful in what you do. This is because you are not judging for people but for the Lord. He will be with you when you make a decision. 7 Now let each of you fear the Lord. Be careful in what you do because the Lord our God wants people to be fair. He wants all people to be treated the same. And he doesn’t want people to accept money to change their judgments.”
8 And in Jerusalem Jehoshaphat appointed some of the Levites, priests and leaders of Israelite families to be judges. They were to decide cases about the law of the Lord. And they were to settle problems between the people who lived in Jerusalem. 9 Jehoshaphat gave them commands. He said, “You must always serve the Lord completely. You must fear him. 10 You will have cases about killing, about the teachings, commands, rules or some other law. These cases will come from your people living in the cities. In all these cases you must warn the people not to sin against the Lord. If you don’t, the Lord will be angry with you and your people. But if you warn them, you won’t be guilty.
11 “Amariah is the leading priest. He will be over you in all cases about the Lord. Zebadiah son of Ishmael is a leader in the tribe of Judah. He will be over you in all cases about the king. Also, the Levites will serve as officers for you. Have courage. May the Lord be with those who do what is right.”
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