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King Jehoshaphat’s Religious Reforms

19 King Jehoshaphat of Judah returned safely to his home in Jerusalem. Jehu, son of the seer[a] Hanani, asked King Jehoshaphat, “Why do you help wicked people and love those who hate Yahweh? Yahweh’s anger is directed toward you because you have done this. However, you’ve done some good things: You’ve burned the Asherah poles in this country, and you’ve wholeheartedly dedicated your life to serving Elohim.”

While Jehoshaphat was living in Jerusalem, he regularly went to the people between Beersheba and the mountains of Ephraim. He brought the people back to Yahweh Elohim of their ancestors. He appointed judges in the country, in each fortified city of Judah. He told the judges, “Pay attention to what you’re doing. When you judge, you aren’t doing it for a human but for Yahweh. He will be with you when you hear a case. May you have the fear of Yahweh in you. Be careful about what you do. Yahweh our Elohim is never unjust. He is impartial and never takes bribes.”

In Jerusalem Jehoshaphat also appointed some Levites, priests, and family heads from Israel to administer Yahweh’s laws and decide cases. They lived in Jerusalem. He ordered them, “Do this wholeheartedly—with the fear of Yahweh and with faithfulness. 10 Warn your relatives living in other cities about every case they bring to you, even if the case involves bloodshed or commands, rules, or regulations derived from Moses’ Teachings. Then your relatives will not become guilty in front of Yahweh. Otherwise, he will become angry with you and your relatives. Do this, and you won’t be guilty of anything. 11 Now, the chief priest Amariah will be in charge of you in every matter involving Yahweh. Zebadiah, who is the son of Ishmael and the leader of the tribe of Judah, will be in charge of every matter involving the king. The Levites will serve as officers of the court. Be strong, and do your job. May Yahweh be with those who do right.”


  1. 2 Chronicles 19:2 A seer is a prophet.