2 Kings 1-2Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
Ahaziah’s Sickness and Death
1 After the death of Ahab, Moab rebelled against Israel. 2 Ahaziah had fallen through the latticed window of his upper room in Samaria and was injured. So he sent messengers instructing them: “Go inquire of Baal-zebub,[a] the god of Ekron, if I will recover from this injury.”
3 But the angel of the Lord said to Elijah the Tishbite, “Go and meet the messengers of the king of Samaria and ask them, ‘Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron?’ 4 Therefore, this is what the Lord says: ‘You will not get up from your sickbed—you will certainly die.’” Then Elijah left.
5 The messengers returned to the king, who asked them, “Why have you come back?”
6 They replied, “A man came to meet us and said, ‘Go back to the king who sent you and declare to him: This is what the Lord says: Is it because there is no God in Israel that you’re sending these men to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron? Therefore, you will not get up from your sickbed—you will certainly die.’”
7 The king asked them, “What sort of man came up to meet you and spoke those words to you?”
8 They replied, “A hairy man with a leather belt around his waist.”
He said, “It’s Elijah the Tishbite.”
9 So King Ahaziah sent a captain of 50 with his 50 men to Elijah. When the captain went up to him, he was sitting on top of the hill. He announced, “Man of God, the king declares, ‘Come down!’”
10 Elijah responded to the captain of the 50, “If I am a man of God, may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your 50 men.” Then fire came down from heaven and consumed him and his 50 men.
11 So the king sent another captain of 50 with his 50 men to Elijah. He took in the situation[b] and announced, “Man of God, this is what the king says: ‘Come down immediately!’”
12 Elijah responded, “If I am a man of God, may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your 50 men.” So a divine fire[c] came down from heaven and consumed him and his 50 men.
13 Then the king sent a third captain of 50 with his 50 men. The third captain of 50 went up and fell on his knees in front of Elijah and begged him, “Man of God, please let my life and the lives of these 50 servants of yours be precious in your sight. 14 Already fire has come down from heaven and consumed the first two captains of 50 with their fifties, but this time let my life be precious in your sight.”
15 The angel of the Lord said to Elijah, “Go down with him. Don’t be afraid of him.” So he got up and went down with him to the king.
16 Then Elijah said to King Ahaziah, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Because you have sent messengers to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron—is it because there is no God in Israel for you to inquire of His will?—you will not get up from your sickbed; you will certainly die.’”
17 Ahaziah died according to the word of the Lord that Elijah had spoken. Since he had no son, Joram[d] became king in his place. This happened in the second year of Judah’s King Jehoram son of Jehoshaphat.[e] 18 The rest of the events of Ahaziah’s reign, along with his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings.[f]
Elijah in the Whirlwind
2 The time had come for the Lord to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind. Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal, 2 and Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here; the Lord is sending me on to Bethel.”
But Elisha replied, “As the Lord lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel.
3 Then the sons of the prophets who were at Bethel came out to Elisha and said, “Do you know that the Lord will take your master away from you today?”
He said, “Yes, I know. Be quiet.”
4 Elijah said to him, “Elisha, stay here; the Lord is sending me to Jericho.”
But Elisha said, “As the Lord lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went to Jericho.
5 Then the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho came up to Elisha and said, “Do you know that the Lord will take your master away from you today?”
He said, “Yes, I know. Be quiet.”
6 Elijah said to him, “Stay here; the Lord is sending me to the Jordan.”
But Elisha said, “As the Lord lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them went on.
7 Fifty men from the sons of the prophets came and stood facing them from a distance while the two of them stood by the Jordan. 8 Elijah took his mantle, rolled it up, and struck the waters, which parted to the right and left. Then the two of them crossed over on dry ground. 9 After they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me what I can do for you before I am taken from you.”
So Elisha answered, “Please, let me inherit two shares[g] of your spirit.”
10 Elijah replied, “You have asked for something difficult. If you see me being taken from you, you will have it. If not, you won’t.”
11 As they continued walking and talking, a chariot of fire with horses of fire suddenly appeared and separated the two of them. Then Elijah went up into heaven in the whirlwind. 12 As Elisha watched, he kept crying out, “My father, my father, the chariots and horsemen of Israel!” Then he never saw Elijah again. He took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces.
Elisha Succeeds Elijah
13 Elisha picked up the mantle that had fallen off Elijah and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. 14 Then he took the mantle Elijah had dropped and struck the waters. “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” he asked. He struck the waters himself, and they parted to the right and the left, and Elisha crossed over.
15 When the sons of the prophets from Jericho who were facing him saw him, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” They came to meet him and bowed down to the ground in front of him.
16 Then the sons of the prophets said to Elisha, “Since there are 50 strong men here with your servants, please let them go and search for your master. Maybe the Spirit of the Lord has carried him away and put him on one of the mountains or into one of the valleys.”
He answered, “Don’t send them.”
17 However, they urged him to the point of embarrassment, so he said, “Send them.” They sent 50 men, who looked for three days but did not find him. 18 When they returned to him in Jericho where he was staying, he said to them, “Didn’t I tell you not to go?”
19 Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Even though our lord can see that the city’s location is good, the water is bad and the land unfruitful.”
20 He replied, “Bring me a new bowl and put salt in it.”
After they had brought him one, 21 Elisha went out to the spring of water, threw salt in it, and said, “This is what the Lord says: ‘I have healed this water. No longer will death or unfruitfulness result from it.’” 22 Therefore, the water remains healthy to this very day according to the word that Elisha spoke.
23 From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking up the path, some small boys came out of the city and harassed him, chanting, “Go up, baldy! Go up, baldy!” 24 He turned around, looked at them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. Then two female bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of the children. 25 From there Elisha went to Mount Carmel, and then he returned to Samaria.
Acts 13:42-14:7Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
Paul and Barnabas in Antioch
42 As they[a] were leaving, the people[b] begged that these matters be presented to them the following Sabbath. 43 After the synagogue had been dismissed, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who were speaking with them and persuading them to continue in the grace of God.
44 The following Sabbath almost the whole town assembled to hear the message of the Lord.[c] 45 But when the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and began to oppose what Paul was saying by insulting him.
46 Then Paul and Barnabas boldly said: “It was necessary that God’s message be spoken to you first. But since you reject it and consider yourselves unworthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles! 47 For this is what the Lord has commanded us:
48 When the Gentiles heard this, they rejoiced and glorified the message of the Lord, and all who had been appointed to eternal life believed. 49 So the message of the Lord spread through the whole region. 50 But the Jews incited the prominent women, who worshiped God, and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas and expelled them from their district. 51 But they shook the dust off their feet against them and went to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.
Growth and Persecution in Iconium
14 The same thing happened in Iconium; they entered the Jewish synagogue and spoke in such a way that a great number of both Jews and Greeks believed. 2 But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up and poisoned the minds of the Gentiles against the brothers. 3 So they stayed there for some time and spoke boldly in reliance on the Lord, who testified to the message of His grace by granting that signs and wonders be performed through them. 4 But the people of the city were divided, some siding with the Jews and some with the apostles. 5 When an attempt was made by both the Gentiles and Jews, with their rulers, to assault and stone them, 6 they found out about it and fled to the Lycaonian towns called Lystra and Derbe, and to the surrounding countryside. 7 And there they kept evangelizing.
Psalm 139Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
The All-Knowing, Ever-Present God
For the choir director. A Davidic psalm.
1 Lord, You have searched me and known me.
7 Where can I go to escape Your Spirit?
13 For it was You who created my inward parts;[b]
19 God, if only You would kill the wicked—
23 Search me, God, and know my heart;
Proverbs 17:19-21Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
19 One who loves to offend loves strife;
20 One with a twisted mind will not succeed,
21 A man fathers a fool to his own sorrow;