2 Kings 16-17 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
Reign of Ahaz of Judah.[a] 1 In the seventeenth year of Pekah, son of Remaliah, Ahaz, son of Jotham, king of Judah, became king. 2 Ahaz was twenty years old when he became king, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem.
He did not do what was right in the sight of the Lord his God, as David his father had done. 3 He walked in the way of the kings of Israel; he even immolated his child by fire, in accordance with the abominable practices of the nations whom the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites. 4 Further, he sacrificed and burned incense on the high places, on hills, and under every green tree.
5 Then Rezin, king of Aram, and Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came up to Jerusalem to attack it. Although they besieged Ahaz, they were unable to do battle. 6 (In those days Rezin, king of Aram, recovered Elath for Aram, and drove the Judahites out of it. The Edomites then entered Elath, which they have occupied until the present.)
7 Meanwhile, Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath-pileser, king of Assyria, with the plea: “I am your servant and your son. Come up and rescue me from the power of the king of Aram and the king of Israel, who are attacking me.” 8 Ahaz took the silver and gold that were in the house of the Lord and in the treasuries of the king’s house and sent them as a present to the king of Assyria. 9 The king of Assyria listened to him and moved against Damascus, captured it, deported its inhabitants to Kir, and put Rezin to death.
10 King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser, king of Assyria. When he saw the altar in Damascus, King Ahaz sent to Uriah the priest a model of the altar and a detailed design of its construction. 11 Uriah the priest built an altar according to the plans which King Ahaz sent him from Damascus, and had it completed by the time King Ahaz returned from Damascus. 12 On his arrival from Damascus, the king inspected the altar; the king approached the altar, went up 13 and sacrificed his burnt offering and grain offering, pouring out his libation, and sprinkling the blood of his communion offerings on the altar. 14 The bronze altar that stood before the Lord he brought from the front of the temple—that is, from the space between the new altar and the house of the Lord—and set it on the north side of his altar. 15 King Ahaz commanded Uriah the priest, “Upon the large altar sacrifice the morning burnt offering and the evening grain offering, the king’s burnt offering and grain offering, and the burnt offering and grain offering of the people of the land.[b] Their libations you must sprinkle on it along with all the blood of burnt offerings and sacrifices. But the old bronze altar shall be mine for consultation.” 16 Uriah the priest did just as King Ahaz had commanded. 17 King Ahaz detached the panels from the stands and removed the basins from them; he also took down the bronze sea from the bronze oxen that supported it, and set it on a stone pavement. 18 In deference to the king of Assyria he removed the sabbath canopy that had been set up in the house of the Lord and the king’s outside entrance[c] to the temple.
19 The rest of the acts of Ahaz, with what he did, are recorded in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah. 20 Ahaz rested with his ancestors; he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David, and his son Hezekiah succeeded him as king.
Reign of Hoshea of Israel. 1 In the twelfth year of Ahaz, king of Judah, Hoshea, son of Elah, became king in Samaria over Israel for nine years.
2 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, yet not to the extent of the kings of Israel before him. 3 Shalmaneser,[d] king of Assyria, advanced against him, and Hoshea became his vassal and paid him tribute. 4 But the king of Assyria found Hoshea guilty of conspiracy for sending messengers to the king of Egypt at Sais, and for failure to pay the annual tribute to the king of Assyria. So the king of Assyria arrested and imprisoned him. 5 Then the king of Assyria[e] occupied the whole land and attacked Samaria, which he besieged for three years.
X. The End of Israel[f]
Israelites Deported. 6 In Hoshea’s ninth year, the king of Assyria took Samaria, deported the Israelites to Assyria, and settled them in Halah, and at the Habor, a river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes. 7 This came about because the Israelites sinned against the Lord, their God, who had brought them up from the land of Egypt, from under the hand of Pharaoh, king of Egypt. They venerated other gods, 8 they followed the rites of the nations whom the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites and those that the kings of Israel had practiced. 9 They adopted unlawful practices toward the Lord, their God. They built high places in all their cities, from guard post to garrisoned town. 10 They set up pillars and asherahs[g] for themselves on every high hill and under every green tree. 11 They burned incense there, on all the high places, like the nations whom the Lord had sent into exile at their coming. They did evil things that provoked the Lord, 12 and served idols, although the Lord had told them: You must not do this.
13 The Lord warned Israel and Judah by every prophet and seer: Give up your evil ways and keep my commandments and statutes, in accordance with the entire law which I enjoined on your ancestors and which I sent you by my servants the prophets. 14 But they did not listen. They grew as stiff-necked as their ancestors, who had not believed in the Lord, their God. 15 They rejected his statutes, the covenant he had made with their ancestors, and the warnings he had given them. They followed emptiness and became empty; they followed the surrounding nations whom the Lord had commanded them not to imitate. 16 They abandoned all the commandments of the Lord, their God: they made for themselves two molten calves; they made an asherah; they bowed down to all the host of heaven; they served Baal. 17 They immolated their sons and daughters by fire. They practiced augury and divination. They surrendered themselves to doing what was evil in the Lord’s sight, and provoked him.
18 The Lord became enraged, and removed them from his presence. Only the tribe of Judah was left. 19 Even the people of Judah did not keep the commandments of the Lord, their God, but followed the rites practiced by Israel. 20 So the Lord rejected the entire people of Israel: he afflicted them and delivered them over to plunderers, finally casting them from his presence. 21 When he tore Israel away from the house of David, they made Jeroboam, son of Nebat, king; but Jeroboam lured the Israelites away from the Lord, causing them to commit a great sin. 22 The Israelites imitated Jeroboam in all the sins he committed; they would not depart from them.
23 Finally, the Lord removed Israel from his presence, just as he had declared through all his servants, the prophets. Thus Israel went into exile from their native soil to Assyria until this very day.
Foreigners Deported to Israel. 24 The king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim, and settled them in the cities of Samaria in place of the Israelites. They took possession of Samaria and dwelt in its cities. 25 When they first settled there, they did not venerate the Lord, so he sent lions among them that killed some of them. 26 A report reached the king of Assyria: “The nations you deported and settled in the cities of Samaria do not know the proper worship of the god of the land, so he has sent lions among them that are killing them, since they do not know the law of the god of the land.” 27 The king of Assyria gave the order, “Send back some of the priests you deported, to go there and settle, to teach them the proper worship of the god of the land.” 28 So one of the priests who had been deported from Samaria returned and settled in Bethel, and began to teach them how to venerate the Lord.
29 Thus each of these nations continued to make its own gods, setting them up in the shrines of the high places the Samarians had made: each nation in the cities in which they dwelt. 30 The Babylonians made Sukkot-Benot;[h] the people of Cuth made Nergal; those from Hamath made Ashima; 31 those from Avva made Nibhaz and Tartak; and those from Sepharvaim immolated their children by fire to their city gods, King Hadad and King Anu. 32 At the same time, they were venerating the Lord, appointing from their own number priests for the high places to officiate for them in the shrines on the high places. 33 They were both venerating the Lord and serving their own gods. They followed the custom of the nations from among whom they had been deported.
34 To this very day they continue to act according to their former customs, not venerating the Lord nor observing the statutes and regulations, the law and commandment, that the Lord enjoined on the descendants of Jacob, whom he had named Israel. 35 When the Lord made a covenant with them, he commanded them: You must not venerate other gods, nor bow down to them, nor serve them, nor offer sacrifice to them, 36 but only to the Lord, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and outstretched arm. Him shall you venerate, to him shall you bow down, and to him shall you offer sacrifice. 37 You must be careful always to observe the statutes and ordinances, the law and commandment, which he wrote for you; you must not venerate other gods. 38 The covenant I made with you, you must not forget; you must not venerate other gods. 39 You must venerate only the Lord, your God; it is he who will deliver you from the power of all your enemies. 40 But they did not listen; they continued to act according to their former customs.
41 But these nations were both venerating the Lord and serving their own idols. Their children and children’s children are still acting like their ancestors, to this very day.
Proverbs 8:22-36 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
22 [a]“The Lord begot me, the beginning of his works,
2 Corinthians 2 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
1 For I decided not to come to you again in painful circumstances. 2 For if I inflict pain upon you, then who is there to cheer me except the one pained by me? 3 And I wrote as I did[a] so that when I came I might not be pained by those in whom I should have rejoiced, confident about all of you that my joy is that of all of you. 4 For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote to you with many tears, not that you might be pained but that you might know the abundant love I have for you.
The Offender.[b] 5 If anyone has caused pain, he has caused it not to me, but in some measure (not to exaggerate) to all of you. 6 This punishment by the majority is enough for such a person, 7 so that on the contrary you should forgive and encourage him instead, or else the person may be overwhelmed by excessive pain. 8 Therefore, I urge you to reaffirm your love for him. 9 For this is why I wrote, to know your proven character, whether you were obedient in everything. 10 Whomever you forgive anything, so do I. For indeed what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, has been for you in the presence of Christ, 11 so that we might not be taken advantage of by Satan, for we are not unaware of his purposes.
Paul’s Anxiety.[c] 12 When I went to Troas for the gospel of Christ, although a door was opened for me in the Lord, 13 [d]I had no relief in my spirit because I did not find my brother Titus. So I took leave of them and went on to Macedonia.
B. Paul’s Ministry[e]
Ministers of a New Covenant. 14 [f]But thanks be to God,[g] who always leads us in triumph in Christ[h] and manifests through us the odor of the knowledge of him[i] in every place. 15 For we are the aroma of Christ for God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, 16 to the latter an odor of death that leads to death, to the former an odor of life that leads to life. Who is qualified[j] for this? 17 For we are not like the many who trade on the word of God; but as out of sincerity, indeed as from God and in the presence of God, we speak in Christ.