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2 Kings 3:1-4:17; Acts 14:8-28; Psalms 140:1-13; Proverbs 17:22 (New English Translation)

2 Kings 3:1-4:17

Moab Fights with Israel

In the eighteenth year of King Jehoshaphat’s reign over Judah, Ahab’s son Jehoram became king over Israel in Samaria; he ruled for twelve years. He did evil in the sight of the Lord, but not to the same degree as his father and mother. He did remove the sacred pillar of Baal that his father had made. Yet he persisted in the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, who encouraged Israel to sin; he did not turn from them.

Now King Mesha of Moab was a sheep breeder. He would send as tribute to the king of Israel 100,000 male lambs and the wool of 100,000 rams. When Ahab died, the king of Moab rebelled against the king of Israel. At that time King Jehoram left Samaria and assembled all Israel for war. He sent this message to King Jehoshaphat of Judah: “The king of Moab has rebelled against me. Will you fight with me against Moab?” Jehoshaphat replied, “I will join you in the campaign; my army and horses are at your disposal.” He then asked, “Which invasion route are we going to take?” Jehoram answered, “By the road through the Desert of Edom.” So the kings of Israel, Judah, and Edom set out together. They wandered around on the road for seven days and finally ran out of water for the men and animals they had with them. 10 The king of Israel said, “Oh no! Certainly the Lord has summoned these three kings so that he can hand them over to the king of Moab!” 11 Jehoshaphat asked, “Is there no prophet of the Lord here that we might seek the Lord’s direction?” One of the servants of the king of Israel answered, “Elisha son of Shapat is here; he used to be Elijah’s servant.” 12 Jehoshaphat said, “The Lord speaks through him.” So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom went down to visit him.

13 Elisha said to the king of Israel, “Why are you here? Go to your father’s prophets or your mother’s prophets!” The king of Israel replied to him, “No, for the Lord is the one who summoned these three kings so that he can hand them over to Moab.” 14 Elisha said, “As certainly as the Lord who rules over all lives (whom I serve), if I did not respect King Jehoshaphat of Judah, I would not pay attention to you or acknowledge you. 15 But now, get me a musician.” When the musician played, the Lord energized him, 16 and he said, “This is what the Lord says, ‘Make many cisterns in this valley,’ 17 for this is what the Lord says, ‘You will not feel any wind or see any rain, but this valley will be full of water and you and your cattle and animals will drink.’ 18 This is an easy task for the Lord; he will also hand Moab over to you. 19 You will defeat every fortified city and every important city. You must chop down every productive tree, stop up all the springs, and cover all the cultivated land with stones.”

20 Sure enough, the next morning, at the time of the morning sacrifice, water came flowing down from Edom and filled the land. 21 Now all Moab had heard that the kings were attacking, so everyone old enough to fight was mustered and placed at the border. 22 When they got up early the next morning, the sun was shining on the water. To the Moabites, who were some distance away, the water looked red like blood. 23 The Moabites said, “It’s blood! The kings are totally destroyed! They have struck one another down! Now, Moab, seize the plunder!” 24 When they approached the Israelite camp, the Israelites rose up and struck down the Moabites, who then ran from them. The Israelites thoroughly defeated Moab. 25 They tore down the cities and each man threw a stone into every cultivated field until they were covered. They stopped up every spring and chopped down every productive tree.

Only Kir Hareseth was left intact, but the slingers surrounded it and attacked it. 26 When the king of Moab realized he was losing the battle, he and 700 swordsmen tried to break through and attack the king of Edom, but they failed. 27 So he took his firstborn son, who was to succeed him as king, and offered him up as a burnt sacrifice on the wall. There was an outburst of divine anger against Israel, so they broke off the attack and returned to their homeland.

Elisha Helps a Widow and Her Sons

Now a wife of one of the prophets appealed to Elisha for help, saying, “Your servant, my husband is dead. You know that your servant was a loyal follower of the Lord. Now the creditor is coming to take away my two boys to be his servants.” Elisha said to her, “What can I do for you? Tell me, what do you have in the house?” She answered, “Your servant has nothing in the house except a small jar of olive oil.” He said, “Go and ask all your neighbors for empty containers. Get as many as you can. Go and close the door behind you and your sons. Pour the olive oil into all the containers; set aside each one when you have filled it.” So she left him and closed the door behind her and her sons. As they were bringing the containers to her, she was pouring the olive oil. When the containers were full, she said to one of her sons, “Bring me another container.” But he answered her, “There are no more.” Then the olive oil stopped flowing. She went and told the prophet. He said, “Go, sell the olive oil. Repay your creditor, and then you and your sons can live off the rest of the profit.”

Elisha Gives Life to a Boy

One day Elisha traveled to Shunem, where a prominent woman lived. She insisted that he stop for a meal. So whenever he was passing through, he would stop in there for a meal. She said to her husband, “Look, I’m sure that the man who regularly passes through here is a very special prophet. 10 Let’s make a small private upper room and furnish it with a bed, table, chair, and lamp. When he visits us, he can stay there.”

11 One day Elisha came for a visit; he went into the upper room and rested. 12 He told his servant Gehazi, “Ask the Shunammite woman to come here.” So he did so and she came to him. 13 Elisha said to Gehazi, “Tell her, ‘Look, you have treated us with such great respect. What can I do for you? Can I put in a good word for you with the king or the commander of the army?’” She replied, “I’m quite secure.” 14 So he asked Gehazi, “What can I do for her?” Gehazi replied, “She has no son, and her husband is old.” 15 Elisha told him, “Ask her to come here.” So he did so and she came and stood in the doorway. 16 He said, “About this time next year you will be holding a son.” She said, “No, my master! O prophet, do not lie to your servant!” 17 The woman did conceive, and at the specified time the next year she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

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Acts 14:8-28

Paul and Barnabas at Lystra

In Lystra sat a man who could not use his feet, lame from birth, who had never walked. This man was listening to Paul as he was speaking. When Paul stared intently at him and saw he had faith to be healed, 10 he said with a loud voice, “Stand upright on your feet.” And the man leaped up and began walking. 11 So when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” 12 They began to call Barnabas Zeus and Paul Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. 13 The priest of the temple of Zeus, located just outside the city, brought bulls and garlands to the city gates; he and the crowds wanted to offer sacrifices to them. 14 But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard about it, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting, 15 “Men, why are you doing these things? We too are men, with human natures just like you! We are proclaiming the good news to you, so that you should turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and everything that is in them. 16 In past generations he allowed all the nations to go their own ways, 17 yet he did not leave himself without a witness by doing good, by giving you rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying you with food and your hearts with joy.” 18 Even by saying these things, they scarcely persuaded the crowds not to offer sacrifice to them.

19 But Jews came from Antioch and Iconium, and after winning the crowds over, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, presuming him to be dead. 20 But after the disciples had surrounded him, he got up and went back into the city. On the next day he left with Barnabas for Derbe.

Paul and Barnabas Return to Antioch in Syria

21 After they had proclaimed the good news in that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, to Iconium, and to Antioch. 22 They strengthened the souls of the disciples and encouraged them to continue in the faith, saying, “We must enter the kingdom of God through many persecutions.” 23 When they had appointed elders for them in the various churches, with prayer and fasting they entrusted them to the protection of the Lord in whom they had believed. 24 Then they passed through Pisidia and came into Pamphylia, 25 and when they had spoken the word in Perga, they went down to Attalia. 26 From there they sailed back to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work they had now completed. 27 When they arrived and gathered the church together, they reported all the things God had done with them, and that he had opened a door of faith for the Gentiles. 28 So they spent considerable time with the disciples.

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Psalm 140

Psalm 140

For the music director; a psalm of David.

O Lord, rescue me from wicked men!
Protect me from violent men,
who plan ways to harm me.
All day long they stir up conflict.
Their tongues wound like a serpent;
a viper’s venom is behind their lips. (Selah)
O Lord, shelter me from the power of the wicked!
Protect me from violent men,
who plan to knock me over.
Proud men hide a snare for me;
evil men spread a net by the path;
they set traps for me. (Selah)
I say to the Lord, “You are my God.”
O Lord, pay attention to my plea for mercy!
O sovereign Lord, my strong deliverer,
you shield my head in the day of battle.
O Lord, do not let the wicked have their way!
Do not allow their plan to succeed when they attack! (Selah)
As for the heads of those who surround me—
may the harm done by their lips overwhelm them!
10 May he rain down fiery coals upon them!
May he throw them into the fire!
From bottomless pits they will not escape.
11 A slanderer will not endure on the earth;
calamity will hunt down a violent man and strike him down.
12 I know that the Lord defends the cause of the oppressed
and vindicates the poor.
13 Certainly the godly will give thanks to your name;
the morally upright will live in your presence.

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Proverbs 17:22

22 A cheerful heart brings good healing,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

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New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

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