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2 Kings 13-14

Jehoahaz rules Israel

13 Jehoahaz, Jehu’s son, became king of Israel in Samaria in the twenty-third year of Judah’s King Jehoash,[a] who was Ahaziah’s son. He ruled for seventeen years. He did what was evil in the Lord’s eyes. He walked in the sins that Jeroboam, Nebat’s son, had caused Israel to commit. He didn’t deviate from them. So the Lord was angry at Israel. Time after time God handed them over to Aram’s king Hazael, and to Hazael’s son Ben-hadad.

But Jehoahaz sought the Lord’s presence, and the Lord listened to him because he saw how badly Aram’s king was oppressing Israel. The Lord sent Israel a savior, and they escaped from Aram’s power. Then the Israelites lived peacefully at home, just as they had in the past. But they didn’t deviate from the sins that Jeroboam’s dynasty had caused Israel to commit; they walked in them! Moreover, a sacred pole[b] stood in Samaria. No, nothing was left of Jehoahaz’s army except fifty chariot riders, ten chariots, and ten thousand foot soldiers, because Aram’s king had decimated them, trampling them as if they were dirt. The rest of Jehoahaz’s deeds, all that he accomplished, and all his powerful acts, aren’t they written in the official records of Israel’s kings? Jehoahaz lay down with his ancestors. He was buried in Samaria. His son Joash succeeded him as king.

Joash rules Israel

10 Joash,[c] Jehoahaz’s son, became king of Israel in Samaria in the thirty-seventh year of Judah’s King Jehoash. He ruled for sixteen years. 11 He did what was evil in the Lord’s eyes. He didn’t deviate from all the sins that Jeroboam, Nebat’s son, had caused Israel to commit, but he walked in them! 12 The rest of Joash’s deeds, all that he accomplished, and his powerful acts—how he fought against Judah’s King Amaziah—aren’t they written in the official records of Israel’s kings? 13 Joash lay down with his ancestors, and Jeroboam followed him on the throne. Joash was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel.

Elisha’s last days

14 Now Elisha became sick with the illness that would kill him. So Israel’s King Joash went down to see him. Joash cried over Elisha, saying, “Oh, my father, my father! Israel’s chariots and its riders!”

15 Elisha told Joash, “Get a bow and some arrows.” So he brought Elisha a bow and some arrows. 16 Elisha then said to Israel’s king, “Put your hand on the bow.” So Joash put his hand on the bow. Elisha then put his hands over the king’s hands 17 and said, “Open the window to the east.” The king did so. “Now shoot!” Elisha told him. Joash shot, then Elisha announced, “That’s the Lord’s rescue arrow! The rescue arrow against the Arameans! You will finish the Arameans off at Aphek.” 18 Then Elisha said, “Take the arrows!” so Joash took them. Elisha then said to Israel’s king, “Hit the ground with them!” Joash hit the ground three times and stopped. 19 The man of God became angry with him. He said, “If only you had struck five or six times, you would have finished the Arameans off. As it is, you will defeat them only three times.”

20 So Elisha died, and he was buried.

Sometimes Moabite raiding parties used to come into the land each spring. 21 Now it happened once that while a man was being buried, the people at the funeral suddenly saw a raiding party. They threw the body into Elisha’s tomb and ran off. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet!

22 Aram’s King Hazael had oppressed Israel throughout Jehoahaz’s rule. 23 But the Lord was gracious to Israel and had compassion on them, turning back to them because of his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; he didn’t want to destroy them or throw them out of his presence until now. 24 Aram’s King Hazael died. His son Ben-hadad succeeded him as king. 25 Then Jehoahaz’s son Joash recaptured from Hazael’s son Ben-hadad those cities that Hazael had won in battle from Joash’s father Jehoahaz. Joash attacked Ben-hadad three times and took back these Israelite cities.

Amaziah rules Judah

14 Amaziah, the son of Judah’s King Jehoash,[d] became king in the second year of Israel’s King Joash, who was Jehoahaz’s son. Amaziah was 25 years old when he became king, and he ruled for twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jehoaddin; she was from Jerusalem. He did what was right in the Lord’s eyes, but not as well as his ancestor King David. He did everything his father Jehoash did. However, the shrines weren’t removed. People kept sacrificing and burning incense at them. Once he had secured control over his kingdom, he executed the officials who had assassinated his father the king. However, he didn’t kill the children of the murderers, because of what is written in the Instruction scroll from Moses, where the Lord commanded, Parents shouldn’t be executed because of what their children have done; neither should children be executed because of what their parents have done. Each person should be executed for their own guilty acts.[e]

Next Amaziah struck down ten thousand Edomites in the Salt Valley and captured Sela in battle. He renamed it Jokthe-el, which is what it is still called today. Then Amaziah sent messengers to Israel’s King Joash[f] son of Jehoahaz son of Israel’s King Jehu, saying, “Come on! Let’s go head-to-head.”

But Israel’s King Joash responded to Judah’s King Amaziah, “Once upon a time, a thistle in Lebanon sent a message to a cedar, ‘Give your daughter to my son as a wife.’ But then a wild beast in Lebanon came along and trampled the thistle. 10 You have definitely defeated Edom and have now become conceited. Enjoy the honor, but stay home. Why invite disaster when both you and Judah will fall?”

11 But Amaziah wouldn’t listen, so Israel’s King Joash moved against him, and he and Judah’s King Amaziah went head-to-head in battle at Beth-shemesh in Judah. 12 Judah was defeated by Israel, and everyone ran home. 13 At Beth-shemesh, Israel’s King Joash captured Judah’s King Amaziah, Jehoash’s son and Ahaziah’s grandson. Joash then marched to Jerusalem and broke down six hundred feet of the Jerusalem wall from the Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate. 14 Joash took all the gold and silver, and all the objects he could find in the Lord’s temple and the treasuries of the palace, along with some hostages and returned to Samaria. 15 The rest of Joash’s deeds and his powerful acts—how he fought against Judah’s King Amaziah—aren’t they written in the official records of Israel’s kings? 16 Joash lay down with his ancestors. He was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel. His son Jeroboam succeeded him as king.

17 Judah’s King Amaziah, Jehoash’s son, lived fifteen years after the death of Israel’s King Joash, Jehoahaz’s son. 18 The rest of Amaziah’s deeds, aren’t they written in the official records of Judah’s kings? 19 Some people in Jerusalem plotted against him. When Amaziah fled to Lachish, they sent men after him to Lachish, and they murdered him there. 20 They carried him back on horses, and he was buried in Jerusalem with his ancestors in David’s City.

21 Then all the people of Judah took Azariah and made him king after his father Amaziah. He was 16 years old. 22 He rebuilt Elath, restoring it to Judah after King Amaziah had lain down with his ancestors.

Jeroboam II rules Israel

23 Jeroboam, the son of Israel’s King Joash, became king in Samaria in the fifteenth year of Judah’s King Amaziah, Jehoash’s son. He ruled for forty-one years. 24 He did what was evil in the Lord’s eyes. He didn’t deviate from all the sins that Jeroboam, Nebat’s son, had caused Israel to commit. 25 He reestablished Israel’s border from Lebo-hamath to the Dead Sea. This was in agreement with the word that the Lord, the God of Israel, spoke through his servant the prophet Jonah, Amittai’s son, who was from Gath-hepher. 26 The Lord saw how brutally Israel suffered, whether slave or free, with no one to help Israel. 27 But the Lord hadn’t said he would erase Israel’s name from under heaven, so he saved them through Jeroboam, Joash’s son. 28 The rest of Jeroboam’s deeds, all that he accomplished, and his powerful acts—how he fought and how he restored Damascus and Hamath to Judah in Israel[g]—aren’t they written in the official records of Israel’s kings? 29 Jeroboam lay down with his ancestors the kings of Israel. His son Zechariah succeeded him as king.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Kings 13:1 Heb Joash (also in 13:10); the king’s name is variously spelled in either long Jehoash or short Joash form. The latter is the form used in 2 Chron.
  2. 2 Kings 13:6 Heb asherah, perhaps an object devoted to the goddess Asherah
  3. 2 Kings 13:10 Heb Jehoash (also in 13:25); the king’s name is variously spelled in either long Jehoash or short Joash form. The latter is the form used in 2 Chron.
  4. 2 Kings 14:1 Heb Joash (also in 14:3, 17, 23); the king’s name is variously spelled in either long Jehoash or short Joash form. The latter is the form used in 2 Chron.
  5. 2 Kings 14:6 Deut 24:16
  6. 2 Kings 14:8 Heb Jehoash (also in 14:9, 11, 13, 15, 16-17); the king’s name is variously spelled in either long Jehoash or short Joash form. The latter is the form used in 2 Chron.
  7. 2 Kings 14:28 Heb uncertain
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Acts 18:23-19:12

23 After some time there he left and traveled from place to place in the region of Galatia and the district of Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.

Apollos and his ministry

24 Meanwhile, a certain Jew named Apollos arrived in Ephesus. He was a native of Alexandria and was well-educated and effective in his use of the scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord and spoke as one stirred up by the Spirit. He taught accurately the things about Jesus, even though he was aware only of the baptism John proclaimed and practiced. 26 He began speaking with confidence in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they received him into their circle of friends and explained to him God’s way more accurately. 27 When he wanted to travel to Achaia, the brothers and sisters encouraged him and wrote to the disciples so they would open their homes to him. Once he arrived, he was of great help to those who had come to believe through grace. 28 He would vigorously defeat Jewish arguments in public debate, using the scriptures to prove that Jesus was the Christ.

Paul in Ephesus

19 While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul took a route through the interior and came to Ephesus, where he found some disciples. He asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you came to believe?”

They replied, “We’ve not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

Then he said, “What baptism did you receive, then?”

They answered, “John’s baptism.”

Paul explained, “John baptized with a baptism by which people showed they were changing their hearts and lives. It was a baptism that told people about the one who was coming after him. This is the one in whom they were to believe. This one is Jesus.” After they listened to Paul, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in other languages and prophesying. Altogether, there were about twelve people.

Paul went to the synagogue and spoke confidently for the next three months. He interacted with those present and offered convincing arguments concerning the nature of God’s kingdom. Some people had closed their minds, though. They refused to believe and publicly slandered the Way. As a result, Paul left them, took the disciples with him, and continued his daily interactions in Tyrannus’ lecture hall. 10 This went on for two years, so that everyone living in the province of Asia—both Jews and Greeks—heard the Lord’s word.

11 God was doing unusual miracles through Paul. 12 Even the small towels and aprons that had touched his skin were taken to the sick, and their diseases were cured and the evil spirits left them.

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Psalm 146

Psalm 146

146 Praise the Lord!

    Let my whole being[a] praise the Lord!
I will praise the Lord with all my life;
    I will sing praises to my God as long as I live.

Don’t trust leaders;
    don’t trust any human beings—
    there’s no saving help with them!
Their breath leaves them,
    then they go back to the ground.
    On that very same day, their plans die too.

The person whose help is the God of Jacob—
    the person whose hope rests on the Lord their God—
    is truly happy!
God: the maker of heaven and earth,
    the sea, and all that is in them,
God: who is faithful forever,
    who gives justice to people who are oppressed,
    who gives bread to people who are starving!
The Lord: who frees prisoners.
    The Lord: who makes the blind see.
    The Lord: who straightens up those who are bent low.
    The Lord: who loves the righteous.
    The Lord: who protects immigrants,
        who helps orphans and widows,
        but who makes the way of the wicked twist and turn!

10 The Lord will rule forever!
    Zion, your God will rule from one generation to the next!

Praise the Lord!

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 146:1 Or soul
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Proverbs 18:2-3

Fools find no pleasure in understanding,
    but only in expressing their opinion.
When the wicked arrive, so does contempt;
    with shame comes insult.

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Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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