Day 154 – 2 Chronicles 14-17; Psalm 118:145–160; Proverbs 27:1–6; John 13:1–17

2 Chronicles 14-17

1 Asa did what was good and proper in the eyes of the Lord his God, 2 for he removed the altars of the foreign gods and the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the groves. 3 He commanded Judah to seek the Lord God of their fathers and to observe the law and the commandments. 4 He also removed the altars and the idols from all the cities of Judah, and the kingdom was quiet under him. 5 He was able to build walled cities in Judah, for the land had rest. There was no war in those years because the Lord gave him rest. 6 Therefore he said to Judah, “Because we sought the Lord our God, let us build these cities and make walls around them, and towers, gates, and bars in the land we rule. We sought Him, and He gave us rest on every side, and we have prospered.” 7 Asa had an army of three hundred thousand from Judah who carried shields and spears, and from Benjamin two hundred fifty thousand men who carried shields and drew bows. All these were mighty men of valor.
8 Then Zerah the Ethiopian came against them with an army of a million men and three hundred chariots, and came to Mareshah. 9 So Asa went out against him, and they set the troops in battle array in the valley to the north of Mareshah. 10 And Asa cried out to the Lord his God and said, “Lord, with You it is not impossible, whether with the many or with the few. Strengthen us, Lord our God, for we trust in You. And in Your name we go against this multitude. Lord our God, do not let man prevail against You!”
11 So the Lord struck the Ethiopians before Judah, and the Ethiopians fled. 12 And Asa and the people with him pursued them to Gerar, and the Ethiopians were so defeated they could not recover. They were crushed before the Lord and His army. And they carried away a great deal of spoil. 13 Then they cut off all the villages round about Gerar, for the fear of the Lord came upon them; even so, they plundered all their cities, for they had a great amount of spoil in them. 14 They even tore down the enclosures for the livestock. Then they took many of the sheep and camels and returned to Jerusalem.
Asa Brings Reforms
1 Now the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded. 2 And he went out to meet Asa and all Judah and Benjamin, and said, “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin. The Lord is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you, but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. 3 For a long time Israel was without the true God, without a teaching priest, and held to what is not the law. 4 But when in their trouble they turned to the Lord God of Israel and sought Him, He was found by them. 5 In those times, there was no peace for the one who went out or the one who came in, but great terror of the Lord was on all the inhabitants of the lands. 6 So nation destroyed nation and city against city, for God troubled them with every adversity. 7 But be strong and do not let your hands be weak, for there is a reward for your work.”
  8 When Asa heard these words and the prophecy of Oded the prophet, he took courage and removed the abominations throughout the land of Judah and Benjamin, and the cities he took in the mountains of Ephraim. And he restored the altar of the Lord before the temple of the Lord. 9 Then he gathered all of Judah and Benjamin, and those who dwelt with them from Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon, for they came over to him in great numbers from Israel when they saw that the Lord his God was with him.
10 So they gathered together at Jerusalem in the third month, in the fifteenth year of the reign of Asa. 11 And at that time, they offered to the Lord seven hundred calves and seven thousand sheep from the spoil they had brought. 12 Then they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers with all their heart and with all their soul. 13 Whoever would not seek the Lord God of Israel was to be put to death, small or great, man or woman. 14 With a loud voice and trumpets and rams’ horns they took an oath before the Lord. 15 And all of Judah rejoiced at the oath, for they had sworn with all their heart and sought Him with all their soul. And He was found by them, and the Lord gave them rest all around.
16 And he removed Maachah his mother from being queen mother because she served the Asherah; and he cut down the idol and burned it at the Brook Kidron. 17 But the high places were not removed, and they still existed in Israel. But the heart of Asa was loyal all his days. 18 He also brought the things his father had dedicated and that he himself had dedicated—silver and gold and utensils.
19 And there was no war until the thirty-fifth year of the reign of Asa.
Asa’s Treaty with Syria’s King
1 In the thirty-eighth year of the reign of Asa, Baasha king of Israel came up against Judah and built Ramah, so that no one could go out or come in to Asa king of Judah. 2 Then Asa brought silver and gold from the treasuries of the house of the Lord and the king’s house. He sent them to the son of Hadad the king of Syria, who dwelt in Damascus, saying, 3 “Let there be a treaty between you and me, as there was between my father and your father. Here, I have sent you silver and gold. Come and drive away Baasha king of Israel so that he will withdraw from me.”
4 So the son of Hadad heeded King Asa, and sent the captains of his armies against the cities of Israel. They attacked Ijon, Dan, Abel Maim, and all the areas around Naphtali. 5 Now when Baasha heard it, he stopped building Ramah and ceased his work. 6 Then King Asa took all of Judah, and they carried away the stones and timber of Ramah which Baasha had used for building. With them he built Geba and Mizpah.
Hanani’s Prophecy to Asa
7 And at that time, Hanani the prophet came to Asa king of Judah and said to him, “Because you relied on the king of Syria and did not rely on the Lord your God, therefore the army of the king of Syria escaped from your hand. 8 Were not the Ethiopians and the Lubim a large and courageous army with a great many chariots and horsemen? Yet, because you relied on the Lord, He delivered them into your hand. 9 For the eyes of the Lord look over the whole earth and strengthen every heart that is loyal to Him. In this you did foolishly, and from now on you shall have wars.” 10 Asa was angry at the prophet and he put him in prison, for because of this he was enraged at him. And at that time Asa oppressed some of the people.
Sickness and Death of Asa
11 Now the acts of Asa, first and last, are written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel. 12 In the thirty-ninth year of his reign, Asa became diseased in his feet, and his malady was severe. And in his disease he sought physicians rather than the Lord. 13 So Asa rested with his fathers. He died in the thirty-ninth year of his reign. 14 They buried him in the tomb he had made for himself in the City of David. And they laid him in a bed filled with spices and various ingredients prepared in a mixture of ointments. They made a very great funeral for him.
  Jehoshaphat Is King of Judah
1 Then Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his place and strengthened himself against Israel. 2 He placed troops in all the fortified cities of Judah, and set captains in the land of Judah and in the cities of Ephraim which Asa his father had taken. 3 Now the Lord was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the former ways of his father David and did not seek idols, 4 but sought the Lord God of his father and walked in His commandments, and not according to the deeds of Israel. 5 Therefore the Lord guided the kingdom by his hand. And all Judah brought gifts to Jehoshaphat, and he had great wealth and honor. 6 His heart took delight in the ways of the Lord. And moreover, he removed the high places and groves from the land of Judah.
7 And in the third year of his reign, he sent his leaders and the sons of the mighty men, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Michaiah, to teach in the cities of Judah. 8 And with them he sent Levites, Shemaiah, Nethaniah, Zebadiah, Asahel, Shemiramoth, Jehonathan, Adonijah, Tobijah—the Levites. And with them were the priests Elishama and Jehoram. 9 So they taught in Judah, and had the Book of the Law of the Lord with them. They went through the cities of Judah and taught the people.
Jehoshaphat’s Strength
10 And the fear of the Lord fell on all the kingdoms of the lands around Judah, so they did not make war against Jehoshaphat. 11 And some of the foreigners brought Jehoshaphat presents and silver as tribute, and the Arabians brought him flocks—seven thousand seven hundred rams. 12 So Jehoshaphat became increasingly powerful, and he built fortresses and fortified cities in Judah.
13 He had great works in Judah, and in Jerusalem men of war, mighty men of valor. 14 These are their numbers by their fathers’ houses: of Judah, the captains of thousands, Adnah the captain, and with him three hundred thousand mighty men of valor; 15 and with him was Jehohanan the captain, and with him were two hundred eighty thousand; 16 and with him was Amasiah the son of Zichri, who willingly offered himself to the Lord, and with him were two hundred thousand mighty men of valor. 17 From Benjamin came Eliada, a mighty man of valor, and with him were two hundred thousand men armed with bow and shield. 18 And with him was Jehozabad, who brought one hundred eighty thousand prepared for war. 19 These served the king in addition to those the king put in the fortified cities throughout Judah.
Psalm 118:145–160

145 I cry out with my whole heart; hear me, O Lord;

I shall search Your ordinances.

146 I cry out to You; save me,

And I shall keep Your testimonies.

147 I arose at midnight and cried out;

I hoped in Your words.

148 My eyes awoke before dawn

That I might meditate on Your teachings.

149 Hear my voice, O Lord, according to Your mercy;

Give me life according to Your judgment.

150 Those who persecute me in lawlessness drew near;

They are far removed from Your law.

151 You are near, O Lord;

All Your commandments are truth.

152 From the beginning I knew Your testimonies,

That You established them forever.

153 Behold my humiliation and deliver me,

For I have not forgotten Your law.

154 Plead my cause and redeem me;

Give me life because of Your word.

155 Salvation is far from sinners,

For they have not searched Your ordinances.

156 Your compassions are many, O Lord;

Give me life according to Your judgment.

157 Many are those who pursue and afflict me,

But I did not turn away from Your testimonies.

158 I saw those acting foolishly, and I yearned for You;

For they did not keep Your teachings.

159 Behold, I love Your commandments;

O Lord, in Your mercy, give me life.

160 The beginning of Your words is truth,

And all the judgments of Your righteousness are forever.

Proverbs 27:1–6

1 Do not boast about tomorrow,

For you do not know what the next day will bring forth.

2 Let your neighbor praise you, and not your own mouth;

A stranger, and not your own lips.

3 A stone is heavy, and sand is cumbersome;

But the wrath of a man without discernment is heavier than both.

4 Wrath is merciless and anger passionate,

But jealousy supports nothing.

5 Open reproofs are better than hidden love.

6 The wounds of a friend are more trustworthy

Than the voluntary kisses of an enemy.

John 13:1–17

1 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.
2 And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him,
3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God,
4 rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself.
5 After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded.
6 Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, “Lord, are You washing my feet?”
7 Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this.”
8 Peter said to Him, “You shall never wash my feet!” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”
9 Simon Peter said to Him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”
10 Jesus said to him, “He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you.”
11 For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, “You are not all clean.”
12 So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you?
13 “You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.
14 “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
15 “For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.
16 “Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him.
17 “If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

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