2 Kings 15:1-16:20; Acts 19:13-41; Psalms 147:1-20; Proverbs 18:4-5 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
2 Kings 15-16
Judah’s King Azariah
15 In the twenty-seventh year of Israel’s King Jeroboam, Azariah[a] son of Amaziah became king of Judah. 2 He was 16 years old when he became king and reigned 52 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jecoliah, who was from Jerusalem. 3 Azariah did what was right in the Lord’s sight just as his father Amaziah had done. 4 Yet the high places were not taken away; the people continued sacrificing and burning incense on the high places.
5 The Lord afflicted the king, and he had a serious skin disease until the day of his death. He lived in a separate house,[b] while Jotham, the king’s son, was over the household governing the people of the land.
6 The rest of the events of Azariah’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Judah’s Kings. 7 Azariah rested with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. His son Jotham became king in his place.
Israel’s King Zechariah
8 In the thirty-eighth year of Judah’s King Azariah, Zechariah son of Jeroboam became king over Israel in Samaria for six months. 9 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight as his fathers had done. He did not turn away from the sins Jeroboam son of Nebat had caused Israel to commit.
10 Shallum son of Jabesh conspired against Zechariah. He struck him down publicly,[c] killed him, and became king in his place. 11 As for the rest of the events of Zechariah’s reign, they are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings. 12 The word of the Lord that He spoke to Jehu was, “Four generations of your sons will sit on the throne of Israel,” and it was so.
Israel’s King Shallum
13 In the thirty-ninth year of Judah’s King Uzziah, Shallum son of Jabesh became king; he reigned in Samaria a full month. 14 Then Menahem son of Gadi came up from Tirzah to Samaria and struck down Shallum son of Jabesh there. He killed him and became king in his place. 15 As for the rest of the events of Shallum’s reign, along with the conspiracy that he formed, they are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings.
Israel’s King Menahem
16 At that time, starting from Tirzah, Menahem attacked Tiphsah, all who were in it, and its territory. Because they wouldn’t surrender, he attacked it and ripped open all the pregnant women.
17 In the thirty-ninth year of Judah’s King Azariah, Menahem son of Gadi became king over Israel and reigned 10 years in Samaria. 18 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight. Throughout his reign, he did not turn away from the sins Jeroboam son of Nebat had caused Israel to commit.
19 Pul[d] king of Assyria invaded the land, so Menahem gave Pul 75,000 pounds[e] of silver so that Pul would support him to strengthen his grip on the kingdom. 20 Then Menahem exacted 20 ounces[f] of silver from each of the wealthy men of Israel to give to the king of Assyria. So the king of Assyria withdrew and did not stay there in the land.
21 The rest of the events of Menahem’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings. 22 Menahem rested with his fathers, and his son Pekahiah became king in his place.
Israel’s King Pekahiah
23 In the fiftieth year of Judah’s King Azariah, Pekahiah son of Menahem became king over Israel in Samaria and reigned two years. 24 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight and did not turn away from the sins Jeroboam son of Nebat had caused Israel to commit.
25 Then his officer, Pekah son of Remaliah, conspired against him and struck him down in Samaria at the citadel of the king’s palace —as well as Argob and Arieh.[g] There were 50 Gileadite men with Pekah. He killed Pekahiah and became king in his place.
26 As for the rest of the events of Pekahiah’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, they are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings.
Israel’s King Pekah
27 In the fifty-second year of Judah’s King Azariah, Pekah son of Remaliah became king over Israel in Samaria and reigned 20 years. 28 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight. He did not turn away from the sins Jeroboam son of Nebat had caused Israel to commit.
29 In the days of Pekah king of Israel, Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria came and captured Ijon, Abel-beth-maacah, Janoah, Kedesh, Hazor, Gilead, and Galilee—all the land of Naphtali—and deported the people to Assyria.
30 Then Hoshea son of Elah organized a conspiracy against Pekah son of Remaliah. He attacked him, killed him, and became king in his place in the twentieth year of Jotham son of Uzziah.
31 As for the rest of the events of Pekah’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, they are written in the Historical Record of Israel’s Kings.
Judah’s King Jotham
32 In the second year of Israel’s King Pekah son of Remaliah, Jotham son of Uzziah became king of Judah. 33 He was 25 years old when he became king and reigned 16 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jerusha daughter of Zadok. 34 He did what was right in the Lord’s sight just as his father Uzziah had done. 35 Yet the high places were not taken away; the people continued sacrificing and burning incense on the high places.
Jotham built the Upper Gate of the Lord’s temple. 36 The rest of the events of Jotham’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, they are written in the Historical Record of Judah’s Kings. 37 In those days the Lord began sending Rezin king of Aram and Pekah son of Remaliah against Judah. 38 Jotham rested with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of his ancestor David. His son Ahaz became king in his place.
Judah’s King Ahaz
16 In the seventeenth year of Pekah son of Remaliah, Ahaz son of Jotham became king of Judah. 2 Ahaz was 20 years old when he became king and reigned 16 years in Jerusalem. He did not do what was right in the sight of the Lord his God like his ancestor David 3 but walked in the way of the kings of Israel. He even made his son pass through the fire,[h] imitating the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites. 4 He sacrificed and burned incense on the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.
5 Then Aram’s King Rezin and Israel’s King Pekah son of Remaliah came to wage war against Jerusalem. They besieged Ahaz but were not able to conquer him. 6 At that time Rezin king of Aram recovered Elath for Aram and expelled the Judahites from Elath. Then the Arameans came to Elath, and they live there until today.
7 So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your son. March up and save me from the power of the king of Aram and of the king of Israel, who are rising up against me.” 8 Ahaz also took the silver and gold found in the Lord’s temple and in the treasuries of the king’s palace and sent them to the king of Assyria as a gift. 9 So the king of Assyria listened to him and marched up to Damascus and captured it. He deported its people to Kir but put Rezin to death.
10 King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria. When he saw the altar that was in Damascus, King Ahaz sent a model of the altar and complete plans for its construction to Uriah the priest. 11 Uriah built the altar according to all the instructions King Ahaz sent from Damascus. Therefore, by the time King Ahaz came back from Damascus, Uriah the priest had completed it. 12 When the king came back from Damascus, he saw the altar. Then he approached the altar and ascended it. 13 He offered his burnt offering and his grain offering, poured out his drink offering, and sprinkled the blood of his fellowship offerings on the altar. 14 He took the bronze altar that was before the Lord in front of the temple between his altar and the Lord’s temple, and put it on the north side of his altar.
15 Then King Ahaz commanded Uriah the priest, “Offer on the great altar the morning burnt offering, the evening grain offering, and the king’s burnt offering and his grain offering. Also offer the burnt offering of all the people of the land, their grain offering, and their drink offerings. Sprinkle on the altar all the blood of the burnt offering and all the blood of sacrifice. The bronze altar will be for me to seek guidance.”[i] 16 Uriah the priest did everything King Ahaz commanded.
17 Then King Ahaz cut off the frames of the water carts[j] and removed the bronze basin from each of them. He took the reservoir[k] from the bronze oxen that were under it and put it on a stone pavement. 18 To satisfy the king of Assyria, he removed from the Lord’s temple the Sabbath canopy they had built in the palace, and he closed the outer entrance for the king.
19 The rest of the events of Ahaz’s reign, along with his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Judah’s Kings. 20 Ahaz rested with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David, and his son Hezekiah became king in his place.
- 2 Kings 15:1 = Uzziah in 2Ch 26:3
- 2 Kings 15:5 Lit house of freedom, or house of exemption
- 2 Kings 15:10 Some LXX mss read at Ibleam; Hb uncertain
- 2 Kings 15:19 = Tiglath-pileser
- 2 Kings 15:19 Lit 1,000 talents
- 2 Kings 15:20 Lit 50 shekels
- 2 Kings 15:25 Hb obscure
- 2 Kings 16:3 Either a Canaanite cult practice or child sacrifice
- 2 Kings 16:15 Hb obscure
- 2 Kings 16:17 Lit the stands
- 2 Kings 16:17 Lit sea
13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists attempted to pronounce the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “I command you by the Jesus that Paul preaches!” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 The evil spirit answered them, “I know Jesus, and I recognize Paul—but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit leaped on them, overpowered them all, and prevailed against them, so that they ran out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known to everyone who lived in Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. Then fear fell on all of them, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. 18 And many who had become believers came confessing and disclosing their practices, 19 while many of those who had practiced magic collected their books and burned them in front of everyone. So they calculated their value and found it to be 50,000 pieces of silver. 20 In this way the Lord’s message flourished and prevailed.
The Riot in Ephesus
21 When these events were over, Paul resolved in the Spirit to pass through Macedonia and Achaia and go to Jerusalem. “After I’ve been there,” he said, “I must see Rome as well!” 22 So after sending two of those who assisted him, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.
23 During that time there was a major[a] disturbance about the Way. 24 For a person named Demetrius, a silversmith who made silver shrines of Artemis,[b] provided a great deal of[c] business for the craftsmen. 25 When he had assembled them, as well as the workers engaged in this type of business, he said: “Men, you know that our prosperity is derived from this business. 26 You both see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost all of Asia, this man Paul has persuaded and misled a considerable number of people by saying that gods made by hand are not gods! 27 So not only do we run a risk that our business may be discredited, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis may be despised and her magnificence come to the verge of ruin—the very one all of Asia and the world adore.”
28 When they had heard this, they were filled with rage and began to cry out, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 29 So the city was filled with confusion, and they rushed all together into the amphitheater, dragging along Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians who were Paul’s traveling companions. 30 Though Paul wanted to go in before the people, the disciples did not let him. 31 Even some of the provincial officials of Asia, who were his friends, sent word to him, pleading with him not to take a chance by going[d] into the amphitheater. 32 Meanwhile, some were shouting one thing and some another, because the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had come together. 33 Then some of the crowd gave Alexander advice when the Jews pushed him to the front. So motioning with his hand, Alexander wanted to make his defense to the people. 34 But when they recognized that he was a Jew, a united cry went up from all of them for about two hours: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!”
35 However, when the city clerk had calmed the crowd down, he said, “Men of Ephesus! What man is there who doesn’t know that the city of the Ephesians is the temple guardian of the great[e] Artemis, and of the image that fell from heaven? 36 Therefore, since these things are undeniable, you must keep calm and not do anything rash. 37 For you have brought these men here who are not temple robbers or blasphemers of our[f] goddess. 38 So if Demetrius and the craftsmen who are with him have a case against anyone, the courts are in session, and there are proconsuls. Let them bring charges against one another. 39 But if you want something else, it must be decided in a legal assembly. 40 In fact, we run a risk of being charged with rioting for what happened today, since there is no justification that we can give as a reason for this disorderly gathering.” 41 After saying this, he dismissed the assembly.
God Restores Jerusalem
How good it is to sing to our God,
for praise is pleasant and lovely.
2 The Lord rebuilds Jerusalem;
He gathers Israel’s exiled people.
3 He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.
4 He counts the number of the stars;
He gives names to all of them.
5 Our Lord is great, vast in power;
His understanding is infinite.[a]
6 The Lord helps the afflicted
but brings the wicked to the ground.
7 Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving;
play the lyre to our God,
8 who covers the sky with clouds,
prepares rain for the earth,
and causes grass to grow on the hills.
9 He provides the animals with their food,
and the young ravens, what they cry for.
10 He is not impressed by the strength of a horse;
He does not value the power[b] of a man.
11 The Lord values those who fear Him,
those who put their hope in His faithful love.
12 Exalt the Lord, Jerusalem;
praise your God, Zion!
13 For He strengthens the bars of your gates
and blesses your children within you.
14 He endows your territory with prosperity;[c]
He satisfies you with the finest wheat.
15 He sends His command throughout the earth;
His word runs swiftly.
16 He spreads snow like wool;
He scatters frost like ashes;
17 He throws His hailstones like crumbs.
Who can withstand His cold?
18 He sends His word and melts them;
He unleashes His winds,[d] and the waters flow.
19 He declares His word to Jacob,
His statutes and judgments to Israel.
20 He has not done this for any nation;
they do not know[e] His judgments.