Chapter 7

  1. And Jehoshaphat his son reigned in his stead, and strengthened himself against Israel. And he placed forces in all the fortified cities of Judah, and set garrisons in the land of Judah and in the cities of Ephraim which Asa his father had taken.
  2. And the Lord was with Jehoshaphat because he walked in the first ways of his father David, and sought not unto Baalim but sought to the Lord God of his father, and walked in his commandments and not after the doings of Israel. Therefore, the Lord established the kingdom in his hand. And all Judah brought to Jehoshaphat presents, and he had riches and honor in abundance. And his heart was lifted up in the ways of the Lord. Moreover, he took away the high places and groves out of Judah.
  3. Also in the third year of his reign, he sent to his princes — even to Benhail, and to Obadiah, and to Zechariah, and to Nethanel, and to Micaiah — to teach in the cities of Judah. And with them he sent Levites, even Shemaiah, and Nethaniah, and Zebadiah, and Asahel, and Shemiramoth, and Jehonathan, and Adonijah, and Tobijah, and Tobadonijah — Levites, and with them, Elishama and Jehoram — priests. And they taught in Judah, and had the book of the law of the Lord with them, and went about throughout all the cities of Judah, and taught the people.
  4. And the fear of the Lord fell upon all the kingdoms of the lands that were round about Judah, so that they made no war against Jehoshaphat. Also, some of the Philistines brought Jehoshaphat presents and tribute silver; and the Arabians brought him flocks, seven thousand seven hundred rams and seven thousand seven hundred he-goats.
  5. And Jehoshaphat waxed great exceedingly, and he built in Judah castles and cities of store, and he had much business in the cities of Judah. And the men of war, mighty men of valor, were in Jerusalem. And these are the numbers of them according to the house of their fathers: of Judah, the captains of thousands: Adnah the chief, and with him mighty men of valor, three hundred thousand; and next to him was Jehohanan the captain, and with him two hundred eighty thousand; and next to him was Amasiah the son of Zichri, who willingly offered himself unto the Lord, and with him two hundred thousand mighty men of valor. And of Benjamin: Eliada, a mighty man of valor, and with him armed men with bow and shield, two hundred thousand; and next to him was Jehozabad, and with him a hundred eighty thousand ready, prepared for the war. These waited on the king besides those whom the king put in the fortified cities throughout all Judah.
  6. Now Jehoshaphat had riches and honor in abundance, and joined alliance with Ahab. And after certain years, he went down to Ahab, to Samaria. And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people that he had with him, and persuaded him to go up with him to Ramoth-Gilead. And Ahab king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat king of Judah, Will you go with me to Ramoth-Gilead? And he answered him, I am as you are, and my people as your people, and we will be with you in the war.
  7. And Jehoshaphat said unto the king of Israel, Inquire, I pray you, at the word of the Lord today. Therefore, the king of Israel gathered together of prophets four hundred men, and said unto them, Shall we go to Ramoth-Gilead to battle? Or shall I refrain? And they said, Go up, for God will deliver it into the king’s hand.
  8. But Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here a prophet of the Lord besides, that we might inquire of him? And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the Lord, but I hate him, for he never prophesied good unto me, but always evil. The same is Micaiah the son of Imlah. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say so. And the king of Israel called for one of his officers and said, Fetch quickly Micaiah the son of Imlah.
  9. And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah sat either of them on his throne, clothed in their robes, and they sat in a void place at the entering in of the gate of Samaria. And all the prophets prophesied before them. And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah had made him horns of iron, and said, Thus says the Lord: With these you shall push Syria until they are consumed. And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, Go up to Ramoth-Gilead and prosper, for the Lord shall deliver it into the hand of the king.
  10. And the messenger that went to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, Behold, the words of the prophets declare good to the king with one assent. Let your word therefore, I pray you, be like one of theirs, and speak good. And Micaiah said, As the Lord lives, even what my God says, that will I speak.
  11. And when he had come to the king, the king said unto him, Micaiah, shall we go to Ramoth-Gilead to battle? Or shall I refrain? And he said, Go up and prosper, and they shall be delivered into your hand. And the king said to him, How many times shall I adjure you that you say nothing but the truth to me in the name of the Lord?
  12. Then he said, I did see all Israel scattered upon the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd. And the Lord said, These have no master; let them return, therefore, every man to his house in peace. And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, Did I not tell you that he would not prophesy good unto me, but evil?
  13. Again he said, Therefore hear the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting upon his throne, and all the host of heaven standing on his right hand and on his left. And the Lord said, Who shall entice Ahab king of Israel, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-Gilead? And one spoke, saying after this manner, and another saying after that manner. Then there came out of them a lying spirit, and stood before the Lord and said, I will entice him. And the Lord said unto him, With what? And he said, I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And the Lord said, You shall entice him, and you shall also prevail. Go out and do so, for all these have sinned against me. Now therefore behold, the Lord has found a lying spirit in the mouth of these your prophets, and the Lord has spoken evil against you.
  14. Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near and smote Micaiah upon the cheek, and said, Which way went the spirit of the Lord from me to speak unto you? And Micaiah said, Behold, you shall see on that day when you shall go into an inner chamber to hide yourself.
  15. Then the king of Israel said, Take Micaiah and carry him back to Amon the governor of the city, and to Joash the king’s son, and say, Thus says the king: Put this man in the prison, and feed him with bread of affliction and with water of affliction until I return in peace. And Micaiah said, If you certainly return in peace, then has the Lord not spoken by me. And he said, Listen, all you people.
  16. So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah went up to Ramoth-Gilead. And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, I will disguise myself and will go to the battle, but you put on your robes. So the king of Israel disguised himself, and they went to the battle.
  17. Now the king of Syria had commanded the captains of the chariots that were with him, saying, Fight not with small or great, save only with the king of Israel. And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It is the king of Israel. Therefore, they encompassed about him to fight. But Jehoshaphat cried out, and the Lord helped him and God moved them from him; for it came to pass that, when the captains of the chariots perceived that it was not the king of Israel, they turned back again from pursuing him.
  18. And a certain man drew a bow at a venture, and smote the king of Israel between the joints of the harness. Therefore he said to his chariot man, Turn your hand, that you may carry me out of the host, for I am wounded. And the battle increased that day. Nevertheless, the king of Israel propped himself up in his chariot against the Syrians until the evening. And about the time of the sun going down, he died.
  19. And Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned to his house in peace, to Jerusalem. And Jehu the son of Hanani, the seer, went out to meet him, and said to king Jehoshaphat, Should you help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord? Therefore is wrath upon you from before the Lord. Nevertheless, there are good things found in you, in that you have taken away the groves out of the land and have prepared your heart to seek God.
  20. And Jehoshaphat dwelled at Jerusalem. And he went out again through the people, from Beersheba to Mount Ephraim, and brought them back unto the Lord God of their fathers. And he set judges in the land throughout all the fortified cities of Judah, city by city. And said to the judges, Take heed what you do, for you judge not for man but for the Lord, who is with you in the judgment. Wherefore, now let the fear of the Lord be upon you. Take heed and do it, for there is no iniquity with the Lord our God, nor respect of persons, nor taking of bribes.
  21. Moreover, in Jerusalem did Jehoshaphat set of the Levites, and the priests, and of the chief of the fathers of Israel, for the judgment of the Lord and for controversies, when they returned to Jerusalem. And he charged them, saying, Thus shall you do in the fear of the Lord, faithfully, and with a perfect heart. And whatever cause shall come to you of your brethren that dwell in their cities, between blood and blood, between law and commandment, statutes and judgments, you shall even warn them that they trespass not against the Lord, and so wrath come upon you and upon your brethren. This do, and you shall not trespass.
  22. And behold, Amariah the chief priest is over you in all matters of the Lord, and Zebadiah the son of Ishmael, the ruler of the house of Judah, for all the king’s matters. Also, the Levites shall be officers before you. Deal courageously and the Lord shall be with the good.
  23. It came to pass after this also, the children of Moab and the children of Ammon (and with them, others besides the Ammonites) came against Jehoshaphat to battle. Then there came some that told Jehoshaphat, saying, There comes a great multitude against you from beyond the sea on this side of Syria. And behold, they are in Hazazon-Tamar, which was called Engedi. And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. And Judah gathered themselves together to ask of the Lord; even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord.
  24. And Jehoshaphat stood in the congregation of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the Lord, before the new court, and said, O Lord God of our fathers — you, God, who are in Heaven, and rule over all the kingdoms of the heathen, and in your hand you have power and might so that none is able to withstand you — you, our God, did drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel, and gave it to the seed of Abraham your friend for ever. And they dwelled therein, and have built you a sanctuary therein for your name, saying, If evil comes upon us — the sword, judgment, or pestilence, or famine — we stand before this house and in your presence, for your name is in this house, and cry unto you in our affliction; then you will hear and help.
  25. And now behold, the children of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir — whom you would not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned from them and destroyed them not — behold, they reward us not, but have come to cast us out of your possession which you have given us to inherit. O our God, will you not judge them? For we have no might against this great company that comes against us, neither know we what to do. But our eyes are upon you.
  26. And all Judah stood before the Lord with their little ones, their wives, and their children.
  27. Then upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph, came the spirit of the Lord in the midst of the congregation. And he said, Listen, all Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, king Jehoshaphat. Thus says the Lord unto you: Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow go down against them. Behold, they come up by the cliff of Ziz, and you shall find them at the end of the brook, before the wilderness of Jeruel. You shall not go to fight in this day. Set yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you. O Judah and Jerusalem, fear not, nor be dismayed. Tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord will be with you.
  28. And Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell before the Lord, worshipping the Lord. And the Levites of the children of the Kohathites and of the children of the Korahites stood up to praise the Lord God of Israel with a loud voice on high.
  29. And they rose early in the morning and went forth into the wilderness of Tekoa. And as they went forth, Jehoshaphat stood and said, Hear me, O Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem. Believe in the Lord your God; so shall you be established. Believe his prophets; so shall you prosper. And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the Lord, and that should praise the beauty of holiness as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the Lord, for his mercy endures for ever.
  30. And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambushes against the children of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir who had come against Judah, and they were smitten; for the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir utterly to slay and destroy them. And when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, every one helped to destroy another.
  31. And when Judah came toward the watchtower in the wilderness, they looked unto the multitude, and behold, they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none escaped. And when Jehoshaphat and his people came to take away the spoil of them, they found among them in abundance both riches (with the dead bodies) and precious jewels, which they stripped off for themselves, more than they could carry away. And they were three days in gathering of the spoil, it was so much. And on the fourth day, they assembled themselves in the valley of Berachah — for there they blessed the Lord, therefore the name of the same place was called the valley of Berachah unto this day.
  32. Then they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, and Jehoshaphat in the forefront of them, to go again to Jerusalem with joy; for the Lord had made them to rejoice over their enemies. And they came to Jerusalem with psalteries and harps and trumpets, unto the house of the Lord. And the fear of God was on all the kingdoms of those countries when they had heard that the Lord fought against the enemies of Israel. So the realm of Jehoshaphat was quiet, for his God gave him rest round about.
  33. And Jehoshaphat reigned over Judah. He was thirty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-five years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Azubah, the daughter of Shilhi. And he walked in the way of Asa his father and departed not from it, doing right in the sight of the Lord. Nevertheless, the high places were not taken away, for as yet the people had not prepared their hearts unto the God of their fathers.
  34. Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, first and last, behold, they are written in the book of Jehu the son of Hanani, who is mentioned in the book of the kings of Israel.
  35. And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly. And he joined himself with him to make ships to go to Tarshish, and they made the ships in Ezion-Geber. Then Eliezer, the son of Dodavahu of Mareshah, prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, Because you have joined yourself with Ahaziah, the Lord has broken your works. And the ships were broken, that they were not able to go to Tarshish.