2 Chronicles 13–14; Luke 7:1–30

Abijah Reigns in Judah

13 zIn the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, yAbijah began to reign over Judah. He reigned for three years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was aMicaiah1 the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah.

bNow there was war between Abijah and Jeroboam. Abijah went out to battle, having an army of valiant men of war, 400,000 chosen men. And Jeroboam cdrew up his line of battle against him with 800,000 chosen mighty warriors. Then Abijah stood up on Mount dZemaraim that is in ethe hill country of Ephraim and said, Hear me, O Jeroboam and all Israel! Ought you not to know that the Lord God of Israel fgave the kingship over Israel forever to David and his sons by ga covenant of salt? Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, a servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up hand rebelled against his lord, and certain iworthless scoundrels2 gathered about him and defied Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was jyoung and irresolute3 and could not withstand them.

And now you think to withstand the kingdom of the Lord in the hand of the sons of David, because you are a great multitude and have with you kthe golden calves that Jeroboam made you for gods. lHave you not driven out the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and made priests for yourselves like the peoples of other lands? Whoever comes mfor ordination4 with a young bull or seven rams becomes a priest of what are nnot gods. 10 But as for us, the Lord is our God, and we have not forsaken him. We have priests ministering to the Lord who are sons of Aaron, and Levites for their service. 11 They offer to the Lord oevery morning and every evening burnt offerings and incense of sweet spices, set out pthe showbread on the table of pure gold, qand care for the golden lampstand that its lamps may rburn every evening. For we skeep the charge of the Lord our God, but you have forsaken him. 12 Behold, God is with us at our head, and his priests twith their battle trumpets to sound the call to battle against you. O sons of Israel, udo not fight against the Lord, the God of your fathers, for you cannot succeed.

13 Jeroboam had sent van ambush around to come upon them from behind. Thus his troops5 were in front of Judah, and the ambush was behind them. 14 And when Judah looked, behold, the battle was in front of and behind them. wAnd they cried to the Lord, and the priests tblew the trumpets. 15 Then the men of Judah raised the battle shout. And when the men of Judah shouted, xGod defeated Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah. 16 The men of Israel fled before Judah, yand God gave them into their hand. 17 Abijah and his people struck them with great force, so there fell slain of Israel 500,000 chosen men. 18 Thus the men of Israel were subdued at that time, and the men of Judah prevailed, zbecause they relied on the Lord, the God of their fathers. 19 And Abijah pursued Jeroboam aand took cities from him, Bethel with its villages and Jeshanah with its villages and bEphron6 with its villages. 20 Jeroboam did not recover his power in the days of Abijah. cAnd the Lord struck him down, dand he died. 21 But Abijah grew mighty. And he took fourteen wives and had twenty-two sons and sixteen daughters. 22 The rest of the acts of Abijah, his ways and his sayings, are written in the estory of the prophet fIddo.

Asa Reigns in Judah

14 7gAbijah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David. And Asa his son reigned in his place. In his days the land had rest for ten years. 8 And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God. He took away the foreign altars hand the high places and broke down ithe pillars and cut down the jAsherim and commanded Judah to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, and to keep the law and the commandment. He also took out of all the cities of Judah hthe high places and the kincense altars. And the kingdom had rest under him. He built lfortified cities in Judah, for the land had rest. He had no war in those years, mfor the Lord gave him peace. And he said to Judah, Let us build these cities and surround them with nwalls and towers, gates and bars. The land is still ours, because we have sought the Lord our God. We have sought him, mand he has given us peace on every side. So they built and prospered. And Asa had an army of o300,000 from Judah, armed with large shields and spears, and 280,000 men from Benjamin that carried shields and drew bows. All these were mighty men of valor.

Zerah pthe Ethiopian came out against them with an army of a million men and 300 chariots, and came as far as qMareshah. 10 And Asa went out to meet him, and rthey drew up their lines of battle in the Valley of Zephathah at qMareshah. 11 And Asa scried to the Lord his God, O Lord, there is none like you to help, between the mighty and the weak. Help us, O Lord our God, tfor we rely on you, uand in your name we have come against this multitude. O Lord, you are our God; let not man prevail against you. 12 vSo the Lord defeated the Ethiopians before Asa and before Judah, and the Ethiopians fled. 13 Asa and the people who were with him pursued them as far as wGerar, and the Ethiopians fell until none remained alive, for they were broken before the Lord and his army. The men of Judah9 carried away very much spoil. 14 And they attacked all the cities around wGerar, xfor the fear of the Lord was upon them. They plundered all the cities, for there was much plunder in them. 15 And they struck down the tents of those who had livestock and carried away sheep in abundance and camels. Then they returned to Jerusalem.


Jesus Heals a Centurion's Servant

After he had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, bhe entered Capernaum. Now a centurion had a servant1 who was sick and at the point of death, who was highly valued by him. When the centurion2 heard about Jesus, che sent to him elders of the Jews, asking him to come and heal his servant. And when they came to Jesus, they pleaded with him earnestly, saying, dHe is worthy to have you do this for him, for he loves our nation, and he is the one who built us eour synagogue. And Jesus went with them. When he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends, saying to him, Lord, fdo not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof. Therefore I did not presume to come to you. But gsay the word, and let my servant be healed. For I too am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me: and I say to one, Go, and he goes; and to another, Come, and he comes; and to my servant, Do this, and he does it. When Jesus heard these things, hhe marveled at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, said, I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such ifaith. 10 And when those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the servant well.

Jesus Raises a Widow's Son

11 Soon afterward3 he went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a great crowd went with him. 12 As he drew near to the gate of the town, behold, a man who had died was being carried out, jthe only son of his mother, and she was a widow, and a considerable crowd from the town was with her. 13 And when the Lord saw her, khe had compassion on her and lsaid to her, Do not weep. 14 Then he came up and touched mthe bier, and the bearers stood still. And he said, Young man, I say to you, narise. 15 And the dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus4 ogave him to his mother. 16 Fear seized them all, and pthey glorified God, saying, qA great prophet has arisen among us! and rGod has visited his people! 17 And this report about him spread through the whole of Judea and all the surrounding country.

Messengers from John the Baptist

18 stThe disciples of John reported all these things to him. And John, 19 calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to the Lord, saying, Are you the one uwho is to come, or vshall we look for another? 20 And when the men had come to him, they said, John the Baptist has sent us to you, saying, Are you the one uwho is to come, or vshall we look for another? 21 In that hour whe healed many people of diseases and plagues and evil spirits, and xon many who were blind he bestowed sight. 22 And he answered them, Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: ythe blind receive their sight, the lame walk, zlepers5 are cleansed, and athe deaf hear, bthe dead are raised up, cthe poor have good news preached to them. 23 And blessed is the one who is dnot offended by me.

24 When John's messengers had gone, Jesus6 began to speak to the crowds concerning John: What did you go out einto the wilderness to see? fA reed shaken by the wind? 25 What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who are dressed in splendid clothing and live in luxury are in kings' courts. 26 What then did you go out to see? gA prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 27 This is he of whom it is written,

hBehold, I send my messenger before your face,

who will prepare your way before you.

28 I tell you, among those born of women none is greater than John. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he. 29 (iWhen all the people heard this, and jthe tax collectors too, they declared God just,7 jhaving been baptized with kthe baptism of John, 30 lbut the Pharisees and mthe lawyers nrejected othe purpose of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.)