2 Chronicles 15–16

1 Then the Spirit of God came on Azariah the son of Oded, 2 and he went out to meet Asa and said to him, “Listen to me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: The Lord is with you while you are with Him. If you all seek Him, He will be found with you. But if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. 3 For a long time Israel has been without the true God, and without a teaching priest and without law, 4 but when in their trouble they turned to the Lord God of Israel, and sought Him, He was found by them. 5 And at that time there was no peace to the one traveling in or out because there was a great panic on all those who dwelt in the land. 6 They were broken to pieces, nation against nation and city against city, because God confused them with every type of distress. 7 But you all must be strong and not lose heart, for there is a reward for your deeds.”

8 And when Asa heard these words of the prophecy of Azariah son of Oded the prophet, he was encouraged and removed the detestable idols from the entire land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities that he captured in the hills of Ephraim. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that was before the vestibule of the Lord.

9 And he gathered together all of Judah and Benjamin and those who had settled among them from Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon, for these had come down to him from Israel in a great number when they saw that the Lord his God was with him.

10 These were gathered in Jerusalem in the third month in the fifteenth year in the reign of Asa. 11 They sacrificed to the Lord that day from the plunder that they brought in, seven hundred oxen and seven thousand sheep. 12 And they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers with all their heart and soul. 13 But whoever would not seek the Lord God of Israel would be put to death, whether young or old, man or woman. 14 They swore an oath to the Lord in a loud voice, with shouting, trumpets, and horns. 15 And all Judah rejoiced over this oath because they swore with their whole heart and they sought Him with all their desire; and He was found by them, and the Lord gave them rest all around.

16 King Asa even removed his mother Maakah from being queen mother because she had made a detestable image for Asherah. Asa cut down her image, crushed it, and burned it in the Kidron Valley. 17 But they did not remove the high places from Israel. Nevertheless the heart of Asa was wholly committed all his days. 18 He brought into the house of God the sacred gifts of his father and his own sacred gifts—silver, gold, and utensils.

19 And there was no war until the thirty-fifth year of the reign of Asa.

Chapter 16

1 But in the thirty-sixth year of the reign of Asa, Baasha king of Israel went up against Judah and built Ramah and did not allow anyone to come in or go out to Asa king of Judah.

2 Then Asa removed silver and gold from the storehouses of the house of the Lord and palace of the king, and he sent it to Ben-Hadad king of Aram in Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying, 3 “There is a covenant between me and you as between my father and your father. I am sending you silver and gold. Go and break your covenant with Baasha king of Israel so that he might leave me.”

4 And Ben-Hadad listened to King Asa, and he sent the commanders of his armies against the cities of Israel. They struck down Ijon, Dan, Abel Maim, and all the depot cities of Naphtali. 5 And it happened when Baasha heard this, that he stopped building Ramah and he ceased his work. 6 Then King Asa took all of Judah, and they took the stones of Ramah and its timber that Baasha had used to build, and he built with them Geba and Mizpah.

7 And at that time Hanani the seer came to King Asa of Judah saying, “Because you depended on the king of Aram and did not depend on the Lord your God, therefore the army of the king of Aram escaped from your hand. 8 Were not the Cushites and Libyans a very large army with chariots and horses, but when you depended on the Lord, He gave them to your hand. 9 For the eyes of the Lord move about on all the earth to strengthen the heart that is completely toward Him. You have acted foolishly in this, and from this point forward you will have wars.”

10 Then Asa was angry with the seer and placed him in prison stocks, for he was enraged by these words. Asa even oppressed some of the people during this time.

11 The events of Asa from beginning to end are written in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel. 12 In the thirty-ninth year of the reign of Asa, he had a sickness in his feet until his sickness became grave. Even in his disease he did not seek after the Lord, but the physicians. 13 So Asa slept with his fathers; he died in the forty-first year of his reign. 14 And they buried him in the tomb that he cut for himself in the City of David. And they placed him on a place filled with all types of spices mixed with ointments, and then they burned him up with a very great conflagration.

John 12:27–50

27 “Now My soul is troubled. What shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? Instead, for this reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify Your name.”

Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that stood by and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, “An angel has spoken to Him.”

30 Jesus answered, “This voice came not for My sake, but for your sakes. 31 Now judgment is upon this world. Now the ruler of this world will be cast out. 32 And if I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men to Myself.” 33 He said this to signify by what kind of death He would die.

34 The crowd answered Him, “We have heard from the law that the Christ remains forever. Why do You say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this Son of Man?”

35 Then Jesus said to them, “Yet a little while the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. He who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. 36 While you have light, believe in the light that you may become sons of light.” Jesus said these things, and departed and hid Himself from them.

37 Though He had done so many signs before them, yet they did not believe in Him. 38 This fulfilled the word spoken by Isaiah the prophet:

“Lord, who has believed our report,

and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”

39 Therefore they could not believe. For Isaiah said again:

40 “He has blinded their eyes

and hardened their hearts,

lest they should see with their eyes

and perceive with their hearts and turn,

and I would heal them.”

41 Isaiah said this when he saw His glory and spoke of Him.

42 Yet many of the rulers also believed in Him. But because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they be put out of the synagogue. 43 For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.

44 Jesus cried out, “He who believes in Me believes not only in Me, but in Him who sent Me. 45 He who sees Me sees Him who sent Me. 46 I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not remain in darkness.

47 “If anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48 He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him. The word I have spoken will judge him on the last day. 49 For I have not spoken on My own authority, but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. 50 I know that His command is eternal life. Therefore what I say, I say as the Father tells me.”