Samaria’s food supply ran out. 1 They laid siege to it so long that 2 a donkey’s head was selling for eighty shekels of silver 3 and a quarter of a kab 4 of dove’s droppings 5 for five shekels of silver. 6
So they went and called out to the gatekeepers 1 of the city. They told them, “We entered the Syrian camp and there was no one there. We didn’t even hear a man’s voice. 2 But the horses and donkeys are still tied up, and the tents remain up.” 3
The king got up in the night and said to his advisers, 1 “I will tell you what the Syrians have done to us. They know we are starving, so they left the camp and hid in the field, thinking, ‘When they come out of the city, we will capture them alive and enter the city.’”
One of his advisers replied, “Pick some men and have them take five of the horses that are left in the city. (Even if they are killed, their fate will be no different than that of all the Israelite people – we’re all going to die!) 1 Let’s send them out so we can know for sure what’s going on.” 2
Now the king had placed the officer who was his right-hand man 1 at the city gate. When the people rushed out, they trampled him to death in the gate. 2 This fulfilled the prophet’s word which he had spoken when the king tried to arrest him. 3
Jehoram ordered, “Hitch up my chariot.” 1 When his chariot had been hitched up, 2 King Jehoram of Israel and King Ahaziah of Judah went out in their respective chariots 3 to meet Jehu. They met up with him 4 in the plot of land that had once belonged to Naboth of Jezreel.
He put an idol of Asherah he had made in the temple, about which the Lord had said to David and to his son Solomon, “This temple in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, will be my permanent home. 1
“Go, seek an oracle from 1 the Lord for me and the people – for all Judah. Find out about 2 the words of this scroll that has been discovered. For the Lord’s fury has been ignited against us, 3 because our ancestors have not obeyed the words of this scroll by doing all that it instructs us to do.” 4
The king stood by the pillar and renewed 1 the covenant before the Lord, agreeing to follow 2 the Lord and to obey his commandments, laws, and rules with all his heart and being, 3 by carrying out the terms 4 of this covenant recorded on this scroll. All the people agreed to keep the covenant. 5
The king ordered Hilkiah the high priest, the high-ranking priests, 1 and the guards 2 to bring out of the Lord’s temple all the items that were used in the worship of 3 Baal, Asherah, and all the stars of the sky. 4 The king 5 burned them outside of Jerusalem in the terraces 6 of Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. 7
Josiah also got rid of 1 the ritual pits used to conjure up spirits, 2 the magicians, personal idols, disgusting images, 3 and all the detestable idols that had appeared in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem. In this way he carried out the terms of the law 4 recorded on the scroll that Hilkiah the priest had discovered in the Lord’s temple.
The men whose names are listed came during the time of King Hezekiah of Judah and attacked the Hamites’ settlements, 1 as well as the Meunites they discovered there, and they wiped them out to this very day. They dispossessed them, 2 for they found pasture for their sheep there.
So the three elite warriors 1 broke through the Philistine forces and drew some water from the cistern in Bethlehem near the city gate. They carried it back to David, but David refused to drink it. He poured it out as a drink offering to the Lord
He even killed an Egyptian who was seven and a half feet 1 tall. The Egyptian had a spear as big as the crossbeam of a weaver’s loom; Benaiah attacked 2 him with a club. He grabbed the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand and killed him with his own spear.
David went out to meet them and said, 1 “If you come to me in peace and want to help me, then I will make an alliance with you. 2 But if you come to betray me to my enemies when I have not harmed you, 3 may the God of our ancestors 4 take notice and judge!”
And who is like your people, Israel, a unique nation 1 in the earth? Their God 2 went to claim 3 a nation for himself! You made a name for yourself by doing great and awesome deeds 4 when you drove out 5 nations before your people whom you had delivered from the Egyptian empire and its gods. 6
the Ammonite officials said to Hanun, “Do you really think David is trying to honor your father by sending these messengers to express his sympathy? 1 No, his servants have come to you so they can get information and spy out the land!” 2
David looked up and saw the Lord’s messenger standing between the earth and sky with his sword drawn and in his hand, stretched out over Jerusalem. David and the leaders, covered with sackcloth, threw themselves down with their faces to the ground. 1
He told David, 1 ‘Since the day I brought my people out of the land of Egypt, I have not chosen a city from all the tribes of Israel to build a temple in which to live. 2 Nor did I choose a man as leader of my people Israel.
You will report to Amariah the chief priest in all matters pertaining to the Lord’s law, and to Zebadiah son of Ishmael, the leader of the family of Judah, in all matters pertaining to the king. 1 The Levites will serve as officials before you. Confidently carry out your duties! 2 May the Lord be with those who do well!”