I, the Lord, 1 hereby promise to make you 2 as strong as a fortified city, an iron pillar, and a bronze wall. You will be able to stand up against all who live in 3 the land, including the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests and all the people of the land.
The roar of battle will rise against your people; all your fortresses will be devastated, just as Shalman devastated 1 Beth Arbel on the day of battle, when mothers were dashed to the ground with their children.
He will assume his post 1 and shepherd the people 2 by the Lord’s strength, by the sovereign authority of the Lord his God. 3 They will live securely, 4 for at that time he will be honored 5 even in the distant regions of 6 the earth.
(2:2) The watchmen of Nineveh shout: 1 “An enemy who will scatter you 2 is marching out 3 to attack you!” 4 “Guard 5 the rampart! 6 Watch the road! Prepare yourselves for battle! 7 Muster your mighty strength!” 8
When I was with them I kept them safe 1 and watched over them 2 in your name 3 that you have given me. Not one 4 of them was lost except the one destined for destruction, 5 so that the scripture could be fulfilled. 6
You also know that 1 the angels who did not keep within their proper domain 2 but abandoned their own place of residence, he has kept 3 in eternal chains 4 in utter 5 darkness, locked up 6 for the judgment of the great Day.
Now Absalom used to get up early and stand beside the road that led to the city gate. Whenever anyone came by who had a complaint to bring to the king for arbitration, Absalom would call out to him, “What city are you from?” The person would answer, “I, your servant, 1 am from one of the tribes of Israel.”
They went inside to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had stationed eighty men outside. He had told them, “If any of the men inside get away, you will pay with your lives!” 1
Jehoiada then assigned the duties of the Lord’s temple to the priests, the Levites whom David had assigned to the Lord’s temple. They were responsible for offering burnt sacrifices to the Lord with joy and music, according to 1 the law of Moses and the edict of David.
After this Manasseh 1 built up the outer wall of the City of David 2 on the west side of the Gihon in the valley to the entrance of the Fish Gate and all around the terrace; he made it much higher. He placed army officers in all the fortified cities in Judah.
and that they should make a proclamation and disseminate this message 1 in all their cities and in Jerusalem: 2 “Go to the hill country and bring back olive branches and branches of wild olive trees, myrtle trees, date palms, and other leafy trees to construct temporary shelters, as it is written.”
When the evening shadows 1 began to fall on the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I ordered 2 the doors to be closed. I further directed that they were not to be opened until after the Sabbath. I positioned 3 some of my young men at the gates so that no load could enter on the Sabbath day.
Letters were sent by the runners to all the king’s provinces stating that 1 they should destroy, kill, and annihilate all the Jews, from youth to elderly, both women and children, 2 on a particular day, namely the thirteenth day 3 of the twelfth month (that is, the month of Adar), and to loot and plunder their possessions.
He also gave him a written copy of the law that had been disseminated 1 in Susa for their destruction so that he could show it to Esther and talk to her about it. He also gave instructions that she should go to the king to implore him and petition him on behalf of her people.
Throughout every province and throughout every city where the king’s edict and his law arrived, the Jews experienced happiness and joy, banquets and holidays. Many of the resident peoples 1 pretended 2 to be Jews, because the fear of the Jews had overcome them. 3