1. There was a lull of three years, with no fighting between Aram and Israel.
2. Then, in the third year, Jehoshaphat king of Judah paid a visit to the king of Israel.
3. The king of Israel said to his officers, 'You are aware that Ramoth in Gilead belongs to us? And yet we do nothing to wrest it away from the king of Aram.'
4. He said to Jehoshaphat, 'Will you come with me to attack Ramoth in Gilead?' Jehoshaphat replied to the king of Israel, 'I will be as you, my men as yours, my horses as yours.'
5. Jehoshaphat, however, said to the king of Israel, 'First, please enquire what the word of Yahweh is.'
6. The king of Israel then called the prophets together, about four hundred of them. 'Should I go and attack Ramoth in Gilead,' he asked, 'or should I hold back?' 'Go ahead,' they replied, 'for Yahweh has already given it to the king.'
7. Jehoshaphat, however, said, 'Is there no other prophet of Yahweh here, so that we can enquire through him?'
8. The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, 'There is one more man through whom we can consult Yahweh, but I hate him because he never has a favourable prophecy for me, only unfavourable ones; he is Micaiah son of Imlah.' 'I hope the king's words are unjustified,' said Jehoshaphat.
9. The king of Israel then summoned a court official and said, 'Bring Micaiah son of Imlah immediately.'
10. The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah were sitting each on his throne, wearing their robes, in an open space just outside the gate of Samaria, with all the prophets in a state of ecstasy before them.
11. Zedekiah son of Kenaanah, who had made himself some iron horns, said, 'Yahweh says, "With horns like these you will gore the Aramaeans till you make an end of them." '
12. And all the prophets cried ecstatically in the same vein, saying, 'March on Ramoth in Gilead! Success is sure, for Yahweh has already given it to the king!'
13. The messenger who had gone to summon Micaiah said to him, 'Look here, what the prophets are saying is uniformly favourable to the king. I hope you will say the same as they do and speak favourably.'
14. Micaiah said, 'As Yahweh lives, I shall speak as Yahweh tells me!'
15. When he came to the king, the king said, 'Micaiah, should we go and attack Ramoth in Gilead, or should we hold back?' He replied, 'Go ahead! Success is sure, for Yahweh has already given it to the king!'
16. The king then said, 'How often must I put you on oath to tell me nothing but the truth in the name of Yahweh?'
17. Then he spoke out: I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains like sheep without a shepherd. And Yahweh said, 'These have no master, let them all go safely home!'
18. At this the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, 'Did I not tell you that he never gives me favourable prophecies, but only unfavourable ones?'
19. Micaiah went on, 'Now listen to the word of Yahweh. I saw Yahweh seated on his throne with the whole array of heaven standing by him, on his right and on his left.
20. Yahweh said, "Who will entice Ahab into marching to his death at Ramoth in Gilead?" At which some answered one way, and some another.
21. A spirit then came forward and stood before Yahweh and said, "I will entice him."
22. "How?" Yahweh asked. He replied, "I shall go and be a deceptive spirit in the mouths of all his prophets." Yahweh said, "You will succeed in enticing him. Go and do it."
23. And now, you see, Yahweh has put a deceptive spirit into the mouths of all your prophets here, for in fact Yahweh has pronounced disaster on you.'
24. Zedekiah son of Chenaanah then came up, struck Micaiah on the cheek and said, 'Which way did Yahweh's spirit leave me, to speak to you?'
25. 'That is what you will find out,' Micaiah retorted, 'the day you go from room to room, trying to hide.'
26. The king of Israel said, 'Seize Micaiah and hand him over to Amon, governor of the city, and Joash, the king's son,
27. and say, "These are the king's orders: Put this man in prison and feed him on nothing but bread and water until I am safely home." '
28. Micaiah said, 'If you ever do get home safely, Yahweh has not spoken through me.'
29. The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah marched on Ramoth in Gilead.
30. The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, 'I shall disguise myself to go into battle, but you put on your robes.' So the king of Israel disguised himself and went into battle.
31. Now, the king of Aram had given his chariot commanders the following order, 'Do not attack anyone of whatever rank, except the king of Israel.'
32. So, when the chariot commanders saw Jehoshaphat, they thought, 'That is obviously the king of Israel,' and surrounded him to attack. But when Jehoshaphat shouted his war cry
33. the chariot commanders, realising that he was not the king of Israel, broke off their pursuit.
34. Someone, however, drawing his bow without any special aim, shot the king of Israel between the joints of his armour. 'Turn about!' said the king to his charioteer. 'Get me out of the fighting; I am collapsing.'
35. But the battle grew fiercer as the day went on and the king had to be held upright in his chariot facing the Aramaeans, the blood from the wound running into the bottom of the chariot, until in the evening he died.
36. At sundown a shout ran through the ranks, 'Every man back to his town, every man back to his country!
37. The king is dead.' He was taken to Samaria and in Samaria the king was buried.
38. They washed the chariot at the Pool of Samaria; the dogs licked up the blood, and the prostitutes washed in it, in accordance with the word which Yahweh had spoken.
39. The rest of the history of Ahab, his entire career, the ivory house he erected, all the towns he built, is this not recorded in the Book of the Annals of the Kings of Israel?
40. When Ahab fell asleep with his ancestors, his son Ahaziah succeeded him.
41. Jehoshaphat son of Asa became king of Judah in the fourth year of Ahab king of Israel.
42. Jehoshaphat was thirty-five years old when he came to the throne, and he reigned for twenty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Azubah daughter of Shilhi.
43. In every way he followed the example of his father Asa undeviatingly, doing what is pleasing to Yahweh.
44. The high places, however, were not abolished; the people still offered sacrifice and incense on the high places.
45. Jehoshaphat was at peace with the king of Israel.
46. The rest of the history of Jehoshaphat, the valour he showed, the wars he waged, is this not recorded in the Book of the Annals of the Kings of Judah?
47. The few male sacred prostitutes left over from the days of his father Asa, he expelled from the country.
48. At the time, Edom had no king, and King
49. Jehoshaphat built ships of Tarshish to go to Ophir for gold, but they never made the voyage since the ships were wrecked at Ezion-Geber.
50. Ahaziah son of Ahab then proposed to Jehoshaphat, 'Let my men go to sea with yours.' But Jehoshaphat would not agree.
51. When Jehoshaphat fell asleep with his ancestors he was buried in the City of his ancestor, David; his son Jehoram succeeded him.
52. Ahaziah son of Ahab became king of Israel in Samaria in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned over Israel for two years.
53. He did what is displeasing to Yahweh, by following the example of his father and mother, and of Jeroboam son of Nebat who had led Israel into sin.
54. He served Baal and worshipped him, and provoked the anger of Yahweh God of Israel just as his father had done.