1. Amaziah was twenty-five years old when he came to the throne and he reigned for twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem.

2. He did what Yahweh regards as right, though not wholeheartedly.

3. Once the kingdom was firmly under his control, he killed those of his retainers who had murdered the king his father.

4. But he did not put their sons to death; this was in accordance with what is written in the Law, in the book of Moses, where Yahweh had commanded, 'Parents may not be put to death for children, nor children for parents, but each must be put to death for his own crime.'

5. Amaziah summoned Judah and organised all Judah and Benjamin by families under commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds. He also made a register of those who were twenty years old and upwards, and found there were three hundred thousand picked men, ready for service and capable of wielding spear and shield.

6. Furthermore, he hired a hundred thousand tough fighting men from Israel for a hundred talents of silver.

7. A man of God then came to him and said, 'My lord king, do not let the Israelite troops march with you, for Yahweh is not with Israel or with any of the Ephraimites.

8. For however valiantly you act in war, God will bring you down before the enemy, for God has the power to uphold or to throw down.'

9. Amaziah said to the man of God, 'But what about the hundred talents which I have paid for the Israelite troops?' 'Yahweh can give you far more than that,' said the man of God.

10. At this, Amaziah dismissed the troops who had come to him from Ephraim and sent them home again. They were furious with Judah and went home in a great rage.

11. Amaziah then, coming to a decision, led out his own troops and, having reached the Valley of Salt, struck down ten thousand Seirites.

12. The men of Judah captured ten thousand more alive and, taking them to the summit of the Rock, threw them off the summit of the Rock so that they were all dashed to pieces.

13. Meanwhile, the troops whom Amaziah had dismissed and not allowed to go into battle with him rased the towns of Judah, from Samaria to Beth-Horon, killing three thousand of their inhabitants and capturing great quantities of plunder.

14. On returning from his slaughter of the Edomites, Amaziah brought the gods of the Seirites with him; he set these up as his gods, bowing down before them and burning incense to them.

15. Yahweh's anger was aroused by Amaziah and he sent him a prophet, who said to him, 'Why do you consult those people's gods when they could not save their own people from your clutches?'

16. He was still speaking when Amaziah interrupted him. 'Have we appointed you a royal counsellor? Stop, as you value your life!' So the prophet stopped, and then said, 'I know that God has decided to destroy you for having done this and for not listening to my advice.'

17. After consultation, Amaziah king of Judah then sent a message to Joash son of Jehoahaz son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, 'Come and make a trial of strength!'

18. Joash king of Israel sent back word to Amaziah king of Judah, 'The thistle of Lebanon sent a message to the cedar of Lebanon, saying, "Give my son your daughter in marriage"; but a wild animal of the Lebanon ran over the thistle and squashed it.

19. "Look at me, the conqueror of Edom," you say, and now aspire to even greater glory. But stay where you belong! Why challenge disaster, to your own and Judah's ruin?'

20. But Amaziah would not listen, for this was an act of God to deliver them up for having consulted the gods of Edom.

21. So Joash king of Israel marched to the attack. And at Beth-Shemesh, which belongs to Judah, he and Amaziah king of Judah made their trial of strength.

22. Judah was defeated by Israel, and everyone fled to his tent.

23. The king of Judah, Amaziah son of Joash, son of Ahaziah, was taken prisoner at Beth-Shemesh by Joash king of Israel who led him off to Jerusalem, where he demolished four hundred cubits of the city wall between the Ephraim Gate and the Corner Gate;

24. he then took back with him to Samaria all the gold and silver, and all the vessels to be found in the Temple of God in the care of Obed-Edom, the treasures in the palace, and hostages besides.

25. Amaziah son of Joash, king of Judah, lived for fifteen years after the death of Joash son of Jehoahaz, king of Israel.

26. The rest of the history of Amaziah, from first to last, is this not recorded in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel?

27. Some time after Amaziah had defected from Yahweh, a plot having been hatched against him in Jerusalem, he fled to Lachish where he was murdered.

28. He was then transported by horse and buried with his ancestors in the city of David.

Livros sugeridos

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