1The spirit of God came on Azariah the son of Oded,
2and he went out to meet Asa and said to him, “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin! Yahweh is with you while you are with him, and if you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.
3Now for a long time Israel was without the true God and without a teaching priest and without law.
4But when in their distress they turned to Yahweh the God of Israel and sought him, he was found by them.
5In those times there was no peace to him who went out, nor to him who came in; but great troubles were on all the inhabitants of the lands.
6They were broken in pieces, nation against nation and city against city, for God troubled them with all adversity.
7But you be strong, and do not let your hands be slack, for your work will be rewarded.”
8When Asa heard these words and the prophecy of Oded the prophet, he took courage and put away the abominations out of all the land of Judah and Benjamin and out of the cities that he had taken from the hill country of Ephraim; and he renewed the altar of Yahweh that was in front of the vestibule of the house of Yahweh.
9He gathered all Judah and Benjamin and those who lived with them out of Ephraim and Manasseh and out of Simeon, for they fell to him out of Israel in abundance when they saw that Yahweh his God was with him.
10So they gathered themselves together at Jerusalem in the third month, in the 15th year of the reign of Asa.
11They sacrificed to Yahweh in that day of the spoil that they had brought, 700 head of cattle and 7,000 sheep.
12They entered into a covenant to seek Yahweh the God of their fathers with all their heart and with all their soul,
13and that whoever would not seek Yahweh the God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman.
14They swore to Yahweh with a loud voice and with shouting, and with trumpets and with cornets.
15All Judah rejoiced at the oath, for they had sworn with all their heart and sought him with their whole desire, and he was found of them; and Yahweh gave them rest all around.
16Also Maacah, the mother of Asa the king, he removed from being queen-mother, because she had made an abominable image for an Asherah; and Asa cut down her image and made dust of it and burned it at the brook Kidron.
17But the high places were not taken away out of Israel; nevertheless the heart of Asa was perfect all his days.
18He brought into God’s house the things that his father had dedicated and that he himself had dedicated, silver and gold and vessels.