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Our Young Folk's Josephus by  William Shepard
Table of Contents




WHEN Jehoshaphat returned to Jerusalem from the battle with Benhadad, he was met by the prophet Jehu, who reproved him for having assisted so wicked a king as Ahab. The Lord, said Jehu, was angry with Jehoshaphat for this, but had delivered him from the enemy, because this was the first time he had sinned against Him.

Then Jehoshaphat humbled himself before God and offered sacrifices to appease His anger. And he went through the land of Judah commanding the people to put away their idols. He appointed judges over them also, whom he chose from the priests and the Levites and the chief men in each city, and he told these judges to fear God and see that justice was administered.

Soon after, the Moabites and the Ammonites made war against Jehoshaphat, and, marching into the land of Judah, they pitched their camp near the city on Engedi. Jehoshaphat sent word to his people to come to the temple at Jerusalem, and when they were assembled there, he prayed aloud to God, [198] and the whole multitude, including women and children, joined him in his prayers. Then a prophet stood up and told them that God had heard their prayers and would fight against their enemies. And he informed the king that next day he was to bring his army out against the enemy, though he should not fight against them, but only stand still and see how God would destroy them.

Next morning the king marched out at the head of his army, but they brought no weapons with them. The priests blew on their trumpets, and the Levites and others sang hymns and sacred songs.

Then God caused a sudden terror and commotion to fall upon the Ammonites and the Moabites, so that they took one another for enemies and fought together, and not one mane out of the great army escaped. When Jehoshaphat looked upon that valley where his enemies had been encamped and saw it full of dead bodies, he gave thanks to God. He gave his army leave to go down and take gold and silver and jewels from the bodies of the slain, and they were three days in gathering the spoil.

After this the heathen nations feared to attack Jehoshaphat, and he lived in peace and splendor.

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