|2 Kings 23 |
1 Now King Josiah gathered all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem to him.
2 And he went up into the temple of the LORD with all the men of Judah, all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests, the prophets, and all the people, both great and small. And he read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant that had been found in the temple of the LORD.
3 Then the king stood by the pillar and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD and to keep his commands, his testimonies, and his statutes with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant that were written in the book. And all the people stood to join in the covenant.
4 And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the second order and the doorkeepers to bring forth out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for Asherah, and for all the hosts of the heavens; and he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron, and carried their the ashes to Bethel.
5 Then he removed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah and in the places all around Jerusalem, also those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun, to the moon, to the constellations, and to all the hosts of the heavens.
6 And he brought out the Asherah [idol] from the temple of the LORD to outside Jerusalem to the brook Kidron and burned it at the brook Kidron and ground it to small dust and threw its dust upon the graves of the common people [those who had sacrificed to it].
7 Then he tore down the houses of the sodomites [male ritual prostitutes], which were by the temple of the LORD, where the women wove hangings for the Asherah.
8 And he brought all the [idol] priests from the cities of Judah and defiled the high places where the priests had burned incense, from Geba to Beersheba; he also broke down the high places at the gates that were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on the left side at the city's gate.
9 Nevertheless the priests of the high places were not allowed to serve at the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but they ate unleavened bread among their brethren.
10 Josiah also defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, so that no man might ever make his son or his daughter pass through the fire to Molech again [sacrifice them].
11 And he took away the horses that the kings of Judah had devoted to the sun from the entrance of the temple of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathanmelech the chamberlain, which was in the area, and burned the chariots of the sun with fire.
12 He pulled down the altars that were on the roof of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courts of the temple of the LORD. He tore them down, smashed them to pieces and cast their dust into the brook Kidron.
13 Then the king defiled the high places that were east of Jerusalem, which were on the south of the Mount of Corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon.
14 And he broke in pieces the images [sacred pillars] and cut down the Asherim and filled their places with the bones of men [to defile them].
15 Moreover, the altar that was at Bethel, the high place made by Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel sin, both that altar and the high place Josiah tore down, and he burned the high place and crushed it to dust, and burned the Ahserah.
16 Now when Josiah turned around, he saw the tombs that were there on the hillside, and he took the bones out of the tombs and burned them on the altar to defile it and pollute it, in fulfillment of the word of the LORD that the man of God had prophesied, who foretold these things.
17 Then Josiah asked, "What is that gravestone that I see?" And the men of the city told him, "It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and foretold these things that you have done against the altar of Bethel."
18 And Josiah said, "Let him alone; let no man move his bones." So they left his bones alone, with the bones of the prophet who came out of Samaria.
19 Josiah also took away all the shrines of the high places that were in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made, provoking the Lord to anger, and did to them all that he had done in Bethel.
20 And he executed all the priests of the high places who were there, upon the altars, and burned men's bones upon them [to defile them]. Then he returned to Jerusalem.
21 Then the king commanded all the people, saying, "Keep the passover to the LORD your God, as it is written in the Book of the Covenant."
22 Surely such a passover had not been held since the days of the judges who judged Israel, nor in all the days of the kings of Israel, nor of the kings of Judah.
23 But in the eighteenth year of King Josiah, this passover was held to the LORD in Jerusalem.
24 Moreover, Josiah got rid of all the mediums, the wizards, the household images, the idols, and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, that he might establish the words of the law that were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest had found in the temple of the LORD.
25 There was no king like Josiah before or after him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart and all his soul and all his might, according to all the law of Moses.
26 Nevertheless, the LORD did not turn from the fierceness of his great wrath, which was kindled against Judah because of all that Manasseh had done to provoked him to anger.
27 So the LORD said, "I will remove Judah also out of my sight as I have removed Israel, and will cast off Jerusalem, this city that I have chosen, and the temple of which I said, 'My name shall be there.'"
28 Now the rest of the acts of Josiah, all that he did, are written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah.
29 In his days Pharaoh Nechoh king of Egypt went up against the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates. And King Josiah went against him, and he slew him at Megiddo when he confronted him.
30 And Josiah's servants carried him dead in a chariot from Megiddo, brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own tomb. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah and anointed him and made him king in his father's place.
31 Jehoahaz was twenty three years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Hamutal, the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah.
32 And he did evil in the sight of the LORD, just as all his forefathers had done.
33 And Pharaoh Nechoh put him [Jehoahaz] in chains at Riblah in the land of Hamath, so that he might not reign in Jerusalem, and imposed a tribute of a hundred talents of silver and a talent of gold upon the land.
34 Then Pharaoh Nechoh made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in the place of Josiah his father and changed his name to Jehoiakim. And he took Jehoahaz away to Egypt, where he died.
35 So Jehoiakim gave the tribute of the silver and gold to Pharaoh, but he taxed the land to get the money commanded by Pharaoh. He exacted the silver and the gold from the people of the land, from everyone according to his assessment, to give it to Pharaoh Nechoh.
36 Jehoiakim was twenty five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Zebudah, the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah.
37 And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his fathers had done.
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