The Reign of Ahaz
281 Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign; and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem: and he didn’t do that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh, like David his father; 2 but he walked in the ways of the kings of Israel, and made also molten images for the Baals. 3 Moreover he burnt incense in the valley of the son of Hinnom, and burnt his children in the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom Yahweh cast out before the children of Israel. 4 He sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree. 5 Therefore Yahweh his God delivered him into the hand of the king of Syria; and they struck him, and carried away of his a great multitude of captives, and brought them to Damascus. He was also delivered into the hand of the king of Israel, who struck him with a great slaughter.
6 For Pekah the son of Remaliah killed in Judah one hundred twenty thousand in one day, all of them valiant men; because they had forsaken Yahweh, the God of their fathers. 7 Zichri, a mighty man of Ephraim, killed Maaseiah the king’s son, and Azrikam the ruler of the house, and Elkanah who was next to the king. 8 The children of Israel carried away captive of their brothers two hundred thousand, women, sons, and daughters, and took also away much spoil from them, and brought the spoil to Samaria. 9 But a prophet of Yahweh was there, whose name was Oded: and he went out to meet the army that came to Samaria, and said to them, Behold, because Yahweh, the God of your fathers, was angry with Judah, he has delivered them into your hand, and you have slain them in a rage which has reached up to heaven. 10 Now you purpose to keep under the children of Judah and Jerusalem for bondservants and bondmaids for yourselves: but aren’t there even with you trespasses of your own against Yahweh your God? 11 Now hear me therefore, and send back the captives, that you have taken captive from your brothers; for the fierce wrath of Yahweh is on you. 12 Then certain of the heads of the children of Ephraim, Azariah the son of Johanan, Berechiah the son of Meshillemoth, and Jehizkiah the son of Shallum, and Amasa the son of Hadlai, stood up against those who came from the war, 13 and said to them, You shall not bring in the captives here: for you purpose that which will bring on us a trespass against Yahweh, to add to our sins and to our trespass; for our trespass is great, and there is fierce wrath against Israel. 14 So the armed men left the captives and the spoil before the princes and all the assembly. 15 The men who have been mentioned by name rose up, and took the captives, and with the spoil clothed all who were naked among them, and arrayed them, and shod them, and gave them to eat and to drink, and anointed them, and carried all the feeble of them on donkeys, and brought them to Jericho, the city of palm trees, to their brothers: then they returned to Samaria.
16 At that time did king Ahaz send to the kings of Assyria to help him. 17 For again the Edomites had come and struck Judah, and carried away captives. 18 The Philistines also had invaded the cities of the lowland, and of the South of Judah, and had taken Beth Shemesh, and Aijalon, and Gederoth, and Soco with its towns, and Timnah with its towns, Gimzo also and its towns: and they lived there. 19 For Yahweh brought Judah low because of Ahaz king of Israel; for he had dealt wantonly in Judah, and trespassed severely against Yahweh. 20 Tilgath Pilneser king of Assyria came to him, and distressed him, but didn’t strengthen him. 21 For Ahaz took away a portion out of the house of Yahweh, and out of the house of the king and of the princes, and gave it to the king of Assyria: but it didn’t help him. 22 In the time of his distress did he trespass yet more against Yahweh, this same king Ahaz. 23 For he sacrificed to the gods of Damascus, which struck him; and he said, Because the gods of the kings of Syria helped them, therefore will I sacrifice to them, that they may help me. But they were the ruin of him, and of all Israel. 24 Ahaz gathered together the vessels of the house of God, and cut in pieces the vessels of the house of God, and shut up the doors of the house of Yahweh; and he made him altars in every corner of Jerusalem. 25 In every city of Judah he made high places to burn incense to other gods, and provoked to anger Yahweh, the God of his fathers. 26 Now the rest of his acts, and all his ways, first and last, behold, they are written in the book of the kings of Judah and Israel. 27 Ahaz slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city, even in Jerusalem; for they didn’t bring him into the tombs of the kings of Israel: and Hezekiah his son reigned in his place.
The Reign of Hezekiah
291 Hezekiah began to reign when he was twenty-five years old; and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem: and his mother’s name was Abijah, the daughter of Zechariah. 2 He did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh, according to all that David his father had done.
Hezekiah Restores the Temple Worship
3 He in the first year of his reign, in the first month, opened the doors of the house of Yahweh, and repaired them. 4 He brought in the priests and the Levites, and gathered them together into the broad place on the east, 5 and said to them, Hear me, you Levites; now sanctify yourselves, and sanctify the house of Yahweh, the God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place. 6 For our fathers have trespassed, and done that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh our God, and have forsaken him, and have turned away their faces from the habitation of Yahweh, and turned their backs. 7 Also they have shut up the doors of the porch, and put out the lamps, and have not burned incense nor offered burnt offerings in the holy place to the God of Israel. 8 Therefore the wrath of Yahweh was on Judah and Jerusalem, and he has delivered them to be tossed back and forth, to be an astonishment, and a hissing, as you see with your eyes. 9 For, behold, our fathers have fallen by the sword, and our sons and our daughters and our wives are in captivity for this. 10 Now it is in my heart to make a covenant with Yahweh, the God of Israel, that his fierce anger may turn away from us. 11 My sons, don’t be negligent now; for Yahweh has chosen you to stand before him, to minister to him, and that you should be his ministers, and burn incense.
12 Then the Levites arose, Mahath, the son of Amasai, and Joel the son of Azariah, of the sons of the Kohathites; and of the sons of Merari, Kish the son of Abdi, and Azariah the son of Jehallelel; and of the Gershonites, Joah the son of Zimmah, and Eden the son of Joah; 13 and of the sons of Elizaphan, Shimri and Jeuel; and of the sons of Asaph, Zechariah and Mattaniah; 14 and of the sons of Heman, Jehuel and Shimei; and of the sons of Jeduthun, Shemaiah and Uzziel. 15 They gathered their brothers, and sanctified themselves, and went in, according to the commandment of the king by the words of Yahweh, to cleanse the house of Yahweh. 16 The priests went in to the inner part of the house of Yahweh, to cleanse it, and brought out all the uncleanness that they found in the temple of Yahweh into the court of the house of Yahweh. The Levites took it, to carry it out abroad to the brook Kidron. 17 Now they began on the first day of the first month to sanctify, and on the eighth day of the month came they to the porch of Yahweh; and they sanctified the house of Yahweh in eight days: and on the sixteenth day of the first month they made an end. 18 Then they went in to Hezekiah the king within the palace, and said, We have cleansed all the house of Yahweh, and the altar of burnt offering, with all its vessels, and the table of show bread, with all its vessels. 19 Moreover all the vessels, which king Ahaz in his reign did cast away when he trespassed, have we prepared and sanctified; and behold, they are before the altar of Yahweh.
20 Then Hezekiah the king arose early, and gathered the princes of the city, and went up to the house of Yahweh. 21 They brought seven bulls, and seven rams, and seven lambs, and seven male goats, for a sin offering for the kingdom and for the sanctuary and for Judah. He commanded the priests the sons of Aaron to offer them on the altar of Yahweh. 22 So they killed the bulls, and the priests received the blood, and sprinkled it on the altar: and they killed the rams, and sprinkled the blood on the altar: they killed also the lambs, and sprinkled the blood on the altar. 23 They brought near the male goats for the sin offering before the king and the assembly; and they laid their hands on them: 24 and the priests killed them, and they made a sin offering with their blood on the altar, to make atonement for all Israel; for the king commanded that the burnt offering and the sin offering should be made for all Israel. 25 He set the Levites in the house of Yahweh with cymbals, with stringed instruments, and with harps, according to the commandment of David, and of Gad the king’s seer, and Nathan the prophet; for the commandment was of Yahweh by his prophets. 26 The Levites stood with the instruments of David, and the priests with the trumpets. 27 Hezekiah commanded to offer the burnt offering on the altar. When the burnt offering began, the song of Yahweh began also, and the trumpets, together with the instruments of David king of Israel. 28 All the assembly worshiped, and the singers sang, and the trumpeters sounded; all this continued until the burnt offering was finished. 29 When they had made an end of offering, the king and all who were present with him bowed themselves and worshiped. 30 Moreover Hezekiah the king and the princes commanded the Levites to sing praises to Yahweh with the words of David, and of Asaph the seer. They sang praises with gladness, and they bowed their heads and worshiped. 31 Then Hezekiah answered, Now you have consecrated yourselves to Yahweh; come near and bring sacrifices and thank offerings into the house of Yahweh. The assembly brought in sacrifices and thank offerings; and as many as were of a willing heart brought burnt offerings. 32 The number of the burnt offerings which the assembly brought was seventy bulls, one hundred rams, and two hundred lambs: all these were for a burnt offering to Yahweh. 33 The consecrated things were six hundred head of cattle and three thousand sheep. 34 But the priests were too few, so that they could not flay all the burnt offerings: therefore their brothers the Levites helped them, until the work was ended, and until the priests had sanctified themselves; for the Levites were more upright in heart to sanctify themselves than the priests. 35 Also the burnt offerings were in abundance, with the fat of the peace offerings, and with the drink offerings for every burnt offering. So the service of the house of Yahweh was set in order. 36 Hezekiah rejoiced, and all the people, because of that which God had prepared for the people: for the thing was done suddenly.