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2 Kings 22:1-23:30 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Judah’s King Josiah

22 Josiah was eight years old when he became king and reigned 31 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jedidah the daughter of Adaiah; she was from Bozkath. He did what was right in the Lord’s sight and walked in all the ways of his ancestor David; he did not turn to the right or the left.

Josiah Repairs the Temple

In the eighteenth year of King Josiah, the king sent the court secretary Shaphan son of Azaliah, son of Meshullam, to the Lord’s temple, saying, “Go up to Hilkiah the high priest so that he may total up the money brought into the Lord’s temple—the money the doorkeepers have collected from the people. It is to be put into the hands of those doing the work—those who oversee the Lord’s temple. They in turn are to give it to the workmen in the Lord’s temple to repair the damage. They are to give it to the carpenters, builders, and masons to buy timber and quarried stone to repair the temple. But no accounting is to be required from them for the money put into their hands since they work with integrity.”

The Book of the Law Found

Hilkiah the high priest told Shaphan the court secretary, “I have found the book of the law in the Lord’s temple,” and he gave the book to Shaphan, who read it.

Then Shaphan the court secretary went to the king and reported,[a] “Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the temple and have put it into the hand of those doing the work—those who oversee the Lord’s temple.” 10 Then Shaphan the court secretary told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book,” and Shaphan read it in the presence of the king.

11 When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes. 12 Then he commanded Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Achbor son of Micaiah, Shaphan the court secretary, and the king’s servant Asaiah: 13 “Go and inquire of the Lord for me, the people, and all Judah about the instruction in this book that has been found. For great is the Lord’s wrath that is kindled against us because our ancestors have not obeyed the words of this book in order to do everything written about us.”

Huldah’s Prophecy of Judgment

14 So Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam, Achbor, Shaphan, and Asaiah went to the prophetess Huldah, wife of Shallum son of Tikvah, son of Harhas,[b] keeper of the wardrobe. She lived in Jerusalem in the Second District. They spoke with her.

15 She said to them, “This is what the Lord God of Israel says, ‘Say to the man who sent you to Me: 16 This is what the Lord says: I am about to bring disaster on this place and on its inhabitants, fulfilling all the words of the book that the king of Judah has read, 17 because they have abandoned Me and burned incense to other gods in order to provoke Me with all the work of their hands. My wrath will be kindled against this place, and it will not be quenched. 18 Say this to the king of Judah who sent you to inquire of the Lord: This is what the Lord God of Israel says: As for the words that you heard, 19 because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I spoke against this place and against its inhabitants, that they would become a desolation and a curse, and because you have torn your clothes and wept before Me, I Myself have heard you—this is the Lord’s declaration— 20 therefore, I will indeed gather you to your fathers, and you will be gathered to your grave in peace. Your eyes will not see all the disaster that I am bringing on this place.’”

Then they reported[c] to the king.

Covenant Renewal

23 So the king sent messengers, and they gathered all the elders of Jerusalem and Judah to him. Then the king went to the Lord’s temple with all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, as well as the priests and the prophets—all the people from the youngest to the oldest. As they listened, he read all the words of the book of the covenant that had been found in the Lord’s temple. Next, the king stood by the pillar[d] and made a covenant in the presence of the Lord to follow the Lord and to keep His commands, His decrees, and His statutes with all his mind and with all his heart, and to carry out the words of this covenant that were written in this book; all the people agreed to[e] the covenant.

Josiah’s Reforms

Then the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the second rank and the doorkeepers to bring out of the Lord’s temple all the articles made for Baal, Asherah, and the whole heavenly host. He burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron and carried their ashes to Bethel. Then he did away with the idolatrous priests the kings of Judah had appointed to burn incense at the high places in the cities of Judah and in the areas surrounding Jerusalem. They had burned incense to Baal, and to the sun, moon, constellations, and the whole heavenly host. He brought out the Asherah pole from the Lord’s temple to the Kidron Valley outside Jerusalem. He burned it at the Kidron Valley, beat it to dust, and threw its dust on the graves of the common people.[f] He also tore down the houses of the male cult prostitutes that were in the Lord’s temple, in which the women were weaving tapestries[g] for Asherah.

Then Josiah brought all the priests from the cities of Judah, and he defiled the high places from Geba to Beer-sheba, where the priests had burned incense. He tore down the high places of the gates at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city (on the left at the city gate). The priests of the high places, however, did not come up to the altar of the Lord in Jerusalem; instead, they ate unleavened bread with their fellow priests.

10 He defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of Hinnom, so that no one could make his son or daughter pass through the fire to Molech. 11 He did away with the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun. They had been at the entrance of the Lord’s temple in the precincts by the chamber of Nathan-melech the court official, and he burned up the chariots of the sun.

12 The king tore down the altars that were on the roof—Ahaz’s upper chamber that the kings of Judah had made—and the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courtyards of the Lord’s temple. Then he smashed them[h] there and threw their dust into the Kidron Valley. 13 The king also defiled the high places that were across from Jerusalem, to the south of the Mount of Destruction, which King Solomon of Israel had built for Ashtoreth, the detestable idol of the Sidonians; for Chemosh, the detestable idol of Moab; and for Milcom, the abomination of the Ammonites. 14 He broke the sacred pillars into pieces, cut down the Asherah poles, then filled their places with human bones.

15 He even tore down the altar at Bethel and the high place that Jeroboam son of Nebat, who caused Israel to sin, had made. Then he burned the high place, crushed it to dust, and burned the Asherah. 16 As Josiah turned, he saw the tombs there on the mountain. He sent someone to take the bones out of the tombs, and he burned them on the altar. He defiled it according to the word of the Lord proclaimed by the man of God[i] who proclaimed these things. 17 Then he said, “What is this monument I see?”

The men of the city told him, “It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and proclaimed these things that you have done to the altar at Bethel.”

18 So he said, “Let him rest. Don’t let anyone disturb his bones.” So they left his bones undisturbed with the bones of the prophet who came from Samaria.

19 Josiah also removed all the shrines of the high places that were in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made to provoke the Lord. Josiah did the same things to them that he had done at Bethel. 20 He slaughtered on the altars all the priests of the high places who were there, and he burned human bones on the altars. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

Passover Observed

21 The king commanded all the people, “Keep the Passover of the Lord your God as written in the book of the covenant.” 22 No such Passover had ever been kept from the time of the judges who judged Israel through the entire time of the kings of Israel and Judah. 23 But in the eighteenth year of King Josiah, this Passover was observed to the Lord in Jerusalem.

Further Zeal for the Lord

24 In addition, Josiah removed the mediums, the spiritists, household idols, images, and all the detestable things that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem. He did this in order to carry out the words of the law that were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the Lord’s temple. 25 Before him there was no king like him who turned to the Lord with all his mind and with all his heart and with all his strength according to all the law of Moses, and no one like him arose after him.

26 In spite of all that, the Lord did not turn from the fury of His great burning anger, which burned against Judah because of all that Manasseh had provoked Him with. 27 For the Lord had said, “I will also remove Judah from My sight just as I have removed Israel. I will reject this city Jerusalem, that I have chosen, and the temple about which I said, ‘My name will be there.’”

Josiah’s Death

28 The rest of the events of Josiah’s reign, along with all his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Judah’s Kings. 29 During his reign, Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt marched up to help the king of Assyria at the Euphrates River. King Josiah went to confront him, and at Megiddo when Neco saw him he killed him. 30 From Megiddo his servants carried his dead body in a chariot, brought him into Jerusalem, and buried him in his own tomb. Then the common people[j] took Jehoahaz son of Josiah, anointed him, and made him king in place of his father.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Kings 22:9 Lit and returned a word to the king and said
  2. 2 Kings 22:14 = Hasrah in 2Ch 34:22
  3. 2 Kings 22:20 Lit returned a word
  4. 2 Kings 23:3 2Ch 34:31 reads platform
  5. 2 Kings 23:3 Lit people took a stand in
  6. 2 Kings 23:6 Lit the sons of the people
  7. 2 Kings 23:7 Or clothing
  8. 2 Kings 23:12 Text emended; MT reads he ran from
  9. 2 Kings 23:16 LXX adds when Jeroboam stood by the altar of the feast. And he turned and raised his eyes to the tomb of the man of God
  10. 2 Kings 23:30 Lit the people of the land

2 Chronicles 34:1-36 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Judah’s King Josiah

34 Josiah was eight years old when he became king and reigned 31 years in Jerusalem. He did what was right in the Lord’s sight and walked in the ways of his ancestor David; he did not turn aside to the right or the left.

Josiah’s Reform

In the eighth year of his reign, while he was still a youth, Josiah began to seek the God of his ancestor David, and in the twelfth year he began to cleanse Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images. Then in his presence the altars of the Baals were torn down, and he chopped down the incense altars that were above them. He shattered the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images, crushed them to dust, and scattered them over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. He burned the bones of the priests on their altars. So he cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. He did the same in the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, and Simeon, and as far as Naphtali and on their surrounding mountain shrines.[a] He tore down the altars, and he smashed the Asherah poles and the carved images to powder. He chopped down all the incense altars throughout the land of Israel and returned to Jerusalem.

Josiah’s Repair of the Temple

In the eighteenth year of his reign, in order to cleanse the land and the temple, Josiah sent Shaphan son of Azaliah, along with Maaseiah the governor of the city and the court historian Joah son of Joahaz, to repair the temple of the Lord his God.

So they went to Hilkiah the high priest, and gave him the money brought into God’s temple. The Levites and the doorkeepers had collected money from Manasseh, Ephraim, and from the entire remnant of Israel, and from all Judah, Benjamin, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 10 They put it into the hands of those doing the work—those who oversaw the Lord’s temple. They gave it to the workmen who were working in the Lord’s temple, to repair and restore the temple; 11 they gave it to the carpenters and builders and also used it to buy quarried stone and timbers—for joining and making beams—for the buildings that Judah’s kings had destroyed.

12 The men were doing the work with integrity. Their overseers were Jahath and Obadiah, Levites from the Merarites, and Zechariah and Meshullam from the Kohathites as supervisors. The Levites were all skilled with musical instruments. 13 They were also over the porters and were supervising all those doing the work task by task. Some of the Levites were secretaries, officers, and gatekeepers.

The Recovery of the Book of the Law

14 When they brought out the money that had been deposited in the Lord’s temple, Hilkiah the priest found the book of the law of the Lord written by the hand of Moses. 15 Consequently, Hilkiah told Shaphan the court secretary, “I have found the book of the law in the Lord’s temple,” and he gave the book to Shaphan.

16 Shaphan took the book to the king, and also reported, “Your servants are doing all that was placed in their hands. 17 They have emptied out the money that was found in the Lord’s temple and have put it into the hand of the overseers and the hand of those doing the work.” 18 Then Shaphan the court secretary told the king, “Hilkiah the priest gave me a book,” and Shaphan read from it in the presence of the king.

19 When the king heard the words of the law, he tore his clothes. 20 Then he commanded Hilkiah, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Abdon son of Micah, Shaphan the court secretary, and the king’s servant Asaiah, 21 “Go. Ask Yahweh for me and for those remaining in Israel and Judah, concerning the words of the book that was found. For great is the Lord’s wrath that is poured out on us because our fathers have not kept the word of the Lord in order to do everything written in this book.”

Huldah’s Prophecy of Judgment

22 So Hilkiah and those the king had designated[b] went to the prophetess Huldah, the wife of Shallum son of Tokhath, son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe. She lived in Jerusalem in the Second District. They spoke with her about this.

23 She said to them, “This is what Yahweh, the God of Israel says: Say to the man who sent you to Me, 24 ‘This is what Yahweh says: I am about to bring disaster on this place and on its inhabitants, fulfilling all the curses written in the book that they read in the presence of the king of Judah, 25 because they have abandoned Me and burned incense to other gods in order to provoke Me with all the works of their hands. My wrath will be poured out on this place, and it will not be quenched.’ 26 Say this to the king of Judah who sent you to ask Yahweh, ‘This is what Yahweh, the God of Israel says: As for the words that you heard, 27 because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard His words against this place and against its inhabitants, and because you humbled yourself before Me, and you tore your clothes and wept before Me, I Myself have heard’—this is the Lord’s declaration. 28 ‘I will indeed gather you to your fathers, and you will be gathered to your grave in peace. Your eyes will not see all the disaster that I am bringing on this place and on its inhabitants.’”

Then they reported to the king.

Affirmation of the Covenant by Josiah and the People

29 So the king sent messengers and gathered all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 The king went up to the Lord’s temple with all the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, as well as the priests and the Levites—all the people from great to small. He read in their hearing all the words of the book of the covenant that had been found in the Lord’s temple. 31 Then the king stood at his post and made a covenant in the Lord’s presence to follow the Lord and to keep His commands, His decrees, and His statutes with all his heart and with all his soul in order to carry out the words of the covenant written in this book.

32 He had all those present in Jerusalem and Benjamin agree[c] to it. So all the inhabitants of Jerusalem carried out the covenant of God, the God of their ancestors.

33 So Josiah removed everything that was detestable from all the lands belonging to the Israelites, and he required all who were present in Israel to serve the Lord their God. Throughout his reign they did not turn aside from following Yahweh, the God of their ancestors.

Josiah’s Passover Observance

35 Josiah observed the Lord’s Passover and slaughtered the Passover lambs on the fourteenth day of the first month. He appointed the priests to their responsibilities and encouraged them to serve in the Lord’s temple. He said to the Levites who taught all Israel the holy things of the Lord, “Put the holy ark in the temple built by Solomon son of David king of Israel. Since you do not have to carry it on your shoulders, now serve Yahweh your God and His people Israel.

“Organize your ancestral houses by your divisions according to the written instruction of David king of Israel and that of his son Solomon. Serve in the holy place by the divisions of the ancestral houses for your brothers, the lay people,[d] and the distribution of the tribal household of the Levites. Slaughter the Passover lambs, consecrate yourselves, and make preparations for your brothers to carry out the word of the Lord through Moses.”

Then Josiah donated 30,000 sheep, lambs, and young goats, plus 3,000 bulls from his own possessions, for the Passover sacrifices for all the lay people[e] who were present.

His officials also donated willingly for the people, the priests, and the Levites. Hilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, chief officials of God’s temple, gave 2,600 Passover sacrifices and 300 bulls for the priests. Conaniah and his brothers Shemaiah and Nethanel, and Hashabiah, Jeiel, and Jozabad, officers of the Levites, donated 5,000 Passover sacrifices for the Levites, plus 500 bulls.

10 So the service was established; the priests stood at their posts and the Levites in their divisions according to the king’s command. 11 Then they slaughtered the Passover lambs, and while the Levites were skinning the animals, the priests sprinkled the blood[f] they had been given.[g] 12 They removed the burnt offerings so that they might be given to the divisions of the ancestral houses of the lay people[h] to offer to the Lord, according to what is written in the book of Moses; they did the same with the bulls. 13 They roasted the Passover lambs with fire according to regulation. They boiled the holy sacrifices in pots, kettles, and bowls; and they quickly brought them to the lay people.[i] 14 Afterward, they made preparations for themselves and for the priests, since the priests, the descendants of Aaron, were busy offering up burnt offerings and fat until night. So the Levites made preparations for themselves and for the priests, the descendants of Aaron.

15 The singers, the descendants of Asaph, were at their stations according to the command of David, Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun the king’s seer. Also, the gatekeepers were at each gate. None of them left their tasks because their Levite brothers had made preparations for them.

16 So all the service of the Lord was established that day for observing the Passover and for offering burnt offerings on the altar of the Lord, according to the command of King Josiah. 17 The Israelites who were present in Judah also observed the Passover at that time and the Festival of Unleavened Bread for seven days. 18 No Passover had been observed like it in Israel since the days of Samuel the prophet. None of the kings of Israel ever observed a Passover like the one that Josiah observed with the priests, the Levites, all Judah, the Israelites who were present in Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 19 In the eighteenth year of Josiah’s reign, this Passover was observed.

Josiah’s Last Deeds and Death

20 After all this that Josiah had prepared for the temple, Neco king of Egypt marched up to fight at Carchemish by the Euphrates, and Josiah went out to confront him. 21 But Neco sent messengers to him, saying, “What is the issue between you and me, king of Judah? I have not come against you today[j] but I am fighting another dynasty.[k] God told me to hurry. Stop opposing God who is with me; don’t make Him destroy you!”

22 But Josiah did not turn away from him; instead, in order to fight with him he disguised himself.[l] He did not listen to Neco’s words from the mouth of God, but went to the Valley of Megiddo to fight. 23 The archers shot King Josiah, and he said to his servants, “Take me away, for I am severely wounded!” 24 So his servants took him out of the war chariot, carried him in his second chariot, and brought him to Jerusalem. Then he died, and they buried him in the tomb of his fathers. All Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah. 25 Jeremiah chanted a dirge over Josiah, and all the singing men and singing women still speak of Josiah in their dirges to this very day. They established them as a statute for Israel, and indeed they are written in the Dirges.

26 The rest of the events of Josiah’s reign, along with his deeds of faithful love according to what is written in the law of the Lord, 27 and his words, from beginning to end, are written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.

Judah’s King Jehoahaz

36 Then the common people[m] took Jehoahaz son of Josiah and made him king in Jerusalem in place of his father.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Chronicles 34:6 One Hb tradition reads Naphtali with their swords; alt Hb tradition, Syr, Vg read Naphtali, the ruins all around; Hb obscure
  2. 2 Chronicles 34:22 LXX; MT omits designated
  3. 2 Chronicles 34:32 Lit take a stand.
  4. 2 Chronicles 35:5 Lit the sons of the people
  5. 2 Chronicles 35:7 Lit the sons of the people
  6. 2 Chronicles 35:11 LXX, Vg, Tg; MT omits blood
  7. 2 Chronicles 35:11 Lit sprinkled from their hand
  8. 2 Chronicles 35:12 Lit the sons of the people
  9. 2 Chronicles 35:13 Lit the sons of the people
  10. 2 Chronicles 35:21 LXX, Syr, Tg, Vg; MT reads Not against you, you today
  11. 2 Chronicles 35:21 Lit house
  12. 2 Chronicles 35:22 LXX reads he was determined
  13. 2 Chronicles 36:1 Lit the people of the land

Jeremiah 1:2 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

The word of the Lord came to him in the thirteenth year of the reign of Josiah son of Amon, king of Judah.

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