Also in Judah the hand of God was on the people to give them unity1 of mind to carry out what the king and his officials had ordered, following the word of the LORD.
A very large crowd of people assembled in Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread2 in the second month.
They removed the altars3 in Jerusalem and cleared away the incense altars and threw them into the Kidron Valley.415
They slaughtered the Passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the second month. The priests and the Levites were ashamed and consecrated5 themselves and brought burnt offerings to the temple of the LORD.
Then they took up their regular positions6 as prescribed in the Law of Moses the man of God. The priests sprinkled the blood handed to them by the Levites.
Since many in the crowd had not consecrated themselves, the Levites had to kill7 the Passover lambs for all those who were not ceremonially clean and could not consecrate [their lambs] to the LORD.
Although most of the many people who came from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun had not purified themselves,8 yet they ate the Passover, contrary to what was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, "May the LORD, who is good, pardon everyone
who sets his heart on seeking God--the LORD, the God of his fathers--even if he is not clean according to the rules of the sanctuary."
And the LORD heard9 Hezekiah and healed10 the people.1121
The Israelites who were present in Jerusalem celebrated the Feast of Unleavened Bread12 for seven days with great rejoicing, while the Levites and priests sang to the LORD every day, accompanied by the LORD's instruments of praise.a22
Hezekiah spoke encouragingly to all the Levites, who showed good understanding of the service of the LORD. For the seven days they ate their assigned portion and offered fellowship offeringsb and praised the LORD, the God of their fathers.