2 Kings 23:1-30 (New American Standard)

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Josiah's Covenant

1 1Then the king sent, and they gathered to him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem. 2 The king went up to the house of the LORD and all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem with him, and the priests and the prophets and all the people, both small and great; and 2he read in their hearing all the words of the book of the covenant 3which was found in the house of the LORD. 3 4The king stood by the pillar and made a covenant before the LORD, 5to walk after the LORD, and to keep His commandments and His testimonies and His statutes with all his heart and all his soul, to carry out the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people aentered into the covenant.

Reforms under Josiah

4 Then the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and 6the priests of the second order and the bdoorkeepers, 7to bring out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels that were made for Baal, for cAsherah, and for all the host of heaven; and 8he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel 5 He did away with the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had appointed to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah and in the surrounding area of Jerusalem, also those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun and to the moon and to the constellations and to all the 9host of heaven. 6 He brought out the Asherah from the house of the LORD outside Jerusalem to the brook Kidron, and burned it at the brook Kidron, and 10ground it to dust, and 11threw its dust on the graves of the dcommon people. 7 He also broke down the houses of the 12male cult prostitutes which were in the house of the LORD, where 13the women were weaving ehangings for the Asherah. 8 Then he brought all the priests from the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had burned incense, from 14Geba to Beersheba; and he broke down the high places of the gates which were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on one's left at the city gate. 9 Nevertheless 15the priests of the high places did not go up to the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but they ate unleavened bread among their brothers. 10 16He also defiled fTopheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, 17that no man might make his son or his daughter pass through the fire for 18Molech. 11 He did away with the horses which the kings of Judah had given to the 19sun, at the entrance of the house of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the official, which was in the precincts; and he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. 12 20The altars which were on the roof, the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and 21the altars which Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the LORD, the king broke down; and he gsmashed them there and 22threw their dust into the brook Kidron. 13 The high places which were before Jerusalem, which were on the right of 23the mount of destruction which Solomon the king of Israel had built for 24Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, and for 25Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Milcom the abomination of the sons of Ammon, the king defiled. 14 26He broke in pieces the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherim and 27filled their places with human bones 15 Furthermore, 28the altar that was at Bethel and the 29high place which Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel sin, had made, even that altar and the high place he broke down. Then he h30demolished its stones, ground them to dust, and burned the Asherah. 16 Now when Josiah turned, he saw the graves that were there on the mountain, and he sent and took the bones from the graves and burned them on the altar and defiled it 31according to the word of the LORD which the man of God proclaimed, who proclaimed these things. 17 Then he said, "What is this monument that I see?" And the men of the city told him, "32It is the grave of the man of God who came from Judah and proclaimed these things which you have done against the altar of Bethel." 18 He said, "Let him alone; let no one disturb his bones." So they ileft his bones undisturbed 33with the bones of the prophet who came from Samaria. 19 Josiah also removed all the houses of the high places which were 34in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made provoking jthe LORD; and he did to them kjust as he had done in Bethel 20 All the priests of the high places who were there 35he slaughtered on the altars and burned human bones on them; then he returned to Jerusalem.

Passover Reinstituted

21 Then the king commanded all the people saying, "36Celebrate the Passover to the LORD your God 37as it is written in this book of the covenant. 22 38Surely such a Passover had not been celebrated from the days of the judges who judged Israel, nor in all the days of the kings of Israel and of the kings of Judah. 23 But in the eighteenth year of King Josiah, this Passover was observed to the LORD in Jerusalem. 24 Moreover, Josiah lremoved 39the mediums and the spiritists and the 40teraphim and 41the idols and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, 42that he might mconfirm the words of the law which were written 43in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the LORD. 25 Before him there was no king 44like him who turned to the LORD with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; nor did any like him arise after him. 26 However, the LORD did not turn from the fierceness of His great wrath with which His anger burned against Judah, 45because of all the provocations with which Manasseh had provoked Him. 27 The LORD said, "I will remove Judah also from My sight, 46as I have removed Israel. And 47I will cast off Jerusalem, this city which I have chosen, and the ntemple of which I said, 'My name shall be there.' "

Jehoahaz Succeeds Josiah

28 Now the rest of the acts of Josiah and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah? 29 48In his days 49Pharaoh Neco king of Egypt went up to the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates. And King Josiah went to meet him, and when Pharaoh Neco saw him he killed him at 50Megiddo. 30 51His servants drove ohis body in a chariot from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem and buried him in his own tomb. 52Then the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah and anointed him and made him king in place of his father.
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