Now Hezekiahsent to allIsrael and Judah and wrotelettersalso to Ephraim and Manasseh, that they should come to the house of the LORD at Jerusalem to acelebrate the Passover to the LORDGod of Israel.
For the king and his princes and all the assembly in Jerusalem had decided1to celebrate the Passover in the secondmonth,
3since they could not celebrate it 2at that time, because the priests had not consecrated themselves in sufficientnumbers, nor had the people been gathered to Jerusalem.
Thus the thing was right in the sight of the king and ball the assembly.
So they established a decree to circulate a cproclamation throughout allIsrael3from Beersheba even to Dan, that they should come to celebrate the Passover to the LORDGod of Israel at Jerusalem. For they had not celebrated it in greatnumbers as it was dprescribed.
64The ecourierswent throughout allIsrael and Judah with the letters from the hand of the king and his princes, even according to the command of the king, saying, "O sons of Israel, return to the LORDGod of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, that He may return to those of you whoescaped and are left from 5the fhand of the kings of Assyria.
"6Do not be like your fathers and your brothers, who were unfaithful to the LORDGod of their fathers, so that 7He made them a horror, as you see.
8"Now do not 8stiffen your neck like your fathers, but gyield to the LORD and enter His sanctuarywhich He has consecratedforever, and serve the LORD your God, 9that His burninganger may turnaway from you.
"For 10if you return to the LORD, your brothers and your sons will find compassionbefore those who led them captive and will return to thisland. 11For the LORD your God is gracious and compassionate, and will not turn His faceaway from you if you return to Him."
So the hcourierspassed from city to city through the country of Ephraim and Manasseh, and as far as Zebulun, but 12they laughed them to scorn and mocked them.
11Nevertheless13somemen of Asher, Manasseh and Zebulunhumbled themselves and came to Jerusalem.
The 14hand of God was also on Judah to give them oneheart to dowhat the king and the princescommanded by the word of the LORD.
Now manypeople were gathered at Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of UnleavenedBread15in the secondmonth, a verylargeassembly.
They arose and removed the altarswhich were in Jerusalem ; they also 16removedall the incensealtars and 17cast them into the brookKidron.
Then 18they slaughtered the Passover lambs on the fourteenth of the secondmonth. And 19the priests and Levites were ashamed of themselves, and consecrated themselves and broughtburntofferings to the house of the LORD.
1620They stood at their stations after their custom, according to the law of Moses the man of God ; the priestssprinkled the blood which they received from the hand of the Levites.
For there were many in the assemblywho had not consecrated themselves; therefore, 21the Levites were over the slaughter of the Passover lambs for everyone who was unclean , in order to consecrate them to the LORD.
For a multitude of the people, 22even many from Ephraim and Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun, had not purified themselves, 23yet they ate the Passover24otherwise than iprescribed. For Hezekiahprayed for them, saying, "May the goodLORDpardon1925everyone who prepares his heart to seekGod, the LORDGod of his fathers, though not according to the purification rules of the sanctuary."
So the LORDheardHezekiah and 26healed the people.
The sons of Israelpresent in Jerusalem27celebrated the Feast of UnleavenedBread for sevendays with greatjoy, and the Levites and the priestspraised the LORDday after day with loudinstruments to the LORD.
Then Hezekiah28spokejencouragingly to all the Levites who showedgoodinsight in the things of the LORD. So they ate for the appointedsevendays, sacrificingpeaceofferings and 29givingthanks to the LORDGod of their fathers.
Then the wholeassembly30decided to celebrate the feast anothersevendays, so they celebrated the sevendays with joy.
For 31Hezekiahking of Judah had contributed to the assembly1,000bulls and 7,000sheep, and the princes had contributed to the assembly1,000bulls and 10,000sheep ; and 32a largenumber of priestsconsecrated themselves.
25All the assembly of Judahrejoiced, with the priests and the Levites and 33all the assembly that came from Israel, both the sojourners who came from the land of Israel and those living in Judah.
So there was greatjoy in Jerusalem, because there was nothing like this in Jerusalem34since the days of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel.
Then 35the Leviticalpriestsarose and 36blessed the people ; and their voice was heard and their prayercame to 37His holydwellingplace, to heaven.