2 Chronicles 29

Hezekiah Purifies the Temple

1 Hezekiah was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem twenty-nine years. His mother’s name was Abijah daughter of Zechariah.
2 He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father David had done.
3 In the first month of the first year of his reign, he opened the doors of the temple of the LORD and repaired them.
4 He brought in the priests and the Levites, assembled them in the square on the east side
5 and said: “Listen to me, Levites! Consecrate yourselves now and consecrate the temple of the LORD, the God of your ancestors. Remove all defilement from the sanctuary.
6 Our parents were unfaithful; they did evil in the eyes of the LORD our God and forsook him. They turned their faces away from the LORD’s dwelling place and turned their backs on him.
7 They also shut the doors of the portico and put out the lamps. They did not burn incense or present any burnt offerings at the sanctuary to the God of Israel.
8 Therefore, the anger of the LORD has fallen on Judah and Jerusalem; he has made them an object of dread and horror and scorn, as you can see with your own eyes.
9 This is why our fathers have fallen by the sword and why our sons and daughters and our wives are in captivity.
10 Now I intend to make a covenant with the LORD, the God of Israel, so that his fierce anger will turn away from us.
11 My sons, do not be negligent now, for the LORD has chosen you to stand before him and serve him, to minister before him and to burn incense.”
12 Then these Levites set to work: from the Kohathites, Mahath son of Amasai and Joel son of Azariah; from the Merarites, Kish son of Abdi and Azariah son of Jehallelel; from the Gershonites, Joah son of Zimmah and Eden son of Joah;
13 from the descendants of Elizaphan, Shimri and Jeiel; from the descendants of Asaph, Zechariah and Mattaniah;
14 from the descendants of Heman, Jehiel and Shimei; from the descendants of Jeduthun, Shemaiah and Uzziel.
15 When they had assembled their fellow Levites and consecrated themselves, they went in to purify the temple of the LORD, as the king had ordered, following the word of the LORD.
16 The priests went into the sanctuary of the LORD to purify it. They brought out to the courtyard of the LORD’s temple everything unclean that they found in the temple of the LORD. The Levites took it and carried it out to the Kidron Valley.
17 They began the consecration on the first day of the first month, and by the eighth day of the month they reached the portico of the LORD. For eight more days they consecrated the temple of the LORD itself, finishing on the sixteenth day of the first month.
18 Then they went in to King Hezekiah and reported: “We have purified the entire temple of the LORD, the altar of burnt offering with all its utensils, and the table for setting out the consecrated bread, with all its articles.
19 We have prepared and consecrated all the articles that King Ahaz removed in his unfaithfulness while he was king. They are now in front of the LORD’s altar.”
20 Early the next morning King Hezekiah gathered the city officials together and went up to the temple of the LORD.
21 They brought seven bulls, seven rams, seven male lambs and seven male goats as a sin offering[a] for the kingdom, for the sanctuary and for Judah. The king commanded the priests, the descendants of Aaron, to offer these on the altar of the LORD.
22 So they slaughtered the bulls, and the priests took the blood and splashed it against the altar; next they slaughtered the rams and splashed their blood against the altar; then they slaughtered the lambs and splashed their blood against the altar.
23 The goats for the sin offering were brought before the king and the assembly, and they laid their hands on them.
24 The priests then slaughtered the goats and presented their blood on the altar for a sin offering to atone for all Israel, because the king had ordered the burnt offering and the sin offering for all Israel.
25 He stationed the Levites in the temple of the LORD with cymbals, harps and lyres in the way prescribed by David and Gad the king’s seer and Nathan the prophet; this was commanded by the LORD through his prophets.
26 So the Levites stood ready with David’s instruments, and the priests with their trumpets.
27 Hezekiah gave the order to sacrifice the burnt offering on the altar. As the offering began, singing to the LORD began also, accompanied by trumpets and the instruments of David king of Israel.
28 The whole assembly bowed in worship, while the musicians played and the trumpets sounded. All this continued until the sacrifice of the burnt offering was completed.
29 When the offerings were finished, the king and everyone present with him knelt down and worshiped.
30 King Hezekiah and his officials ordered the Levites to praise the LORD with the words of David and of Asaph the seer. So they sang praises with gladness and bowed down and worshiped.
31 Then Hezekiah said, “You have now dedicated yourselves to the LORD. Come and bring sacrifices and thank offerings to the temple of the LORD.” So the assembly brought sacrifices and thank offerings, and all whose hearts were willing brought burnt offerings.
32 The number of burnt offerings the assembly brought was seventy bulls, a hundred rams and two hundred male lambs—all of them for burnt offerings to the LORD.
33 The animals consecrated as sacrifices amounted to six hundred bulls and three thousand sheep and goats.
34 The priests, however, were too few to skin all the burnt offerings; so their relatives the Levites helped them until the task was finished and until other priests had been consecrated, for the Levites had been more conscientious in consecrating themselves than the priests had been.
35 There were burnt offerings in abundance, together with the fat of the fellowship offerings and the drink offerings that accompanied the burnt offerings. So the service of the temple of the LORD was reestablished.
36 Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced at what God had brought about for his people, because it was done so quickly.

2 Chronicles 29 Commentary

Chapter 29

Hezekiah's good reign in Judah. (1-19) Hezekiah's sacrifice of atonement. (20-36)

Verses 1-19 When Hezekiah came to the crown, he applied at once to work reform. Those who begin with God, begin at the right end of their work, and it will prosper accordingly. Those that turn their backs upon God's ordinances, may truly be said to forsake God himself. There are still such neglects, if the word be not duly read and opened, for that was signified by the lighting the lamps, and also if prayers and praise be not offered up, for that was signified by the burning incense. Neglect of God's worship was the cause of the calamities they had lain under. The Lord alone can prepare the heart of man for vital godliness: when much good is done in a little time, the glory must be ascribed to him; and all who love him or the souls of men, will rejoice therein. Let those that do good work, learn to do it well.

Verses 20-36 As soon as Hezekiah heard that the temple was ready, he lost no time. Atonement must be made for the sins of the last reign. It was not enough to lament and forsake those sins; they brought a sin-offering. Our repentance and reformation will not obtain pardon but in and through Christ, who was made sin, that is, a sin-offering for us. While the offerings were on the altar, the Levites sang. Sorrow for sin must not prevent us from praising God. The king and the congregation gave their consent to all that was done. It is not enough for us to be where God is worshipped, if we do not ourselves worship with the heart. And we should offer up our spiritual sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving, and devote ourselves and all we have, as sacrifices, acceptable to the Father only through the Redeemer.

Cross References 44

  • 1. S 1 Chronicles 3:13
  • 2. 2 Chronicles 28:1; 2 Chronicles 34:2
  • 3. 2 Chronicles 28:24; 2 Kings 18:16
  • 4. S Leviticus 11:44; Nehemiah 13:9; 2 Chronicles 35:6
  • 5. Ezra 9:7; Psalms 106:6-47; Jeremiah 2:27; Jeremiah 18:17; Ezekiel 23:35; Daniel 9:5-6
  • 6. S 1 Chronicles 5:25; Ezekiel 8:16
  • 7. S Exodus 30:7
  • 8. S Deuteronomy 28:25; 2 Chronicles 24:18
  • 9. S Leviticus 26:32; Jeremiah 18:16; Jeremiah 19:8; Jeremiah 25:9,18
  • 10. 2Ch 28:5-8,17
  • 11. S 2 Kings 11:17; S 2 Chronicles 15:12; 2 Chronicles 23:16
  • 12. S Numbers 25:4; 2 Chronicles 30:8; Ezra 10:14
  • 13. S Numbers 3:6; Numbers 8:6,14
  • 14. S 1 Chronicles 15:2
  • 15. S Numbers 3:17-20
  • 16. 2 Chronicles 31:15
  • 17. S Exodus 6:22
  • 18. S 1 Chronicles 6:39
  • 19. ver 5; S 1 Chronicles 23:28; 2 Chronicles 30:12; S Isaiah 1:25
  • 20. S 2 Samuel 15:23
  • 21. 2 Chronicles 28:24
  • 22. Ezra 6:17; Ezra 8:35
  • 23. S Leviticus 4:13-14
  • 24. S Leviticus 4:18; Numbers 18:17
  • 25. S Leviticus 16:5
  • 26. Leviticus 4:15
  • 27. S Exodus 29:36; Leviticus 4:26
  • 28. 1 Chronicles 11:1; Ezra 8:35
  • 29. S 1 Chronicles 25:6; 1 Chronicles 28:19; 2 Chronicles 8:14
  • 30. S 1 Samuel 22:5; 2 Samuel 24:11
  • 31. S 1 Chronicles 15:16
  • 32. S 1 Chronicles 15:24; 1 Chronicles 23:5; 2 Chronicles 5:12
  • 33. S 1 Samuel 16:16; 2 Chronicles 23:18
  • 34. S 2 Chronicles 2:4
  • 35. S 2 Chronicles 20:18
  • 36. Hebrews 13:15-16
  • 37. S Exodus 25:2; Exodus 35:22
  • 38. Leviticus 1:1-17
  • 39. Ezekiel 44:11; 2 Chronicles 35:11
  • 40. 2 Chronicles 30:3,15
  • 41. S Genesis 4:4; S Exodus 29:13; Leviticus 3:16
  • 42. Leviticus 7:11-21
  • 43. S Genesis 35:14; Numbers 15:5-10
  • 44. 2 Chronicles 35:8

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or "purification offering" ; also in verses 23 and 24

Chapter Summary


This chapter begins with the good reign of Hezekiah, who upon his accession to the throne opened the doors of the temple, 2Ch 29:1-3, summoned the priests and Levites, and exhorted them to purge the temple, and restore the worship of it, 2Ch 29:4-11, who accordingly set about the work immediately, and cleansed the temple, and, when they had done, reported it to the king, 2Ch 29:12-19 upon which he, with the princes, went into the temple and offered sacrifices, 2Ch 29:20-24 and ordered singers to sing at the offering of burnt offerings, 2Ch 29:25-30 when he and his people offered burnt offerings and peace offerings in great abundance, 2Ch 29:31-36.

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2 Chronicles 29 Commentaries