2 Chronicles 34; 2 Chronicles 35; 2 Chronicles 36; John 19:1-22

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2 Chronicles 34

1 Josiah was 8 years old when he began to rule, and he was king for 31 years in Jerusalem.
2 He did what the LORD considered right. He lived in the ways of his ancestor David and never stopped living this way.
3 In the eighth year of his reign, while he was still a boy, he began to dedicate his life to serving the God of his ancestor David. In his twelfth year as king, he began to make Judah and Jerusalem clean by destroying the illegal places of worship, poles dedicated to the goddess Asherah, carved idols, and metal idols.
4 He had the altars of the various Baal gods torn down. He cut down the incense altars that were above them. He destroyed the Asherah poles, carved idols, and metal idols. He ground them into powder and scattered the powder over the tombs of those who had sacrificed to them.
5 He burned the bones of the priests on their altars. So he made Judah and Jerusalem clean.
6 In the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, he removed all their temples,
7 tore down the altars, beat the Asherah poles and idols into powder, and cut down all the incense altars everywhere in Israel. Then he went back to Jerusalem.
8 In the eighteenth year of his reign as he was making the land and the temple clean, Josiah sent Shaphan, son of Azaliah, Maaseiah, the mayor of the city, and Joah, the royal historian and son of Joahaz, to repair the temple of the LORD his God.
9 They came to the chief priest Hilkiah and gave him the money that had been brought to God's temple, the money that the Levite doorkeepers had collected from the tribes of Manasseh and Ephraim, from all who were left in Israel, from everyone in the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, and from the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
10 They gave the money to the foremen who were in charge of the LORD's temple. These foremen gave it to the workmen who were restoring and repairing the temple.
11 (These workers included carpenters and builders.) They were to buy quarried stones and wood for the fittings and beams of the buildings that the kings of Judah had allowed to become run-down.
12 The men did their work faithfully under the supervision of Jahath and Obadiah (Levites descended from Merari), and Zechariah and Meshullam (descendants of Kohath). The Levites, who were skilled musicians,
13 also supervised the workers and directed all the workmen on the various jobs. Some of the Levites served as scribes, officials, or gatekeepers.
14 When they brought out the money that had been deposited in the LORD's temple, the priest Hilkiah found the book of the LORD's Teachings written by Moses.
15 Hilkiah told the scribe Shaphan, "I have found the book of the Teachings in the LORD's temple." Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan.
16 Shaphan took the book to the king and reported, "We are doing everything you told us to do.
17 We took the money that was donated in the LORD's temple and gave it to the supervisors and the workmen."
18 Then the scribe Shaphan told the king, "The priest Hilkiah has given me a book." And Shaphan read it to the king.
19 When the king heard what the Teachings said, he tore his clothes [in distress].
20 Then the king gave an order to Hilkiah, Ahikam (son of Shaphan), Abdon (son of Micah), the scribe Shaphan, and the royal official Asaiah. He said,
21 "On behalf of those who are left in Israel and Judah and me, ask the LORD about the words in this book that was found. The LORD's fierce anger has been poured on us because our ancestors did not obey the word of the LORD by doing everything written in this book."
22 So Hilkiah and the king's officials went to talk to the prophet Huldah about this matter. She was the wife of Shallum, son of Tokhath and grandson of Hasrah. Shallum was in charge of the [royal] wardrobe. Huldah was living in the Second Part of Jerusalem.
23 She told them, "This is what the LORD God of Israel says: Tell the man who sent you to me,
24 'This is what the LORD says: I'm going to bring disaster on this place and on the people living here according to the curses written in the book that was read to the king of Judah.
25 I will do this because they have abandoned me and sacrificed to other gods in order to make me furious. Therefore, my anger will be poured on this place and will never come to an end.'"
26 [Huldah added,] "Tell Judah's king who sent you to me to ask the LORD a question, 'This is what the LORD God of Israel says about the words you heard:
27 You had a change of heart and humbled yourself in front of God when you heard my words against this place and those who live here. You humbled yourself, tore your clothes [in distress], and cried in front of me. So I will listen [to you], declares the LORD.
28 That is why I'm going to bring you to your ancestors. I'm going to bring you to your grave in peace, and your eyes will not see any of the disaster I'm going to bring on this place and those who live here.'" So they reported this to the king.
29 Then the king sent for all the respected leaders of Judah and Jerusalem to join him.
30 The king, everyone in Judah, everyone living in Jerusalem, the priests, the Levites, and all the people (young and old) went up to the LORD's temple. He read everything written in the Book of the Promise found in the LORD's temple so that they could hear it.
31 The king stood in his place and made a promise to the LORD that he would follow the LORD and obey his commands, instructions, and laws with all his heart and soul. He said he would live by the terms of the promise written in this book.
32 He also made all those found in Jerusalem and Benjamin join with him [in the promise]. Then the people of Jerusalem lived according to the promise of God, the God of their ancestors.
33 Josiah got rid of all the disgusting idols throughout Israelite territory. He made all people found in Israel serve the LORD their God. As long as he lived, they didn't stop following the LORD God of their ancestors.

2 Chronicles 35

1 Josiah celebrated the Passover for the LORD in Jerusalem. The Passover lamb was slaughtered on the fourteenth day of the first month.
2 Josiah appointed the priests to their duties and encouraged them to serve in the LORD's temple.
3 He told the Levites, who instructed all Israel and performed ceremonies to make themselves holy to the LORD, "Put the holy ark in the temple that Solomon, son of David and king of Israel, built. It shouldn't be carried on your shoulders any longer. Serve the LORD your God and his people Israel.
4 Get yourselves ready with the family groups of your divisions, which are listed in the records of King David of Israel and the records of his son Solomon.
5 Stand in the holy place representing the family divisions of your relatives, the people [of Israel]. Let the Levites be considered a part of each family.
6 Slaughter the Passover lamb, perform the ceremonies to make yourselves holy, and prepare [the lambs] for the other Israelites as the LORD instructed [us] through Moses."
7 Josiah provided the people with 33,000 sheep and goats to be sacrificed as Passover offerings for all who were present. In addition, he provided 3,000 bulls. (These animals were the king's property.)
8 His officials also voluntarily gave animals to the people, priests, and Levites. Hilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, the men in charge of God's temple, gave the priests 2,600 sheep and goats and 300 bulls for Passover sacrifices.
9 Conaniah and his brothers Shemaiah and Nethanel, and Hashabiah, Jeiel, and Jozabad, the leaders of the Levites, gave the Levites 5,000 sheep and goats and 500 bulls as Passover sacrifices.
10 So the service was prepared. The priests took their positions with the Levites according to their divisions, as the king had ordered.
11 They slaughtered the Passover lambs. The priests sprinkled the blood with their hands while the Levites skinned the lambs.
12 They set aside the burnt offerings to give them to the laypeople according to their family divisions. The laypeople could then present them to the LORD as written in the Book of Moses. The Levites did the same with the bulls.
13 They roasted the Passover lambs according to the directions. They boiled the holy offerings in pots, kettles, and pans and immediately served them to all the people.
14 Later, they prepared [the animals] for themselves and for the priests because the priests (Aaron's descendants) were sacrificing the burnt offerings and the fat until that evening. So the Levites prepared [the animals] for themselves and the priests.
15 The singers (Asaph's descendants) were in their places as David, Asaph, Heman, and the king's seer Jeduthun had commanded. The gatekeepers were stationed at each gate. They didn't need to leave their work, because their relatives, the Levites, prepared [animals] for them.
16 So everything was arranged that day for the worship of the LORD. The Passover was celebrated, and the burnt offerings were sacrificed on the LORD's altar as King Josiah had commanded.
17 The Israelites who were present celebrated the Passover at that time. They also celebrated the Festival of Unleavened Bread for seven days.
18 Never had a Passover like this been celebrated in Israel during the time of the prophet Samuel or the kings of Israel. They did not celebrate the Passover as Josiah celebrated it with priests, Levites, all of Judah, the people of Israel who could be found, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
19 In the eighteenth year of Josiah's reign, this Passover was celebrated.
20 After all this, when Josiah had repaired the temple, King Neco of Egypt came to fight a battle at Carchemish at the Euphrates River. Josiah went to attack him.
21 But Neco sent messengers to Josiah to say, "What's your quarrel with me, king of Judah? I'm not attacking you. I've come to fight those who are at war with me. God told me to hurry. God is with me, so stop now or else he will destroy you."
22 But Josiah would not stop his attack. He disguised himself as he went into battle. He refused to listen to Neco's words, which came from God, and he went to fight in the valley of Megiddo.
23 Some archers shot King Josiah. The king told his officers, "Take me away because I'm badly wounded."
24 His officers took him out of the chariot and brought him to Jerusalem in his other chariot. He died and was buried in the tombs of his ancestors. All Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah.
25 Jeremiah sang a funeral song about Josiah. All the male and female singers still sing funeral songs about Josiah today. This became a tradition in Israel. They are written in [the Book of] the Funeral Songs.
26 Everything else about Josiah--including his devotion to God by following what is written in the LORD's Teachings
27 and his acts from first to last--are written in the records of the kings of Israel and Judah.

2 Chronicles 36

1 Then people of the land took Josiah's son Jehoahaz and made him king in Jerusalem in place of his father.
2 Jehoahaz was 23 years old when he became king, and he was king in Jerusalem for 3 months.
3 The king of Egypt removed him from office in Jerusalem and fined the country 7,500 pounds of silver and 75 pounds of gold.
4 The king of Egypt made Jehoahaz's brother Eliakim king of Judah and Jerusalem and changed Eliakim's name to Jehoiakim. Neco took Jehoahaz away to Egypt.
5 Jehoiakim was 25 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled for 11 years in Jerusalem. He did what the LORD his God considered evil.
6 King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon attacked Jehoiakim and put him in bronze shackles to take him to Babylon.
7 Nebuchadnezzar also brought some of the utensils of the LORD's temple to Babylon. He put them in his palace in Babylon.
8 Everything else about Jehoiakim--the disgusting things he did and all the charges against him--is written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah. His son Jehoiakin succeeded him as king.
9 Jehoiakin was eight years old when he began to rule as king. He was king for three months and ten days in Jerusalem. He did what the LORD considered evil.
10 In the spring King Nebuchadnezzar sent for Jehoiakin and brought him to Babylon with the valuable utensils from the LORD's temple. Nebuchadnezzar made Jehoiakin's uncle Zedekiah king of Judah and Jerusalem.
11 Zedekiah was 21 years old when he began to rule, and he ruled for 11 years in Jerusalem.
12 He did what the LORD his God considered evil and didn't humble himself in front of the prophet Jeremiah, who spoke for the LORD.
13 Zedekiah also rebelled against King Nebuchadnezzar. Nebuchadnezzar had made Zedekiah swear an oath of allegiance to him in God's name. But Zedekiah became so stubborn and so impossible to deal with that he refused to turn back to the LORD God of Israel.
14 All the officials, the priests, and the people became increasingly unfaithful and followed all the disgusting practices of the nations. Although the LORD had made the temple in Jerusalem holy, they made the temple unclean.
15 The LORD God of their ancestors repeatedly sent messages through his messengers because he wanted to spare his people and his dwelling place.
16 But they mocked God's messengers, despised his words, and made fun of his prophets until the LORD became angry with his people. He could no longer heal them.
17 So he had the Babylonian king attack them and execute their best young men in their holy temple. He didn't spare the best men or the unmarried women, the old people or the sick people. God handed all of them over to him.
18 He brought to Babylon each of the utensils from God's temple, the treasures from the LORD's temple, and the treasures of the king and his officials.
19 They burned God's temple, tore down Jerusalem's walls, burned down all its palaces, and destroyed everything of value.
20 The king of Babylon took those who weren't executed to Babylon to be slaves for him and his sons. They remained captives until the Persian Empire began to rule.
21 This happened so that the LORD's words spoken through Jeremiah would be fulfilled. The land had its years of rest and was made acceptable [again]. While it lay in ruins, [the land had its] 70 years of rest.
22 The promise the LORD had spoken through Jeremiah was about to come true in Cyrus' first year as king of Persia. The LORD inspired the king to make this announcement throughout his whole kingdom and then to put it in writing.
23 This is what King Cyrus of Persia says: The LORD God of heaven has given me all the kingdoms of the world. Then he ordered me to build a temple for him in Jerusalem (which is in Judah). May the LORD God be with all of you who are his people. You may go.

John 19:1-22

1 Then Pilate had Jesus taken away and whipped.
2 The soldiers twisted some thorny branches into a crown, placed it on his head, and put a purple cape on him.
3 They went up to him, said, "Long live the king of the Jews!" and slapped his face.
4 Pilate went outside again and told the Jews, "I'm bringing him out to you to let you know that I don't find this man guilty of anything."
5 Jesus went outside. He was wearing the crown of thorns and the purple cape. Pilate said to the Jews, "Look, here's the man!"
6 When the chief priests and the guards saw Jesus, they shouted, "Crucify him! Crucify him!" Pilate told them, "You take him and crucify him. I don't find this man guilty of anything."
7 The Jews answered Pilate, "We have a law, and by that law he must die because he claimed to be the Son of God."
8 When Pilate heard them say that, he became more afraid than ever.
9 He went into the palace again and asked Jesus, "Where are you from?" But Jesus didn't answer him.
10 So Pilate said to Jesus, "Aren't you going to answer me? Don't you know that I have the authority to free you or to crucify you?"
11 Jesus answered Pilate, "You wouldn't have any authority over me if it hadn't been given to you from above. That's why the man who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin."
12 When Pilate heard what Jesus said, he wanted to free him. But the Jews shouted, "If you free this man, you're not a friend of the emperor. Anyone who claims to be a king is defying the emperor."
13 When Pilate heard what they said, he took Jesus outside and sat on the judge's seat in a place called Stone Pavement. (In Hebrew it is called Gabbatha.)
14 The time was about six o'clock in the morning on the Friday of the Passover festival. Pilate said to the Jews, "Look, here's your king!"
15 Then the Jews shouted, "Kill him! Kill him! Crucify him!" Pilate asked them, "Should I crucify your king?" The chief priests responded, "The emperor is the only king we have!"
16 Then Pilate handed Jesus over to them to be crucified. So the soldiers took Jesus.
17 He carried his own cross and went out [of the city] to a location called The Skull. (In Hebrew this place is called Golgotha.)
18 The soldiers crucified Jesus and two other men there. Jesus was in the middle.
19 Pilate wrote a notice and put it on the cross. The notice read, "Jesus from Nazareth, the king of the Jews."
20 Many Jews read this notice, because the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city. The notice was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek.
21 The chief priests of the Jewish people told Pilate, "Don't write, 'The king of the Jews!' Instead, write, 'He said that he is the king of the Jews.'"
22 Pilate replied, "I have written what I've written."