2 Kings 22–23; 2 Chronicles 34–35

Josiah Reigns in Judah

22 aJosiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty-one years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Jedidah the daughter of Adaiah of bBozkath. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all the way of David his father, cand he did not turn aside to the right or to the left.

Josiah Repairs the Temple

In the eighteenth year of King Josiah, the king sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, son of Meshullam, the secretary, to the house of the Lord, saying, Go up to dHilkiah the high priest, that he may count the money ethat has been brought into the house of the Lord, which fthe keepers of the threshold have collected from the people. gAnd let it be given into the hand of the workmen who have the oversight of the house of the Lord, and let them give it to the workmen who are at the house of the Lord, repairing the house (that is, to the carpenters, and to the builders, and to the masons), and let them use it for buying timber and quarried stone to repair the house. But hno accounting shall be asked from them for the money that is delivered into their hand, for they deal honestly.

Hilkiah Finds the Book of the Law

And Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the secretary, I have found ithe Book of the Law in the house of the Lord. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it. And Shaphan the secretary came to the king, and reported to the king, Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the house and have delivered it into the hand of the workmen who have the oversight of the house of the Lord. 10 Then Shaphan the secretary told the king, Hilkiah the priest has given me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king.

11 When the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, jhe tore his clothes. 12 And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, and kAhikam the son of Shaphan, and lAchbor the son of lMicaiah, and Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah the king's servant, saying, 13 Go, inquire of the Lord for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found. For great is mthe wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.

14 So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Shaphan, and Asaiah went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of nTikvah, son of nHarhas, keeper of the wardrobe (now she lived in Jerusalem in othe Second Quarter), and they talked with her. 15 And she said to them, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Tell the man who sent you to me, 16 Thus says the Lord, Behold, I will bring disaster upon this place and upon its inhabitants, all the words of the book that the king of Judah has read. 17 pBecause they have forsaken me and have made offerings to other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the work of their hands, therefore mmy wrath will be kindled against this place, and it will not be quenched. 18 But to the king of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the Lord, thus shall you say to him, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Regarding the words that you have heard, 19 qbecause your heart was penitent, and you rhumbled yourself before the Lord, when you heard how I spoke against this place and against its inhabitants, that they should become sa desolation and ta curse, and you uhave torn your clothes and wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the Lord. 20 Therefore, behold, I will gather you to your fathers, and vyou shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place. And they brought back word to the king.

Josiah's Reforms

23 wThen the king sent, and all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem were gathered to him. And the king went up to the house of the Lord, and with him all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the priests and the prophets, all the people, both small and great. And xhe read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant ythat had been found in the house of the Lord. And the king stood zby the pillar and amade a covenant before the Lord, bto walk after the Lord and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people joined in the covenant.

And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests cof the second order and the keepers of the threshold to bring out of the temple of the Lord all the vessels made for dBaal, for eAsherah, and for all the host of heaven. fHe burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron and carried their ashes to Bethel. And he deposed the priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to make offerings in the high places at the cities of Judah and around Jerusalem; those also who burned incense to Baal, to the sun and the moon and the constellations gand all the host of the heavens. And he brought out hthe Asherah from the house of the Lord, outside Jerusalem, to the brook Kidron, iand burned it at the brook Kidron jand beat it to dust and cast the dust of it upon the graves kof the common people. And he broke down the houses of lthe male cult prostitutes who were in the house of the Lord, mwhere the women wove hangings for hthe Asherah. And he brought all the priests out of the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had made offerings, from nGeba to Beersheba. And he broke down the high places of the gates that were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on one's left at the gate of the city. oHowever, the priests of the high places did not come up to the altar of the Lord in Jerusalem, but they ate unleavened bread among their brothers. 10 And he defiled pTopheth, which is qin the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, rthat no one might burn his son or his daughter as an offering to sMolech.1 11 And he removed the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance to the house of the Lord, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the precincts.2 And he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. 12 And the altars ton the roof of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars uthat Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the Lord, he pulled down and broke in pieces3 and cast the dust of them vinto the brook Kidron. 13 And the king defiled the high places that were east of Jerusalem, to the south of wthe mount of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had built for xAshtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, and for yChemosh the abomination of Moab, and for zMilcom the abomination of the Ammonites. 14 And he broke in pieces the apillars and cut down the Asherim and filled their places with the bones of men.

15 Moreover, the altar at Bethel, the high place erected bby Jeroboam the son of Nebat, cwho made Israel to sin, dthat altar with the high place he pulled down and burned,4 reducing it to dust. He also burned the Asherah. 16 And as Josiah turned, he saw the tombs there on the mount. And he sent and took the bones out of the tombs and burned them on the altar and defiled it, eaccording to the word of the Lord that the man of God proclaimed, who had predicted these things. 17 Then he said, What is that monument that I see? And the men of the city told him, fIt is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and predicted5 these things that you have done against the altar at Bethel. 18 And he said, Let him be; let no man move his bones. So they let his bones alone, with the bones gof the prophet who came out of Samaria. 19 And Josiah removed all the shrines also of the high places that were hin the cities of Samaria, which kings of Israel had made, provoking the Lord to anger. He did to them according to all that he had done at Bethel. 20 And ihe sacrificed all the priests of the high places who were there, on the altars, jand burned human bones on them. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

Josiah Restores the Passover

21 And the king commanded all the people, kKeep the Passover to the Lord your God, las it is written in this Book of the Covenant. 22 mFor no such Passover had been kept since the days of the judges who judged Israel, or during all the days of the kings of Israel or of the kings of Judah. 23 But in the eighteenth year of King Josiah this Passover was kept to the Lord in Jerusalem.

24 Moreover, Josiah put away nthe mediums and the necromancers and othe household gods and pthe idols and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, that he might establish qthe words of the law that were written in the book rthat Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the Lord. 25 sBefore him there was no king like 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 Still the Lord did not turn from the burning of his great wrath, by which his anger was kindled against Judah, tbecause of all the provocations with which Manasseh had provoked him. 27 And the Lord said, I will remove Judah also out of my sight, uas I have removed Israel, and I will cast off this city that I have chosen, Jerusalem, vand the house of which I said, My name shall be there.

Josiah's Death in Battle

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 wIn his days xPharaoh Neco king of Egypt went up to the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates. King Josiah went to meet him, and Pharaoh Neco killed him at yMegiddo, as soon as he saw him. 30 zAnd his servants carried him dead in a chariot from yMegiddo and brought him to Jerusalem and buried him in his own tomb. aAnd the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's place.

Jehoahaz's Reign and Captivity

31 bJehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother's name was cHamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 32 And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, daccording to all that his fathers had done. 33 And xPharaoh Neco put him in bonds at eRiblah in the land of fHamath, that he might not reign in Jerusalem, and laid on the land a tribute of a hundred talents6 of silver and a talent of gold. 34 And xPharaoh Neco made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in the place of Josiah his father, and gchanged his name to Jehoiakim. But he took Jehoahaz away, hand he came to Egypt and died there. 35 And Jehoiakim igave the silver and the gold to Pharaoh, but he taxed the land to give the money according to the command of Pharaoh. He exacted the silver and the gold of the people of the land, from everyone according to his assessment, to give it to Pharaoh Neco.

Jehoiakim Reigns in Judah

36 jJehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. His mother's name was Zebidah the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah. 37 And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, daccording to all that his fathers had done.


Josiah Reigns in Judah

34 mJosiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty-one years in Jerusalem. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and walked in the ways of David his father; and he did not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was yet a boy, he began to seek the God of David his father, and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the nAsherim, and the carved and the metal images. And they chopped down the altars of the Baals in his presence, and he cut down the oincense altars that stood above them. And he broke in pieces the nAsherim and the carved and the metal images, and he made dust of them and oscattered it over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. pHe also burned the bones of the priests on their altars and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. And in the qcities of Manasseh, Ephraim, and Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, in their ruins1 all around, he broke down the altars and beat the nAsherim and the images rinto powder and cut down all the incense altars throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

The Book of the Law Found

sNow in the eighteenth year of his reign, when he had cleansed the land and the house, he sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, and Maaseiah the tgovernor of the city, and Joah the son of Joahaz, uthe recorder, to repair the house of the Lord his God. They came to vHilkiah the high priest and gave him the money that had been brought into the house of God, which the Levites, the keepers of the threshold, had collected from qManasseh and Ephraim and from all the remnant of Israel and from all Judah and Benjamin and from the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 10 And they gave it to the workmen who were working in the house of the Lord. And the workmen who were working in the house of the Lord gave it for repairing and restoring the house. 11 They gave it to the carpenters and the builders to buy quarried stone, and timber for binders and wbeams for the buildings that the kings of Judah had let go to ruin. 12 And the men did the work faithfully. Over them were set Jahath and Obadiah the Levites, of the sons of Merari, and Zechariah and Meshullam, of the sons of the Kohathites, to have oversight. xThe Levites, all who were skillful with instruments of music, 13 were over ythe burden-bearers and directed all who did work in every kind of service, and some of the Levites were scribes and officials and gatekeepers.

14 While they were bringing out the money that had been brought into the house of the Lord, vHilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord given through2 Moses. 15 Then Hilkiah answered and said to Shaphan the secretary, I have found the Book of the Law in the house of the Lord. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan. 16 Shaphan brought the book to the king, and further reported to the king, All that was committed to your servants they are doing. 17 They have emptied out the money that was found in the house of the Lord and have given it into the hand of the overseers and the workmen. 18 Then Shaphan the secretary told the king, Hilkiah the priest has given me a book. And Shaphan read from it before the king.

19 And when the king heard the words of the Law, zhe tore his clothes. 20 And the king commanded Hilkiah, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Abdon the son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah the king's servant, saying, 21 Go, inquire of the Lord for me and for those who are left in Israel and in Judah, concerning the words of the book that has been found. For great is athe wrath of the Lord that is poured out on us, because our fathers have not kept the word of the Lord, to do according to all that is written in this book.

Huldah Prophesies Disaster

22 So Hilkiah and those whom the king had sent3 went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tokhath, son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe (now she lived in Jerusalem in the Second Quarter) and spoke to her to that effect. 23 And she said to them, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Tell the man who sent you to me, 24 Thus says the Lord, Behold, I will bring disaster upon this place and upon its inhabitants, all the curses that are written in the book that was read before the king of Judah. 25 Because they have forsaken me and bhave made offerings to other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands, therefore amy wrath will be poured out on this place and will not be quenched. 26 But to the king of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the Lord, thus shall you say to him, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: Regarding the words that you have heard, 27 because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and its inhabitants, and you have humbled yourself before me and have torn your clothes and wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the Lord. 28 Behold, I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place and its inhabitants. And they brought back word to the king.

29 cThen the king sent and gathered together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 And the king went up to the house of the Lord, with all the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the priests and the Levites, all the people both great and small. And he read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant that had been found in the house of the Lord. 31 And the king dstood in his place eand made a covenant before the Lord, to walk after the Lord and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes, with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant that were written in this book. 32 Then he made all who were present in Jerusalem and in Benjamin join in it. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem did according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers. 33 And Josiah took away fall the abominations from all the territory that belonged to the people of Israel and made all who were present in Israel serve the Lord their God. All his days they did not turn away from following the Lord, the God of their fathers.

Josiah Keeps the Passover

35 gJosiah kept a Passover to the Lord in Jerusalem. And they slaughtered the Passover lamb hon the fourteenth day of the first month. He appointed the priests to their offices iand encouraged them in the service of the house of the Lord. And he said to the Levites jwho taught all Israel and who were holy to the Lord, Put the holy ark in the house that Solomon the son of David, king of Israel, built. You need not carry it on your shoulders. Now serve the Lord your God and his people Israel. Prepare yourselves kaccording to your fathers' houses by your divisions, las prescribed in the writing of David king of Israel mand the document of Solomon his son. And nstand in the Holy Place oaccording to the groupings of the fathers' houses of your brothers the lay people, and according to the division of the Levites by fathers' household. And slaughter the Passover lamb, and pconsecrate yourselves, and prepare for your brothers, to do according to the word of the Lord by4 Moses.

Then Josiah contributed to the lay people, as Passover offerings for all who were present, lambs and young goats from the flock to the number of 30,000, and 3,000 bulls; qthese were from the king's possessions. And his officials contributed willingly to the people, to the priests, and to the Levites. rHilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, the chief officers of the house of God, gave to the priests for the Passover offerings 2,600 Passover lambs and 300 bulls. Conaniah also, and Shemaiah and Nethanel his brothers, and Hashabiah and Jeiel and Jozabad, the chiefs of the Levites, gave to the Levites for the Passover offerings 5,000 lambs and young goats and 500 bulls.

10 When the service had been prepared for, the priests sstood in their place, tand the Levites in their divisions according to the king's command. 11 uAnd they slaughtered the Passover lamb, and the priests vthrew the blood that they received from them wwhile the Levites flayed the sacrifices. 12 And they set aside the burnt offerings that they might distribute them according to the groupings of the fathers' houses of the lay people, to offer to the Lord, as it is written in the Book of Moses. And so they did with the bulls. 13 xAnd they roasted the Passover lamb with fire according to the rule; and they yboiled the holy offerings in pots, in cauldrons, and in pans, and carried them quickly to all the lay people. 14 And afterward they prepared for themselves and for the priests, because the priests, the sons of Aaron, were offering the burnt offerings and the fat parts until night; so the Levites prepared for themselves and for the priests, the sons of Aaron. 15 The singers, the sons of Asaph, were in their place zaccording to the command of David, and Asaph, and Heman, and Jeduthun the king's aseer; band the gatekeepers were at each gate. They did not need to depart from their service, for their brothers the Levites prepared for them.

16 So all the service of the Lord was prepared that day, to keep the Passover and to offer burnt offerings on the altar of the Lord, according to the command of King Josiah. 17 And the people of Israel who were present kept the Passover at that time, cand the Feast of Unleavened Bread seven days. 18 dNo Passover like it had been kept in Israel since the days of Samuel the prophet. None of the kings of Israel had kept such a Passover as was kept by Josiah, and the priests and the Levites, and all Judah and Israel who were present, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 19 In the eighteenth year of the reign of Josiah this Passover was kept.

Josiah Killed in Battle

20 eAfter all this, when Josiah had prepared the temple, Neco king of Egypt went up to fight at fCarchemish on the Euphrates, and Josiah went out to meet him. 21 But he sent envoys to him, saying, What have we to do with each other, king of Judah? I am not coming against you this day, but against the house with which I am at war. And God has commanded me to hurry. Cease opposing God, who is with me, lest he destroy you. 22 Nevertheless, Josiah did not turn away from him, but gdisguised himself in order to fight with him. He did not listen to the words of Neco from the mouth of God, but came to fight in the plain of hMegiddo. 23 And the archers shot King Josiah. And the king said to his servants, iTake me away, for I am badly wounded. 24 So his servants took him out of the chariot and carried him in his second chariot and brought him to Jerusalem. And he died and was buried in the tombs of his fathers. jAll Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah. 25 kJeremiah also uttered a lament for Josiah; and all lthe singing men and singing women have spoken of Josiah in their laments to this day. They made these a rule in Israel; behold, they are written in the Laments. 26 Now the rest of the acts of Josiah, and his good deeds according to what is written in the Law of the Lord, 27 and his acts, first and last, behold, they are written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.