Josiah Restores True Worship
1Now #2 Sam. 19:11; 2 Chr. 34:29, 30the king sent them to gather all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem to him. 2The king went up to the house of the Lord with all the men of Judah, and with him all the inhabitants of Jerusalem—the priests and the prophets and all the people, both small and great. And he #Deut. 31:10–13read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant #2 Kin. 22:8which had been found in the house of the Lord.
3Then the king #2 Kin. 11:14stood by a pillar and made a #2 Kin. 11:17covenant before the Lord, to follow 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 took a stand for the covenant. 4And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, the #2 Kin. 25:18; Jer. 52:24priests of the second order, and the doorkeepers, to bring #2 Kin. 21:3–7out of the temple of the Lord all the articles that were made for Baal, for Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; and he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. 5Then he removed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense on the high places in the cities of Judah and in the places all around Jerusalem, and those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun, to the moon, to the constellations, and to #2 Kin. 21:3all the host of heaven. 6And he brought out the #2 Kin. 21:7wooden image from the house of the Lord, to the Brook Kidron outside Jerusalem, burned it at the Brook Kidron and ground it to #Ex. 32:20ashes, and threw its ashes on #2 Chr. 34:4the graves of the common people. 7Then he tore down the ritual booths #1 Kin. 14:24; 15:12of the perverted persons that were in the house of the Lord, #Ex. 35:25, 26; Ezek. 16:16where the #Ex. 38:8women wove hangings for the wooden image. 8And he brought all the priests from the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had burned incense, from #Josh. 21:17; 1 Kin. 15:22Geba to Beersheba; also he broke down the high places at the gates which were at the entrance of the Gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were to the left of the city gate. 9#(Ezek. 44:10–14)Nevertheless the priests of the high places did not come up to the altar of the Lord in Jerusalem, #1 Sam. 2:36but they ate unleavened bread among their brethren.
10And he defiled #Is. 30:33; Jer. 7:31, 32Topheth, which is in #Josh. 15:8the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, #(Lev. 18:21; Deut. 18:10); Ezek. 23:37–39that no man might make his son or his daughter #2 Kin. 21:6pass through the fire to Molech. 11Then 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 officer who was in the court; and he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. 12The altars that were #Jer. 19:13; Zeph. 1:5on the roof, the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars which #2 Kin. 21:5; 2 Chr. 33:5Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the Lord, the king broke down and pulverized there, and threw their dust into the Brook Kidron. 13Then the king defiled the high places that were east of Jerusalem, which were on the south of the Mount of Corruption, which #1 Kin. 11:5–7Solomon king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the people of Ammon. 14And he #(Ex. 23:24; Deut. 7:5–25)broke in pieces the sacred pillars and cut down the wooden images, and filled their places with the bones of men.
15Moreover the altar that was at Bethel, and the high place #1 Kin. 12:28–33which Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel sin, had made, both that altar and the high place he broke down; and he burned the high place and crushed it to powder, and burned the wooden image. 16As Josiah turned, he saw the tombs that were there on the mountain. And he sent and took the bones out of the tombs and burned them on the altar, and defiled it according to the #1 Kin. 13:2word of the Lord which the man of God proclaimed, who proclaimed these words. 17Then he said, “What gravestone is this that I see?”
So the men of the city told him, “It is #1 Kin. 13:1, 30, 31the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and proclaimed these things which you have done against the altar of Bethel.”
18And he said, “Let him alone; let no one move his bones.” So they let his bones alone, with the bones of #1 Kin. 13:11, 31the prophet who came from Samaria.
19Now Josiah also took away all the shrines of the high places that were #2 Chr. 34:6, 7in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made to provoke the Lord to anger; and he did to them according to all the deeds he had done in Bethel. 20#1 Kin. 13:2He #(Ex. 22:20); 1 Kin. 18:40; 2 Kin. 10:25; 11:18executed all the priests of the high places who were there, on the altars, and #2 Chr. 34:5burned men’s bones on them; and he returned to Jerusalem.
21Then the king commanded all the people, saying, #Num. 9:5; Josh. 5:10; 2 Chr. 35:1“Keep the Passover to the Lord your God, #Ex. 12:3; Lev. 23:5; Num. 9:2; Deut. 16:2–8as it is written in this Book of the Covenant.” 22#2 Chr. 35:18, 19Such a Passover surely had never been held since the days of the judges who judged Israel, nor in all the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah. 23But in the eighteenth year of King Josiah this Passover was held before the Lord in Jerusalem. 24Moreover Josiah put away those who consulted mediums and spiritists, the household gods and idols, all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, that he might perform the words of #(Lev. 19:31; 20:27); Deut. 18:11the law which were written in the book #2 Kin. 22:8that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the Lord. 25#2 Kin. 18:5Now before him there was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the Law of Moses; nor after him did any arise like him.
Impending Judgment on Judah
26Nevertheless the Lord did not turn from the fierceness of His great wrath, with which His anger was aroused against Judah, #2 Kin. 21:11, 12; 24:3, 4; Jer. 15:4because of all the provocations with which Manasseh had provoked Him. 27And the Lord said, “I will also remove Judah from My sight, as #2 Kin. 17:18, 20; 18:11; 21:13I have removed Israel, and will cast off this city Jerusalem which I have chosen, and the house of which I said, #1 Kin. 8:29; 9:3; 2 Kin. 21:4, 7‘My name shall be there.’ ”
Josiah Dies in Battle
28Now 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#2 Chr. 35:20; Jer. 2:16; 46:2In his days Pharaoh Necho king of Egypt went to the aid of the king of Assyria, to the River Euphrates; and King Josiah went against him. And Pharaoh Necho killed him at #Judg. 5:19; Zech. 12:11Megiddo when he #2 Kin. 14:8confronted him. 30#2 Chr. 35:24; 2 Kin. 22:20Then his servants moved his body in a chariot from Megiddo, brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own tomb. And #2 Chr. 36:1–4the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, anointed him, and made him king in his father’s place.
The Reign and Captivity of Jehoahaz
31#1 Chr. 3:15; Jer. 22:11Jehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was #2 Kin. 24:18Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. 32And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his fathers had done. 33Now Pharaoh Necho put him in prison #2 Kin. 25:6; Jer. 52:27at Riblah in the land of Hamath, that he might not reign in Jerusalem; and he imposed on the land a tribute of one hundred talents of silver and a talent of gold. 34Then #2 Chr. 36:4Pharaoh Necho made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in place of his father Josiah, and #2 Kin. 24:17; Dan. 1:7changed his name to #Matt. 1:11Jehoiakim. And Pharaoh took Jehoahaz #Jer. 22:11, 12; Ezek. 19:3, 4and went to Egypt, and he died there.
Jehoiakim Reigns in Judah
35So Jehoiakim gave #2 Kin. 23:33the silver and gold to Pharaoh; but he taxed the land to give money according to the command of Pharaoh; he exacted the silver and gold from the people of the land, from every one according to his assessment, to give it to Pharaoh Necho. 36#2 Chr. 36:5; Jer. 22:18, 19; 26:1Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Zebudah the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah. 37And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his fathers had done.