1 When all this was over, the Israelites#tn Heb “all Israel.” who were in the cities of Judah went out and smashed the sacred pillars, cut down the Asherah poles, and demolished#tn Or “tore down.” all the high places and altars throughout Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, and Manasseh.#tn Heb “the high places and the altars from all Judah and Benjamin and in Ephraim and in Manasseh until finished.” Then all the Israelites returned to their own homes in their cities.#tn Heb “and the sons of Israel returned, each to his possession to their cities.”
The People Contribute to the Temple
2 Hezekiah appointed the divisions of the priests and Levites to do their assigned tasks#tn Heb “and Hezekiah appointed the divisions of the priests and the Levites according to their divisions, each in accordance with his service for the priests and for the Levites.” – to offer burnt sacrifices and present offerings and to serve, give thanks, and offer praise in the gates of the Lord’s sanctuary.#tn Heb “in the gates of the encampments of the Lord.”
3 The king contributed#tn Heb “the portion of the king [was].” some of what he owned for burnt sacrifices, including the morning and evening burnt sacrifices and the burnt sacrifices made on Sabbaths, new moon festivals, and at other appointed times prescribed#tn Heb “as written.” in the law of the Lord. 4 He ordered#tn Heb “said to.” the people living in Jerusalem#map For location see Map5-B1; Map6-F3; Map7-E2; Map8-F2; Map10-B3; JP1-F4; JP2-F4; JP3-F4; JP4-F4. to contribute the portion prescribed for the priests and Levites so they might be obedient#tn Heb “might hold firmly.” to the law of the Lord. 5 When the edict was issued,#tn Heb “and when the word spread out.” the Israelites freely contributed#tn Heb “the sons of Israel multiplied.” the initial portion of their grain, wine, olive oil, honey, and all the produce of their fields. They brought a tenth of everything, which added up to a huge amount. 6 The Israelites and people of Judah#tn Heb “and the sons of Israel and Judah.” who lived in the cities of Judah also contributed a tenth of their cattle and sheep, as well as a tenth of the holy items consecrated to the Lord their God. They brought them and placed them in many heaps.#tn Heb “heaps, heaps.” Repetition of the noun draws attention to the large number of heaps. 7 In the third month they began piling their contributions in heaps#tn Heb “they began the heaps, to establish.” and finished in the seventh month. 8 When Hezekiah and the officials came and saw the heaps, they praised the Lord and pronounced blessings on his people Israel.#tn Heb “they blessed the Lord and his people Israel.”
9 When Hezekiah asked the priests and Levites about the heaps, 10 Azariah, the head priest from the family of Zadok, said to him, “Since the contributions began arriving in the Lord’s temple, we have had plenty to eat and have a large quantity left over. For the Lord has blessed his people, and this large amount remains.” 11 Hezekiah ordered that storerooms be prepared in the Lord’s temple. When this was done,#tn Heb “and they prepared.” 12 they brought in the contributions, tithes,#tn Heb “tenth.” and consecrated items that had been offered.#tn Heb “and holy things in faithfulness.” Konaniah, a Levite, was in charge of all this, assisted by his brother Shimei. 13 Jehiel, Azaziah, Nahath, Asahel, Jerimoth, Jozabad, Eliel, Ismakiah, Mahath, and Benaiah worked under the supervision of Konaniah and his brother Shimei, as directed by King Hezekiah and Azariah, the supervisor of God’s temple.
14 Kore son of Imnah, a Levite and the guard on the east side, was in charge of the voluntary offerings made to God and disbursed the contributions made to the Lord and the consecrated items. 15 In the cities of the priests, Eden, Miniamin, Jeshua, Shemaiah, Amariah, and Shecaniah faithfully assisted him in making disbursements to their fellow priests#tn Heb “to their brothers.” according to their divisions, regardless of age.#tn Heb “like great, like small” (i.e., old and young alike). 16 They made disbursements to all the males three years old and up who were listed in the genealogical records – to all who would enter the Lord’s temple to serve on a daily basis and fulfill their duties as assigned to their divisions.#tn Heb “in addition enrolling them by males from a son of three years and upwards, to everyone who enters the house of the Lord for a matter of a day in its day, for their service by their duties according to their divisions.” 17 They made disbursements to the priests listed in the genealogical records by their families, and to the Levites twenty years old and up, according to their duties as assigned to their divisions, 18 and to all the infants, wives, sons, and daughters of the entire assembly listed in the genealogical records, for they faithfully consecrated themselves. 19 As for the descendants of Aaron, the priests who lived in the outskirts of all their cities,#tn Heb “the priests in the fields of the pastureland of their cities in every city and city.” men were assigned#tn Heb “designated by names.” to disburse portions to every male among the priests and to every Levite listed in the genealogical records.
20 This is what Hezekiah did throughout Judah. He did what the Lord his God considered good and right and faithful. 21 He wholeheartedly and successfully reinstituted service in God’s temple and obedience to the law, in order to follow his God.#tn Heb “and in all the work which he began with regard to the service of the house of God and with respect to the law and with respect to the commandment, to seek his God; with all his heart he acted and he succeeded.”