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from the forefront of the house, 24 all Israel. And Ahaz gathered from between his altar and the together the vessels of the house house of the LORD, and put it of God, and cut in pieces the

on the north side of his altar. vessels of the house of God, and 15 And king Ahaz commanded shut

up

the doors of the house Urijah the priest, saying, Upon of the LORD; and he made him the great altar burn the morning altars in every corner of Jeruburnt offering, and the evening 25 salem. And in every several meal offering, and the king's city of Judah he made high burnt offering, and his meal places to burn incense unto other offering, with the burnt offering gods, and provoked to anger the of all the people of the land, LORD, the God of his fathers. and their meal offering, and their drink offerings; and sprinkle upon

it all the blood of the burnt offering, and all the blood of the sacrifice : but the

brasen altar shall be for me to 16 inquire by. Thus did Urijah

the priest, according to all that 17 king Ahaz commanded. And

king Ahaz cut off the 'borders of the bases, and removed the laver from off them; and took down the sea from off the brasen oxen that were under it, and put

it upon a pavement of stone. 18 And the 'covered way for the

sabbath that they had built in the house, and the king's entry without, turned he 'unto the

house of the LORD, because of 19 the king of Assyria. Now the 26 Now the rest of his acts, and

rest of the acts of Ahaz which all his ways, first and last, behold, he did, are they not written in they are written in the book of

the book of the chronicles of the the kings of Judah and Israel. 20 kings of Judah? And Ahaz 27 And Ahaz slept with his fathers,

slept with his fathers, and was and they buried him in the city, buried with his fathers in the city even in Jerusalem; for they of David : and Hezekiah his brought him not into the seson reigned in his stead.

pulchres of the kings of Israel :
and Hezekiah his son reigned
in his stead.

i Or, panels
2 Or, covered place
3 Or, round

Hoshea besieged in Samaria by Shalmaneser, King of Assyria.

Israel carried away captive.

17 In the twelfth year of Ahaz king of Judah began Hoshea the son

2 of Elah to reign in Samaria over Israel, and reigned nine years. And V he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, yet not as the

3 kings of Israel that were before him. Against him came up Shal

maneser king of Assyria ; and Hoshea became his servant, and brought 4 him presents. And the king of Assyria found conspiracy in Hoshea ;

for he had sent messengers to So king of Egypt, and offered no present

to the king of Assyria, as he had done year by year: therefore the king 5 of Assyria shut him up, and bound him in prison. Then the king of

Assyria came up throughout all the land, and went up to Samaria, and 6 besieged it three years. In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of

Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away unto Assyria, and placed

them in Halah, and in Habor, on the river of Gozan, and in the cities 7 of the Medes. And it was so, because the children of Israel had sinned

against the LORD their God, which brought them up out of the land of

Egypt from under the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and had feared 8 other gods, and walked in the statutes of the nations, whom the LORD

cast out from before the children of Israel, and of the kings of Israel, 9 which they 'made. And the children of Israel did secretly things that

were not right against the LORD their God, and they built them high

places in all their cities, from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced 10 city. And they set them up 'pillars and Asherim upon every high hill, II and under every green tree : and there they burnt incense in all the

high places, as did the nations whom the LORD carried away before 12 them; and wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger: and

they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not 13 do this thing. Yet the LORD testified unto Israel, and unto Judah, by

the hand of every prophet, and of every seer, saying, Turn ye from your evil ways, and keep my commandments and my statutes, according to

all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you 14 by the hand of my servants the prophets. Notwithstanding they would

not hear, but hardened their neck, like to the neck of their fathers, who 15 believed not in the LORD their God. And they rejected his statutes,

and his covenant that he made with their fathers, and his testimonies which he testified unto them; and they followed vanity, and became vain, and went after the nations that were round about them, concern

ing whom the LORD had charged them that they should not do like 16 them. And they forsook all the commandments of the LORD their God,

and made them molten images, even two calves, and made an Asherah, 17 and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal. And they

caused their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire, and used

divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do that which was 18 evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger. Therefore the

1 Or, practised

2 Or, obelisks

LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them out of his sight : 19 there was none left but the tribe of Judah only. Also Judah kept not

the commandments of the LORD their God, but walked in the statutes 20 of Israel which they 'made. And the LORD rejected all the seed of

Israel, and afflicted them, and delivered them into the hand of spoilers, 21 until he had cast them out of his sight. For he rent Israel from the

house of David; and they made Jeroboam the son of Nebat king: and

Jeroboam ?drave Israel from following the LORD, and made them sin a. ( 22 great sin. And the children of Israel walked in all the sins of Jeroboam 23 which he did ; they departed not from them ; until the Lord removed

Israel out of his sight, as he spake by the hand of all his servants the prophets. So Israel was carried away out of their own land to Assyria, unto this day.

The worship of Jehovah established among the Assyrian Colonists. 24 And the king of Assyria brought men from Babylon, and from

Cuthah, and from Avva, and from Hamath and Sepharvaim, and

placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the children of Israel : 25 and they possessed Samaria, and dwelt in the cities thereof. And so it

was, at the beginning of their dwelling there, that they feared not the

LORD: therefore the LORD sent lions among them, which killed some 26 of them. Wherefore they spake to the king of Assyria, saying, The

nations which thou hast carried away, and placed in the cities of Samaria, know not the manner of the God of the land: therefore he

hath sent lions among them, and, behold, they slay them, because they 27 know not the manner of the God of the land. Then the king of

Assyria commanded, saying, Carry thither one of the priests whom ye

brought from thence; and let them go and dwell there, and let him 28 teach them the manner of the God of the land. So one of the priests

whom they had carried away from Samaria came and dwelt in Beth-el, 29 and taught them how they should fear the LORD.

Howbeit every nation made gods of their own, and put them in the houses of the

high places which the Samaritans had made, every nation in their cities 30 wherein they dwelt. And the men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth,

and the men of Cuth made Nergal, and the men of Hamath made 31 Ashima, and the Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak, and the Sepharvites

burnt their children in the fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the 32 'gods of Sepharvaim. So they feared the LORD, and made unto them

from among themselves priests of the high places, which sacrificed for 33 them in the houses of the high places. They feared the LORD, and

served their own gods, after the manner of the nations from among 34 whom they had been carried away. Unto this day they do after the

former manners : they fear not the LORD, neither do they after their statutes, or after their ordinances, or after the law or after the command

ment which the LORD commanded the children of Jacob, whom he 35 named Israel ; with whom the LORD had made a covenant, and charged

them, saying, Ye shall not fear other gods, nor bow yourselves to them,

1 Or, practised

2

3 Or, god

According to another reading, drew Israel away.

36 nor serve them, nor sacrifice to them: but the LORD, who brought you

up out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a stretched out

arm, him shall ye fear, and unto him shall ye bow yourselves, and to 37 him shall ye sacrifice: and the statutes and the ordinances, and the law

and the commandment, which he wrote for you, ye shall observe to do 38 for evermore; and ye shall not fear other gods: and the covenant that

I have made with you ye shall not forget; neither shall ye fear other 39 gods : but the LORD your God shall ye fear; and he shall deliver you 40 out of the hand of all your enemies. Howbeit they did not hearken, 41 but they did after their former manner. So these nations feared the

LORD, and served their graven images; their children likewise, and their children's children, as did their fathers, so do they unto this day.

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2

Hezekiah's destruction of the Asherah and Brazen Serpent. 2 Kings 18. 1.

2 Chronicles 29. 1. 18 Now it came to pass in the

29 Hezekiah began to reign third year of Hoshea son of Elah when he was five and twenty king of Israel, that Hezekiah years old ; and he reigned nine

the son of Ahaz king of Judah and twenty years in Jerusalem : 2 began to reign. Twenty and and his mother's name was Abi

five years old was he when he jah the daughter of Zechariah. began to reign; and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Abi the daughter of Zechariah.

And he did that which was right 3

And he did that which was in the eyes of the LORD, accord- right in the eyes of the LORD

ing to all that David his father according to all that David his 4

had done. He removed the 3 father had done. He in the first high places, and brake the pil- year of his reign, in the first lars, and cut down the Asherah : month, opened the doors of the and he brake in pieces the brasen

house of the LORD, and repaired serpent that Moses had made ; 4 them. And he brought in the for unto those days the children priests and the Levites, and of Israel did burn incense to it;

gathered them together into the and 'he called it ?Nehushtan. 5 broad place on the east, and 5 He trusted in the LORD, the

said unto them, Hear me, ye God of Israel; so that after

Levites; now sanctify yourselves, him was none like him among

and sanctify the house of the all the kings of Judah, nor among

LORD, the God of your fathers, 6 them that were before him. For and carry forth the filthiness out he clave to the LORD, he depart

6 of the holy place. For our fathers ed not from following him, but have trespassed, and done that kept his commandments, which which was evil in the sight of the the LORD commanded Moses. LORD our God, and have forsaken

him, and have turned away their 1 Or, it was called

faces from the habitation of the 2 That is, A piece of brass.

LORD, and turned their backs. 1 Or, a terror

17 And the LORD was with him ;

whithersoever he went forth he prospered : and he rebelled

against the king of Assyria, 8 and served him not. He smote

the Philistines unto Gaza and the borders thereof, from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced city.

7 Also they have shut up the

doors of the porch, and put out the lamps, and have not burned incense nor offered burnt

offerings in the holy place unto 8 the God of Israel. Wherefore

the wrath of the LORD was upon Judah and Jerusalem, and he hath delivered them to be tossed to and fro, to be an astonishment,

and an hissing, as ye see with 9 your eyes. For, lo, our fathers

have fallen by the sword, and our sons and our daughters and

our wives are in captivity for 10 this. Now it is in mine heart

to make a covenant with the LORD, the God of Israel, that

his fierce anger may turn away 11 from us. My sons, be not now

negligent: for the LORD hath chosen you to stand before him, to minister unto him, and that ye should be his ministers, and burn incense.

2 Chronicles 29. 12.

I 2

Restoration of the Temple by Hezekiah. Then the Levites arose, Mahath the son of Amasai, and Joel the son of Azariah, of the sons of the Kohathites : and of the sons of Merari,

Kish the son of Abdi, and Azariah the son of Jehallelel : and of the 13 Gershonites, Joah the son of Zimmah, and Eden the son of Joah : and

of the sons of Elizaphan, Shimri and Jeuel : and of the sons of Asaph, 14 Zechariah and Mattaniah : and of the sons of Heman, Jehuel and 15 Shimei : and of the sons of Jeduthun, Shemaiah and Uzziel. And

they gathered their brethren, and sanctified themselves, and went in,

according to the commandment of the king by the words of the LORD, 16 to cleanse the house of the LORD. And the priests went in unto the

inner part of the house of the LORD, to cleanse it, and brought out all the uncleanness that they found in the temple of the LORD into the

court of the house of the LORD. And the Levites took it, to carry it 17 out abroad to the brook Kidron. Now they began on the first day of

the first month to sanctify, and on the eighth day of the month came they to the porch of the LORD; and they sanctified the house of the

LORD in eight days : and on the sixteenth day of the first month they 18 made an end. Then they went in to Hezekiah the king within the

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