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Hezekiah Becomes King of Judah

18 In the third year of the reign of Israel’s King Hoshea son of Elah, Ahaz’s son Hezekiah became king over Judah. He was twenty-five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem. His mother[a] was Abi,[b] the daughter of Zechariah. He did what the Lord approved, just as his ancestor David had done.[c] He eliminated the high places, smashed the sacred pillars to bits, and cut down the Asherah pole.[d] He also demolished the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for up to that time[e] the Israelites had been offering incense to it; it was called Nehushtan.[f] He trusted in the Lord God of Israel; in this regard there was none like him among the kings of Judah either before or after.[g] He was loyal to[h] the Lord and did not abandon him.[i] He obeyed the commandments that the Lord had given to[j] Moses. The Lord was with him; he succeeded in all his endeavors.[k] He rebelled against the king of Assyria and refused to submit to him.[l]

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  1. 2 Kings 18:2 tn Heb “the name of his mother.”
  2. 2 Kings 18:2 tn The parallel passage in 2 Chr 29:1 has “Abijah.”
  3. 2 Kings 18:3 tn Heb “he did what was proper in the eyes of the Lord, according to all which David his father had done.”
  4. 2 Kings 18:4 tn The term is singular in the MT but plural in the LXX and other ancient versions. It is also possible to regard the singular as a collective singular, especially in the context of other plural Asherah was a leading deity of the Canaanite pantheon, wife/sister of El and goddess of fertility. She was commonly worshiped at shrines in or near groves of evergreen trees, or, failing that, at places marked by wooden poles. These were to be burned or cut down (Deut 12:3; 16:21; Judg 6:25, 28, 30; 2 Kgs 18:4).
  5. 2 Kings 18:4 tn Heb “until those days.”
  6. 2 Kings 18:4 tn In Hebrew the name sounds like the phrase נְחַשׁ הַנְּחֹשֶׁת (nekhash hannekhoshet), “bronze serpent.”
  7. 2 Kings 18:5 tn Heb “and after him there was none like him among all the kings of Judah, and those who were before him.”
  8. 2 Kings 18:6 tn Heb “he hugged.”
  9. 2 Kings 18:6 tn Heb “and did not turn aside from after him.”
  10. 2 Kings 18:6 tn Heb “had commanded.”
  11. 2 Kings 18:7 tn Heb “in all which he went out [to do], he was successful.”
  12. 2 Kings 18:7 tn Heb “and did not serve him.”