Judah’s King Ahaz

16 In the seventeenth year of Pekah son of Remaliah,(A) Ahaz(B) son of Jotham became king of Judah. Ahaz was 20 years old when he became king and reigned 16 years in Jerusalem. He did not do what was right in the sight of the Lord his God like his ancestor David(C) but walked in the way of the kings of Israel.(D) He even made his son pass through the fire,[a] imitating the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites.(E) He sacrificed and burned incense(F) on the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.(G)

Then(H) Aram’s King Rezin and Israel’s King Pekah son of Remaliah came to wage war against Jerusalem. They besieged Ahaz but were not able to conquer him.(I) At that time Rezin king of Aram recovered Elath for Aram and expelled the Judahites from Elath.(J) Then the Arameans came to Elath, and they live there until today.(K)

So Ahaz sent messengers(L) to Tiglath-pileser(M) king of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your son. March up and save me from the power of the king of Aram and of the king of Israel, who are rising up against me.” Ahaz also took the silver and gold found in the Lord’s temple and in the treasuries of the king’s palace and sent them to the king of Assyria as a gift.(N) So the king of Assyria listened to him(O) and marched up to Damascus and captured it.(P) He deported its people to Kir(Q) but put Rezin to death.

Ahaz’s Idolatry

10 King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser(R) king of Assyria. When he saw the altar that was in Damascus, King Ahaz sent a model of the altar and complete plans for its construction to Uriah the priest.(S) 11 Uriah built the altar according to all the instructions King Ahaz sent from Damascus. Therefore, by the time King Ahaz came back from Damascus, Uriah the priest had completed it. 12 When the king came back from Damascus, he saw the altar. Then he approached the altar(T) and ascended it. 13 He offered his burnt offering(U) and his grain offering, poured out his drink offering, and sprinkled the blood of his fellowship offerings(V) on the altar. 14 He took the bronze altar(W) that was before the Lord in front of the temple between his altar and the Lord’s temple, and put it on the north side of his altar.

15 Then King Ahaz commanded Uriah the priest, “Offer on the great altar the morning burnt offering, the evening grain offering, and the king’s burnt offering and his grain offering. Also offer the burnt offering of all the people of the land, their grain offering, and their drink offerings. Sprinkle on the altar all the blood of the burnt offering and all the blood of sacrifice. The bronze altar will be for me to seek guidance.”[b] 16 Uriah the priest did everything King Ahaz commanded.

17 Then King Ahaz cut off the frames of the water carts[c](X) and removed the bronze basin from each of them. He took the reservoir[d](Y) from the bronze oxen that were under it and put it on a stone pavement. 18 To satisfy the king of Assyria, he removed from the Lord’s temple the Sabbath canopy they had built in the palace, and he closed the outer entrance for the king.

Ahaz’s Death

19 The rest(Z) of the events of Ahaz’s reign, along with his accomplishments, are written in the Historical Record of Judah’s Kings.(AA) 20 Ahaz rested with his fathers(AB) and was buried with his fathers in the city of David, and his son Hezekiah became king in his place.


  1. 2 Kings 16:3 Either a Canaanite cult practice or child sacrifice
  2. 2 Kings 16:15 Hb obscure
  3. 2 Kings 16:17 Lit the stands
  4. 2 Kings 16:17 Lit sea

Judah’s King Ahaz

28 Ahaz was 20 years old(A) when he became king and reigned 16 years in Jerusalem. He did not do what was right in the Lord’s sight(B) like his ancestor David, for he walked in the ways of the kings of Israel(C) and made cast images of the Baals.(D) He burned incense in the Valley of Hinnom(E) and burned his children in[a](F) the fire, imitating the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites.(G) He sacrificed and burned incense on the high places,(H) on the hills, and under every green tree.

So the Lord his God handed Ahaz over(I) to the king of Aram. He attacked him and took many captives to Damascus.

Ahaz was also handed over to the king of Israel, who struck him with great force: Pekah son of Remaliah killed 120,000 in Judah in one day—all brave men—because they had abandoned the Lord God of their ancestors. An Ephraimite warrior named Zichri killed the king’s son Maaseiah, Azrikam governor of the palace, and Elkanah who was second to the king. Then the Israelites took 200,000 captives from their brothers—women, sons, and daughters.(J) They also took a great deal of plunder from them and brought it to Samaria.

A prophet of the Lord named Oded was there. He went out to meet the army that came to Samaria and said to them, “Look, the Lord God of your ancestors handed them over to you because of His wrath against Judah,(K) but you slaughtered them in a rage that has reached heaven.(L) 10 Now you plan to reduce the people of Judah and Jerusalem, male and female, to slavery. Are you not also guilty before Yahweh your God? 11 Listen to me and return the captives you took from your brothers,(M) for the Lord’s burning anger is on you.”

12 So some men who were leaders of the Ephraimites—Azariah son of Jehohanan, Berechiah son of Meshillemoth, Jehizkiah son of Shallum, and Amasa son of Hadlai—stood in opposition to those coming from the war. 13 They said to them, “You must not bring the captives here, for you plan to bring guilt on us from the Lord to add to our sins and our guilt. For we have much guilt, and burning anger is on Israel.”

14 The army left the captives and the plunder in the presence of the officers and the congregation. 15 Then the men who were designated by name(N) took charge of the captives and provided clothes for their naked ones from the plunder. They clothed them, gave them sandals, food and drink,(O) dressed their wounds, and provided donkeys for all the feeble. The Israelites brought them to Jericho, the City of Palms,(P) among their brothers. Then they returned to Samaria.

16 At that time King Ahaz asked the king of Assyria for help.(Q) 17 The Edomites came again, attacked Judah, and took captives.(R) 18 The Philistines also raided the cities of the Judean foothills[b] and the Negev of Judah(S) and captured Beth-shemesh, Aijalon, Gederoth, Soco and its villages, Timnah and its villages, Gimzo and its villages, and they lived there. 19 For the Lord humbled Judah because of King Ahaz of Judah,[c] who threw off restraint in Judah and was unfaithful to the Lord. 20 Then Tiglath-pileser[d](T) king of Assyria came against Ahaz; he oppressed him and did not give him support.(U) 21 Although Ahaz plundered the Lord’s temple and the palace of the king and of the rulers and gave the plunder to the king of Assyria, it did not help him.

22 At the time of his distress, King Ahaz himself became more unfaithful to the Lord. 23 He sacrificed to the gods of Damascus which had defeated him; he said, “Since the gods of the kings of Aram are helping them, I will sacrifice to them so that they will help me.”(V) But they were the downfall of him and of all Israel.

24 Then Ahaz gathered up the utensils of God’s temple, cut them into pieces,(W) shut the doors of the Lord’s temple,(X) and made himself altars on every street corner in Jerusalem.(Y) 25 He made high places in every city of Judah to offer incense to other gods, and he provoked the Lord, the God of his ancestors.

Ahaz’s Death

26 As for the rest of his deeds(Z) and all his ways, from beginning to end, they are written in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel. 27 Ahaz rested with his fathers and was buried in the city, in Jerusalem, but they did not bring him into the tombs of the kings of Israel. His son Hezekiah became king in his place.


  1. 2 Chronicles 28:3 LXX, Syr, Tg read and passed his children through
  2. 2 Chronicles 28:18 Or the Shephelah
  3. 2 Chronicles 28:19 Some Hb mss; other Hb mss read Israel
  4. 2 Chronicles 28:20 Text emended; MT reads Tilgath-pilneser; 1Ch 5:6,26

The vision(A) concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah(B) son of Amoz saw during the reigns[a][b] of Uzziah,(C) Jotham,(D) Ahaz,(E) and Hezekiah,(F) kings of Judah.(G)

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  1. Isaiah 1:1 Lit saw in the days
  2. Isaiah 1:1 ca 792–686 b.c.

The Message to Ahaz

This took place during the reign of Ahaz, son of Jotham, son of Uzziah king of Judah:(A) Rezin king of Aram, along with Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, waged war against Jerusalem,(B) but he could not succeed. When it became known to the house of David(C) that Aram had occupied Ephraim,(D) the heart of Ahaz[a] and the hearts of his people trembled like trees of a forest shaking in the wind.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out with your son Shear-jashub(E) to meet Ahaz at the end of the conduit of the upper pool,(F) by the road to the Fuller’s Field. Say to him: Calm down and be quiet. Don’t be afraid or cowardly(G) because of these two smoldering stubs of firebrands, the fierce anger of Rezin and Aram, and the son of Remaliah. For Aram, along with Ephraim and the son of Remaliah, has plotted harm against you. They say, ‘Let us go up against Judah, terrorize it, and conquer it for ourselves. Then we can install Tabeel’s son as king in it.’”

This is what the Lord God says:

It will not happen; it will not occur.(H)
The[b] head of Aram is Damascus,
the head of Damascus is Rezin
(within 65 years
Ephraim will be too shattered to be a people),
the head of Ephraim is Samaria,
and the head of Samaria is the son of Remaliah.
If you do not stand firm in your faith,
then you will not stand at all.

The Immanuel Prophecy

10 Then the Lord spoke again to Ahaz: 11 “Ask for a sign(I) from the Lord your God—from the depths of Sheol to the heights of heaven.”

12 But Ahaz replied, “I will not ask. I will not test the Lord.”

13 Isaiah(J) said, “Listen, house of David! Is it not enough for you to try the patience of men? Will you also try the patience of my God?(K) 14 Therefore, the Lord Himself will give you[c] a sign: The virgin will conceive,[d] have a son, and name him Immanuel.[e](L) 15 By the time he learns to reject what is bad and choose what is good,(M) he will be eating butter[f] and honey.(N) 16 For before the boy knows to reject what is bad and choose what is good, the land of the two kings you dread will be abandoned. 17 The Lord will bring on you, your people, and the house of your father, such a time as has never been since Ephraim separated from Judah(O)—the king of Assyria(P) is coming.”

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  1. Isaiah 7:2 Lit Aram has rested upon Ephraim, his heart
  2. Isaiah 7:8 Lit For the
  3. Isaiah 7:14 In Hb, the word you is pl
  4. Isaiah 7:14 Or virgin is pregnant, will
  5. Isaiah 7:14 = God With Us
  6. Isaiah 7:15 Or sour milk

The word of the Lord that came(A) to Micah(B) the Moreshite(C)—what he saw regarding Samaria and Jerusalem in the days of Jotham,(D) Ahaz,(E) and Hezekiah,(F) kings of Judah.

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