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At that time King Rezin of Syria and King Pekah son of Remaliah of Israel attacked Jerusalem.[a] They besieged Ahaz,[b] but were unable to conquer him.[c] (At that time King Rezin of Syria[d] recovered Elat for Syria; he drove the Judahites from there.[e] Syrians[f] arrived in Elat and live there to this very day.) Ahaz sent messengers to King Tiglath-Pileser of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your dependent.[g] March up and rescue me from the power[h] of the king of Syria and the king of Israel, who have attacked[i] me.” Then Ahaz took the silver and gold that were[j] in the Lord’s temple and in the treasuries of the royal palace and sent it as tribute[k] to the king of Assyria. The king of Assyria responded favorably to his request;[l] he[m] attacked Damascus and captured it. He deported the people[n] to Kir and executed Rezin.

10 When King Ahaz went to meet with King Tiglath-Pileser of Assyria in Damascus, he saw the altar there.[o] King Ahaz sent to Uriah the priest a drawing of the altar and a blueprint for its design.[p] 11 Uriah the priest built an altar in conformity to the plans King Ahaz had sent from Damascus.[q] Uriah the priest finished it before King Ahaz arrived back from Damascus.[r] 12 When the king arrived back from Damascus and[s] saw the altar, he approached it[t] and offered a sacrifice on it.[u] 13 He offered his burnt sacrifice and his grain offering. He poured out his libation and sprinkled the blood from his peace offerings on the altar. 14 He moved the bronze altar that stood in the Lord’s presence from the front of the temple (between the altar and the Lord’s temple) and put it on the north side of the new[v] altar. 15 King Ahaz ordered Uriah the priest, “On the large altar[w] offer the morning burnt sacrifice, the evening grain offering, the royal burnt sacrifices and grain offering, the burnt sacrifice for all the people of the land, their grain offering, and their libations. Sprinkle all the blood of the burnt sacrifice and other sacrifices on it. The bronze altar will be for my personal use.”[x] 16 So Uriah the priest did exactly as[y] King Ahaz ordered.

17 King Ahaz took off the frames of the movable stands, and removed the basins from them. He took “The Sea”[z] down from the bronze bulls that supported it[aa] and put it on the stone pavement. 18 He also removed the Sabbath awning[ab] that had been built[ac] in the temple and the king’s outer entranceway to the Lord’s temple, on account of the king of Assyria.[ad]

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  1. 2 Kings 16:5 tn Heb “went up to Jerusalem for battle.”
  2. 2 Kings 16:5 tn That is, Jerusalem, Ahaz’s capital city.
  3. 2 Kings 16:5 tn Heb “they were unable to fight.” The object must be supplied from the preceding sentence. Elsewhere when the Niphal infinitive of לָחָם (lakham) follows the verb יָכֹל (yakhol), the infinitive appears to have the force of “prevail against.” See Num 22:11; 1 Sam 17:9; and the parallel passage in Isa 7:1.
  4. 2 Kings 16:6 tc Some prefer to read “the king of Edom” and “for Edom” here. The names Syria (Heb “Aram,” אֲרָם, ʾaram) and Edom (אֱדֹם, ʾedom) are easily confused in the Hebrew consonantal script.
  5. 2 Kings 16:6 tn Heb “from Elat.”
  6. 2 Kings 16:6 tc The consonantal text (Kethib), supported by many medieval Hebrew mss, the Syriac version, and some mss of the Targum and Vulgate, read “Syrians” (Heb “Arameans”). The marginal reading (Qere), supported by the LXX, Targums, and Vulgate, reads “Edomites.”
  7. 2 Kings 16:7 tn Heb “son.” Both terms (“servant” and “son”) reflect Ahaz’s subordinate position as Tiglath-Pileser’s subject.
  8. 2 Kings 16:7 tn Heb “hand, palm.”
  9. 2 Kings 16:7 tn Heb “who have arisen against.”
  10. 2 Kings 16:8 tn Heb “that was found.”
  11. 2 Kings 16:8 tn Or “bribe money.”
  12. 2 Kings 16:9 tn Heb “listened to him.”
  13. 2 Kings 16:9 tn Heb “the king of Assyria.”
  14. 2 Kings 16:9 tn Heb “it.”
  15. 2 Kings 16:10 tn Heb “in Damascus.”
  16. 2 Kings 16:10 tn Heb “the likeness of the altar and its pattern for all its work.”
  17. 2 Kings 16:11 tn Heb “according to all that King Ahaz sent from Damascus.”
  18. 2 Kings 16:11 tn Heb “so Uriah the priest did, until the arrival of King Ahaz from Damascus.”
  19. 2 Kings 16:12 tn Heb “and the king.”
  20. 2 Kings 16:12 tn Heb “the altar.”
  21. 2 Kings 16:12 tn Or “ascended it.”
  22. 2 Kings 16:14 tn The word “new” is added in the translation for clarification.
  23. 2 Kings 16:15 tn That is, the newly constructed altar.
  24. 2 Kings 16:15 tn Heb “for me to seek.” The precise meaning of בָּקַר (baqar), “seek,” is uncertain in this context. For discussion see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 189.
  25. 2 Kings 16:16 tn Heb “according to all that.”
  26. 2 Kings 16:17 sn See the note at 1 Kgs 7:23.
  27. 2 Kings 16:17 tn Heb “that [were] under it.”
  28. 2 Kings 16:18 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew term מוּסַךְ (musakh; Qere) / מִיסַךְ (misakh; Kethib) is uncertain. For discussion see HALOT 557 s.v. מוּסַךְ and M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 189-90.
  29. 2 Kings 16:18 tn Heb “that they built.”
  30. 2 Kings 16:18 sn It is doubtful that Tiglath-Pileser ordered these architectural changes. Ahaz probably made these changes so he could send some of the items and materials to the Assyrian king as tribute. See M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 190, 193.