2 Chronicles 32-34 Amplified Bible (AMP)
Sennacherib Invades Judah
32 After these things and this faithfulness, Sennacherib king of Assyria came and invaded Judah and besieged the fortified cities, intending to take them for himself. 2 When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come and that he intended to go to war against Jerusalem, 3 he decided, together with his officers and his soldiers, to stop up the water [supply] from the springs which were outside the city [by enclosing them with masonry and concealing them], and they helped him. 4 So many people came together, and they stopped up all the springs and the brook which flowed [underground] through the region, saying, “Why should the kings of Assyria come and find an abundance of water?” 5 Also Hezekiah resolutely set to work and rebuilt all the wall that had been broken down, and erected towers on it, and he built another wall outside and strengthened the Millo (fortification) in the City of David, and made a great number of weapons and shields. 6 He also appointed military officers over the people and gathered them to him in the square at the city gate, and spoke [a]encouragingly to them, saying, 7 “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be dismayed because of the king of Assyria, nor because of all the army that is with him; for the One with us is greater than the one with him. 8 With him there is only an arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.” And the people relied on the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.
Sennacherib Undermines Hezekiah
9 After this, Sennacherib king of Assyria, while he was at Lachish [besieging it] with all his forces, sent his servants to Jerusalem, to Hezekiah king of Judah, and to all Judah who were at Jerusalem, saying, 10 “Thus says Sennacherib king of Assyria, ‘In what do you trust that you are remaining in Jerusalem under siege? 11 Is not Hezekiah misleading you in order to let you die by famine and thirst, while saying, “The Lord our God will rescue us from the hand of the king of Assyria?” 12 Has the same Hezekiah not taken away [b]his [Baal’s] high places and his altars, and commanded Judah and Jerusalem, “You shall worship before [only] one altar and burn incense on it”? 13 Do you not know what I and my fathers (ancestors) have done to all the peoples of the [other] lands? Were the gods of the nations of those lands able to rescue their lands from my hand at all? 14 Who [was there] among all the gods of those nations that my fathers utterly destroyed who was able to rescue his people from my hand, that your God should be able to rescue you from my hand? 15 So now, do not let Hezekiah deceive or mislead you like this, and do not believe him, for no god of any nation or kingdom has been able to rescue his people from my hand or the hand of my fathers. How much less will your God rescue you from my hand!’”
16 And his servants said even more against the Lord God and against His servant Hezekiah. 17 The Assyrian king also wrote letters insulting and taunting the Lord God of Israel, and speaking against Him, saying, “As the gods of the nations of other lands have not rescued their people from my hand, so the God of Hezekiah will not rescue His people from my hand.” 18 They shouted it loudly in the language of Judah to the people of Jerusalem who were on the wall, to frighten and terrify them, so that they might take the city [without a long siege]. 19 They spoke of the God of Jerusalem as [they spoke of] the gods of the peoples of the earth, [which are only] the work of the hands of men.
Hezekiah’s Prayer Is Answered
20 But Hezekiah the king and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz prayed about this and cried out to heaven [for help]. 21 And the Lord sent an angel who destroyed every brave warrior, commander, and officer in the camp of the king of Assyria. So the king returned to his own land in shame. And when he entered the house (temple) of his god, some of his own children killed him there with the sword. 22 Thus the Lord saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib the king of Assyria and from the hand of all others, and He gave them rest on every side. 23 And many brought gifts to the Lord at Jerusalem and valuable presents to Hezekiah king of Judah; so from then on he was exalted in the sight of all nations.
24 In those days Hezekiah became terminally ill; and he prayed to the Lord, and He answered him and gave him a [miraculous] sign. 25 But Hezekiah did nothing [for the Lord] in return for the benefit bestowed on him, because his heart had become proud; therefore God’s wrath came on him and on Judah and Jerusalem. 26 However, Hezekiah humbled his proud heart, both he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the Lord did not come on them during the days of Hezekiah.
27 Now Hezekiah had immense wealth and honor; and he made for himself treasuries for silver, gold, precious stones, spices, shields, and all kinds of delightful articles, 28 and storehouses for the produce of grain, new wine, and [olive] oil, and stalls for all kinds of cattle, and sheepfolds for the flocks. 29 Moreover, he made cities for himself and acquired an abundance of flocks and herds, for God gave him very many possessions. 30 This same Hezekiah also stopped up the upper outlet of the waters of Gihon and channeled them down to the west side of the City of David. Hezekiah succeeded in everything that he did. 31 And so in the matter of the envoys of the rulers of Babylon, who were sent to him to inquire about the wonder that had happened in the land, God left him alone only to test him, in order to know everything that was in his heart.
32 Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah and his godly achievements, behold, they are written in the vision of Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel. 33 So Hezekiah slept with his fathers [in death] and they buried him in the upper section of the tombs of the descendants of David; and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem honored him at his death. And his son Manasseh became king in his place.
Manasseh Succeeds Hezekiah in Judah
33 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned for fifty-five years in Jerusalem. 2 But he did evil in the sight of the Lord, like the repulsive acts of the [pagan] nations whom the Lord dispossessed before the sons (descendants) of Israel. 3 For he rebuilt the [idolatrous] high places which his father Hezekiah had torn down; and he set up altars for the Baals and made the [c]Asherim, and worshiped all the host of heaven [the sun, the moon, stars and planets] and served them. 4 He built [pagan] altars in the house of the Lord, of which the Lord had said, “My Name shall be in Jerusalem forever.” 5 He built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the Lord. 6 He made his sons pass through the fire [as an offering to his gods] in the Valley of Ben-hinnom; and he practiced witchcraft, used divination, and practiced sorcery, and dealt with mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking Him to anger. 7 Then he set the carved image of the idol which he had made in the house of God, of which God had said to David and to Solomon his son, “In this house and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen from all the tribes of Israel, I will put My Name [and the symbol of my Presence] forever; 8 and I will not again remove Israel from the land which I appointed for your fathers, if they will only be careful to do everything that I have commanded them in regard to all the law, the statutes, and the ordinances given through Moses.” 9 So Manasseh caused Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to sin, by doing more evil than the [pagan] nations whom the Lord had destroyed before the sons of Israel.
Manasseh’s Idolatry Rebuked
10 Now the Lord spoke to Manasseh and to his people, but they paid no attention. 11 So the Lord brought the commanders of the army of the king of Assyria against them, and they captured Manasseh with hooks [through his nose or cheeks] and bound him with bronze [chains] and took him to Babylon. 12 But when he was in distress, he sought the Lord his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers. 13 When he prayed to Him, He was moved by his entreaty and heard his pleading, and brought him back to Jerusalem to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord is God.
14 After this he built an outer wall for the City of David on the west side of Gihon, in the river valley, to the entrance of the Fish Gate; and he encircled the [d]Ophel with it and made it very high. Then he put military commanders in all the fortified cities of Judah. 15 He also removed the foreign gods and the idol from the house of the Lord, as well as all the altars which he had built on the mountain of the house of the Lord and in Jerusalem; and he threw them outside the city. 16 Then he set up the altar of the Lord and sacrificed peace offerings and thank offerings on it; and he ordered Judah to serve the Lord God of Israel. 17 Yet the people still sacrificed on the high places, but only to the Lord their God.
18 Now the rest of the acts of Manasseh, and his prayer to his God, and the words of the seers who spoke to him in the name of the Lord God of Israel, behold, they are among the records of the kings of Israel. 19 His prayer also and how God heard him, and all his sin, his unfaithfulness, and the sites on which he built high places and set up the Asherim and the carved images, before he humbled himself, behold, they are written in the records of the [e]Hozai. 20 So Manasseh slept with his fathers [in death], and they buried him in [the garden of] his own house. And his son Amon became king in his place.
Amon Becomes King in Judah
21 Amon was twenty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned for two years in Jerusalem. 22 But he did evil in the sight of the Lord, just as his father Manasseh had done. Amon sacrificed to all the carved images which his father Manasseh had made, and he served them. 23 Further, he did not humble himself before the Lord as his father Manasseh [finally] had done, but Amon multiplied his guilt and his sin. 24 And his servants conspired against him and killed him in his own house (palace). 25 But the people of the land struck down all those who had conspired against King Amon, and they made his son Josiah king in his place.
Josiah Succeeds Amon in Judah
34 Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned for thirty-one years in Jerusalem. 2 He did what was right in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the ways of David his father (forefather) and did not turn aside either to the right or to the left. 3 For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was still young (sixteen), he began to seek after and inquire of the God of his father David; and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherim, and the carved and cast images. 4 They tore down the altars of the Baals in his presence; he cut to pieces the incense altars that were high above them; he also smashed the Asherim and the carved images and the cast images to pieces, and ground them to dust and scattered it on the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. 5 Then Josiah burned the bones of the [pagan] priests on their altars and purged and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. 6 In the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, in their surrounding ruins, 7 he tore down the altars and beat and crushed the Asherim and the carved images into powder, and cut to pieces all the incense altars throughout the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.
Josiah Repairs the Temple
8 In the eighteenth year of Josiah’s reign, when he had purged the land and the [Lord’s] house, he sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, and Maaseiah the governor of the city, and Joah the son of Joahaz the recorder (secretary), to repair the house of the Lord his God. 9 When they came to Hilkiah the high priest, they delivered the money that had been brought into the house of God, which the Levites, who guarded the doors, had collected from Manasseh and Ephraim, and from all the remnant of Israel, and from all Judah and Benjamin, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 10 Then they gave it to the workmen who were appointed over the house of the Lord, and the workmen who were working in the house of the Lord gave it [to others] to repair and restore the house (temple). 11 They in turn gave it to the carpenters and builders to buy quarried stone and timber for couplings (trusses, braces) and to make beams for the houses which the kings of Judah had let go to ruin. 12 The men did the work faithfully with foremen over them to supervise and inspect [their work]: Jahath and Obadiah, the Levites of the sons of Merari, and Zechariah and Meshullam of the sons of the Kohathites, and the Levites, all who were skillful with musical instruments. 13 They were also in charge of the burden bearers [who carried heavy loads], and supervised all the workmen in any kind of service; and some of the Levites were scribes and officials and gatekeepers.
Hilkiah Discovers Lost Book of the Law
14 When they were bringing out the money which had been brought into the house of the Lord, Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord given by Moses. 15 Hilkiah told Shaphan the scribe, “I have found the Book of the Law in the house of the Lord.” And he gave the book to Shaphan. 16 Shaphan brought the book to the king, but [first] reported further to him, “Your servants are doing everything that was entrusted to them. 17 They have emptied out the money that was found in the house of the Lord, and have delivered it into the hands of the overseers and the workmen.” 18 Then Shaphan the scribe told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.” And Shaphan read from it in the presence of the king.
19 When the king heard the words of the Law, he tore his clothes. 20 Then the king commanded Hilkiah, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Abdon the son of Micah, Shaphan the scribe, and Asaiah a servant of the king, saying, 21 “Go, inquire of the Lord for me and for those who are left in Israel and in Judah in regard to the words of the book which has been found; for great is the wrath of the Lord which has been poured out on us because our fathers have not kept and obeyed the word of the Lord, to act in accordance with everything that is written in this book.”
Huldah, the Prophetess, Speaks
22 So Hilkiah and those whom the king had told went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tokhath, the son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe (now she lived in Jerusalem, in the Second Quarter); and they spoke to her about this. 23 And she answered them, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: ‘Tell the man who sent you to me, 24 thus says the Lord: “Behold, I am bringing evil on this place and on its inhabitants, all the curses that are written in the book which they have read in the presence of the king of Judah. 25 Because they have abandoned (rejected) Me and have burned incense to other gods, in order to provoke Me to anger with all the works of their hands, [f]My wrath will be poured out on this place and it will not be extinguished.”’ 26 But you shall say the following to King Josiah of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the Lord: ‘Thus says the Lord God of Israel, concerning the words which you have heard, 27 “Because your heart was gentle and penitent and you humbled yourself before God when you heard His words against this place and its inhabitants, and humbled yourself before Me, and tore your clothes and wept before Me, I also have heard you,” declares the Lord. 28 “Behold, I will gather you to your fathers [in death], and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the evil which I am going to bring on this place and on its inhabitants.”’” So they brought back word to the king.
29 Then the king sent word and gathered all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 And the king went up to the house of the Lord with all the men of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests, the Levites, and all the people, from the greatest to the least; and he read aloud so they could hear all the words of the Book of the Covenant which was found in the house of the Lord.
Josiah’s Good Reign
31 Then the king stood in his place and made a covenant before the Lord—to walk after (obey) the Lord, and to keep His commandments, His testimonies, and His statutes with all his heart and with all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant written in this book. 32 Further, he made all who were present in Jerusalem and Benjamin stand [with him, in confirmation of it]. So the inhabitants of Jerusalem acted in accordance with the covenant of God, the God of their fathers. 33 Josiah removed all the [pagan] repulsive things from all the lands belonging to the sons (descendants) of Israel, and made all who were present in Israel serve the Lord their God. Throughout his lifetime they did not turn from following the Lord God of their fathers.
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