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29 Hezekiah was 25 years old when he became king and reigned 29 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Abijah[a] daughter of Zechariah. 2 He did what was right in the Lord’s sight just as his ancestor David had done.
3 In the first year of his reign, in the first month, he opened the doors of the Lord’s temple and repaired them. 4 Then he brought in the priests and Levites and gathered them in the eastern public square. 5 He said to them, “Hear me, Levites. Consecrate yourselves now and consecrate the temple of Yahweh, the God of your ancestors. Remove everything impure from the holy place. 6 For our fathers were unfaithful and did what is evil in the sight of the Lord our God. They abandoned Him, turned their faces away from the Lord’s tabernacle, and turned their backs on Him.[b] 7 They also closed the doors of the portico, extinguished the lamps, did not burn incense, and did not offer burnt offerings in the holy place of the God of Israel. 8 Therefore, the wrath of the Lord was on Judah and Jerusalem, and He made them an object of terror, horror, and mockery,[c] as you see with your own eyes. 9 Our fathers fell by the sword, and our sons, our daughters, and our wives are in captivity because of this. 10 It is in my heart now to make a covenant with Yahweh, the God of Israel so that His burning anger may turn away from us. 11 My sons, don’t be negligent now, for the Lord has chosen you to stand in His presence, to serve Him, and to be His ministers and burners of incense.”
12 Then the Levites stood up:
Mahath son of Amasai and Joel son of Azariah from the Kohathites;
Kish son of Abdi and Azariah son of Jehallelel from the Merarites;
Joah son of Zimmah and Eden son of Joah from the Gershonites;
13 Shimri and Jeuel from the Elizaphanites;
Zechariah and Mattaniah from the Asaphites;
14 Jehiel[d] and Shimei from the Hemanites;
Shemaiah and Uzziel from the Jeduthunites.
15 They gathered their brothers together, consecrated themselves, and went according to the king’s command by the words of the Lord to cleanse the Lord’s temple.
16 The priests went to the entrance of the Lord’s temple to cleanse it. They took all the unclean things they found in the Lord’s sanctuary to the courtyard of the Lord’s temple. Then the Levites received them and took them outside to the Kidron Valley. 17 They began the consecration on the first day of the first month, and on the eighth day of the month they came to the portico of the Lord’s temple. They consecrated the Lord’s temple for eight days, and on the sixteenth day of the first month they finished.
18 Then they went inside to King Hezekiah and said, “We have cleansed the whole temple of the Lord, the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and the table for the rows of the bread of the Presence and all its utensils. 19 We have set up and consecrated all the utensils that King Ahaz rejected during his reign when he became unfaithful. They are in front of the altar of the Lord.”
20 King Hezekiah got up early, gathered the city officials, and went to the Lord’s temple. 21 They brought seven bulls, seven rams, seven lambs, and seven male goats as a sin offering for the kingdom, for the sanctuary, and for Judah. Then he told the descendants of Aaron, the priests, to offer them on the altar of the Lord. 22 So they slaughtered the bulls, and the priests received the blood and sprinkled it on the altar. They slaughtered the rams and sprinkled the blood on the altar. They slaughtered the lambs and sprinkled the blood on the altar. 23 Then they brought the goats for the sin offering right into the presence of the king and the congregation, who laid their hands on them. 24 The priests slaughtered the goats and put their blood on the altar for a sin offering, to make atonement for all Israel, for the king said that the burnt offering and sin offering were for all Israel.
25 Hezekiah stationed the Levites in the Lord’s temple with cymbals, harps, and lyres according to the command of David, Gad the king’s seer, and Nathan the prophet. For the command was from the Lord through His prophets. 26 The Levites stood with the instruments of David, and the priests with the trumpets.
27 Then Hezekiah ordered that the burnt offering be offered on the altar. When the burnt offerings began, the song of the Lord and the trumpets began, accompanied by the instruments of David king of Israel. 28 The whole assembly was worshiping, singing the song, and blowing the trumpets—all of this continued until the burnt offering was completed. 29 When the burnt offerings were completed, the king and all those present with him bowed down and worshiped. 30 Then King Hezekiah and the officials told the Levites to sing praise to the Lord in the words of David and of Asaph the seer. So they sang praises with rejoicing and bowed down and worshiped.
31 Hezekiah concluded, “Now you are consecrated[e] to the Lord. Come near and bring sacrifices and thank offerings to the Lord’s temple.” So the congregation brought sacrifices and thank offerings, and all those with willing hearts brought burnt offerings. 32 The number of burnt offerings the congregation brought was 70 bulls, 100 rams, and 200 lambs; all these were for a burnt offering to the Lord. 33 Six hundred bulls and 3,000 sheep were consecrated.
34 However, since there were not enough priests, they weren’t able to skin all the burnt offerings, so their Levite brothers helped them until the work was finished and until the priests consecrated themselves. For the Levites were more conscientious[f] to consecrate themselves than the priests were. 35 Furthermore, the burnt offerings were abundant, along with the fat of the fellowship offerings and with the drink offerings for the burnt offering.
So the service of the Lord’s temple was established. 36 Then Hezekiah and all the people rejoiced over how God had prepared the people, for it had come about suddenly.
14 Accept anyone who is weak in faith,[a] but don’t argue about doubtful issues. 2 One person believes he may eat anything, but one who is weak eats only vegetables. 3 One who eats must not look down on one who does not eat, and one who does not eat must not criticize one who does, because God has accepted him. 4 Who are you to criticize another’s household slave? Before his own Lord he stands or falls. And he will stand. For the Lord is able[b] to make him stand.
5 One person considers one day to be above another day. Someone else considers every day to be the same. Each one must be fully convinced in his own mind. 6 Whoever observes the day, observes it for the honor of the Lord.[c] Whoever eats, eats for the Lord, since he gives thanks to God; and whoever does not eat, it is for the Lord that he does not eat it, yet he thanks God. 7 For none of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 Christ died and came to life for this: that He might rule over both the dead and the living. 10 But you, why do you criticize your brother? Or you, why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before the tribunal of God.[d] 11 For it is written:
As I live, says the Lord,
every knee will bow to Me,
and every tongue will give praise to God.[e]
12 So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.
13 Therefore, let us no longer criticize one another. Instead decide never to put a stumbling block or pitfall in your brother’s way. 14 (I know and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself. Still, to someone who considers a thing to be unclean, to that one it is unclean.) 15 For if your brother is hurt by what you eat, you are no longer walking according to love. Do not destroy that one Christ died for by what you eat. 16 Therefore, do not let your good be slandered, 17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 Whoever serves Christ in this way is acceptable to God and approved by men.
19 So then, we must pursue what promotes peace and what builds up one another. 20 Do not tear down God’s work because of food. Everything is clean, but it is wrong for a man to cause stumbling by what he eats. 21 It is a noble thing not to eat meat, or drink wine, or do anything that makes your brother stumble.[f] 22 Do you have a conviction?[g] Keep it to yourself before God. The man who does not condemn himself by what he approves is blessed. 23 But whoever doubts stands condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from a conviction,[h] and everything that is not from a conviction[i] is sin.
1 The earth and everything in it,
the world and its inhabitants,
belong to the Lord;
2 for He laid its foundation on the seas
and established it on the rivers.
3 Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord?
Who may stand in His holy place?
4 The one who has clean hands and a pure heart,
who has not set his mind[a] on what is false,
and who has not sworn deceitfully.
5 He will receive blessing from the Lord,
and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
6 Such is the generation of those who seek Him,
who seek the face of the God of Jacob.[b]
7 Lift up your heads, you gates!
Rise up, ancient doors!
Then the King of glory will come in.
8 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord, strong and mighty,
the Lord, mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, you gates!
Rise up, ancient doors!
Then the King of glory will come in.
10 Who is He, this King of glory?
The Lord of Hosts,
He is the King of glory.
12 The hearing ear and the seeing eye—
the Lord made them both.