2 Chronicles Chapter 35 to 36 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Josiah Celebrates Passover

35 King Josiah celebrated the Passover* to the Lord in Jerusalem. The Passover lamb was killed on the 14th day of the first month. 2Josiah chose the priests to do their duties. He encouraged the priests while they were serving in the Lord’s temple.* 3Josiah spoke to the Levites who taught the people of Israel and who were made holy for service to the Lord. He said to those Levites: “Put the Holy Box* in the temple that Solomon built. Solomon was David’s son. David was king of Israel. Do not carry the Holy Box from place to place on your shoulders again. Now serve the Lord your God. Serve God’s people, the people of Israel. 4Make yourselves ready for service in the temple by your family groups. Do the jobs that King David and his son King Solomon gave you to do. 5Stand in the Holy Place* with a group of Levites. Do this for each different family group of the people so you can help them. 6Kill the Passover lambs, make yourselves holy to the Lord. Make the lambs ready for your brothers, the people of Israel. Do all the things the Lord commanded us to do. The Lord gave us all those commands through Moses.” 7Josiah gave the people of Israel 30,000 sheep and goats to kill for the Passover* sacrifices. He also gave 3,000 cattle to the people. All these animals were from King Josiah’s own animals. 8Josiah’s officials also freely gave animals and things to the people, to the priests, and Levites to use for the Passover. Hilkiah the high priest, Zechariah, and Jehiel were the officials in charge of the temple. They gave the priests 2,600 lambs and goats and 300 bulls for Passover sacrifices. 9Also Conaniah with Shemaiah and Nethanel, his brothers, and Hashabiah, Jeiel and Jozabad gave 500 sheep and goats and 500 bulls for Passover sacrifices to the Levites. Those men were leaders of the Levites. 10When everything was ready for the Passover* service to begin, the priests and Levites went to their places. This is what the king commanded. 11The Passover lambs were killed. Then the Levites skinned the animals and gave the blood to the priests. The priests sprinkled the blood on the altar. 12Then they gave the animals to be used for burnt offerings to the different family groups. This was done so the burnt offerings could be offered the way the Law of Moses taught. 13The Levites roasted the Passover sacrifices over the fire in the way they were commanded. And they boiled the holy offerings in pots, kettles, and pans. Then they quickly gave the meat to the people. 14After this was finished, the Levites got meat for themselves and for the priests that were descendants of Aaron. Those priests were kept very busy, working until it got dark. They worked hard burning the burnt offerings and the fat of the sacrifices. 15The Levite singers from Asaph’s family got in the places that King David had chosen for them to stand. They were: Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun the king’s prophet. The gatekeepers at each gate did not have to leave their places because their brother Levites made everything ready for them for the Passover. 16So everything was done that day for the worship of the Lord as King Josiah commanded. The Passover* was celebrated and the burnt offerings* were offered on the Lord’s altar.* 17The people of Israel that were there celebrated Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread* for seven days. 18Passover hadn’t been celebrated like this since the time of Samuel the prophet! None of the kings of Israel had ever celebrated a Passover like this. King Josiah, the priests, the Levites, and the people of Judah and Israel that were there with all the people in Jerusalem celebrated the Passover in a very special way. 19They celebrated this Passover in Josiah’s 18th year as king. The Death of Josiah 20Josiah did all those good things for the temple. Later, Neco, the king of Egypt, led an army to fight against the town of Carchemish on the Euphrates River. King Josiah went out to fight against Neco. 21But Neco sent messengers to Josiah. They said, “King Josiah, this war is not your problem. I didn’t come to fight against you. I came to fight my enemies. God told me to hurry. God is on my side, so don’t bother me. If you fight against me, God will destroy you!” 22But Josiah didn’t go away. He decided to fight Neco, so he changed his appearance and went to fight the battle. Josiah refused to listen to what Neco said about God’s command. Josiah went to fight on the plain of Megiddo. 23Then King Josiah was shot by arrows while he was in the battle. He told his servants, “Take me away, I am wounded badly!” 24So the servants took Josiah out of his chariot and put him in another chariot he had brought with him to the battle. Then they took Josiah to Jerusalem. King Josiah died in Jerusalem. Josiah was buried in the cemetery where his ancestors were buried. All the people of Judah and Jerusalem were very sad because Josiah was dead. 25Jeremiah wrote and sang some funeral songs for Josiah. And the men and women singers still sing those sad songs today. It became something the people of Israel always do—they sing a sad song for Josiah. Those songs are written in the book, Funeral Songs. 26–27All the other things that Josiah did while he was king, from beginning to the end of his rule, are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel and Judah. That book tells about his loyalty to the Lord and how he obeyed the Lord’s law.

Passover An important holiday for Jews. They eat a special meal on this day every year to remember that God freed them from slavery in Egypt in the time of Moses. temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. Holy Box The Box of the Agreement. The box containing the stone tablets with the Ten Commandments written on them and the other things that proved God was with the people of Israel during their time in the Sinai Desert. Also called “The Ark of the Covenant.” Holy Place The room in the Holy Tent and in the temple that was used by the priests to do their daily service to God. burnt offering(s) Gifts to God. Usually these were animals that were killed and completely burned on the altar. altar(s) A stone table or a stand for offering sacrifices. Festival of Unleavened Bread The week after Passover. At Passover, Jewish people throw out all the yeast and eat only bread without yeast for seven days. This helps them remember the time they were leaving Egypt in a hurry and did not have time to make leavened bread.


Jehoahaz King of Judah

36 The people of Judah chose Jehoahaz to be the new king in Jerusalem. Jehoahaz was Josiah’s son. 2Jehoahaz was 23 years old when he became king of Judah. He was king in Jerusalem for three months. 3Then King Neco from Egypt made Jehoahaz a prisoner. Neco made the people of Judah pay 3 3/4 tons* of silver and 75 pounds* of gold for a fine. 4Neco chose Jehoahaz’s brother to be the new king of Judah and Jerusalem. Jehoahaz’s brother’s name was Eliakim. Then Neco gave Eliakim a new name. He named him Jehoiakim. But Neco took Jehoahaz to Egypt.

Jehoiakim King of Judah

5Jehoiakim was 25 years old when he became the new king of Judah. He was king in Jerusalem for eleven years. Jehoiakim didn’t do the things the Lord wanted him to do. He sinned against the Lord his God. 6King Nebuchadnezzar from Babylon attacked Judah. He made Jehoiakim a prisoner and put bronze chains on him. Then Nebuchadnezzar took King Jehoiakim to Babylon. 7Nebuchadnezzar took some of the things from the Lord’s temple. He carried those things to Babylon and put them in his own house. 8The other things that Jehoiakim did, the terrible sins he did and everything he was guilty of doing, are written in the book, The History of the Kings of Israel and Judah. Jehoiachin became the new king in Jehoiakim’s place. Jehoiachin was Jehoiakim’s son.

Jehoiachin King of Judah

9Jehoiachin was 18 years old when he became king of Judah. He was king in Jerusalem for three months and ten days. He didn’t do the things the Lord wanted him to do. Jehoiachin sinned against the Lord. 10In the spring, King Nebuchadnezzar sent some servants to get Jehoiachin. They brought Jehoiachin and some valuable treasures from the Lord’s temple* to Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar chose Zedekiah to be the new king of Judah and Jerusalem. Zedekiah was one of Jehoiachin’s relatives.

Zedekiah King of Judah

11Zedekiah was 21 years old when he became king of Judah. He was king in Jerusalem for eleven years. 12Zedekiah didn’t do the things the Lord wanted him to do. Zedekiah sinned against the Lord. Jeremiah the prophet spoke messages from the Lord. But Zedekiah didn’t humble himself and obey the things Jeremiah said.

Jerusalem Is Destroyed

13Zedekiah turned against King Nebuchadnezzar. In the past Nebuchadnezzar forced Zedekiah to make a promise to be faithful to Nebuchadnezzar. Zedekiah used God’s name and promised to be faithful to Nebuchadnezzar. But Zedekiah was very stubborn and refused to change his life and come back and obey the Lord God of Israel. 14Also, all the leaders of the priests and the leaders of the people of Judah sinned worse and became more unfaithful to the Lord. They followed the evil example of the other nations. Those leaders ruined the Lord’s temple.* The Lord had made the temple holy in Jerusalem. 15The Lord, the God of their ancestors,* sent prophets again and again to warn his people. The Lord did this because he felt sorry for them and for his temple. The Lord didn’t want to destroy them or his temple. 16But God’s people made fun of God’s prophets. They refused to listen to God’s prophets. They hated God’s messages. Finally God could not hold his anger any longer. God became angry at his people and there was nothing that could be done to stop it. 17So God brought the King of Babylon to attack the people of Judah and Jerusalem.* The king of Babylon killed the young men even when they were in the temple. He didn’t have mercy on the people of Judah and Jerusalem. The king of Babylon killed young and old people. He killed men and women. He killed sick and healthy people. God permitted Nebuchadnezzar to punish the people of Judah and Jerusalem. 18Nebuchadnezzar carried all the things in God’s temple away to Babylon. He took all the valuable things from the temple, from the king, and from the king’s officials. 19Nebuchadnezzar and his army burned the temple. They broke down Jerusalem’s wall and burned all the houses that belonged to the king and his officials. They took or destroyed every valuable thing in Jerusalem. 20Nebuchadnezzar took the people that were still alive back to Babylon and forced them to be slaves. Those people stayed in Babylon as slaves until the Persian kingdom defeated the kingdom of Babylon. 21And so the things the Lord told the people of Israel through the prophet Jeremiah really happened. The Lord had said through Jeremiah: “This place will be an empty wasteland for 70 years.* This will happen to make up for the Sabbath rests* that the people didn’t do.” 22During the first year that Cyrus* was king of Persia, the Lord caused Cyrus to make a special announcement. He did this so that the things the Lord promised through Jeremiah the prophet would really happen. Cyrus sent messengers to every place in his kingdom. They carried this message: 23Cyrus, King of Persia says: The Lord, the God of heaven, made me king over the whole earth. He gave me the responsibility of building a temple* for him in Jerusalem. Now, all of you who are God’s people are free to go to Jerusalem. And may the Lord your God be with you.

3 3/4 tons Or, “3,400kg.” Literally, “100 talents.” 75 pounds Or, “34kg.” Literally, “1 talent.” temple The special building in Jerusalem for Jewish worship. ancestors Literally, “fathers,” meaning a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. brought the King of Babylon … Jerusalem This happened in the year 586 B.C., when Jerusalem was finally destroyed by King Nebuchadnezzar from Babylon. This place … for 70 years See Jer. 25:11; 29:10. Sabbath rests The Law said that every seventh year the land was not to be farmed, see Lev. 25:1–7. first year … Cyrus That is, 539–538 B.C.

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