2 Chronicles 29
King Hezekiah Rededicates the Temple(A)
29 Hezekiah began to rule as king when he was 25 years old. He ruled for 29 years in Jerusalem. His mother was Abijah, daughter of Zechariah. 2 He did what Yahweh considered right, as his ancestor David had done.
3 In the first month of his first year as king, he opened the doors of Yahweh’s temple and repaired them. 4 He brought the priests and Levites together in the square on the east side of the temple.
5 He said to them, “Listen to me, Levites. Perform the ceremonies to make the temple of Yahweh Elohim of your ancestors holy. Remove anything that has been corrupted from the holy place. 6 Our ancestors were unfaithful and did what Yahweh our Elohim considered evil. They deserted him. They turned away from Yahweh’s tent[a] and turned their backs on him. 7 They also shut the doors of the temple’s entrance hall, extinguished the lamps, and didn’t burn incense or sacrifice burnt offerings in the holy place to the Elohim of Israel. 8 So Yahweh was angry with Judah and Jerusalem. He made them something that shocks and terrifies people and that people ridicule, as you can see with your own eyes. 9 Our fathers were killed in battle, and our sons, daughters, and wives are prisoners because of this. 10 Now I intend to make a pledge to Yahweh Elohim of Israel so that he may turn his burning anger away from us. 11 Don’t be negligent, my sons. Yahweh has chosen you to stand in front of him, serve him, be his servants, and burn sacrifices.”
12 So the Levites started to work.
From Kohath’s descendants were Mahath, son of Amasai, and Joel, son of Azariah.
From Merari’s descendants were Kish, son of Abdi, and Azariah, son of Jehallelel.
From Gershon’s descendants were Joah, son of Zimmah, and Eden, son of Joah.
13 From Elizaphan’s descendants were Shimri and Jeiel.
From Asaph’s descendants were Zechariah and Mattaniah.
14 From Heman’s descendants were Jehiel and Shimei.
From Jeduthun’s descendants were Shemaiah and Uzziel.
15 These men gathered their relatives and performed the ceremonies to make themselves holy. Then they obeyed the king’s order from Yahweh’s word and entered the temple to make it clean.[b] 16 The priests entered Yahweh’s temple to make it clean. They carried into the courtyard every unclean thing that they found in Yahweh’s temple. Then the Levites took the unclean items outside the city to the Kidron Brook. 17 They started on the first day of the first month. On the eighth day they went into Yahweh’s entrance hall, and for eight days they performed the ceremonies to make Yahweh’s temple holy. They finished on the sixteenth day of the first month.
18 Then they went to King Hezekiah. They said to him, “We have made all of Yahweh’s temple clean. This includes the altar for burnt offerings, all its utensils, the table for the rows of bread and all its utensils, 19 and all the utensils King Ahaz refused to use during his reign when he was unfaithful. We have restored them and made them holy. They are in front of Yahweh’s altar.”
20 Early in the morning Hezekiah gathered the leaders of the city and went to Yahweh’s temple. 21 They brought seven bulls, seven rams, seven lambs, and seven male goats as an offering for sin for the kingdom, the holy place, and Judah. Hezekiah told the priests, Aaron’s descendants, to sacrifice the animals on Yahweh’s altar.
22 So they slaughtered the bulls, and the priests sprinkled the blood on the altar. Then they slaughtered the rams and sprinkled the blood on the altar. After that, they slaughtered the lambs and sprinkled the blood on the altar. 23 Then they brought the male goats for the offering for sin in front of the king and the assembly, who laid their hands on them. 24 The priests slaughtered the goats and made their blood an offering for sin at the altar to make peace with the Lord for Israel. The king had said that the burnt offerings and offerings for sin should be for all Israel.
25 He had the Levites stand in Yahweh’s temple with cymbals, harps, and lyres as David, the king’s seer[c] Gad, and the prophet Nathan had ordered. This command came from Yahweh through his prophets. 26 The Levites stood with David’s instruments, and the priests had the trumpets. 27 Then Hezekiah ordered the sacrificing of burnt offerings on the altar. When the burnt offerings started, the songs to Yahweh started. These songs were accompanied by trumpets and the instruments of King David of Israel. 28 The whole assembly bowed down with their faces touching the ground, singers began to sing, and the trumpets blew until the burnt offering was finished. 29 When the burnt offerings were finished, the king and everyone who was with him kneeled and bowed down. 30 Then King Hezekiah and the leaders told the Levites to praise Yahweh with the words of David and the seer Asaph. They joyfully sang praises, bowed down, and worshiped.
31 Hezekiah said, “You have dedicated your lives to Yahweh. Come, bring sacrifices and thank offerings to Yahweh’s temple.”
The assembly brought sacrifices and thank offerings, and everyone who was willing brought burnt offerings. 32 The burnt offerings brought by the assembly totaled 70 bulls, 100 rams, and 200 lambs. All of these were burnt offerings to Yahweh. 33 The animals dedicated as holy sacrifices were 600 bulls and 3,000 sheep. 34 But the priests needed more help to skin all the burnt offerings. So their relatives, the Levites, helped them until the work was completed and the priests could make themselves holy. The Levites were more diligent in making themselves holy than the priests were. 35 There were many burnt offerings in addition to the fat of the fellowship offerings and wine offerings that accompanied the burnt offerings. So the worship in Yahweh’s temple was reestablished. 36 Hezekiah and all the people were overjoyed because of what Elohim had done for the people. Everything had happened so quickly.
How to Treat Christians Who Are Weak in Faith
14 Welcome people who are weak in faith, but don’t get into an argument over differences of opinion. 2 Some people believe that they can eat all kinds of food. Other people with weak faith believe that they can eat only vegetables. 3 People who eat all foods should not despise people who eat only vegetables. In the same way, the vegetarians should not criticize people who eat all foods, because God has accepted those people. 4 Who are you to criticize someone else’s servant? The Lord will determine whether his servant has been successful. The servant will be successful because the Lord makes him successful.
5 One person decides that one day is holier than another. Another person decides that all days are the same. Every person must make his own decision. 6 When people observe a special day, they observe it to honor the Lord. When people eat all kinds of foods, they honor the Lord as they eat, since they give thanks to God. Vegetarians also honor the Lord when they eat, and they, too, give thanks to God. 7 It’s clear that we don’t live to honor ourselves, and we don’t die to honor ourselves. 8 If we live, we honor the Lord, and if we die, we honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this reason Christ died and came back to life so that he would be the Lord of both the living and the dead.
10 Why do you criticize or despise other Christians? Everyone will stand in front of God to be judged. 11 Scripture says,
“As certainly as I live, says the Lord,
everyone will worship me,
and everyone will praise God.”
12 All of us will have to give an account of ourselves to God.
13 So let’s stop criticizing each other. Instead, you should decide never to do anything that would make other Christians have doubts or lose their faith.
14 The Lord Yeshua has given me the knowledge and conviction that no food is unacceptable in and of itself. But it is unacceptable to a person who thinks it is. 15 So if what you eat hurts another Christian, you are no longer living by love. Don’t destroy anyone by what you eat. Christ died for that person. 16 Don’t allow anyone to say that what you consider good is evil.
17 God’s kingdom does not consist of what a person eats or drinks. Rather, God’s kingdom consists of God’s approval and peace, as well as the joy that the Holy Spirit gives. 18 The person who serves Christ with this in mind is pleasing to God and respected by people.
19 So let’s pursue those things which bring peace and which are good for each other. 20 Don’t ruin God’s work because of what you eat. All food is acceptable, but it’s wrong for a person to eat something if it causes someone else to have doubts. 21 The right thing to do is to avoid eating meat, drinking wine, or doing anything else that causes another Christian to have doubts. 22 So whatever you believe about these things, keep it between yourself and God. The person who does what he knows is right shouldn’t feel guilty. He is blessed. 23 But if a person has doubts and still eats, he is condemned because he didn’t act in faith. Anything that is not done in faith is sin.
A psalm by David.
1 The earth and everything it contains are Yahweh’s.
The world and all who live in it are his.
2 He laid its foundation on the seas
and set it firmly on the rivers.
3 Who may go up Yahweh’s mountain?
Who may stand in his holy place?
4 The one who has clean hands and a pure heart
and does not long for what is false[a]
or lie when he is under oath.
5 This person will receive a blessing from Yahweh
and righteousness from Elohim, his savior.
6 This is the person who seeks him,
who searches for the face of the El of Jacob.[b] Selah
7 Lift your heads, you gates.
Be lifted, you ancient doors,
so that the Melek of glory may come in.
8 Who is this Melek of glory?
Yahweh, strong and mighty!
Yahweh, heroic in battle!
9 Lift your heads, you gates.
Be lifted, you ancient doors,
so that the Melek of glory may come in.
10 Who, then, is this Melek of glory?
Yahweh Tsebaoth is the Melek of glory! Selah
12 The ear that hears,
the eye that sees—
Yahweh made them both.