2 Kings 16

1Ahaz son of Jotham became king of Judah during the 17th year that Pekah son of Remaliah was king of Israel. 2Ahaz was 20 years old when he became king. Ahaz ruled 16 years in Jerusalem. Ahaz was not like his ancestor David—Ahaz did not do the things the Lord said were right. 3Ahaz lived like the kings of Israel. He even sacrificed his son in fire. He copied the terrible sins of the nations that the Lord forced to leave the country at the time the Israelites came. 4Ahaz made sacrifices and burned incense at the high places and on the hills and under every green tree. 5Rezin, king of Aram, and Pekah son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came to fight against Jerusalem. Rezin and Pekah surrounded Ahaz, but could not defeat him. 6At that time, Rezin king of Aram took back Elath for Aram. Rezin took all the people of Judah that were living in Elath. The Arameans settled in Elath, and they still live there today. 7Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath Pileser, the king of Assyria. The message was: “I am your servant. I am like a son to you. Come and save me from the king of Aram and the king of Israel. They have come to fight me!” 8Ahaz also took the silver and gold that was in the temple of the Lord and in the treasuries of the king’s house. Then Ahaz sent a gift to the king of Assyria. 9The king of Assyria listened to Ahaz. The king of Assyria went to fight against Damascus. The king captured that city and took the people from Damascus as prisoners to Kir. He also killed Rezin. 10King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath Pileser king of Assyria. Ahaz saw the altar at Damascus. King Ahaz sent a model and pattern of this altar to Uriah the priest. 11Then Uriah the priest built an altar just like the model King Ahaz had sent him from Damascus. Uriah the priest built the altar this way before King Ahaz came back from Damascus. 12When the king arrived from Damascus, he saw the altar. He offered sacrifices on the altar. 13On the altar, Ahaz burned his burnt offerings and grain offerings. He poured his drink offering and sprinkled the blood of his fellowship offerings on this altar. 14Ahaz took the bronze altar that was before the Lord from the front of the temple. This bronze altar was between Ahaz’s altar and the temple of the Lord. Ahaz put the bronze altar on the north side of his own altar. 15Ahaz gave a command to Uriah the priest. He said, “Use the large altar to burn the morning burnt offerings, the evening grain offerings, and the drink offerings from all the people of this country. Sprinkle all the blood from the burnt offering and other sacrifices on the large altar. But I will use the bronze altar to ask questions from God.” 16Uriah the priest did everything that King Ahaz commanded him to do. 17There were carts with bronze panels and basins for the priests to wash their hands. King Ahaz removed the panels and basins and cut up the carts. He also took the large tank off the bronze bulls that stood under it. He put the large tank on a stone pavement. 18Workers had built a covered place inside the temple area for the Sabbath ˻meetings˼. But Ahaz took away that covered place. Ahaz also took away the outside entrance for the king. Ahaz took all of these from the Lord’s temple. Ahaz did this because of the king of Assyria. 19All the great things that Ahaz did are written in the book The History of the Kings of Judah. 20Ahaz ˻died and˼ was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. Ahaz’s son Hezekiah became the new king after him.

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