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1Josiʹah kept a passover to the Lord in Jerusalem; and they killed the passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the first month. 2He appointed the priests to their offices and encouraged them in the service of the house of the Lord. 3And he said to the Levites who taught all Israel and who were holy to the Lord, “Put the holy ark in the house which Solomon the son of David, king of Israel, built; you need no longer carry it upon your shoulders. Now serve the Lord your God and his people Israel. 4Prepare yourselves according to your fathers’ houses by your divisions, following the directions of David king of Israel and the directions of Solomon his son. 5And stand in the holy place according to the groupings of the fathers’ houses of your brethren the lay people, and let there be for each a part of a father’s house of the Levites. 6And kill the passover lamb, and sanctify yourselves, and prepare for your brethren, to do according to the word of the Lord by Moses.”

7Then Josiʹah contributed to the lay people, as passover offerings for all that were present, lambs and kids from the flock to the number of thirty thousand, and three thousand bulls; these were from the king’s possessions. 8And his princes contributed willingly to the people, to the priests, and to the Levites. Hilkiʹah, Zechariʹah, and Jehiʹel, the chief officers of the house of God, gave to the priests for the passover offerings two thousand six hundred lambs and kids and three hundred bulls. 9Conaniʹah also, and Shemaiʹah and Nethanʹel his brothers, and Hashabiʹah and Je-iʹel and Joʹzabad, the chiefs of the Levites, gave to the Levites for the passover offerings five thousand lambs and kids and five hundred bulls.

10When the service had been prepared for, the priests stood in their place, and the Levites in their divisions according to the king’s command. 11And they killed the passover lamb, and the priests sprinkled the blood which they received from them while the Levites flayed the victims. 12And they set aside the burnt offerings that they might distribute them according to the groupings of the fathers’ houses of the lay people, to offer to the Lord, as it is written in the book of Moses. And so they did with the bulls. 13And they roasted the passover lamb with fire according to the ordinance; and they boiled the holy offerings in pots, in caldrons, and in pans, and carried them quickly to all the lay people. 14And afterward they prepared for themselves and for the priests, because the priests the sons of Aaron were busied in offering the burnt offerings and the fat parts until night; so the Levites prepared for themselves and for the priests the sons of Aaron. 15The singers, the sons of Asaph, were in their place according to the command of David, and Asaph, and Heman, and Jeduʹthun the king’s seer; and the gatekeepers were at each gate; they did not need to depart from their service, for their brethren the Levites prepared for them.

16So all the service of the Lord was prepared that day, to keep the passover and to offer burnt offerings on the altar of the Lord, according to the command of King Josiʹah. 17And the people of Israel who were present kept the passover at that time, and the feast of unleavened bread seven days. 18No passover like it had been kept in Israel since the days of Samuel the prophet; none of the kings of Israel had kept such a passover as was kept by Josiʹah, and the priests and the Levites, and all Judah and Israel who were present, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 19In the eighteenth year of the reign of Josiʹah this passover was kept.

20After all this, when Josiʹah had prepared the temple, Neco king of Egypt went up to fight at Carʹchemish on the Euphraʹtes and Josiʹah went out against him. 21But he sent envoys to him, saying, “What have we to do with each other, king of Judah? I am not coming against you this day, but against the house with which I am at war; and God has commanded me to make haste. Cease opposing God, who is with me, lest he destroy you.” 22Nevertheless Josiʹah would not turn away from him, but disguised himself in order to fight with him. He did not listen to the words of Neco from the mouth of God, but joined battle in the plain of Megidʹdo. 23And the archers shot King Josiʹah; and the king said to his servants, “Take me away, for I am badly wounded.” 24So his servants took him out of the chariot and carried him in his second chariot and brought him to Jerusalem. And he died, and was buried in the tombs of his fathers. All Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiʹah. 25Jeremiah also uttered a lament for Josiʹah; and all the singing men and singing women have spoken of Josiʹah in their laments to this day. They made these an ordinance in Israel; behold, they are written in the Laments. 26Now the rest of the acts of Josiʹah, and his good deeds according to what is written in the law of the Lord, 27and his acts, first and last, behold, they are written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.

Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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