א וַיִּשְׁלַח הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיַּאַסְפוּ אֵלָיו כָּל־זִקְנֵי יְהוּדָה וִירוּשָׁלִָם׃
2 The king went up to the House of Hashem, together with all the men of Yehuda and all the inhabitants of Yerushalayim, and the Kohanim and Neviim—all the people, young and old. And he read to them the entire text of the covenant scroll which had been found in the House of Hashem.
3 The king stood by the pillar and solemnized the covenant before Hashem: that they would follow Hashem and observe His commandments, His injunctions, and His laws with all their heart and soul; that they would fulfill all the terms of this covenant as inscribed upon the scroll. And all the people entered into the covenant.
ג וַיַּעֲמֹד הַמֶּלֶךְ עַל־הָעַמּוּד וַיִּכְרֹת אֶת־הַבְּרִית לִפְנֵי יְהֹוָה לָלֶכֶת אַחַר יְהֹוָה וְלִשְׁמֹר מִצְוׂתָיו וְאֶת־עֵדְוׂתָיו וְאֶת־חֻקֹּתָיו בְּכָל־לֵב וּבְכָל־נֶפֶשׁ לְהָקִים אֶת־דִּבְרֵי הַבְּרִית הַזֹּאת הַכְּתֻבִים עַל־הַסֵּפֶר הַזֶּה וַיַּעֲמֹד כָּל־הָעָם בַּבְּרִית׃
4 Then the king ordered the Kohen Gadol Chilkiyahu, the Kohanim of the second rank, and the guards of the threshold to bring out of the Temple of Hashem all the objects made for Baal and Asherah and all the host of heaven. He burned them outside Yerushalayim in the fields of Kidron, and he removed the ashes to Beit El.
ד וַיְצַו הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶת־חִלְקִיָּהוּ הַכֹּהֵן הַגָּדוֹל וְאֶת־כֹּהֲנֵי הַמִּשְׁנֶה וְאֶת־שֹׁמְרֵי הַסַּף לְהוֹצִיא מֵהֵיכַל יְהֹוָה אֵת כָּל־הַכֵּלִים הָעֲשׂוּיִם לַבַּעַל וְלָאֲשֵׁרָה וּלְכֹל צְבָא הַשָּׁמָיִם וַיִּשְׂרְפֵם מִחוּץ לִירוּשָׁלִַם בְּשַׁדְמוֹת קִדְרוֹן וְנָשָׂא אֶת־עֲפָרָם בֵּית־אֵל׃
5 He suppressed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Yehuda had appointed to make offerings at the shrines in the towns of Yehuda and in the environs of Yerushalayim, and those who made offerings to Baal, to the sun and moon and constellations—all the host of heaven.
6 He brought out the [image of] Asherah from the House of Hashem to the Kidron Valley outside Yerushalayim, and burned it in the Kidron Valley; he beat it to dust and scattered its dust over the burial ground of the common people.
7 He tore down the cubicles of the male prostitutes in the House of Hashem, at the place where the women wove coverings for Asherah.
ז וַיִּתֹּץ אֶת־בָּתֵּי הַקְּדֵשִׁים אֲשֶׁר בְּבֵית יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר הַנָּשִׁים אֹרְגוֹת שָׁם בָּתִּים לָאֲשֵׁרָה׃
8 He brought all the Kohanim from the towns of Yehuda [to Yerushalayim] and defiled the shrines where the Kohanim had been making offerings—from Geba to Be’er Sheva. He also demolished the shrines of the gates, which were at the entrance of the gate of Yehoshua, the city prefect—which were on a person’s left [as he entered] the city gate.
9 The Kohanim of the shrines, however, did not ascend the mizbayach of Hashem in Yerushalayim, but they ate unleavened bread along with their kinsmen.
ט אַךְ לֹא יַעֲלוּ כֹּהֲנֵי הַבָּמוֹת אֶל־מִזְבַּח יְהֹוָה בִּירוּשָׁלִָם כִּי אִם־אָכְלוּ מַצּוֹת בְּתוֹךְ אֲחֵיהֶם׃
10 He also defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of Ben-hinnom, so that no one might consign his son or daughter to the fire of Molech.
י וְטִמֵּא אֶת־הַתֹּפֶת אֲשֶׁר בְּגֵי בני־[בֶן־] הִנֹּם לְבִלְתִּי לְהַעֲבִיר אִישׁ אֶת־בְּנוֹ וְאֶת־בִּתּוֹ בָּאֵשׁ לַמֹּלֶךְ׃
11 He did away with the horses that the kings of Yehuda had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance of the House of Hashem, near the chamber of the eunuch Nathan-melech, which was in the precincts. He burned the chariots of the sun.
יא וַיַּשְׁבֵּת אֶת־הַסּוּסִים אֲשֶׁר נָתְנוּ מַלְכֵי יְהוּדָה לַשֶּׁמֶשׁ מִבֹּא בֵית־יְהֹוָה אֶל־לִשְׁכַּת נְתַן־מֶלֶךְ הַסָּרִיס אֲשֶׁר בַּפַּרְוָרִים וְאֶת־מַרְכְּבוֹת הַשֶּׁמֶשׁ שָׂרַף בָּאֵשׁ׃
12 And the king tore down the altars made by the kings of Yehuda on the roof by the upper chamber of Achaz, and the altars made by Menashe in the two courts of the House of Hashem. He removed them quickly from there and scattered their rubble in the Kidron Valley.
13 The king also defiled the shrines facing Yerushalayim, to the south of the Mount of the Destroyer, which King Shlomo of Yisrael had built for Ashtoreth, the abomination of the Sidonians, for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, and for Milcom, the detestable thing of the Amonites.
14 He shattered their pillars and cut down their sacred posts and covered their sites with human bones.
יד וְשִׁבַּר אֶת־הַמַּצֵּבוֹת וַיִּכְרֹת אֶת־הָאֲשֵׁרִים וַיְמַלֵּא אֶת־מְקוֹמָם עַצְמוֹת אָדָם׃
15 As for the altar in Beit El [and] the shrine made by Yerovam son of Nebat who caused Yisrael to sin—that altar, too, and the shrine as well, he tore down. He burned down the shrine and beat it to dust, and he burned the sacred post.
16 Yoshiyahu turned and saw the graves that were there on the hill; and he had the bones taken out of the graves and burned on the altar. Thus he defiled it, in fulfillment of the word of Hashem foretold by the man of Hashem who foretold these happenings.
17 He asked, “What is the marker I see there?” And the men of the town replied, “That is the grave of the man of Hashem who came from Yehuda and foretold these things that you have done to the altar of Beit El.”
יז וַיֹּאמֶר מָה הַצִּיּוּן הַלָּז אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי רֹאֶה וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו אַנְשֵׁי הָעִיר הַקֶּבֶר אִישׁ־הָאֱלֹהִים אֲשֶׁר־בָּא מִיהוּדָה וַיִּקְרָא אֶת־הַדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה אֲשֶׁר עָשִׂיתָ עַל הַמִּזְבַּח בֵּית־אֵל׃
יח וַיֹּאמֶר הַנִּיחוּ לוֹ אִישׁ אַל־יָנַע עַצְמֹתָיו וַיְמַלְּטוּ עַצְמֹתָיו אֵת עַצְמוֹת הַנָּבִיא אֲשֶׁר־בָּא מִשֹּׁמְרוֹן׃
20 He slew on the altars all the priests of the shrines who were there, and he burned human bones on them. Then he returned to Yerushalayim.
21 The king commanded all the people, “Offer the Pesach sacrifice to Hashem your God as prescribed in this scroll of the covenant.”
כא וַיְצַו הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶת־כָּל־הָעָם לֵאמֹר עֲשׂוּ פֶסַח לַיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם כַּכָּתוּב עַל סֵפֶר הַבְּרִית הַזֶּה׃
23:22 Now the Pesach sacrifice had not been offered in that manner
Yoshiyahu is a righteous king who restores service of Hashem and observance of His Torah among the Children of Israel. His unique ability and success is symbolized by the massive observance of the Pesach sacrifice. Rashi notes that there had never been as many people observing this commandment. The Pesach sacrifice is a central commandment, as it proclaims Hashem’s active involvement in history and His selection of the Children of Israel as His holy nation. It also shows that though God may punish the Children of Israel, His bond with them is eternal. This message will take on special significance during the long and arduous exile from the Land of Israel.1 comment
24 Yoshiyahu also did away with the necromancers and the mediums, the idols and the fetishes—all the detestable things that were to be seen in the land of Yehuda and Yerushalayim. Thus he fulfilled the terms of the Teaching recorded in the scroll that the Kohen Chilkiyahu had found in the House of Hashem.
25 There was no king like him before who turned back to Hashem with all his heart and soul and might, in full accord with the Teaching of Moshe; nor did any like him arise after him.
כה וְכָמֹהוּ לֹא־הָיָה לְפָנָיו מֶלֶךְ אֲשֶׁר־שָׁב אֶל־יְהֹוָה בְּכָל־לְבָבוֹ וּבְכָל־נַפְשׁוֹ וּבְכָל־מְאֹדוֹ כְּכֹל תּוֹרַת מֹשֶׁה וְאַחֲרָיו לֹא־קָם כָּמֹהוּ׃
כו אַךְ לֹא־שָׁב יְהֹוָה מֵחֲרוֹן אַפּוֹ הַגָּדוֹל אֲשֶׁר־חָרָה אַפּוֹ בִּיהוּדָה עַל כָּל־הַכְּעָסִים אֲשֶׁר הִכְעִיסוֹ מְנַשֶּׁה׃
29 In his days, Pharaoh Neco, king of Egypt, marched against the king of Assyria to the River Euphrates; King Yoshiyahu marched toward him, but when he confronted him at Megiddo, [Pharaoh Neco] slew him.
30 His servants conveyed his body in a chariot from Megiddo to Yerushalayim, and they buried him in his tomb. Then the people of the land took Yehoachaz; they anointed him and made him king in place of his father.
32 He did what was displeasing to Hashem, just as his fathers had done.
לב וַיַּעַשׂ הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהֹוָה כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר־עָשׂוּ אֲבֹתָיו׃
33 Pharaoh Neco imprisoned him in Riblah in the region of Hamath, to keep him from reigning in Yerushalayim. And he imposed on the land an indemnity of one hundred kikarim of silver and a kikar of gold.
35 Yehoyakim gave Pharaoh the silver and the gold, and he made an assessment on the land to pay the money demanded by Pharaoh. He exacted from the people of the land the silver and gold to be paid Pharaoh Neco, according to each man’s assessment.
לה וְהַכֶּסֶף וְהַזָּהָב נָתַן יְהוֹיָקִים לְפַרְעֹה אַךְ הֶעֱרִיךְ אֶת־הָאָרֶץ לָתֵת אֶת־הַכֶּסֶף עַל־פִּי פַרְעֹה אִישׁ כְּעֶרְכּוֹ נָגַשׂ אֶת־הַכֶּסֶף וְאֶת־הַזָּהָב אֶת־עַם הָאָרֶץ לָתֵת לְפַרְעֹה נְכֹה׃
37 He did what was displeasing to Hashem, just as his ancestors had done.
לז וַיַּעַשׂ הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהֹוָה כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר־עָשׂוּ אֲבֹתָיו׃