20 Oct. 2 Kings 23:1-4,8-11,21-25

20 Oct. The people renew the Covenant and celebrate Passover

“Then the king gathered all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem together. He went up to the Temple of the LORD, and all the people from Judah and Jerusalem went with him. The priests, prophets and all the people – from the least important to the most important – went with him.”

“He read to them all the words of the Book of the [Covenant] Agreement that was found in the Temple of the LORD. The king stood by the pillar and made an agreement in the presence of the LORD to follow the LORD and obey his commandments, rules and laws with his whole being, and to obey the words of the agreement written in this book. Then all the people promised to obey the agreement.”

“The king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the next rank and the gatekeepers to bring out of the Temple of the LORD everything made for Baal, Asherah and all the stars of the sky. Then Josiah burnt them outside Jerusalem in the open country of the Kidron Valley and carried their ashes to Bethel...”

“King Josiah brought all the false priests from the cities of Judah. He ruined the places where gods were worshipped, where the priests had burnt incense, from Geba to Beersheba. He destroyed the places of worship at the entrance to the Gate of Joshua, the ruler of the city, on the left side of the city gate. The priests at the places where gods were worshipped were not allowed to serve at the LORD’s altar in Jerusalem…”

“Josiah ruined Topheth, in the Valley of Ben Hinnom, so no one could sacrifice his son or daughter to Molech. Judah’s kings had placed horses at the front door of the Temple of the LORD in the courtyard near the room of Nathan-Melech, an officer. These horses were for the worship of the sun. So Josiah removed them and burnt the chariots that were for sun worship also…”

“The king commanded all the people, ‘Celebrate the Passover to the LORD your God as it is written in this Book of the [Covenant] Agreement.’ The Passover had not been celebrated like this since the judges led Israel. Nor had one like it happened while there were kings of Israel and kings of Judah…”

“There was no king like Josiah before or after him. He obeyed the LORD with all his heart, soul and strength, following all the Teachings of Moses.”

          (2 Kings 23:1-4,8-11,21-25)



After the high priest, Hilkiah, re-discovered the Book of the Law in the Temple in Jerusalem in the eighteenth year of Josiah’s reign (in 624BC), King Josiah called the elders of Judah together to renew their covenant with the LORD.

All the articles associated with Baal and Asherah worship were removed from the Temple and burned in the Kidron Valley outside the city.

Josiah tore down the quarters of the male shrine-prostitutes and destroyed Topheth (‘the fireplace’) - the pagan worship site in the Valley of Hinnom (the ‘Valley of wickedness’) - where children were sacrificed to the god Molech.

He removed the statues of the horses and chariots dedicated to the Egyptian Sun god Re at the entrance to the Temple in Jerusalem, and destroyed the altars to the pagan gods Ashtoreth, Chemosh and Molech on the Hill of Corruption (the Mount of Olives).

The people of Jerusalem then celebrated the Passover festival for the first time in many generations and renewed their commitment to the LORD.

The photo (by Willy Horst) shows a Torah scroll containing the Law of Moses.

You can read more about King Josiah @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/33-judah-after-the-fall-of-israel/king-josiah-ushers-in-religious-reforms/

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