The Passover of Hezekiah (30:1–27)

From: 2 Chronicles

In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

427 1/ Hezekiah sent to all Israel and Judah, and also wrote letters to Ephraim and Manasseh to come to the house of Yahweh in Jerusalem to carry out a Passover for Yahweh the God of Israel. 2/ The king, his officials, and all the assembly had taken counsel in Jerusalem to carry out the Passover in the second month. 3/ For they were not able to do it1 at that time because the priests had not sanctified themselves in great numbers2 and the people had not gathered together in Jerusalem. 4/ This plan had seemed correct in the eyes of the king and in the eyes of all3 the assembly . 5/ So they formulated a decree to be proclaimed throughout all Israel, from Beer-sheba to Dan, to come to celebrate a Passover to Yahweh the God of Israel in Jerusalem, but they had not done it often4 as prescribed. 6/ Runners went with letters from the king and his officials throughout all Israel and Judah and according to the commandment5 of the king, saying,6 “Israelites, return to Yahweh7 the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, so that he may return again to the remnant that is left for you8 from the hand of the kings9 of Assyria. 7/ Do not be like your fathers or your brothers who acted unfaithfully toward Yahweh the God of their ancestors, and he handed them over to desolation, just as you see. 8/ Now do not stiffen your neck10 like your ancestors.11 Extend your hand to Yahweh12 and come to his sanctuary, which he has sanctified forever. Serve Yahweh your God so that the anger of his wrath may turn from you. 9/ For when you return to Yahweh,your kinsmen and your children will find 13 mercy before their captors to return to this land, for gracious and merciful is Yahweh your God, and he will not turn14 his face15 away from you if you return to him.” 10/ And the runners passed on from city to city in the land of Ephraim and Manasseh and up to Zebulun,16 but they were laughing at them 17 and mocking them. 11/ Only some people from Asher, Manasseh,18 and Zebulun humbled themselves and came to Jerusalem . 12/ Moreover, the hand of God19 was on Judah to give them one heart to do the commandment of the king and the officials according to the word of20 Yahweh. 13/ Many people came together in Jerusalem to keep the festival of Unleavened Bread in the second month, an exceedingly great21 assembly. 14/ They rose up and removed the altars that were in Jerusalem, and they removed all the altars for offering incense,22 and they 30:1-27 The Passover of Hezekiah Translation 1 wtc[l; BHS (cf. Rudolph, 300) suggests inserting wt[l or wt[b “at its [appropriate] time,” a word that is thought to have been lost by haplography. Dillard (239) denies a need for this addition and finds here an allusion to the chronology in chap. 29, where the purification of the temple had not been completed until the sixteenth day of the first month. 2 ydml. HALOT, 219: a combination of yd ∆hm ∆l. 3 lk; lacking in LXX. 4 wc[ brl al. HALOT (1174) defines brl as “plentifully .” BDB, 914: “in respect to abundance, abundantly .” JPS: “not often did they act in accord with what was written.” Similarly, Japhet, 941. The word brl is lacking in Cairo Genizah manuscripts. Tg: “Because the greater part of the assembly had not kept the Passover in Nisan at its proper time.” 5 twxmkw; many Hebrew mss twxmbw; one Hebrew ms LXX Vg twxmk. 6 rmal ^lmh. BHS (cf. Rudolph, 300) suggests inserting ^lmh !vb larcy ynb la wrbd or something similar “speak to the Israelites in the name of the king.” This clause was lost by homoioteleuton according to Rudolph, but the intervening rmal makes that unlikely. Rudolph argued that the speech of the messengers in vv. 6b-9 is only to the northern kingdom and not to both kingdoms, as v. 6a would imply. 7 hwhy; lacking in LXX. 8 !kl; missing in LXX. 9 yklm; LXX Syr Vg singular. Rudolph (300) retains the plural. Cf. Tg. Note the plural form “the kings of Assyria” in Isa 37:11, 18. 10 !kpr[; LXX ta;~ kardiva~ uJmw'n “(do not harden) your hearts.” 11 !kytwbak; lacking in LXX. !kytwbak may have been lost by homoioteleuton after !kpr[. 12 hwhyl...