1. Josiah was eight years old when he became king and he reigned for thirty-one years in Jerusalem.
2. He did what is pleasing to Yahweh, and walked in the ways of his father David, without turning aside.
3. In the eighth year of his reign, when he was still a youth, he began to seek the God of his father David. In the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the High places, the sacred trunks and the molten idols.
4. He looked on while they smashed the altars of Baal, and he himself tore down the incense altars near them. He reduced to dust the symbols of Asherah and the other idols and then threw the dust over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them.
5. He burned the bones of their priests on their altars, and so purified Judah and Jerusalem.
6. He did the same in the towns of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, and in the devastated areas around them.
7. There too he destroyed the altars and symbols of the goddess, smashed the sacred trunks and the idols and ground them to powder, and tore down all the altars of incense throughout the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.
8. In the eighteenth year of his reign, with the object of purifying land and Temple, he sent Shaphan son of Azaliah, Maaseiah governor of the city and the herald Joah son of Joahaz, to repair the house of Yahweh his God.
9. These men went to the high priest Hilkiah and handed over to him the money that had been brought to the house of God. The Levite gatekeepers had collected this money from Manasseh, Ephraim and all the rest of Israel, and from all the Judaeans and Benjaminites and from the people living in Jerusalem.
10. They handed it over to the masters of works of Yahweh's House and these men used it for the repair and restoration of the House.
11. They gave it to the carpenters and builders for buying the stones and timber for the beams and framework of the buildings which the kings of Judah had let go to ruin.
12. The men worked conscientiously. Over them were set Jahath and Obadiah, Levites of the sons of Merari; together with Zechariah and Meshullam of the sons of Kohath, as supervisors. These Levites were all skilled liturgical musicians;
13. but they also directed the carriers and the masters of works of the various jobs. Other Levites were scribes, clerks and gatekeepers.
14. When they were taking out the money that had been brought to Yahweh's House, Hilkiah the high priest found the book of the Law given through Moses.
15. At once Hilkiah told Shaphan the secretary, "I have found the book of the Law in Yahweh's House." And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan.
16. Shaphan took the book to the king, and reported to him, "Your servants are carrying out the commands you gave them:
17. they have melted down the silver which was in Yahweh's House and have handed it over to the supervisors and masters of works."
18. After which Shaphan the secretary informed the king, "Hilkiah the priest has given me a book"; and Shaphan read from it in the king's presence.
19. When the king heard the book being read, he tore his garments,
20. and gave the following order to Hilkiah, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Abdon son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary and Asaiah the king's minister,
21. "Go and consult Yahweh, for me and for the people who still remain in Israel and Judah, about the words of the book that has been found. Great indeed must be the anger of Yahweh to be poured down on us because our ancestors did not observe the word of Yahweh nor do according to what is written in this book."
22. Hilkiah and the king's men went to Huldah the prophetess, wife of Shallum son of Tokhath, son of Hasrah, the keeper of the Temple robes; she lived in Jerusalem in the new town. They spoke to her about this,
23. and she answered, "This is the word of Yahweh for the man who sent you to me:
24. I am going to punish Jerusalem and all its people, carrying out all the curses written in the book that has been read in the presence of the king of Judah,
25. because they have abandoned me and have burned incense to other gods, stirring up my anger by everything they have done. Because of this my anger is aroused against Jerusalem, and it will not die down.
26. And you will tell the king of Judah who sent you to consult Yahweh, that thus answers Yahweh, the God of Israel, regarding the words you have heard:
27. Since your heart has been touched and you have humbled yourself before God on hearing what he has threatened against Jerusalem and those who live in it, since you have humbled yourself before me and torn your garments and wept before me, I for my part have heard - this is Yahweh's word.
28. The punishment which I am going to bring on Jerusalem will not come until after your death. I will let you die in peace." They took this answer to the king.
29. The king then had all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem summoned,
30. and the king went up to Yahweh's House, with all the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, priests, Levites and all the people, great and small alike. In their hearing he read out everything that was said in the book of the covenant found in Yahweh's House.
31. The king stood beside the pillar, and in the presence of Yahweh he made a covenant to follow Yahweh and to keep his laws and commands with all his heart and soul, as written in that book.
32. He committed everyone there in Jerusalem or in Benjamin to obey the requirements of the covenant of God, the God of their ancestors.
33. Josiah removed all the disgusting idols throughout the territories belonging to the people of Israel. For the rest of his life he made sure that every member of Israel served their God. They did not fail to follow Yahweh, the God of their ancestors.