1. When all this was complete, all Israel present went out to the towns of Judah, broke the pillars, cut down the sacred poles, wrecked the high places and the altars, and did away with them entirely throughout Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, and Manasseh. Then all the Israelites returned to their towns, everyone to his property.

2. Hezekiah re-established the priestly and levitical orders, each man in his proper order according to his duties, whether priest or Levite, to bring burnt offerings and communion sacrifices, to serve and to give thanks and praise within the gates of Yahweh's camp.

3. He also established a king's portion from his possessions for the morning and evening burnt offerings, and the burnt offerings for the Sabbaths, New Moons and festivals, as laid down in the Law of Yahweh.

4. He furthermore requested the people living in Jerusalem to present the portion for the priests and Levites so that they might devote themselves to the Law of Yahweh.

5. As soon as the order had been promulgated, the Israelites provided the first fruits of grain, new wine, olive oil, honey and every other kind of agricultural produce in abundance; they brought in an abundant tithe of everything.

6. The Israelites and Judaeans living in the towns of Judah also brought in the tithe of cattle and sheep, and the tithe of sacred gifts consecrated to Yahweh their God, laying them in heaps.

7. They began accumulating the heaps in the third month and had finished them by the seventh.

8. When Hezekiah and the officials came to inspect the heaps they praised Yahweh and his people Israel.

9. While Hezekiah was questioning the priests and Levites about the heaps,

10. Azariah, the chief priest, of the family of Zadok, replied as follows, 'Since they began bringing the contributions to the Temple of Yahweh,' he said, 'we have had enough to eat and quantities left over, for Yahweh has blessed his people; this mass of stuff is left.'

11. Hezekiah then ordered them to have storerooms prepared in the Temple of Yahweh and, when they had got them ready,

12. they conscientiously brought in the contributions, tithes and consecrated gifts, Conaniah the Levite was put in charge of them, with Shimei his brother as his assistant,

13. and with Jehiel, Azaziah, Nahath, Asahel, Jeremith, Jozabad, Eliel, Ismachiah, Mahath, and Benaiah as overseers under Conaniah and his brother Shimei, by order of King Hezekiah and of Azariah, the chief of the Temple of God.

14. Kore son of Jimnah the Levite, keeper of the eastern gate, was made responsible for the voluntary offerings to God and for providing the portion set aside for Yahweh and the most holy gifts.

15. Supporting him loyally in the priestly towns were Eden, Miniamin, Jeshua, Shemaiah, Amariah and Shechaniah, who made the distributions to their brothers in their various orders, whether high or low,

16. irrespective of their official genealogy, to the males of thirty years and upwards -- to each one who attended the Temple of Yahweh to fulfil his daily obligations -- for the performance of their duties appropriate to their orders:

17. the priests being registered according to family and the Levites of twenty years and upwards according to their duties within their orders.

18. And the official genealogy included all their household, their wives, their sons and their daughters, throughout the community, since these men were obliged to keep sanctifying themselves anew.

19. The Aaronite priests who lived on the pasture lands belonging to their towns, had men named in every town to distribute portions to every male among the priests and to everyone included in the official genealogy of the Levites.

20. Hezekiah did this throughout all Judah. He did what Yahweh his God regards as good and right and loyal.

21. Everything that he undertook, whether in the service of the Temple of God or in connection with the law or the commandments, he did in absolute devotion to his God, and so succeeded.

Livros sugeridos

“O Anjo de Deus não nos abandona jamais.” São Padre Pio de Pietrelcina


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