Evil Ahaz becomes king of Judah.
VERSE 1. In the seventeenth year of Pekah the son of Remaliah, Ahaz the son of Jotham king of Judah began to reign.
the seventeenth year of Pekah. That was 735 BC.
VERSE 2. Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. He didn’t do that which was right in the LORD his God’s eyes, like David his father.
He didn’t do that which was right. Ahaz is more evil than any of the kings before him.
VERSE 3. But he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, and even made his son to pass through the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD cast out from before the children of Israel.
even made his son to pass through the fire. King Ahaz slaughters his own child as a religious sacrifice to the Canaanite god Molech.
the nations whom the LORD cast out. The Canaanite people had been committing child sacrifice. In their worship of the god Molech, they slaughtered their children.
This was so heinous an act that the LORD God exterminated them from the face of the earth.
But now, King Ahaz brings this heinous evil back.
VERSE 4. He sacrificed and burned incense in the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.
sacrificed and burned incense. This was forbidden.
VERSE 5. Then Rezin king of Syria and Pekah son of Remaliah king of Israel came up to Jerusalem to wage war. They besieged Ahaz, but could not overcome him.
VERSE 6. At that time Rezin king of Syria recovered Elath to Syria, and drove the Jews from Elath; and the Syrians came to Elath, and lived there to this day.
VERSE 7. So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath Pileser king of Assyria, saying, “I am your servant and your son. Come up and save me out of the hand of the king of Syria and out of the hand of the king of Israel, who rise up against me.”
save me. This is a profoundly selfish statement. His only concern is himself. He doesn’t mention his people. Or his nation.
VERSE 8. Ahaz took the silver and gold that was found in the LORD’s house, and in the treasures of the king’s house, and sent it for a present to the king of Assyria.
the silver and gold that was found in the LORD’s house. These are not his to give away.
VERSE 9. The king of Assyria listened to him; and the king of Assyria went up against Damascus and took it, and carried its people captive to Kir, and killed Rezin.
VERSE 10. King Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath Pileser king of Assyria, and saw the altar that was at Damascus; and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest a drawing of the altar and plans to build it.
saw the altar that was at Damascus. This altar was to an Aramean god. Or more likely, an Assyrian god.
VERSE 11. Urijah the priest built an altar. According to all that king Ahaz had sent from Damascus, so Urijah the priest made it for the coming of king Ahaz from Damascus.
Urijah the priest built an altar. Urijah the priest is an official agent of the One God of Israel.
But he is willing to build an altar to a forbidden god. That tells us the priesthood is in a state of apostasy. It is completely corrupt.
VERSE 12. When the king had come from Damascus, the king saw the altar; and the king came near to the altar, and offered on it.
VERSE 13. He burned his burnt offering and his meal offering, poured his drink offering, and sprinkled the blood of his peace offerings on the altar.
VERSE 14. The bronze altar, which was before the LORD, he brought from the front of the house, from between his altar and the LORD’s house, and put it on the north side of his altar.
VERSE 15. King Ahaz commanded Urijah the priest, saying, “On the great altar burn the morning burnt offering, the evening meal offering, the king’s burnt offering and his meal offering, with the burnt offering of all the people of the land, their meal offering, and their drink offerings; and sprinkle on it all the blood of the burnt offering, and all the blood of the sacrifice; but the bronze altar will be for me to inquire by.”
VERSE 16. Urijah the priest did so, according to all that king Ahaz commanded.
VERSE 17. King Ahaz cut off the panels of the bases, and removed the basin from off them, and took down the sea from off the bronze oxen that were under it, and put it on a pavement of stone.
VERSE 18. He removed the covered way for the Sabbath that they had built in the house, and the king’s outer entrance to the LORD’s house, because of the king of Assyria.
VERSE 19. Now the rest of the acts of Ahaz which he did, aren’t they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?
VERSE 20. Ahaz slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in David’s city; and Hezekiah his son reigned in his place.
Ahaz slept with his fathers. That is, he died.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.