God’s Word Goes Forth: Offer Thanks and Praise to God
2 Chronicles 35:1-19: King Josiah celebrates the Passover in Jerusalem and assigns specific duties to the religious leaders.
Today's Scripture: 2 Chronicles 35:16a
So, as King Josiah had commanded, everything was done that day for the worship of the LORD.
1 King Josiah celebrated the Passover at Jerusalem in honor of the LORD; on the fourteenth day of the first month they killed the animals for the festival. 2 He assigned to the priests the duties they were to perform in the Temple and encouraged them to do them well. 3 He also gave these instructions to the Levites, the teachers of Israel, who were dedicated to the LORD: “Put the sacred Covenant Box in the Temple that King Solomon, the son of David, built. You are no longer to carry it from place to place, but you are to serve the LORD your God and his people Israel. 4 Take your places in the Temple by clans, according to the responsibilities assigned to you by King David and his son King Solomon, 5 and arrange yourselves so that some of you will be available to help each family of the people of Israel. 6 You are to kill the Passover lambs and goats. Now make yourselves ritually clean and prepare the sacrifices in order that your fellow Israelites may follow the instructions which the LORD gave through Moses. ” 7 For the use of the people at the Passover, King Josiah contributed from his own herds and flocks 30,000 sheep, lambs, and young goats, and 3,000 bulls. 8 His officials also made contributions for the people, the priests, and the Levites to use. And the officials in charge of the Temple—Hilkiah, the High Priest, Zechariah, and Jehiel—gave the priests 2,600 lambs and young goats and 300 bulls for sacrifices during the festival. 9 The leaders of the Levites—Conaniah, Shemaiah and his brother Nethanel, Hashabiah, Jeiel, and Jozabad—contributed 5,000 lambs and young goats and 500 bulls for the Levites to offer as sacrifices. 10 When everything was arranged for the Passover, the priests and the Levites took their posts, as commanded by the king. 11 After the lambs and goats had been killed, the Levites skinned them, and the priests sprinkled the blood on the altar. 12 Then they divided among the people, by family groups, the animals for burnt offerings, so that they could offer them according to the instructions in the Law of Moses. 13 The Levites roasted the Passover sacrifices over the fire, according to the regulations, and boiled the sacred offerings in pots, kettles, and pans, and quickly distributed the meat to the people. 14 After this was done, the Levites provided meat for themselves and for the priests descended from Aaron, for the priests were kept busy until night, burning the animals that were burned whole and the fat of the sacrifices. 15 The following musicians of the Levite clan of Asaph were in the places assigned to them by King David's instructions: Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, the king's prophet. The guards at the Temple gates did not need to leave their posts, because the other Levites prepared the Passover for them. 16 So, as King Josiah had commanded, everything was done that day for the worship of the LORD, the keeping of the Passover Festival, and the offering of burnt offerings on the altar. 17 For seven days all the people of Israel who were present celebrated the Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread. 18 Since the days of the prophet Samuel, the Passover had never been celebrated like this. None of the former kings had ever celebrated a Passover like this one celebrated by King Josiah, the priests, the Levites, and the people of Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem 19 in the eighteenth year of Josiah's reign.
Today’s reading concludes by stating that “none of the former kings had ever celebrated a Passover like this one celebrated by King Josiah” (verse 18). Describe how the Passover was celebrated. What were the people given? Based on yesterday’s and today’s readings, how would you describe Josiah and his reign?
Lord God, may my words and actions today reflect my love for you and serve as a sign of worship. You alone are worthy of praise. In your holy name I pray, Amen.
Those planning special celebrations this month.
Psalm 65: A psalm of praise and thanksgiving for God’s abundant blessings.