2 Chronicles 35

Josiah has the Passover

1 And Josiah had a Passover feast in Jerusalem for the Lord. They killed the sacrifice for Passover on the 14th day of the first month of the year. 2 He caused the priests to do their special jobs. Then he made them happy to be servants in the Lord's house. 3 He spoke to the Levites who were teaching all the Israelites. These Levites had made themselves holy to work for the Lord. He said, ‘Put the holy Covenant Box in the house that Solomon the son of David the king of Israel built. Do not carry it about on your shoulders. Now you must be the servants of the Lord your God and of his people the Israelites. 4 Make yourselves ready to do the work that King David and King Solomon chose for each group in each clan. David the king of Israel and his son Solomon wrote about the way that you must do it.’

What the priests and Levites must do

5 ‘Stand in the holy place. There should be a group of Levites for each clan of the people or of the Levites. 6 Kill the young sheep for the Passover. Make yourselves holy. And prepare the young sheep for those who are not Levites. Do it as the Lord said to us by Moses.’

Many people give offerings

7 Josiah gave to the Israelites 30,000 young sheep and young goats to kill for the Passover sacrifices. That was enough animals for all the people who were there. And he gave to them 3,000 bulls. All those animals were from the king's own animals.

8 Also, his leaders gave animals freely to the people, to the priests and to the Levites. Hilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel were rulers in God's house. They gave to the priests 2,600 young sheep and young goats and 300 bulls for Passover sacrifices. 9 Conaniah, Shemaiah, Nethanel, Hashabiah, Jeiel and Jozabad gave animals to the Levites as sacrifices for the Passover. The animals that they gave were 5,000 young sheep and young goats and 500 bulls. Shemaiah and Nethanel were Conaniah's brothers. Hashabiah, Jeiel and Jozabad were leaders of the Levites.

The worship begins

10 Everything was ready for the Passover to begin. The priests and the Levites stood in their places, as the king had said. 11 The Levites killed the young sheep for the Passover and they gave the blood to the priests. The priests threw the blood on the altar. At the same time, the Levites were taking the skins from the animals. 12 They put the animals for sacrifices by fire to one side for the people. Then they gave some animals to those who belonged to each clan among the Israelites. They would sacrifice them to the Lord as Moses had written in his book. And they did the same thing with the bulls. 13 They cooked the animals for Passover over fire as is in the rules. And they boiled the holy sacrifices in three kinds of large and small pots. Then they quickly carried the meat to all the people. 14 After that, the Levites prepared the animals for themselves and for the priests. The priests, the descendants of Aaron, were giving the sacrifices by fire and the fat to God. They were doing that until it became dark. So, the Levites prepared the animals for themselves and for the priests, Aaron's descendants.

15 The singers stood where they should stand. They were descendants of Asaph. They were in their places as David, Asaph, Heman and the king's prophet, Jeduthun had said. The men who kept each gate safe did not need to leave their gates. The other Levites prepared everything for them.

The feasts happen in a proper way

16 So, they prepared everything that day to worship the Lord. They had the Passover feast and they gave the sacrifices by fire on the Lord's altar. They did everything that King Josiah had said. 17 Some Israelite people were also there. They had the Passover festival at that time. And they had the Feast of Flat Bread. That feast continued for seven days. 18 There had not been a Passover like that in Israel since the time when the prophet Samuel was still alive. No king of Israel had a Passover like the Passover that King Josiah had. With him were the priests, the Levites and the people who lived in Jerusalem. All the people from Judah and Israel who were there had the Passover too. 19 They had this Passover in the 18th year that Josiah ruled Judah.

Josiah dies while he is fighting the king of Egypt

20 After Josiah had done all that for the temple, Neco, the king of Egypt came into the country. He came to the city called Carchemish. Carchemish is by the river Euphrates. He came to fight against the people who lived there. And Josiah went to fight against him. 21 But Neco sent men to Josiah. They said to him, ‘King of Judah, you and I should not fight. I did not come to fight you. I came to fight my enemies. God told me that I must hurry. God is with me, so do not fight against him. If you do not fight against me, God will not kill you.’

22 But Josiah would not stop his attack. He did not want Neco's soldiers to know that he was Josiah. So he wore different clothes to fight against Neco. God had used Neco to speak to Josiah. But Josiah would not listen to his words. He went to fight Neco on the flat land at Megiddo.

23 Neco's men shot King Josiah with arrows. The king said to his servants, ‘Take me away. The arrows have hurt me very badly.’ 24 So, they took him out of that chariot and they put him in his other chariot. Then they brought him to Jerusalem and he died there. They buried him near his ancestors. All the people in Judah and in Jerusalem were very sad because Josiah was dead.

25 Jeremiah wrote sad songs about Josiah's death. Even today, all the male and female singers remember Josiah with these songs. These songs became like a law in Israel. They are in a book with other sad songs.

26-27 Everything else that Josiah did is in the Book about the Kings of Israel and Judah. Everything is there from the first thing to the last thing. That includes all the good things that he did. He tried to obey everything that is in the Law of the Lord.