1Josiah was eight years old when he came to the throne, and he reigned for thirty-one years inJerusalem. His mother's name was Jedidah daughter of Adaiah, of Bozkath. 2He did what Yahweh regards as right, and in every respect fol owed the example of his ancestor David,not deviating from it to right or left. 3In the eighteenth year of King Josiah, the king sent the secretary Shaphan son of Azaliah, son ofMeshullam to the Temple of Yahweh. 4'Go to Hilkiah the high priest,' he told him, 'and tel him to melt down the silver contributed to theTemple of Yahweh and col ected by the guardians of the threshold from the people. 5He is to hand it over to the masters of works attached to the Temple of Yahweh, for them to pay it overto men working on the Temple of Yahweh, to repair the damaged parts of the Temple: 6to the carpenters, builders and masons, and for buying timber and dressed stone for the Templerepairs.' 7The latter were not required to render account of the money handed over to them, since they wereconscientious in their work. 8The high priest Hilkiah said to Shaphan the secretary, 'I have found the Book of the Law in the Templeof Yahweh.' And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, who read it. 9Shaphan the secretary went to the king, reporting furthermore to him as fol ows, 'Your servants havemelted down the silver which was in the Temple and have handed it over to the masters of works attached to theTemple of Yahweh.' 10Then Shaphan the secretary informed the king, 'The priest Hilkiah has given me a book'; andShaphan read it aloud in the king's presence. 11On hearing the words of the Book of the Law he tore his clothes. 12Then the king gave the fol owing order to the priest Hilkiah, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Achbor son ofMicaiah, Shaphan the secretary and Asaiah the king's minister: 13'Go and consult Yahweh on behalf of me and the people about the words of the book that has beendiscovered; for Yahweh's furious wrath has been kindled against us because our ancestors disobeyed the wordof Yahweh by not doing what this book says they ought to have done.' 14The priest Hilkiah, Ahikam, Achbor, Shaphan and Asaiah went to the prophetess Huldah wife ofShal um son of Tikvah, son of Harhas the keeper of the wardrobe; she lived in Jerusalem in the new town. Theyput the matter to her, 15and she replied, 'Yahweh, God of Israel, says this, "To the man who sent you to me say this: 16Yahweh says this: I am going to bring disaster on this place and the people who live in it -- all thewords of the book read by the king of Judah. 17Because they have abandoned me and sacrificed to other gods, so as to provoke my anger by theirevery action, my wrath is kindled against this place, and nothing can stop it. 18As for the king of Judah who sent you to consult Yahweh, say this to him: As regards the words youhave heard . . . 19But since your heart has been touched and you have humbled yourself before Yahweh on hearingwhat I have decreed against this place and the people who live in it, how they wil become an object of horrorand cursing, and have torn your clothes and wept before me, I too have heard -- Yahweh says this. 20So look, when I gather you to your ancestors, you wil be gathered into your grave in peace; you willnot live to see the great disaster that I am going to bring on this place." ' They took this answer to the king.
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