The Second Book of the Kings

Chapter 16

Ahaz's wicked reign, 1-4. Ahaz, assailed by Rezin and Pekah, hires Tiglath-pileser against them, 5-9. Ahaz, sending a pattern of an altar from Damascus to Urijah, diverts the brazen altar to his own devotions, 10-16. He plunders the temple, 17, 18. Hezekiah succeeds him, 19, 20.

1 In the seventeenth year of Pekah the son of Remaliah, Ahaz the son of Jotham king of Judah began to reign. 2 Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign, and reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem. He did not do that which was right in the sight of the LORD his God, like David his father. 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 heathen whom the LORD cast out from before the children of Israel. 4 And he sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.

5 Then Rezin king of Syria and Pekah son of Remaliah king of Israel came up to Jerusalem to war. And they besieged Ahaz, but could not overcome him. 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 have dwelt there to this day.

7 So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, saying, "I am your servant and your son. Come up, and save me from the hand of the king of Syria and from the hand of the king of Israel who rise up against me." 8 And Ahaz took the silver and gold that was found in the house of the LORD and in the treasures of the king's house and sent it for a present to the king of Assyria. 9 And the king of Assyria listened to him, for the king of Assyria went up against Damascus, took it, and carried the people of it captive to Kir and slew Rezin.

10 And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria and saw an altar that was at Damascus. And king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar and its pattern, according to all its workmanship. 11 And Urijah the priest built an altar according to all that king Ahaz had sent from Damascus. So Urijah the priest made it before king Ahaz came from Damascus. 12 And when the king had come from Damascus, the king saw the altar. And the king approached the altar and offered on it. 13 And he burnt his burnt-offering and his food-offering, poured his drink-offering, and sprinkled the blood of his peace-offerings upon the altar. 14 And he also brought the brazen altar, which was before the LORD, from the front of the house, from between the altar and the house of the LORD, and put it on the north side of the altar. 15 And king Ahaz commanded Urijah the priest, saying, "Upon the great altar burn the morning burnt-offering, the evening food-offering, the king's burnt-sacrifice, and his food-offering, with the burnt-offering of all the people of the land, their food-offering, and their drink-offerings, and sprinkle upon it all the blood of the burnt-offering and all the blood of the sacrifice. And the brazen altar shall be for me to inquire by." 16 Thus Urijah the priest did according to all that king Ahaz commanded.

17 And king Ahaz cut off the borders of the bases and removed the basin from off them, and took down the sea from off the brazen oxen that were under it and put it upon a pavement of stones. 18 And the covert for the sabbath that they had built in the house and the king's entry outside, he turned from the house of the LORD for the king of Assyria.

19 Now the rest of the acts of Ahaz which he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? 20 And Ahaz slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. And Hezekiah his son reigned in his stead.


Matthew Henry Commentary - 2nd Kings, Chapter 16[➚]