The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Fourth Book of Kings
It was in the seventeenth year of Phacee, son of Romelia, that Achaz, son of Joatham, came to the throne of Juda.
He was twenty years old when he began his reign, which lasted at Jerusalem for sixteen years. This Achaz did not obey the Lord’s will like his ancestor David before him;
he followed the example of the Israelite kings, even consecrating his son by passage through the fire, after the idolatrous wont of those nations which the Lord drove out to make room for Israel.
Never a high hill or a mountain-slope or a leafy wood but Achaz must do sacrifice and offer incense there.
And now Rasin king of Syria and Phacee son of Romelia marched on Jerusalem and besieged Achaz there, but could not get the mastery of him.
(It was then that Rasin recovered Ailam for Syria, by driving the men of Juda out from it; but the Edomites came and took possession of it, and it remains theirs to this day.✻ )
Thereupon Achaz sent a message to the Assyrian king, Theglath-Phalasar; Bring aid, master, to thy servant, father, to thy son; rescue me from the assault of Syria and Israel;
gifts, too, he sent him, collecting all the silver and gold that was to be found in temple or palace.
Nor was the king of Assyria unwilling; he marched on Damascus and laid it waste, carrying off the inhabitants to Cyrene and putting Rasin to death.✻
When king Achaz went to meet Theglath-Phalasar at Damascus, he saw there an altar, of which he sent a likeness with a full account of all its workmanship, to the high priest Urias;
and Urias built an altar in accordance with all the directions Achaz had sent him from Damascus, to greet his return.
Returned from Damascus, Achaz went to see it and did reverence to it;✻ then went up to make burnt-sacrifice and meal-offering;
poured libations, and shed the blood of his welcome-offerings there.
Then he removed the brazen altar, that stood ever in the Lord’s presence opposite the tabernacle, away from its place between the new altar and the temple, to the north side of the new altar.
And king Achaz bade the high priest Urias bring to this greater altar the morning burnt-sacrifice and the meal-offering at nightfall; here king and people would present burnt-sacrifice and meal-offering and libations, here the blood of the burnt-sacrifice and all other offerings was to be spilt; as for the altar of bronze, it should await the king’s good pleasure.
And the high priest Urias carried out all his bidding.
King Achaz also took away the moulded stands and the smaller basins that rested on them; took away the oxen that supported the great basin and let it rest on a stone pavement instead;
altered, too, the sabbath porch he had built in the temple, and the outer part of the royal entry.✻ Of all these changes in the temple building the king of Assyria was the cause.
What else Achaz did, all his history, is to be found in the Annals of the kings of Juda.
So he was laid to rest with his fathers, with the Keep of David for his burying-place, and the throne passed to his son Ezechias.
The Holy Bible