Such a celebration has not happened since Solomon dedicated the temple. This celebration is reminiscent of that time in several ways: all of Israel gathers for the occasion, the king makes lavish donations for the celebration, and the festival lasts an extra week. Like Solomon, Hezekiah focuses on his nation’s relationship with God by making the temple and proper worship central to Israelite life.
31 When the Passover was finished, all the Israelites who had attended the festival left Jerusalem for the cities of Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, and Manasseh. There they continued Hezekiah’s zeal by destroying all cultic statues and carved images of Asherah. Having purged the nation of idolatrous symbols like the high places and altars, the Israelites returned to their own homes.
2 Meanwhile Hezekiah continued structuring the temple activities. He reorganized the divisions of priests and Levites according to their duties, such as making burnt or peace offerings, ministering, worshiping, or praising near the gates to the Eternal’s camp.
This camp is, of course, the temple, but the chronicler refers to the temple here as “the camp” to remind the people of their early connection to the Lord when their ancestors fled Egypt and followed Him in the desert.
3 Just as his ancestors David and Solomon did before him, Hezekiah donated a portion of his animals for the morning, evening, Sabbath, new moon, and other festival burnt offerings as the Eternal’s law requires.[a]
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