A song of the degrees. Out of the depths have I called thee, O Lord.
Lord, listen to my voice: let thy ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.
And therefore will the Lord wait, to be gracious unto you, and therefore will he exalt himself, to have mercy upon you; for a God of justice is the Lord: happy are all those that wait for him.
Surely, only goodness and kindness shall follow me all the days of my life: and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord to the utmost length of days.
1 Then sent Hezekiah to all Israel and Judah, and he also wrote letters to Ephraim and Manasseh, that they should come to the house of the Lord at Jerusalem, to prepare the passoversacrifice unto the Lord the God of Israel.
2 And the king held a consultation, as also his princes, and all the assembly in Jerusalem, to prepare the passoversacrifice in the second month.
3 For they were not able to prepare it at that time; because the priests had not sanctified themselves sufficiently, nor had the people gathered themselves together to Jerusalem.
4 And the thing seemed right in the eyes of the king and in the eyes of all the assembly.
5 So they established a decree to cause a proclamation to be made throughout all Israel, from Beersheba even as far as Dan, that they should come to prepare the passoversacrifice unto thy Lord the God of Israel at Jerusalem; because for a long time past they had not prepared it as it was written,
6 So the runners went with the letters from the hand of the king and his princes throughout all Israel and Judah, and according to the command of the king, saying, O children of Israel, return unto the Lord the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Israel, and he will return to the remnant of you, that are escaped out of the power of the kings of Assyria.
7 And be net like your fathers, and like your brethren, who acted faithlessly against the Lord the God of their fathers, wherefore he gave them up to become an object of astonishment, as ye see.
8 Now do ye not harden your necks, like your fathers: hold out your hand unto the Lord, and come unto his sanctuary, which he hath sanctified for ever, and serve the Lord your God, and so will he turn away from you the fierceness of his wrath.
9 For If ye return unto the Lord, your brethren and your children will find mercy in the presence of their captors, so that they may return to this land; for the Lord your God is gracious and merciful, and will not turn away his countenance from you, if ye return unto him.
10 And as the runners were passing from city to city through the country of Ephraim and Menasseh and as far as Zebulun, they were laughing them to scorn, and mocking at them.
11 Nevertheless some men of Asher and Menasseh and of Zebulun humbled themselves, and came to Jerusalem.
12 Also over Judah came the hand of God to give unto them one heart to do the command of the king and of the princes, by the word of the Lord.
13 And there was gathered together at Jerusalem a numerous people to keep the feast of unleavened bread in the second month, a very great assembly.
14 And they arose and removed the altars which were in Jerusalem, and all the vessels for burning incense did they take away, and they threw them into the brook Kidron.
15 And they slaughtered the passoversacrifice on the fourteenth day of the second month: and the priests and the Levites were ashamed, and sanctified themselves, and brought burntofferings unto the house of the Lord.
16 And they stood on their station after their prescribed manner, according to the law of Moses the man of God, the priest sprinkling the blood, which they received out of the hand of the Levites.
17 For there were many in the assembly that had not sanctified themselves: therefore the Levites had the charge of the slaughtering of the passover sacrifices for every one that was not clean, to sanctify the same unto the Lord.
18 For a large portion of the people, even many out of Ephraim, and Menasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun, had not cleansed themselves, but ate the passover not as it is written. However Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, The Lord who is good will grant pardon for this.
19 To every one that hath directed his heart to seek God, the Lord the God of his fathers; though he be not cleansed according to the purification of the sanctuary.
20 And the Lord hearkened to Hezekiah, and he healed the people.
21 And the children of Israel that were present at Jerusalem celebrated the feast of unleavened bread seven days with great joy; and the Levites and the priests praised the Lord day by day, with loud instruments before the Lord.
22 And Hezekiah spoke comfortingly unto all the Levites that had good intelligence of the Lord: and they ate the festiveofferings during seven days, offering peaceofferings, and making confession to the Lord the God of their fathers.
23 And the whole assembly took counsel to celebrate other seven days: and they celebrated these seven days with joy.
24 For Hezekiah king of Judah had provided for the assembly one thousand bullocks and seven thousand sheep; and the princes had provided for the assembly one thousand bullocks and ten thousand sheep: and the priests sanctified themselves in great numbers.
25 And thus rejoiced all the assembly of Judah, and the priests and the Levites, and all the assembly that was come out of Israel, and the strangers that were come out of the land of Israel, and those that dwelt in Judah.
26 And there was great joy in Jerusalem: for since the time of Solomon the son of David the king of Israel had the like not been in Jerusalem.
27 Then arose the priests the Levites and blessed the people: and their voice was listened to, and their prayer came to His holy dwellingplace, even unto heaven.
Merciful and gracious is the Lord, longsuffering and abundant in kindness.
He that concealeth his transgressions will not prosper; but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them will obtain mercy.
24 The Lord bless thee, and preserve thee;
25 The Lord make his face shine unto thee, and be gracious to thee;
26 The Lord lift up his countenance unto thee, and give thee peace.
And may the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us; and the work of our hands do thou firmly establish upon us: yea, the work of our handsfirmly establish thou it.