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2 Chronicles 33:3-7

Context
33:3 He rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had destroyed; he set up altars for the Baals and made Asherah poles. He bowed down to all the stars in the sky 1  and worshiped 2  them. 33:4 He built altars in the Lord’s temple, about which the Lord had said, “Jerusalem will be my permanent home.” 3  33:5 In the two courtyards of the Lord’s temple he built altars for all the stars in the sky. 33:6 He passed his sons through the fire 4  in the Valley of Ben-Hinnom and practiced divination, omen reading, and sorcery. He set up a ritual pit to conjure up underworld spirits and appointed magicians to supervise it. 5  He did a great amount of evil in the sight of the Lord and angered him. 6  33:7 He put an idolatrous image he had made in God’s temple, about which God had said to David and to his son Solomon, “This temple in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, will be my permanent home. 7 

1 tn The phrase כָל צְבָא הֲַשָּׁמַיִם (khol tsÿvahashamayim), traditionally translated “all the host of heaven,” refers to the heavenly lights, including stars and planets. In 1 Kgs 22:19 these heavenly bodies are pictured as members of the Lord’s royal court or assembly, but many other texts view them as the illegitimate objects of pagan and Israelite worship.

2 tn Or “served.”

3 tn Heb “In Jerusalem my name will be permanently.”

4 tn Or “he sacrificed his sons in the fire.” This may refer to child sacrifice, though some interpret it as a less drastic cultic practice (NEB, NASV “made his sons pass through the fire”; NIV “sacrificed his sons in the fire”; NRSV “made his sons pass through fire”). For discussion see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 266-67.

5 tn Heb “and he set up a ritual pit, along with a conjurer.” Hebrew אוֹב (’ov, “ritual pit”) refers to a pit used by a magician to conjure up underworld spirits. In 1 Sam 28:7 the witch of Endor is called a בַּעֲלַת אוֹב (baalatov, “owner of a ritual pit”). See H. Hoffner, “Second Millennium Antecedents to the Hebrew ’OñBù,” JBL 86 (1967): 385-401.

6 tn Heb “and he multiplied doing what is evil in the eyes of the Lord, angering him.”

7 tn Heb “In this house and in Jerusalem, which I chose from all the tribes of Israel, I will place my name permanently” (or perhaps “forever”).



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