21:3 He rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had destroyed; he set up altars for Baal and made an Asherah pole just like King Ahab of Israel had done. He bowed down to all the stars in the sky 1 and worshiped 2 them.
2 Kings 21:5Context
21:5 In the two courtyards of the Lord’s temple he built altars for all the stars in the sky.
2 Kings 21:7Context
21:7 He put an idol of Asherah he had made in the temple, about which the Lord 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. 3
2 Kings 23:4Context
23:4 The king ordered Hilkiah the high priest, the high-ranking priests, 4 and the guards 5 to bring out of the Lord’s temple all the items that were used in the worship of 6 Baal, Asherah, and all the stars of the sky. 7 The king 8 burned them outside of Jerusalem in the terraces 9 of Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. 10
2 Kings 23:6Context
23:6 He removed the Asherah pole from the Lord’s temple and took it outside Jerusalem to the Kidron Valley, where he burned it. 11 He smashed it to dust and then threw the dust in the public graveyard. 12
2 tn Or “served.”
3 tn Heb “In this house and in Jerusalem, which I chose from all the tribes of Israel, I will place my name perpetually (or perhaps “forever”).”
4 tn Heb “the priests of the second [rank],” that is, those ranked just beneath Hilkiah.
5 tn Or “doorkeepers.”
6 tn Heb “for.”
8 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the king) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
9 tn Or “fields.” For a defense of the translation “terraces,” see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 285.
11 tn Heb “and he burned it in the Kidron Valley.”
12 tc Heb “on the grave of the sons of the people.” Some Hebrew, Greek, Syriac, Aramaic, and Latin witnesses read the plural “graves.”
tn The phrase “sons of the people” refers here to the common people (see BDB 766 s.v. עַם), as opposed to the upper classes who would have private tombs.