The exiles who were returning from the captivity offered burnt offerings to the God of Israel – twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven male lambs, along with twelve male goats as a sin offering. All this was a burnt offering to the Lord.
Yet my people have forgotten me and offered sacrifices to worthless idols! This makes them stumble along in the way they live and leave the old reliable path of their fathers. 1 They have left them to walk in bypaths, in roads that are not smooth and level. 2
I will do so because these people 1 have rejected me and have defiled 2 this place. They have offered sacrifices in it to other gods which neither they nor their ancestors 3 nor the kings of Judah knew anything about. They have filled it with the blood of innocent children. 4
The houses in Jerusalem and the houses of the kings of Judah will be defiled by dead bodies 1 just like this place, Topheth. For they offered sacrifice to the stars 2 and poured out drink offerings to other gods on the roofs of those houses.’”
“The Lord did indeed remember and call to mind what you did! He remembered the sacrifices you and your ancestors, your kings, your leaders, and all the rest of the people of the land offered to other gods 1 in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. 2
Then you will know that I am the Lord – when their dead lie among their idols around their altars, on every high hill and all the mountaintops, under every green tree and every leafy oak, 1 the places where they have offered fragrant incense to all their idols.
For from the east to the west my name will be great among the nations. Incense and pure offerings will be offered in my name everywhere, for my name will be great among the nations,” 1 says the Lord who rules over all.
But God turned away from them and gave them over 1 to worship the host 2 of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets: ‘It was not to me that you offered slain animals and sacrifices 3 forty years in the wilderness, was it, 4 house of Israel?
Then Paul took the men the next day, 1 and after he had purified himself 2 along with them, he went to the temple and gave notice 3 of the completion of the days of purification, 4 when 5 the sacrifice would be offered for each 6 of them.