2 Kings 18:4
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
He removed the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake Moses had made, for up to that time the Israelites had been burning incense to it. (It was called Nehushtan.)

New Living Translation
He removed the pagan shrines, smashed the sacred pillars, and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke up the bronze serpent that Moses had made, because the people of Israel had been offering sacrifices to it. The bronze serpent was called Nehushtan.

English Standard Version
He removed the high places and broke the pillars and cut down the Asherah. And he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had made offerings to it (it was called Nehushtan).

New American Standard Bible
He removed the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah. He also broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the sons of Israel burned incense to it; and it was called Nehushtan.

King James Bible
He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
He removed the high places, shattered the sacred pillars, and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake that Moses made, for the Israelites burned incense to it up to that time. He called it Nehushtan.

International Standard Version
He removed the high places, demolished the sacred pillars, and tore down the Asherah poles. He also demolished the bronze serpent that Moses had crafted, because the Israelis had been burning incense to it right up until that time. Hezekiah called it a piece of brass.

NET Bible
He eliminated the high places, smashed the sacred pillars to bits, and cut down the Asherah pole. He also demolished the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for up to that time the Israelites had been offering incense to it; it was called Nehushtan.

New Heart English Bible
He removed the high places, and broke the pillars, and cut down the Asherah: and he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made; for in those days the children of Israel burned incense to it; and he called it Nehushtan.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
He got rid of the illegal places of worship, crushed the sacred stones, and cut down the poles dedicated to the goddess Asherah. He even crushed the bronze snake that Moses had made because up to that time the Israelites had been burning incense to it. They called it Nehushtan.

JPS Tanakh 1917
He removed the high places, and broke the pillars, and cut down the Asherah; and he broke in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made; for unto those days the children of Israel did offer to it; and it was called Nehushtan.

New American Standard 1977
He removed the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah. He also broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the sons of Israel burned incense to it; and it was called Nehushtan.

Jubilee Bible 2000
He removed the high places and broke the images and cut down the groves and broke in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made; for unto those days, the sons of Israel burned incense to it; and he called it Nehushtan. {Heb. a thing of brass}

King James 2000 Bible
He removed the high places, and broke the images, and cut down the idol poles, and broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made: for until those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

American King James Version
He removed the high places, and broke the images, and cut down the groves, and broke in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made: for to those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

American Standard Version
He removed the high places, and brake the pillars, and cut down the Asherah: and he brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made; for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it; and he called it Nehushtan.

Douay-Rheims Bible
He destroyed the n high places, and broke the statues in pieces, and cut down the groves, and broke the brazen serpent, which Moses had made: for till that time the children of Israel burnt incense to it: and he called its name Nohestan.

Darby Bible Translation
He removed the high places, and broke the columns, and cut down the Asherahs, and broke in pieces the serpent of brass that Moses had made; for to those days the children of Israel burned incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

English Revised Version
He removed the high places, and brake the pillars, and cut down the Asherah: And he brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made; for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it; and he called it Nehushtan.

Webster's Bible Translation
He removed the high places, and broke the images, and cut down the groves, and broke in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made: for till those days the children of Israel burnt incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

World English Bible
He removed the high places, and broke the pillars, and cut down the Asherah: and he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made; for to those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it; and he called it Nehushtan.

Young's Literal Translation
he hath turned aside the high places, and broken in pieces the standing-pillars, and cut down the shrine, and beaten down the brazen serpent that Moses made, for unto these days were the sons of Israel making perfume to it, and he calleth it 'a piece of brass.'
Study Bible
Hezekiah Destroys Idolatry in Judah
3He did right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father David had done. 4He removed the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah. He also broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the sons of Israel burned incense to it; and it was called Nehushtan. 5He trusted in the LORD, the God of Israel; so that after him there was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor among those who were before him.…
Cross References
Exodus 23:24
"You shall not worship their gods, nor serve them, nor do according to their deeds; but you shall utterly overthrow them and break their sacred pillars in pieces.

Exodus 34:13
"But rather, you are to tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars and cut down their Asherim

Numbers 21:8
Then the LORD said to Moses, "Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a standard; and it shall come about, that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he will live."

Numbers 21:9
And Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on the standard; and it came about, that if a serpent bit any man, when he looked to the bronze serpent, he lived.

2 Kings 18:22
"But if you say to me, 'We trust in the LORD our God,' is it not He whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah has taken away, and has said to Judah and to Jerusalem, 'You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem '?

2 Kings 21:3
For he rebuilt the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed; and he erected altars for Baal and made an Asherah, as Ahab king of Israel had done, and worshiped all the host of heaven and served them.

2 Chronicles 31:1
Now when all this was finished, all Israel who were present went out to the cities of Judah, broke the pillars in pieces, cut down the Asherim and pulled down the high places and the altars throughout all Judah and Benjamin, as well as in Ephraim and Manasseh, until they had destroyed them all. Then all the sons of Israel returned to their cities, each to his possession.

Isaiah 36:7
"But if you say to me, 'We trust in the LORD our God,' is it not He whose high places and whose altars Hezekiah has taken away and has said to Judah and to Jerusalem, 'You shall worship before this altar '?
Treasury of Scripture

He removed the high places, and broke the images, and cut down the groves, and broke in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made: for to those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

removed

2 Kings 12:3 But the high places were not taken away: the people still sacrificed …

2 Kings 14:4 However, the high places were not taken away: as yet the people did …

2 Kings 15:4,35 Save that the high places were not removed: the people sacrificed …

Leviticus 26:30 And I will destroy your high places, and cut down your images, and …

1 Kings 3:2,3 Only the people sacrificed in high places, because there was no house …

1 Kings 15:14 But the high places were not removed: nevertheless Asa's heart was …

1 Kings 22:43 And he walked in all the ways of Asa his father; he turned not aside …

Psalm 78:58 For they provoked him to anger with their high places, and moved …

Ezekiel 20:28,29 For when I had brought them into the land, for the which I lifted …

brake

2 Kings 23:4 And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of …

Deuteronomy 7:5 But thus shall you deal with them; you shall destroy their altars, …

Deuteronomy 12:2,3 You shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which …

Judges 6:25,28 And it came to pass the same night, that the LORD said to him, Take …

1 Kings 15:12,13 And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the …

2 Chronicles 19:3 Nevertheless there are good things found in you, in that you have …

2 Chronicles 31:1 Now when all this was finished, all Israel that were present went …

2 Chronicles 33:3 For he built again the high places which Hezekiah his father had …

images [heb] statues
the brasen serpent

Numbers 21:8,9 And the LORD said to Moses, Make you a fiery serpent, and set it …

John 3:14,15 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must …

unto those days

2 Kings 16:15 And king Ahaz commanded Urijah the priest, saying, On the great altar …

Nehushtan that is, a piece of brass

(4) He removed.--He it was who removed. According to this statement, Hezekiah made the Temple of Jerusalem the only place where Jehovah might be publicly worshipped. (Comp. 2Kings 18:22, and the fuller account in 2Chronicles 29:3-36.)

Brake the images.--Shattered the pillars (1Kings 14:23; Hosea 3:4; 2Chronicles 14:2).

The groves.--Heb., the Asherah. It should probably be plural, the Asherim, as in 2Chronicles 31:1, and all the versions here. (See Note on 2Kings 17:16.)

Brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made.--The attempt of Bhr and others to evade the obvious force of this simple statement is quite futile. It is clear that the compiler of Kings believed that the brasen serpent which Hezekiah destroyed was a relic of the Mosaic times. (See the narrative in Numbers 21:4-9, and the allusion to the fiery serpents in Deuteronomy 8:15.) His authority may have been oral tradition or a written document. In ancient Egypt the serpent symbolised the healing power of Deity; a symbolism which is repeated in the Grco-Roman myth of sculapius. When Moses set up the Brasen Serpent, he taught the people by means suited to their then capacity that the power of healing lay in the God whose prophet he was--namely, Jehovah; and that they must look to Him, rather than to any of the gods of Egypt, for help and healing. (Kuenen does not believe in the great antiquity of this relic. Yet the Egyptian and Babylonian remains which have come down to our time have lasted many centuries more than the interval between Moses and Hezekiah; and some of them were already ancient in the Mosaic age. Our own Doomsday Book is at least as old as the brasen serpent was when it was destroyed. There is really no tangible historical ground for this extreme unwillingness to admit the authenticity of anything attributed by tradition to the authorship and handiwork of Moses.)

And he called it.--Rather, and it was called. Literally, and one called it. The impersonal construction, like the German man nannte.

Nehushtan.--The popular name of the serpent-idol. It is vocalised as a derivative from n?'h?sheth, "brass," or "copper;" but it may really be formed from n?'h?sh, "serpent," and denote "great serpent" rather than "brass-god." (Comp. the term Leviathan, Job 3:8.) Further, although the word is certainly not a compound of n?'h?sheth, "copper," and t?n (i.e., tannn), "serpent," this may have been the popular etymology of the word. (Comp. the proper name, Nehushta, 2Kings 24:8.)

Verse 4. - He removed the high places. This was a comparatively late step in Hezekiah's religious reformation. He began, as we learn from Chronicles (2 Chronicles 29:3, 17), "in the first year of his reign, the first month, and the first day," by reopening the temple, which Ahaz had shut up, removing from it all the "filthiness" which Ahaz had allowed to accumulate (2 Chronicles 29:5), gathering together the priests and Levites and exhorting them (2 Chronicles 29:4-11), restoring and renewing the vessels which Ahaz had cut in pieces (2 Chronicles 29:19), and then re-establishing the temple-worship with all due solemnity (2 Chronicles 29:20-35). He next resolved on holding a grand Passover-festival, in the second month, as it had not been possible to keep it in the first (2 Chronicles 30:2, 3), and invited thereto, not only his own subjects, but the Israelites of the neighboring kingdom who were not yet carried off, but were still under the rule of Hoshea (2 Chronicles 30:10, 11, 18). It was not until this festival was over that the removal of the high places was taken in hand. Then, in a fit of zeal, which no doubt the king encouraged, a multitude of those who had kept the feast went forth from Jerusalem, first into the cities of Judah and Benjamin, and then into several of the cities of Israel, and "brake the images in pieces, and cut down the groves, and threw down the high places and the altars... and utterly destroyed them all" (see 2 Chronicles 31:1). And brake the images, and cut down the groves; literally, the grove, according to the present text; but, as all the versions have the plural, Thenius thinks אֲשֵׁרָה should be changed into אֲשֵׁרִים. Keil and Bahr, on the contrary, would retain the singular, but understand it "collectively." That idolatry was practiced at some of the high places seems clear from this place, as well as from 1 Kings 14:23. And brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made (see Numbers 21:9). Difficulties are raised with respect to this statement. Some argue that the serpent, having served its purpose, would have been left hanging at the place where it was set up in the wilderness; others, that Moses would have destroyed it, lest the Israelites should make it an idol; others, again, that it was not likely to have lasted seven hundred years from the Exodus, even if it was brought into Palestine and taken care cf. It is supposed, therefore, that an imitation of the original serpent had been made by the Jews in the reign of Ahaz, had been called "the serpent Of Moses," and was now destroyed. But there is no sufficient reason for any of these suppositions. Considering what the serpent typified (John 3:14), it is not surprising that Moses should have been instructed to preserve it with the furniture of the tabernacle, or that, when once attached to that structure, it should have been preserved as a religious relic for seven hundred years. Many Egyptian figures in bronze now exist which are from three thousand to four thousand years old. The statement of the writer of Kings, that Hezekiah did now destroy "the serpent that Moses had made," is of more weight than a thousand speculations concerning what is likely, or not likely, to have happened. For unto these days the children of Israel did burn incense to it. Not, certainly, "from Moses' time to Hezekiah's," but from a date left vague and undetermined to the time when Hezekiah took his religious reformation in hand. Hezekiah found the practice continuing; the writer is not concerned to say - perhaps does net know - when it began. He implies, however, that it was of long standing. Serpent-worship was widely spread in the East, and there was more excuse for directing religious regard toward this serpent than toward any other. And he called it Nehushtan; rather, and it was called Nehushtan. יקרא is a singular with indefinite subject ("one called"), equivalent to "they called," or "it was called" (comp. Genesis 25:26; Genesis 38:29, 30). Nehushtan is not from נחשׁ "serpent," but from נחשׁת, "brass," and means "the little brass thing," ן being a diminutive, expression of tenderness. He removed the high places,.... Which the best of the kings of Judah never attempted, and which is observed of them to their discredit:

and broke the images, and cut down the groves; the idols his father set up and served, 2 Kings 16:4, groves and idols in them, were early instances of idolatry; See Gill on Judges 3:7, and their use for temples are still continued, not only among some Indian nations (l), but among some Christians in the northern parts of Europe (m):

and brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made; which he made in the wilderness, and which was brought by the children of Israel with them into the land of Canaan, and was kept as a memorial of the miracle wrought by looking to it, being laid up in some proper place where it had been preserved to this day:

for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it not from the time it was brought into Canaan, nor even in later times, in the days of Asa and Jehoshaphat, who would never have suffered it; very probably this piece of idolatry began in the times of Ahaz, who encouraged everything of that kind: for this serpent they had a great veneration, being made by Moses, and a means in his time of healing the Israelites; and they imagined it might be of some service to them, in a way of mediation to God; and worthy of worship, having some degree of divinity, as Kimchi and Ben Gersom; but Laniado (n) excuses them from all show of idolatry, and supposes what they did was for the honour of God only; hence sprung the heresy of the Ophites, according to Theodoret:

and he called it Nehushtan; perceiving they were ensnared by it, and drawn into idolatry to it, by way of contempt he called it by this name, which signifies "brass"; suggesting that it was only a mere piece of brass, had no divinity in it, and could be of no service to them in divine things; and, that it might no longer be a snare to them, he broke it into pieces; and, as the Jews (o) say, ground it to powder, and scattered it to every wind, that there might be no remains of it.

(l) See Dampier's Voyage, vol. 1. p. 411. (m) Vid. Fabritii Bibliograph. Antiqu. c. 9. sect. 11. (n) Cli Yaker, fol. 538. 2.((o) T. Bab. Avodah Zarah, fol. 44. 1.2Ki 18:4-37. He Destroys Idolatry.

4. He removed the high places and brake the images, etc.—The methods adopted by this good king for extirpating idolatry, and accomplishing a thorough reformation in religion, are fully detailed (2Ch 20:3; 31:19). But they are indicated very briefly, and in a sort of passing allusion.

brake in pieces the brazen serpent—The preservation of this remarkable relic of antiquity (Nu 21:5-10) might, like the pot of manna and Aaron's rod, have remained an interesting and instructive monument of the divine goodness and mercy to the Israelites in the wilderness: and it must have required the exercise of no small courage and resolution to destroy it. But in the progress of degeneracy it had become an object of idolatrous worship and as the interests of true religion rendered its demolition necessary, Hezekiah, by taking this bold step, consulted both the glory of God and the good of his country.

unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it—It is not to be supposed that this superstitious reverence had been paid to it ever since the time of Moses, for such idolatry would not have been tolerated either by David or by Solomon in the early part of his reign, by Asa or Jehoshaphat had they been aware of such a folly. But the probability is, that the introduction of this superstition does not date earlier than the time when the family of Ahab, by their alliance with the throne of Judah, exercised a pernicious influence in paving the way for all kinds of idolatry. It is possible, however, as some think, that its origin may have arisen out of a misapprehension of Moses' language (Nu 21:8). Serpent-worship, how revolting soever it may appear, was an extensively diffused form of idolatry; and it would obtain an easier reception in Israel because many of the neighboring nations, such as the Egyptians and Phoenicians, adored idol gods in the form of serpents as the emblems of health and immortality.18:1-8 Hezekiah was a true son of David. Some others did that which was right, but not like David. Let us not suppose that when times and men are bad, they must needs grow worse and worse; that does not follow: after many bad kings, God raised one up like David himself. The brazen serpent had been carefully preserved, as a memorial of God's goodness to their fathers in the wilderness; but it was idle and wicked to burn incense to it. All helps to devotion, not warranted by the word of God, interrupt the exercise of faith; they always lead to superstition and other dangerous evils. Human nature perverts every thing of this kind. True faith needs not such aids; the word of God, daily thought upon and prayed over, is all the outward help we need.
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Alphabetical: also and Asherah been broke bronze burned burning called cut days down for had He high in incense into Israel Israelites it made Moses Nehushtan of pieces pillars places poles removed sacred serpent smashed snake sons stones that the those time to until up was

OT History: 2 Kings 18:4 He removed the high places and broke (2Ki iiKi ii ki 2 kg 2kg) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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