Assyria Resettles Samaria
24The king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim, and placed them in the cities of Samaria in place of the people of Israel; they took possession of Samaria, and settled in its cities.25When they first settled there, they did not worship the Lord; therefore the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them.26So the king of Assyria was told, “The nations that you have carried away and placed in the cities of Samaria do not know the law of the god of the land; therefore he has sent lions among them; they are killing them, because they do not know the law of the god of the land.”27Then the king of Assyria commanded, “Send there one of the priests whom you carried away from there; let him go and live there, and teach them the law of the god of the land.”28So one of the priests whom they had carried away from Samaria came and lived in Bethel; he taught them how they should worship the Lord.29But every nation still made gods of its own and put them in the shrines of the high places that the people of Samaria had made, every nation in the cities in which they lived;30the people of Babylon made Succoth-benoth, the people of Cuth made Nergal, the people of Hamath made Ashima;31the Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak; the Sepharvites burned their children in the fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharvaim.32They also worshiped the Lord and appointed from among themselves all sorts of people as priests of the high places, who sacrificed for them in the shrines of the high places.33So they worshiped the Lord but also served their own gods, after the manner of the nations from among whom they had been carried away.34To this day they continue to practice their former customs.
They do not worship the Lord and they do not follow the statutes or the ordinances or the law or the commandment that the Lord commanded the children of Jacob, whom he named Israel.35The Lord had made a covenant with them and commanded them, “You shall not worship other gods or bow yourselves to them or serve them or sacrifice to them,36but you shall worship the Lord, who brought you out of the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm; you shall bow yourselves to him, and to him you shall sacrifice.37The statutes and the ordinances and the law and the commandment that he wrote for you, you shall always be careful to observe. You shall not worship other gods;38you shall not forget the covenant that I have made with you. You shall not worship other gods,39but you shall worship the Lord your God; he will deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.”40They would not listen, however, but they continued to practice their former custom.41So these nations worshiped the Lord, but also served their carved images; to this day their children and their children's children continue to do as their ancestors did.