Pastor Jonathan Falwell
2 Kings 22:1-2 Josiah was eight years old when he became king and reigned 31 years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jedidah the daughter of Adaiah; she was from Bozkath. 2 He did what was right in the Lord’s sight and walked in all the ways of his ancestor David; he did not turn to the right or the left.
From about 1025 BC to 586 BC, Israel was ruled by the kings. Starting with Saul and ending with Zedekiah in Judah and Hoshea in Israel. Judah was taken into captivity by the Babylonians and Israel by the Assyrians. This was a dark period in the time of Israel as most of the kings were evil men who led Israel astray.
United Israel – 4 Kings (Saul, Ishbosheth, David, Solomon)
Divided Kingdom (Rehoboam ignored the advice of his father’s generation and went his own way)
Judah – 20 kings (14 evil, 6 good – Joash and Amaziah started off right but veered away)
Israel – 19 kings (all evil)
Josiah became king at 8 years old after his father, Amon, died. The legacy that Amon and his father, Manasseh, left was one of absolute evil. Josiah had no reason to do right, but Josiah was determined to change things. At 16, 2 Chronicles 34:3 says he began to seek out the God of David. At 18, he sought to restore the temple and sent his people to start the process.
1. A Spiritual Reboot
2 Kings 22:10-13 Then Shaphan the court secretary told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book,” and Shaphan read it in the presence of the king. 11 When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes. 12 Then he commanded Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Achbor son of Micaiah, Shaphan the court secretary, and the king’s servant Asaiah: 13 “Go and inquire of the Lord for me, the people, and all Judah about the instruction in this book that has been found. For great is the Lord’s wrath that is kindled against us because our ancestors have not obeyed the words of this book in order to do everything written about us.”
- Josiah began a spiritual journey that started in repentance
- After hearing God’s Word, he acted by seeking out God’s plan
- This was a spiritual “reboot” that the nation desperately needed but it started in the heart of one
2. A Spiritual Refocus
2 Kings 23:1-3 So the king sent messengers, and they gathered all the elders of Jerusalem and Judah to him. 2 Then the king went to the Lord’s temple with all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, as well as the priests and the prophets—all the people from the youngest to the oldest. As they listened, he read all the words of the book of the covenant that had been found in the Lord’s temple. 3 Next, the king stood by the pillar and made a covenant in the presence of the Lord to follow the Lord and to keep His commands, His decrees, and His statutes with all his mind and with all his heart, and to carry out the words of this covenant that were written in this book; all the people agreed to the covenant.
- God’s Word always brings change
- Josiah read the words to all who had gathered and led the people to refocus their hearts to the things of God and His covenant with them
- We live in a season of promise from God as well. He has promised so much to us all, yet like Israel, many times we’ve abandoned His Word and His ways
3. A Spiritual Renewal
2 Kings 23:25 Before him there was no king like him who turned to the Lord with all his mind and with all his heart and with all his strength according to all the law of Moses, and no one like him arose after him.
- It’s interesting that it was noted there had been no king like Josiah before and none after him. This includes David – “man after God’s own heart”
- How can this be true? Because Josiah is remembered as the one fulfilled the commands of Deut. 6:5 and Matt. 22:39
Deut 6:5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.
Matt. 22:39 He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38 This is the greatest and most important command. 39 The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself
- The world today is in desperate need of leaders who will determine in their hearts to LOVE HIM with everything, and LOVE PEOPLE in order to point them to God
- That’s what Josiah did, he led his country back to God