2 Kings 23; Hebrews 5; Joel 2; Psalm 142
How often do we read in both 1 and 2 Kings, “He did evil in the sight of the LORD?” That seems to be the main gist, then along comes Josiah. 2 Kings 23:25 says this of King Josiah: Before him there was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his might, according to all the Law of Moses, nor did any like him arise after him. That is quite a testimony and I would encourage you to read about Josiah in chapters 22 and 23. When the Book of the Law was discovered and brought to him he tore his clothes after reading it indicating great sorrow as he realized the great sin Israel had committed in not obeying all that was written in the Book of the Covenant. He gathered all the priests and all the people, “both small and great.” “And he read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant that had been found in the house of the Lord. And the king stood by the pillar and made a covenant before the Lord, to walk after the Lord and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people joined in the covenant.” (2 Kings 23: 2b-3) Brings to mind that phrase I have been reading in Hebrews the past couple of days, “Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.”
King Josiah then went about destroying all of the temples and idols and things that were used for worshipping all kinds of false gods. It has been done to some extent by a couple of previous kings, but Josiah was extremely thorough. He even reinstitutes the observance of Passover which had been long ago abandoned. He is a picutre of what it is to be zealous in following God.
As I thought about what Josiah embarked on after hearing God’s voice through what he read I wondered how many things might be around me that are not in keeping with loving God with all of my heart, and mind, and soul, and might. I am certainly inundated with a lot of outside influences that would vie to incline my heart towards wickedness (yesterday’s reading) some of those things might even be found within my own home as I think about the things that can come across my television screen if I let them. What about things that I have, things that I do, that I love more than God? What are the idols of my own heart? I pray I can be as thorough as King Josiah at recognizing and removing them.
Grace, peace, and mercy,