2 Kings 22

2 Kings 22 has Josiah coming to the throne in Judah at age 8.  “He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all the way of David his father, and he did not turn aside to the right or to the left”.  The boy obviously had some good mentors and parental instruction as he follows God carefully.  But that was based on what he knew.  Ten years after taking the throne, he instructs one of his main men to go to the Lord’s house and on some business and while there Shaphan is given the Book of the Law.

Hilkiah the high priest says “I have found the Book of the Law in the house of the Lord”.  It’s been lost for many years and Josiah had never heard the words it contained.  Shaphan read it before the king and “when the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he tore his clothes”.  Josiah had been doing what he knew to follow God, but he had never read God’s Word and knew he was missing the mark.  So he wants to seek God to find out what his status as leader was, as well as the fate of his kingdom.

So Josiah tells his leadership team to “Go, inquire of the Lord for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found. For great is the wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us”.  No sense guessing what their status is.  Josiah wisely wants to hear directly from God.  And the answer not good.  God says “I will bring disaster upon this place and upon its inhabitants”.

God goes on to tell Josiah why.  “Because they have forsaken me and have made offerings to other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the work of their hands, therefore my wrath will be kindled against this place, and it will not be quenched”.  God is a jealous God, and consistently pours out anger when his people lose their way and worship other Gods.  Josiah is given a little consolation because of his attempt to walk with God.  “I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place”.  Obedience matters, but it needs to be based on God’s Word and His way not what we think it should be.

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