Summary: I invite your attention to the examination of a boy named Josiah, whose times thrust him into a role he did not choose. The narrative of Josiah is remarkable on a number of levels.
TITLE: FIND THE BOOK
SCRIPTURE: II KINGS 22:1-14
This morning, I invite your attention to the examination of a boy named Josiah, whose times thrust him into a role he did not choose. The narrative of Josiah is remarkable on a number of levels. Josiah was (8) eight years of age when he became king; he reigned 31 years in Jerusalem. He did what was right in the LORD’s sight and walked in the ways of his ancestor David; he did not turn aside to the right or the left.
Are there any 8 Years olds in the Church this morning, if so, would you stand? Imagine Mom and Dad, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, if your 8 years old, instead of going into the third grade, you became the President of the United States! That’s what happened to Josiah. But there are a couple of other factors you need to know that combine to raise our esteem for this boy who would become King.
To get a handle on the political scene in Josiah’s day, go back hundreds of years before Josiah to the death of Solomon, which marked the beginning of a fractured and divided Israel.
• A civil war would soon break out
• Eventually forcing the creation of two separate kingdoms where there was once one nation
• Ten of the twelve tribes of Israel united to form what was called the Northern Kingdom of Israel
• The remaining two tribes formed the Southern Kingdom, known as Judah
By the time Josiah came to the throne of Judah, the Northern Kingdom of Israel was no more. Eighty years (80) before Josiah, God brought an end to the Northern Kingdom because of their continued rebellion against Him and the idolatrous practices that pervaded the land.
• The Almighty appointed the ruthless Assyrian Army as the instrument of His judgment
• The death toll for the Hebrew people was massive
• Those that survived were deported to Assyria, never to return to their homeland again
In the 8 decades that followed the FALL OF THE NORTHERN KINGDOM, Judah sank deeper and deeper into sin. The prophetic preaching of MICAH– ZEPHANIAH – JEREMIAH – HABAKKUK - all took place in Judah during this time, each of them warning of impending judgment unless there was repentance. But their cries fell on deaf ears.
Just wanted to remind our Bible readers and inform those not familiar with the Old Testament, when Josiah comes as a child to the throne of Judah, he inherits a kingdom where moral anarchy and rampant idolatry were common.
• Do you remember Josiah’s Grandfather?
• His grandfather was Manasseh, who ruled for 55 years in Judah
• He led the most disgusting and vile life imaginable
• What would it be like as an 8-year old to have your recollections of your grandfather be of a man who dedicated himself to removing God’s Word from Judah and replacing the worship of God with idols?
• How would it affect Josiah to know that Grandpa sacrificed some of his own children to satanic gods?
• Or to read the accounts of the wholesale slaughter of innocent people that marked his reign, such that the Bible says of him -- Manasseh also shed so much innocent blood that he filled Jerusalem with it from one end to another?
Let’s not forget about Josiah’s Father. He was not much better.
• Josiah’s Father AMON was not much better than his father
• Amon’s reign as the King was very brief
• Amon, followed in his father Manasseh’s footsteps
• Amon would be assassinated in his second year as king by the palace servants
• People were tired of Manasseh’s reign glad when he died after 55 years on the throne
• His son Amon was just evil and the people were tired of it
• After just two years on the throne the servants of Amon were feed up with him and tired of his evil, nasty ways, therefore; his own servants assassinated him
This is how at 8-years of age, the Grandson of Manasseh – the Son of Amon - Josiah – the boy who would become King would take the throne. This was the spiritual heritage handed to Josiah.
• This was the reason he came to the throne at such an early age
• He had no godly model to follow in his immediate family
• He faced an unpredictable and volatile political climate in his world
• His nation was spinning out of control, headed for the judgment of God
• What possible difference could a child make in such dire conditions?
This is why I don’t buy into the Principle of being a –VICTIM OF YOUR CIRCUMSTANCE OR ENVIRONMENT.
• Josiah did not have the benefit of being raised by a Father