Summary: Our last hero, Josiah, shows us what it means to be a breakthrough hero. What Josiah is able to accomplish sets the stage for the renewal of a pivotal worship practice that prepares the way for Jesus’ new covenant.

Heroes of the OT:


2 Kings 23:19-25

March 29, 2009

Our last hero is Josiah. He is what I’m calling a breakthrough hero. I’ll be talking about what that means for the people of the OT and for us. What I believe this hero will address is the social area of our lives with a strong emphasis on our emotional and spiritual growth as well.

I want to share one more time from our trip. On the ship, we had an inside cabin. There were two long hallways running the length of the ship that had access to cabins on either side. The cabins along one side all were on the outside and therefore had windows. The cabins on the other side were oriented toward the middle of the ship so no windows.

I didn’t think anything of it… until the first morning. I have packed a clock for trips in years because hotels all have alarm clocks in them but our cabin had no clock except the LCD on the phone, which couldn’t be seen in the dark. And believe me, on the inside cabins, it is dark. Pitch black. No windows. No light except what might come in under the bottom of the door. With no clock and no windows, we had no idea what time it was.

I had my cell phone. But that first night, I didn’t realize that whatever network that my phone connected to must have been on Pacific time. I get up to see what time it is and look at the cell phone and it says two something. I’m thinking this is the longest night ever. Remember I had no window. Of course the ship has been going back and forth all night. I knew that this wasn’t true but when laying down, the movement was really accentuated and it felt like the ship was going to tip over. I also figured out why the beds always are perpendicular to the length of the ship. Other wise you’d probably find yourself on the floor.

So I get up and see what time it isn’t. And think, I better go to the bathroom and go back to bed. But here is the thing about the bathroom. For some bizarre reason, it has a lip that you have step over. A sort of speed bump. I guess if you really have to go, they want to slow you down so you don’t run straight through the wall because it really was about the size of a closet. It is like the engineers were saying, “I know you are in a hurry but don’t forget that this bathroom is puny. We don’t want you to forget that and forget to hit the brakes.”

Again its pitch black. Do you see where I’m heading? I’m heading through the wall anyway. I could just see someone tripping over that ledge and landing with their head in the toilet. Their hand goes out to push themselves up by pushing the wall and they find out that the little button is what flushes it. And when it flushes, it flushes!! Whooosh. It creates a little cyclone. The toilet paper starts to unroll. I could just imagine me getting my head stuck there when I flush.

So you learn pretty quick to make the giant step over. And if it is dark, you want to make sure that you clear it. So it looks like this. And that becomes a habit. Everytime you go to the bathroom, you step over the ledge. So if you see me walking into the bathroom here and I do this, you know why. But it’s also pretty handy. It is a great tell. Because you tell who is needing to go to the bathroom by how they are walking. The bigger the step. The worse they have to go.

So after two or three times of tripping over this barrier, the light goes on (sometimes literally) and you adjust to get over the barrier. And sometimes it is that way in other areas of our lives. Sometimes we have trip and fall down metaphorically or bang our head against the wall a few times before we realize what we need to change in order to breakthrough.

In Judah’s case, they realized that big changes needed to be made. Josiah as the king of Judah saw that. Josiah was a breakthrough hero because he helped Judah make a huge breakthrough spiritually. Unfortunately, just like in the days of the judges, the pattern of falling away continued and the changes were not permanent.

A little history, Josiah became king at 8 years old. He became king because his father was assassinated. Josiah’s Dad, Amon, was a poor example. He followed the Baal’s and led the people of Judah into rejection of God and God’s ways. But his example was his own father (Josiah’s grandfather), Manasseh. The bible says that Josiah’s grandfather desecrated God’s temple by instituting worship of idols in it. It says that he led the people to practices that were worse than the people that God drove out in the first place including child sacrifice. God tried to speak to Manasseh but he nor the people listened so they were attacked and subjugated by a foreign king. Finally Manasseh turned to God and things improved but he died and his son, Amon, became king. Amon tried to get the country to go back to idol worship but was assassinated. The people then made Josiah the king.

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