Summary: Revival came and people recommitted their hearts and lives to God. This is what we need today.
PREPARING FOR REVIVAL
2 Kings 22:1-2 Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty and one years in Jerusalem.
And his mother's name was Jedidah, the daughter of Adaiah of Boscath. 2 And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.
Josiah was raised in an ungodly home. His evil, idolatrous father King Amon was assassinated when he was 8 years old, so he inherited the throne and became King. He was raised by Hilkiah the High Priest until he was ready to be king.
The spiritual and moral conditions of Judah continued to decline. Northern Israel had already been carried into captivity by the Assyrians, and God had plainly told Judah that the same would happen to them if they didn’t repent. Yet the Kings and the people of Judah ignored God’s warnings and went on living like the people of Noah’s day.
At age 26 King Josiah ordered that money to be collected
for the restoration of the Temple in Jerusalem. During the remodeling project, Hilkiah the High Priest found a copy of the first 5 books of the Bible and immediately sent it to
King Josiah. The first 5 books of the Bible known as the Pentateuch or “the Book of the Law” was in essence the Jewish Bible of the time. So for the first time in his life,
this Godly King heard the Word of God read to him.
2 Kings 22:11-13 And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the book of the law, that he rent his clothes. 12 And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest,
and Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Achbor the son of Michaiah, and Shaphan the scribe, and Asahiah a servant of the king's, saying, 13 Go ye, enquire of the LORD for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that is found: for great is the wrath of the LORD that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book, to do according unto all that which is written concerning us.
What was his response? He tore his robes, humbled himself and wept in the presence of the Lord.
He then sent his officials to find a prophet to inquire of the Lord, as to what to do. His officials were able to locate a prophetess named Huldah. Her message from the Lord confirmed that God was indeed going to bring disaster on the land and people, but He would give King Josiah peace during his reign because he had a responsive heart
when he heard the Word of the Lord read to him.
2 Kings 23:1-3 And the king sent, and they gathered unto him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem. 2 And the king went up into the house of the LORD, and all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem with him, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the people, both small and great: and he read in their ears all the words of the book of the covenant which was found in the house of the LORD.
3 And the king stood by a 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 their heart and all their soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book.
And all the people stood to the covenant.
Revival came and people recommitted their hearts
and lives to God. This is what we need today.
After this renewal, King Josiah set about ripping down pagan altars, burning occultic shrines, and killing the occultic priests. He removed the vile articles made for Baal and Asherah worship. He also tore down the quarters of the male shrine prostitutes. King Josiah cleaned house.
The last thing he did was to re-institute the observance of the Passover. Not only had the Bible been neglected, but they even neglected to observe Passover. 2 Kings 23:22 says,
“Not since the days of the judges who led Israel,
nor throughout the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah, has any such Passover been observed.” It had been 750 years since the Jews had celebrated the Passover.
Josiah was a godly king. “Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did – with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses.”