Summary: PROPOSITION: Because Christ is the new covenant, you must surrender to Him and walk with Him in order to live the ‘righteousness of life”.
The Righteousness of Life!
Please turn to 2 Kings 23. Have you ever seen a teenager or some young person (bus kid) come out of a home full of evil (sin) and goes on to be something for God? This is what is happening in this passage. A bright and shiny star (Josiah) emerges out of a wicked household and nation full of darkness which is totally immersed in idolatry and apostate worship; from God’s perspective he goes on to be one of the greatest kings in Judah (23:25). We can learn from Josiah, “how we can help establish righteousness in our land”.
Have you ever been to the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas? During the war for Texas independence, in March, 1836 about 150 Texas soldiers under the command of Colonel William Barret Travis held the fort against 5,000 Mexican troops led by General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. Refusing to surrender, even when their ammunition was exhausted, the Texas patriots fought the enemy in hand-to-hand combat, using their empty muskets as clubs. Finally, all of them were killed, including the famous border heroes James Bowie and Davy Crockett.
Out of the drama of that historical battle came the legend of a last-hour conference within the Alamo before the final Mexican assault. Travis told his men they had no ammunition and no chance of surviving Santa Anna's next attack. Drawing his sword, the colonel drew a line in the dirt floor of the mission. He said, "I have promised we will never surrender, so if you wish to remain and fight to the death, step across this line. Those who do not may escape under cover of darkness tonight." One by one, each courageous soldier stepped across the line with Travis. There was even one fighter who was wounded and asked that his cot be carried across the line to be on the side of those heroic martyrs. The motto for the War of Independence became "Remember the Alamo!"
People are stirred by heroism, and we honor those who refuse to retreat or give in. It seems the
very idea of surrendering to a stronger force is abhorrent to us. Maybe that's why some people
rebel at the idea of surrendering to God. They wince at the thought of becoming a "slave of God."
Darkness rules the planet earth under the sovereign control of God. Just as the soldiers in the Alamo would not surrender to the enemy, even so we must not surrender to our enemy (a life of living for ourselves) but rather must stand in a position of living the righteousness of life. May our motto be, “Remember to live righteousness!”
PROPOSITION: Because Christ is the new covenant, you must surrender to Him and walk with Him in order to live the ‘righteousness of life”.
Pattern in Scripture: Pro 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.
Joshua leadership – great blessing as God gives them the Promised Land!
Judges – (13) people went whoring after other gods (corruption from within lead to oppression from without) -- lack of leadership “everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25). So, God sent judges (charismatic military leaders) whose chief function was to deliver the nation from its enemies.
Saul – (an bad choice) -- Israel wants a King like the rest of the nations to fight for them.
David – a man after God’s own heart is given the covenant (promise of a dynasty which will be ‘forever’) -- His descendants would reign
Solomon – great blessing but sows seeds of evil through his idolatrous wives
His son, King Jeroboam and the ‘Division of Israel’
Story of 10 northern tribes – 200 years of apostate worship and the eventual captivity to Assyria
God promises never revoked
The remaining kingdom of the south – Judah (Kings/Chronicles)
8 Kings did right – God merciful because of David
Manessah—55 year reign was the worst King in the south (2 Kings 21:11)
Amorites evil was so bad – God drove them out but Manessah, “hath done wickedly above all that the Amorites did”… The Israelites were to be “light” in a dark place but lived like the people around them.
Josiah, Manessah’s grandson -- comes to the throne at the age of eight..
In 2 Kings 22-23 we see the influence of a godly leader (22:2).
2Ch 34:3 For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was yet young, he began to seek after the God of David his father: and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem from the high places, and the groves, and the carved images, and the molten images.
“who turned to the Lord with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might…” 2 Ki 22:11