We have come to the account of Josiah. Once again, there was peace because a righteous king reigned in Judah. As young as Josiah was when he began to reign (8 years old), it is purely grace that he wasn't influenced by his wicked father, Amon, had been a young man himself when he died. He was only 24 years old when his servants conspired to kill him after he had only reigned for 2 years.
Verse 33 tells us that Josiah was 16 years old when he followed the LORD. His reforms reached even into the former country of Israel. Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, and Naphtali were not part of Judah after the nation divided into two kingdoms during the reign of Rehoboam.
Josiah began the Temple restoration project in his 18th year of reign. It was then that the scriptures were discovered! Josiah's distress at hearing that his forebears had not followed the LORD but had instead led the country into apostasy touched the very heart of God.
Does God issue any commands?
- With the discovery of the book of the law of Moses the king and his people were made aware of the commands of God and how the nation had ignored them.
Does God make any promises?
- Through Huldah the prophetess God told Josiah that He would indeed bring all the evil upon the inhabitants of the land as promised in the book of the law given to Moses; however, Josiah would not see the wrath of God upon the land. The siege would take place after Josiah had died. Josiah had turned to the LORD and had repented with tears before Him therefore God would spare Josiah from the troubles to come.
Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?
- Josiah was spared from judgment because of the grace of God. God's grace always comes through saving faith in the atoning work of Christ. Josiah repented of sin and trusted the atonement provided by God for him.
Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?
- God promised to remove Josiah before His judgment fell. God will remove those that are His prior to the Great Tribulation that is to come.