“Shine like stars in the world, by holding firm to the word of life.” – Philippians 2:15-16

In the Old Testament, we read of one of the greatest kings to rule God’s people. Amid a long line of evil kings in Israel and Judah, Josiah’s life shines forth like a bright star in the night sky. This young king of Judah inspires a revival of faith in Jehovah God.

The nation of Judah has been led astray by Josiah’s father and grandfather, Amon and Manasseh. These kings “did evil in the sight of the Lord” (2 Chronicles 33:2, 22). Idolatry is running rampant in the land. The Book of the Law has been forsaken. Worship of Jehovah has all but ceased. The nation is desperate for a godly king.

»   What can we discover from King Josiah’s life to “shine like stars” in our world?

“Josiah… did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and followed the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left. In the eighth year of his reign, while he was still young, he began to seek the God of his father David.” – 2 Chronicles 34:1-3

Early on in his reign, King Josiah seeks Jehovah and His glory for Judah. He aspires to follow the Lord and His ways, not veering from the path set before him. This young king chooses not to hold to the ways of the disreputable kings who preceded him, but to walk in the footsteps of his godly ancestor, King David.

†   Seek the Lord and His plan – Stay on His path – Strive to not be swayed by the worldly, lured by temptations and led astray by untruths

“In his twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of high places, Asherah poles and idols… In the eighteenth year of Josiah’s reign, to purify the land and the temple.” – 2 Chronicles 34:3, 8

Josiah recognizes Judah’s downfall to be idolatry. The king has all vestiges of idol worship destroyed throughout the land. The “high places” with their pagan altars and shrines are torn down. The temple in Jerusalem is repaired and cleansed of any pagan influences.

†   Purge your life of idols – Anything set upon the throne of your life above God is an idol – Purify your heart, for you are God’s temple

“The king… went up to the temple of the Lord with the people of Judah… from the least to the greatest. He read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant.” – 2 Chronicles 34:29-30

In the temple cleansing, the priest finds the Book of the Law of Moses. Josiah is distraught that God’s commands have been forgotten. Without repentance, Judah will miss out on Jehovah’s blessings and will face His curses for their disobedience. The king gathers all of Judah together and reads the scrolls to the people.

†    Study Scripture – Let God speak to your heart as you read His Word – Hold fast to His words – Allow them to change your life

“The king stood by his pillar and renewed the covenant in the presence of the Lord—to follow the Lord and keep His commands, statutes and decrees with all his heart and all his soul.” – 2 Chronicles 34:31

There is never authentic repentance until there is a true grieving over sin. Josiah models heartfelt repentance before all the people of Judah. The king demonstrates spiritual leadership by renewing his covenant of faith with Jehovah to follow all His ways.

†   Repent and return – Pray for forgiveness when you stray – Promise to follow the Lord with all your heart

“Josiah… had all who were present in Israel serve the Lord their God. As long as he lived, they did not fail to follow the Lord, the God of their ancestors.” – 2 Chronicles 34:33

Josiah sparks a revival in the land, igniting faith and passion for Jehovah in the hearts of the people. They follow their king in repentance, ridding their lives of idolatry. All Judah pledges to follow the Lord in faithful commitment.

†   Live out your faith – Live out your passion for Christ – Inspire faith in the people in your arena of life

“The king gave this order to all the people: ’Celebrate the Passover to the Lord your God, as it is written in this Book of the Covenant.’ Neither in the days of the judges who led Israel nor in the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah had any such Passover been observed.” – 2 Kings 23:21-22

Josiah seeks to restore reverent worship of Jehovah once again in Judah. Passover is celebrated according to all the commands given by God to Moses. It is a grand and worshipful celebration unlike any that has ever been seen in Israel or Judah.

†   Worship with reverence – Celebrate the joy of the Lord – Come before Him with thanksgiving and praise

“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.” – 2 Kings 23:25

Josiah will forever be remembered in God’s Word for his faith that shone like a bright star to a dark world. He turned the nation of Judah from its wayward disobedience back to Jehovah God. His godly life impacted many lives of his day. His faith continues to inspire all who read of his life in Scripture.

†   Leave a godly legacy – Be a light for Christ in your sphere of influence that will carry into future generations – Shine like a bright star in your world