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365 Devotionals: From Solomon to Exile
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. James 1:22 AMP
The Seeds of Promise Devotional Series
But the people were silent and answered him not a word, for Hezekiah had commanded, Do not answer him. II Kings 18:36 AMP
|May||Book||Read From||Read To||Devotional|
|9th||II Kings||Chapter 21||Chapter 23||Tender Hearted|
9But they hearkened not: and Manasseh seduced them to do more evil than did the nations whom the LORD destroyed before the children of Israel.
When the Children of Judah followed whole-heartedly after God, they were faithful in all their doings to their deliverer. However, after many corrupt communications, they became as Solomon after his many strange wives had turned away his heart from God (I Kings 11:4). Solomon became weak-minded concerning his former commitment and began doing evil in the sight of God (I Kings 11:6). Though Solomon had been the epistle of wisdom, he later kindled the anger of God.
Solomon’s latter weakness was like unto the people of Judah in today’s reading. Had they not been in a weakened state because of disobedience, their elect had not been at a disadvantage (Mark 13:22). However, because they were astray, the King Manasseh was able to lead them even further from the truth (II Kings 21:9). And though the people of Judah were previously under God’s protection, he later sent adversaries to trouble and destroy among them, as his anger was stirred against them.
After the wickedness of Manasseh, in which Judah also took part, God promised to cut off his inheritance from His people. Yet He honored His servant David, sparing a remnant of Children of Israel. God promises to raise up a generation that will obey Him. There will always be a remnant to praise Him, no matter how many others turn away. When Manasseh died, his son Amon reigned in his stead and did evil. Yet from the people, God raised up Josiah. He was only eight years old when he began to reign (II Kings 22:1).
Josiah returned the kingdom to God’s grace. A people who had been engulfed in murderous conspiracy became such that there was no audit of accounts even in the payment of workers to re-build the neglected temple, because everyone was trustworthy (II Kings 22:7).
Though the people had forgotten God, Josiah did not allow their wickedness to influence Him. His heart remained tender toward God. When finally he heard the words of the book of the law, he sent messengers to inquire about the things that were read. He did not want the wrath of God to be upon the people.
II Kings 22: 14 -20
14 So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Shaphan, and Asahiah, went unto Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe; (now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the college;) and they communed with her. 15 And she said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Tell the man that sent you to me, 16 Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, and upon the inhabitants thereof, even all the words of the book which the king of Judah hath read: 17 Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands; therefore my wrath shall be kindled against this place, and shall not be quenched. 18 But to the king of Judah which sent you to inquire of the LORD, thus shall ye say to him, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, As touching the words which thou hast heard; 19 Because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the LORD, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee, saith the LORD. 20 Behold therefore, I will gather thee unto thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace; and thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this place. And they brought the king word again.
Because of David, God spared a remnant of the people of Judah, his descendants. Because of Josiah’s tender heart toward God, the people were spared a space. Josiah did not allow them to be ignorant of the law further, but had it read for all their hearing and made them to be in covenant with God again.
II Kings 23:1-3
1 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.
At Josiah’s command, abominations to God were destroyed. And in II Kings 23:35 we read, “And like unto him was there no king before him, that turned to the LORD with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him.”
Unfortunately, Josiah’s son did not carry on his earthly father’s good in the name of the Lord.
We know by the life of Josiah that God is both willing and able to turn away from wrath. When we choose our paths, we must be mindful of not only our own days, but of future generations. God knew the people would do evil again, even after he had delivered them so many times. Yet, he spared Josiah from the wrath that was prepared for the wicked. There is a straight and narrow way that leads to life. God is able to deliver his servants on the straight way. We must not allow the wickedness of this world and those under its influence who have become weak-minded, to lead us out of right standing with God. May we be tender hearted as was Josiah, to hear the Word of God and understand that He is giving us a choice. And if today we hear his voice, we have the opportunity to be saved.
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