Talks for Growing Christians
Josiah’s Great Revival
2 Kings 23:1-25
Lesson Number 37
- 1. Great revivals require great commitment.
- 2. Great revivals involve great reform.
- Make celebration a part of your reform.
- Review the reign of King Josiah to this point.
- What did Josiah do after he read the Law?
- What is the key to revival in your personal or church life?
- What was a “high place”?
- Why are the cities of Samaria mentioned in verses 19-20?
- Josiah became king when he was 8 years old, following the reign of two extremely wicked kings. In his 18th year of ruling he began major repairs on the Temple, which had fallen into disrepair. During the work on the Temple, a hidden copy of the Book of the Law was found. After the reading of the Law, King Josiah tore his clothes in repentance and humbled himself before the Lord.
- He gathered all the people together, including the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the priests, and the prophets. After a reading of the Law in the presence of the people, Josiah called the people to publicly enter into a covenant with the Lord to keep the Law of God.
- There were many high places set up throughout Israel and Judah where worship of the true God was taking place. But this was not appropriate worship. All sacrifices were to take place in Jerusalem at the House of the Lord, not at the high places.
- Even though the northern kingdom of Israel had been conquered by the Assyrians 100 years before this time, there were still Jews living in these northern cities and practicing idolatry. (Samaria was the capital of the northern kingdom of Israel, and the name is often used to refer to the entire region.)
- 1. Great revivals require great commitment. Our commitment must be to the Lord and His Word – not to people or programs. Discuss the distinction here.
- 2. As we read of Josiah’s sweeping reformation, we see how bad the moral and spiritual conditions were in Judah. Do you think this moral and spiritual decay came suddenly or gradually? Discuss how easily this can happen.
- King Josiah not only got rid of the negative in his reform, he also practiced the positive. How can you make celebration a part of your reform?
- “Then the king stood by a pillar and made a covenant before the LORD, to follow the LORD and to keep His commandments and His testimonies and His statutes, with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people took a stand for the covenant.” 2 Kings 23:3
- “Then the king commanded all the people, saying, ‘Keep the Passover to the LORD your God, as it is written in this Book of the Covenant.’ Such a Passover surely had never been held since the days of the judges who judged Israel, nor in all the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah.” 2 Kings 23:21-22
- “Now before him there was no king like him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the Law of Moses; nor after him did any arise like him.” 2 Kings 23:25