Josiah Old Testament

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The Old Testament is the first part of the Christian Bible. It is known as the ‘Old’ Testament because it was written before Christ came to earth, who is also known as ‘the Messiah’. The other two parts are known as the New Testament and these were written after Christ’s coming.’The books of the Old Testament include Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, 1 Kings and 2 Kings.

Josiah Old Testament


Josiah was a king of the southern kingdom of Judah. He came to power in 641 BCE, and ruled until his death in 609 BCE.

Josiah was born into a world where the Israelites had been enslaved by their Egyptian masters for over 400 years. His grandfather Hezekiah had led an uprising against their Egyptian overlords, but after his death, Josiah’s father Amon continued to pay tribute to the Egyptians.

Amon’s rule was short-lived: he was assassinated by one of his own officials after just two years on the throne. But Josiah’s mother saved him from being killed as well—in fact, she hid him away for thirty years until he was old enough to take over as ruler himself.

Josiah’s reign saw many changes in Judah: not only did he finally break free from Egypt’s control, but he also instituted religious reforms that focused on restoring worship at Jerusalem’s Temple and repairing its infrastructure. Josiah also fought against idolatry throughout Judah and encouraged religious observance among ordinary folk through festivals and public ceremonies like Passover (which commemorated Israelite slavery under Moses).

The Religious Changes Josiah Made

The religious changes Josiah made are one of the most notable accomplishments in his reign. Upon taking the throne, Josiah wasted no time in reforming the religious practices of Judah and Jerusalem. He removed all false idols and images from the temple, tore down the high places where animal sacrifices were offered, and forbade any kind of pagan worship.

This change was not popular with many in Judah, especially those who benefited from the former system of religious idolatry. But Josiah refused to back down and continued to promote reform until he had successfully cleansed Judah of all its false deities.

The Rest of Josiah’s Reign

Josiah’s reign as Judah’s sixth king can be divided into two parts: the first, which lasted until his death in 609 BC, was a time of reform and renewal. He eliminated pagan worship and restored the worship of Yahweh, the God of Israel. He also purged the government of corrupt officials and ended forced labor.

However, Josiah’s second half was much less successful. In 587 BC he fell victim to a conspiracy led by his own son Jehoiakim. Jehoiakim replaced Josiah’s reforms with a return to idolatry and oppressive taxation. The people revolted, overthrowing Jehoiakim and installing Zedekiah as Judah’s seventh king.

Josiah’s Death and Burial

The Book of Josiah records the death and burial of Josiah, the last king of Judah. According to the book, Josiah was sick and died in his bed in Jerusalem. He was then buried in the Valley of Jehoshaphat, according to the instructions he had given before his death.

The book also records that after Josiah’s death, his son Joram succeeded him as king. Joram was considered a bad king by most of the people of Judah, who thought he was not doing enough to reform the country. In 609 BC, Joram was killed by Pharaoh Neco II of Egypt, who claimed that Joram had blasphemed against God.

Josiah was 8 years old when he became king of Judah, and he reigned for 31 years in Jerusalem. His mother […]

Josiah was 8 years old when he became king of Judah, and he reigned for 31 years in Jerusalem. His mother was Jedidah daughter of Adaiah of Bozkath. Josiah did what was right in the eyes of God all the days that Jehoiakim his father was king, but not like his ancestor David. He destroyed the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah poles on every high hill, and tore down all the incense altars throughout all the towns of Judah that had been built by people from other nations—even though they offered sacrifices to other gods!

At the age of 16, Josiah started seeking the God of his ancestor David. He abandoned the pagan practices of […]

Josiah was born in 649 B.C. to Amon and Jedidah, who were the grandson and granddaughter of Manasseh. He became king of Judah at the age of sixteen, when his father Amon was assassinated by servants who wanted Josiah to rule instead.

Josiah had been brought up in idolatry, but at the age of sixteen he began seeking God with all his heart. He tore down all the idols that had been set up throughout Judah and Israel, cleansed the temple from its uncleanness by removing everything that was used for religious practices such as sacrifice or divination (see 2 Kings 22:2-7).

Josiah sought nothing but God; therefore he reigned over Israel for 31 years—the longest reign among all kings before him or after him until Christ came into this world (Matthew 1:17).

During the 18th year of his reign, Josiah sent Shaphan son of Azaliah to repair the temple of the LORD.

Ezra describes this event in 2 Kings 22:8, saying that Josiah sent Shaphan to repair the temple. As you might recall from our previous lesson, Shaphan was one of Josiah’s men who helped him find all of the Torah scrolls that had been hidden away.

Shaphan went off to repair the temple but found a scroll instead! It was a book called “The Book of the Law” and it had been written by Moses himself long ago (Deuteronomy 31:9). When he heard what was written in those scrolls, Josiah became very upset and tore his clothes as a sign of mourning over all those people who had lived before him without knowing about God’s laws (2 Kings 22:11-13).

While Hilkiah the priest was giving money to Azariah son of Meshullam for repairs, he found the Book of the Law […]

The king was very moved by the book, so he ordered all of his people to follow it. He also had Hilkiah the priest go back to where he found the book and told him to make sure that everyone followed its instructions.

Hilkiah found another copy of it there too (this one was written on stone), and he showed both copies to Josiah who looked through them carefully.

When Josiah heard the words of The Book of the Law read to him by a scribe, he ripped his clothes in despair.

You can imagine the scene: Josiah, eyes filled with tears, stands before a crowd of people who have gathered at the Temple. He has just heard The Book of the Law read to him by a scribe and is now preparing to speak. But before he does so, he rips his clothes in despair because he realizes that he has sinned against God.

The reason for his grief? Josiah knew what it meant when The Book of the Law was read aloud to him; he understood its implications for both himself and for his people. Most likely King Josiah had been told about these laws before—it’s likely that even as a child growing up under Davidic rule, after centuries of idolatry and injustice under foreign kings like Manasseh and Amon (cf. 2 Kings 21:1-18), King Josiah would have been aware at least in some small way how badly Israel needed reform if it was going to survive into future generations! But now hearing those words spoken out loud by another person confirmed what was already known inside: God was displeased with them due their disobedience and lackadaisical attitude toward holy living!

Here is what King Josiah said to all his officials after reading The Book of The Law: “Don’t you realize that […]

King Josiah’s reaction to The Law is a model of humility and response. After reading it, he was not only moved but also humbled. He didn’t shrug off the content of God’s Word as if it were some kind of entertaining fiction or egotistical boasting by Jahweh; rather, it was an awe-inspiring revelation from a perfect Being who had created him and all things (Psalm 19). And then he did something that many people would find impossible: he actually responded to what he read in The Law with humility and reverence. He listened closely to what Jahweh had said through Moses about His uncompromising demand for holiness among His people—purity that must be maintained at all costs if they were going to remain connected with Him (Leviticus 11–15; Deuteronomy 4:6–8).

“From now on, let there be no more worshiping at that altar on Mount Gerizim and no more sacrifices offered […]

The altar on Mount Gerizim was where the Samaritans worshipped. The Samaritans believed God was not just one person but three—Elohim (God), Yahweh (Lord), and Adonai (Lord). They also believed that their priests could offer sacrifices to God, unlike the Jews who only worshiped Him through prayer and fasting.

The prophet Ezra told the people that they should not worship or sacrifice at this altar anymore because it was not part of what God wanted from them.

“The Passover celebration must be held each year in Jerusalem. No one from any other town or tribe may take part […]

The Passover celebration must be held each year in Jerusalem. No one from any other town or tribe may take part.

This was a significant reform for the nation of Judah, as it had been long forgotten by many people in Judah. By reestablishing these feasts, Josiah ensured that all his subjects were reminded of the God who had redeemed them from Egypt and thus kept them from forgetting their identity. This also made it possible for all Israelites to worship together at the temple in Jerusalem during these festivals, which further strengthened their unity as one people under God’s authority.[1]

Section:”But you must be careful to obey all these instructions and decrees I have issued to you.”

Josiah was a good king because he listened to God. He followed God’s commandments and decrees, as you should do. It is clear that Josiah was a very good example for you to follow, but it does not make sense that you should follow the example of someone who did not listen to God.


Josiah’s reforms were very successful. The people of Judah obeyed all of God’s laws, just as they were written in The Book of The Law. None of the other kings before Josiah had done this, and none after did it either. Though he was a young king, his heart was set on doing what was right and pleasing to God. Even though Jeroboam II’s prophecy that the northern kingdom would rule over Judah came true during Josiah’s reign, Josiah himself remained obedient to God until his death.

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