Josiah became king of Israel at the tender age of eight. When he was 16 he began to seek the Lord. Four years later at the age of twenty he began to tear down the places of idol worship. Six years later he began to rebuild the temple of God. When the book of the law was found, he tore his clothes and told everyone how they had disobeyed God. He set about to get Israel right with God.
Josiah loved God and loved His word. He accomplished more for God before he turned 30 than most people do in twice that amount of time. I love Josiah’s heart. My husband and I named our son after him because we want our son to love God and His word just like king Josiah. Oh, but king Josiah did not end his life well.
20 After all this, when Josiah had set the temple in order, Neco king of Egypt came up to make war at Carchemish on the Euphrates, and Josiah went out to engage him. 21 But Neco sent messengers to him, saying, “What have we to do with each other, O King of Judah? I am not coming against you today but against the house with which I am at war, and God has ordered me to hurry. Stop for your own sake from interfering with God who is with me, so that He will not destroy you.” 22 However, Josiah would not turn away from him… 2 Chronicles 35:20-22
I wonder why Josiah did not turn away from Neco. Was Josiah too proud? He loved God, God spoke to Him, maybe Josiah couldn’t believe that God would use…a gentile…an Egyptian. Was Josiah so sure that God was on his side that he forgot to ask himself if he was on God’s side? Is it possible that we do the same? We puff ourselves up and think that we do not have anything to learn. Maybe we even doubt that anyone could tell us something about God that we don’t know. We don’t listen to warnings or Godly council because we are tight with God.
Could it be pride that drove Josiah to his end? Josiah did not turn away from Neco, instead he went to war with Neco and died from a battle wound. Josiah died in a battle that God never wanted him to fight. Could we lose our lives or maybe our witness to pride? Are we engaging in a battle God never wanted us to fight? Let us not lose our witness, our testimony, even our lives to battles God never wanted us to fight. Instead let us have teachable and humble hearts. Hearts that heed God’s council and guidance wherever it comes from.
What are some ways we can prevent ourselves from ending poorly?