JOSIAH’S REPAIR & RECOVERY
2 Chronicles 34:7 And when he had broken down the altars and the groves, and had beaten the graven images into powder, and cut down all the idols throughout all the land of Israel, he returned to Jerusalem. 8 Now in the eighteenth year of his reign, when he had purged the land, and the house, he sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, and Maaseiah the governor of the city, and Joah the son of Joahaz the recorder, to repair the house of the LORD his God. 9 And when they came to Hilkiah the high priest, they delivered the money that was brought into the house of God, which the Levites that kept the doors had gathered of the hand of Manasseh and Ephraim, and of all the remnant of Israel, and of all Judah and Benjamin; and they returned to Jerusalem.
2 Chronicles 34:14 And when they brought out the money that was brought into the house of the LORD, Hilkiah the priest found a book of the law of the LORD given by Moses. 15 And Hilkiah answered and said to Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD. And Hilkiah delivered the book to Shaphan. 16 And Shaphan carried the book to the king, and brought the king word back again, saying, All that was committed to thy servants, they do it. 17 And they have gathered together the money that was found in the house of the LORD, and have delivered it into the hand of the overseers, and to the hand of the workmen. 18 Then Shaphan the scribe told the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath given me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king. 19 And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the law, that he rent his clothes.
The Moving of the Spirit
King Josiah is a beautiful type of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of kings, and also, a pattern of the Bride of Christ, His Body, the true, spiritual church. We noticed in our last writing that Josiah broke the pattern of natural lineage. For both his grandfather and father were wicked men. And since he does not discover the scriptures, laying lost in the temple until later years of his life, this break from the depravity of the natural line was the exclusive work of the Holy Spirit!
Thus Christ Jesus himself, although made in the likeness of sinful flesh (Rom. 8:3), was without sin (Heb. 4:15), because he was conceived in the virgin’s womb by the Holy Spirit! (Luke 1:35).
Too many “bible believers” in this day have made an idol out of the written word, never coming on to the Living Word, Christ Himself! John 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
Luke 24:44 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,
Josiah is a clear example of Christ’s instruction in John 7:17. If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. For the Holy Spirit quickened him, made him alive from the dead spiritually, so that he would do truth! – not just memorize it and then try to impersonate a traditional compliance! John 3:21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. Notice that it is not here stated that the usage of the light of the scriptures is to bring one to spiritual birth, but it is the spiritual birth that brings one to the light of the scriptures. For one must be born into life before he can receive instruction concerning that life!
The Apostle John makes a very powerful statement concerning this in his first letter. 1 John 2:20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. 21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth. Wow! What an eye opener! This great Apostle says that the Lord’s spiritually living souls, by the indwelling Spirit, already know all things. That is, they have the Teacher within. Therefore he does not write as if they knew not the truth. But the same Holy Spirit who has quickened life within them now writes through John this word to the confirmation of that living truth placed within! (2 Peter 1:21.)
For there is only one way into the spiritual kingdom of God! – One must be born into it! John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
The new born child of grace cries, Abba, father, not to BECOME a son, but because he IS a son! Gal. 4:6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Therefore Josiah’s good works at the early stages of his life reveal that he had been born of the Spirit! For we most assuredly know that this quickening was not OF works! But it most assuredly was UNTO good works! For these good works are the good fruit that evidence that he is a good tree! And these good works are as much ordained of God as the one elected to do them! Eph. 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Dear soul, the Spirit moved upon the face of the deep before the Word said, Let there be light!” (Gen. 1:1-3). And the Apostle Paul instructs us that the creation of spiritual life in the heart of man is the same as the creation of the natural world! 2Cor. 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Redemption Before Sanctification
Then we read that as soon as King Josiah had purged the land of its idols, he returned to Jerusalem! And we read of King Jesus that when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; (Heb. 1:3). There can be no reformation of the soul until there is an accomplished redemption! The Holy Spirit was not sent forth to cleanse the temple/believers until there was a finishing of the transgression, and until the Father was finally satisfied! (Daniel 9:24; Isa. 53:11). 1 Corin. 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Now the cleansing of the temple begins! For growth in grace – termed “sanctification” – cannot begin until redemption is both accomplished and applied!
And we see in verse nine that the price had to be delivered before the repairs could begin! Christ’s blood purchased the church (Acts 20:28), so that we could begin to cleanse ourselves! 2 Corin. 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. The very reason that we do not have precious spiritual worship in our assemblies is that we do not make much of the cost of our salvation! 1 Peter 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
And the reason we do not make much of the cost of our redemption is because we don’t consider ourselves to be very great sinners! For it is only the degree of the awareness of the depth of our sin that raises the height of the praise for the one redeeming us! And since we consider ourselves to be but “moderate sinners” at best, our two-for-a-nickel Jesus will do just fine! But those who know the exceeding sinfulness of their sin need a great Savior!
Listen to the praise of those who realize that their sinful hearts have been forgiven. Rev. 5:9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;
Book Discovered Upon Cleansing of Temple
If there is any one thing this writer has learned in his walk on this Christian journey, it is that the scriptures are discovered to be more and more precious in the experience of laboring to maintain himself as a holy temple for the Lord! For it is the providences laid out by the Lord that increase his awareness of just how precious the scriptures are! That’s why we pointed out earlier that the good works are ordained as much as is the good worker! (See. Eph. 2:10).
Listen to the Psalmist on this matter. Psalm 119:67 Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. 71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes. He realized that the afflictions, assigned for him in providence, were that which heightened the value of the scriptures to his heart! And what a verse we have in Hebrews 5:8! Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; The Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God “learned obedience” through his own appointed afflictions! For he is the author of faith! And faith is always presently active! He originated faith by his personal trust and belief that the Father would not leave his soul in hell, nor his Holy One to see corruption! (Psa. 16:10). Like Abraham, he believed God. Against hope he believed in hope, and it was accounted to him for righteousness! (Rom. 4:18; Gal. 3:6). And it is that righteousness of His that is imputed to us by faith! 2Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
And as he is, so are we to be, for he is our example! 1 Peter 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
In chapter three of Colossians we first read of the command to “mortify” our members in verse five. Then we read in the following verses as how that is to be accomplished. We are to “put off” certain things that are a result of our natural birth. Then we are to “put on” other character traits that will enhance our spiritual man.
Then we come down to verse sixteen. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. For the word of God dwelling richly in you only follows the efforts in the cleansing of our temples; the growth in grace and the sanctification of our hearts being a strong desire of our souls! Therefore once the price has been paid, and we are interested in what it cost our King to present us faultless before the throne, and as we enter into the labor of cleansing ourselves, that we come to discover the book, and come to greatly value its benefit to our spiritual lives!
They Returned to Jerusalem
We read the same phrase ending verse nine as we do in the ending of verse seven. Both state that those who had been instrumental in the purging the land and temple, returned to Jerusalem.
We were told of our Heavenly Josiah in Acts 1:11, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. And we have farther been instructed in Acts 3:21, Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. So King Josiah returned back to whence he came after he had finished his work. And our Lord Jesus returned back to the Father’s presence upon doing the same. John 16:28 I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.
Then those whom the king assigned to continue the work after his return are also said to return to Jerusalem. Not only the Lord Jesus Christ, but also the apostles, and the saints of yesteryear are all gone back to the eternal glories of the Father. And now it is our time on earth. We would do well to finish the work begun by the Holy Spirit! We would do well, as was said of David to serve our generation (Acts 13:36). We have the same Holy Spirit as did all the previous saints. Let us do with our might what our hands find to do!
Pastor Gene Breed.
August 26, 2011