Enquire of the Lord - As inquiry by Urim and Thummim had ceased - apparently because superseded by prophecy - this order was equivalent to an injunction to seek the presence of a prophet (compare 2 Kings 3:11; 1 Kings 22:5).
Because our fathers have not hearkened - Josiah, it will be observed, assumes that preceding generations had had full opportunity of hearing and knowing the Law. He thus regards the loss as comparatively recent (compare 2 Kings 22:8 note).
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. Isaiah 55:7. RC 57.1
When the book of the law was found in the house of the Lord, in the time of ancient Israel, it was read before Josiah the king. And he rent his garments, and bade the men in holy office to inquire of the Lord for him, and for his people; for they had departed from the statutes of the Lord. He called together all the men of Israel, and the words of the book were read in the hearing of the congregation. The sin of the rulers and the people was pointed out, and the king stood up before them, and confessed his transgression. He manifested his repentance, and made a covenant to keep the statutes of the Lord with his whole heart. Josiah did not rest until the people did all they could to return from their backsliding, and serve the living God. RC 57.2Read in context »
Thus Josiah, from his earliest manhood, had endeavored to take advantage of his position as king to exalt the principles of God's holy law. And now, while Shaphan the scribe was reading to him out of the book of the law, the king discerned in this volume a treasure of knowledge, a powerful ally, in the work of reform he so much desired to see wrought in the land. He resolved to walk in the light of its counsels, and also to do all in his power to acquaint his people with its teachings and to lead them, if possible, to cultivate reverence and love for the law of heaven. PK 398.1
But was it possible to bring about the needed reform? Israel had almost reached the limit of divine forbearance; soon God would arise to punish those who had brought dishonor upon His name. Already the anger of the Lord was kindled against the people. Overwhelmed with sorrow and dismay, Josiah rent his garments and bowed before God in agony of spirit, seeking pardon for the sins of an impenitent nation. PK 398.2
At that time the prophetess Huldah was living in Jerusalem, near the temple. The mind of the king, filled with anxious foreboding, reverted to her, and he determined to inquire of the Lord through this chosen messenger to learn, if possible, whether by any means within his power he might save erring Judah, now on the verge of ruin. PK 398.3Read in context »
16, 18. Jezebel's Scheme Unsuccessful—With her seductive arts, Jezebel made Jehoshaphat her friend. She arranged a marriage between her daughter Athaliah and Jehoram, the son of Jehoshaphat. She knew that her daughter, brought up under her guidance and as unscrupulous as herself, would carry out her designs. But did she? No; the sons of the prophets, who had been educated in the schools which Samuel established, were steadfast for truth and righteousness (Manuscript 116, 1899). 2BC 1038.1Read in context »
21 (2 Kings 22:13). Word of the Lord Still Binding—[2 Kings 22:13 quoted.] Josiah did not say, “I knew nothing about this book. These are ancient precepts, and times have changed.” He appointed men to investigate the matter, and these men went to Huldah, the prophetess. [2 Kings 22:15-20 quoted.] 3BC 1133.2Read in context »
Oh, that all could see this and embrace the message given them of God! He has raised up His servants to present truth that, because it involves lifting the cross, has been lost sight of, and is buried beneath the rubbish of formality. It must be rescued and be reset in the framework of present truth. Its claims must be asserted, and its position given it in the third angel's message. 3SM 189.3Read in context »