II Kings

Chapter 23

"Josiah's Covenant [1-3]."
"Evil Removed from Judah [4-20]."
"Command to Keep the Passover [21-30]."
"Jehoahaz Begins his Reign [31-35]."

This Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and it's transcription is provided with written permission by http://www.theseason.org

II Kings 23:1 "And the king sent, and they gathered unto him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem."

Remember from the prior chapter that Josiah saw the evil that his father Manasseh brought to the house of Judah, and he repented, tore his clothes and turned his heart back to God. Then he tried to put the house of Judah back in order according to the Word of God and the prophets of God. God saw the faithfulness of Josiah and blessed him, and promised him through the prophetess Huldah a time of peace. Josiah knew that his life would be a life of leisure, but he was a man of God, and sought to clean up his house according to God's Word. Josiah hoped that if the house of God was in order, maybe his sons and the people would also turn themselves back to God in the future.

So it was time to get the nation cleaned out of all forms of the idolatry that Josiah's father and grandfather had brought on Judah. He gathered all the elders and leaders to Jerusalem to let them know what would be expected of them, in completing this task.

II Kings 23:2 "And the king went up into the house of the Lord, and all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem with him, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the People, both small and great: and he read in their ears all the words of the book of the covenant which was found in the house of the Lord."

The king did not read this text for that was the duties of the priests, and the king had the priests read it for all the people to hear for it was their duty.

II Kings 23:3 "And the king stood by a pillar, and made a covenant before the Lord, to walk after the Lord, and to keep His commandments and His testimonies and His statutes with all their heart and all their soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the People stood to the covenant."

The king is not making this covenant or vow just for himself, but for all the people of his kingdom, from the smallest to the most well to do. Josiah made the challenge of this covenant to the people and they all stood up in agreement with it.

There are times that you want to convert someone so bad that you would do just as Josiah. Were the people individually supporting him? Hardly, for they were giving lip service, but as we will see later in this chapter, when Josiah is gone, they can't wait to slip right back into the old forms of sex orgies and idolatry. You can almost hear the king standing up and saying, "being the king, I order you to be in church today, now stand up in agreement." He let it be know that those in disagreement would not be around very long, for it was time for another purging. You simply can't force people to believe. Remember that man can not make the spiritual seeds to germinate, for it takes the Spirit of God to reveal and cause a change in a person's life.

II Kings 23:4 And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of the second order, and the keepers of the door, to bring forth out of the temple of the Lord all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for the grove, and for all the host of heaven: and he burned them without Jerusalem in the fields of Kedron, and carried the ashes of them unto Beth-el."

Josiah ordered all the altars that were used to burn their babies, and those places in the groves that the people had their religious sex orgies, and all the forms of angel worship to be destroyed. All the forms of idolatry were carried out into the fields to be burned, and then the ashes of those objects were carried into the land of Samaria. Beth-el is the place where the house of Israel use to be. Remember it had been almost a century prior to this time that the house of Israel had been removed off their lands by the Assyrians, and scattered. Those people living in the land at the time of Josiah were foreigners brought in by the Assyrians. So Josiah is moving in on the land that the Assyrian's now possess, however under an agreement with the Assyrians, Judah's king was left in charge of this land.

II Kings 23:5 "And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven."

This covers all the forms of idolatry that was going on at the time. It not only including the forms of Baal worshipping, but those that worshipped the sun, the moon, and planets [which is the zodiac or twelve stations or signs in the heavens, called "Mazzaloth" in the Hebrew]. The "host of heaven" are the angels, and this is angel or ancestor worship. It includes the worshipping of saints, praying to and bowing down to saints that have died and gone to be with the Father. We are to worship on the Father, and pray to Him in Jesus name.

In the time of the Old Testament, Jesus Christ the Messiah had not been born in the flesh yet, however God spelled out in detail through Moses how mankind was to approach the Father in repentance. Josiah cleaned out all those things that God's Word states that our Heavenly Father disapproves of personally.

The bible written in the stars in not to be take as a religion, but that doesn't mean that you can't take the signs that are within the Zodiac for your use. They are given as signs for our guidance, to be used in the natural order of things. Many farmers plant their crops by the signs in the heavens for they have found that they have better crops. You use a hammer as a tool to drive the nail and make the job easier, but you don't worship the hammer because of what it does. No, the signs are used to benefit mankind.

II Kings 23:6 "And he brought out the grove from the house of the Lord, without Jerusalem, unto the brook Kedron, and burned it at the brook Kedron, and stamped it small to power, and cast the power thereof upon the graves of the children of the people."

Kedron is the brook to the north of Jerusalem, where it opens up to a field laying beyond the brook. The brook Kedron was down in a little valley that ran from the east gate up on mount Zion, down into the valley, and up to the mount of Olives. The fire took place down in the valley right along side of the brook of Kedron. There was also a cemetery there along side the brook. Josiah desecrated those graves of those idol worshippers, and he cleaned house in Judah trying to please God. This again is being forced upon the people. There was no innocent blood being shed here, but there is a purging of those that resist the ways of God.

II Kings 23:7 "And he brake down the houses of the sodomites, that were by the house of the Lord, where the women wove hangings for the groves."

As it is written in Deuteronomy 23:17- 18; "There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel."

Deuteronomy 23:18 "Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore or the price of a dog, into the house of the Lord thy God for any vow: for even both these are abomination unto the Lord thy God."

The "Price of a dog" in Strong's Hebrew dictionary is # 6945; "qadesh, a devotee (by prostitution) sodomite given to licentious idolatry." The "price of a dog" had nothing to do with any animal or dogs nor lovers of dogs, but graphically speaking it deals with those that "assume the position of a dog" when they charge for their services of sexual acts. Today we call them "homosexuals", some "queers", and other stretch the term way out of order and call them "gay". The vow of a male prostitute was a marriage vow, and this was a type of what is becoming common today. Two men or two women taking vows to each other to be joined in the same manner as a husband and wife. The vows and the act of these perverted souls are an abomination unto the Lord, yet many churches flaunt their abominations in the face of the Lord and they can't figure out why God is not blessing them.

So what does God think of the act of sodomy and the sodomites? Well he so completely destroyed those towns of sodomy that they are nothing but salt under the sea today. When the town of Gibeah of Benjamin got so deep into sodomy, they were all but wiped out, all but six hundred of the entire tribe. Does God hate sodomites? They are an abomination to Him, and Josiah knew exactly what was to be done with them, he wiped them out. There simply were no closets to run to and hide in, in those days. If you were a sodomite and in the land, you were eliminated [stoned].

II Kings 23:8 "And he brought all the priests out of the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had burned incense, from Geba to beer-sheba, and brake down the high places of the gates that were in the entering in of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on a man's left hand at the gate of the city."

All the good kings of God had their faults, for when the tried to please God they overlooked certain things. They allowed these simple heathen practices to go on that are spoken of here. They had been in the land so long that these acts had become common traditions, accepted as being of God, and part of the house of God.

It had been a long time that the book of God's Word had been opened and the people tried to follow the teachings within the book, and these little traditions that have become part of their lives were hard to eliminate. When Josiah cleaned house, he wanted the Word to be followed in detail, by the rules of law stated in God's Word. Today we do have the Old Testament as an "ensample" to our living today, but we also have the New Testament, which supports the teachings of the Old Testament. The laws and commandments of the Old Testament are still as good in the New Testament age, all that is, except those statutes dealing with blood sacrifices, for when Jesus Christ shed his blood on the cross, He fulfilled those parts of the law that dealt with blood sacrifices.

Jesus Christ became our "Passover sacrifice", our blood sacrifice for one and all times. This is given to us in detail in Hebrews 10:5-11. In verse seven we read; "Then said I, `Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of Me) to do Thy will, O God."

Hebrews 10:8 "Above when He said, "Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin Thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law;"

God's law spelled out exactly how the sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings were to take place, and they were offered because the law of God demanded it to be done. God promised a Savior, a Messiah that would come and be the sacrifice for one and all times, and Jesus Christ was that Messiah.

Hebrews 10:9 "Then said He [Jesus Christ], "Lo, I come to do Thy will, O God." He taketh away the first, that He may establish the second."

The first was the shedding of the blood of lamb and goats for sins, and the second was the shedding of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God for one and all times.

Hebrews 10:10 "By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all."

Hebrews 10:11 "And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins."

There is nothing new under the sun, for the things of the New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old Testament. This is not to promote legalism, for I do not. The point is that we rightly divide the Word of God, all of it as it is written. Those Old Testament sacrifices never did take away the sin of any man, for only the blood of Jesus Christ can do that, but it was an covering for that year to the Father.

II Kings 23:9 "Nevertheless the priests of the high places came not up to the altar of the Lord in Jerusalem but they did eat of the unleavened bread among their brethren."

King Josiah sent out through all of the land that all the members of the priesthood of God were to come back to Jerusalem and pick up the practice as God commanded. Many of the priests refuse to leave the comfort of their traditions and go back to God's ways in Jerusalem. We are talking about the Levitical priesthood, those of the tribe of Levi that were scattered amongst all the tribes.

Remember that the priests in the northern tribes had drifted so far away that they had no idea what was of God, and what was of the heathen religions. Many of Judah were also that far off, that they wanted nothing to do with God's law and Word. All that mattered to them were traditions, the pleasures of their sex orgies, and the quiet places to burn their candles and incense. Stop and look around you today and what is taught in God's houses, and called of God. Much of it is nothing but tradition. Those priests told Josiah that they would not participate in the teaching of God's Word. However before Josiah did what he was about to do, he allow these priests to change their ways first.

It is no different today as it was then, the majority has always been in error. They like to take the path of least resistance, to stay in the comfort of their traditions, and they just don't care to search for the truth. Sure it was Baal, groves, Molech, and all sorts of wickedness then, and today it is the traditions of fairytales like the rapture doctrine, the Easter traditions, and so forth, and they simply don't care to understand what the Word of God states and conform to them.

II Kings 23:10 "And he defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, that no man might make his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to Molech."

The valley of the children of Himmon, is out in the garbage pit. That valley was where the burning took place to where people brought their first born sons and daughters to be burn up on the altar to Molech. It was the cutting and the sacrificing of their own children to please a heathen god.

II Kings 23:11 "And he took away the horses that the kings of Judah had given to the sun, at the entering in of the house of the Lord, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the suburbs, and burned the chariots of the sun with fire."

This place is at the east gate of Jerusalem, and these ancient people set aside horses and chariots so that when the sun rose in the east, they would charge off to meet the sun at its arrival. It was a form of religious practice to try to please the sun gods. It was almost as stupid as the idea of a rapture, whereby people are completely disregarding the prophecies of God's Word in favor of traditions that are being accepted in the Sunday houses of our land. They rush to meet the morning sun, sort of like the new laughing practice that many churches are allowing in their churches.

II Kings 23:12 "And the altars that were on the top of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars which Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the Lord, did the king beat down, and brake them down from thence, and cast the dust of them into the brook Kedron."

Remember old Jezebel, and her husband Ahaz. Their daughters married into the royal family of Judah, and establish many of the heathen Zidonian [Kenite] worship practices of Jezebel. When Manasseh came to power, all of those practices were brought back into being, and made common amongst the people. In fact Manasseh forced each of them on the people, and for a person to rebel against them meant your life.

Joaish is cleaning house and doing it right. He is taking all those old idols, and forms of worship and busting them up, burning them and scattering their ashes in the brook Kedron.

II Kings 23:13 "And the high places that were before Jerusalem, which were on the right hand of mount of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had builded for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Zidonians, and for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon, did the king defile."

Manasseh and Amon had taken in all of the heathen forms of religion, and even revived many of those that Solomon allowed to be built because of his heathen wives. Ashtoreth was the form of grove worship, that used sexual orgies as a form of religion. The abomination of Milcom, was a form of Molech for it was also the burning of their children for sacrifices. All of those heathen practices were brought back by Manasseh and Amon, and Josiah was set on destroying all those heathen forms of worship. Those things were going on over there on the mount of Olives, the same place where Jesus preached His Sermon on the mound. The mount of Olives is also where the feet of Christ will touch down when he returns at the seventh trumpet.

II Kings 23:14 "And he brake in pieces the images, and cut down the groves, and filled their places with the bones of men."

By adding the bones of dead men was the most serious form of degradation in any form of religion. It makes it a unfit place to worship anything, especially if there is an altar around.

II Kings 23:15 "Moreover the altar that was at Beth-el, and the high places which Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, had made, both that altar and the high place he brake down, and burned the high place, and stamped it small to powder, and burned the grove."

Josiah didn't stop in Judah, but he went to those places in Samaria, where heathen altars were build, even to the places where the two golden calves were worshipped, and destroyed the altars there. Though the land was controlled by the king of Assyria, Josiah still had a free reign and was in charge of what went on in the land.

Remember after the Israelites were hauled away, the people that were hauled in to fill the land pleaded to have the priests of Israel return, so that they could worship the god of the land. These priests taught these Samaritans how to worship those same heathen gods, just as the Israelites did before them.

II Kings 23:16 "And as Josiah turned himself, he spied the sepulchres that were there in the mount, and sent, and took the bones out of the sepulchres, and burned them upon the altar, and polluted it, according to the word of the Lord which the man of God proclaimed, who proclaimed these words."

This goes back some three hundred and seventy years prior, as recorded in I Kings 13:1; "And , behold, thee came a man of God out of Judah by the word of the Lord unto Beth-el: and Jeroboam stood by the altar to burn incense."

I Kings 13:2 "And he cried against the altar in the word of the Lord, and said, "O altar, altar, thus saith the Lord; `Behold, a child shall be born unto the house of David, Josiah by name; and upon thee shall he offer the priests of the high places that burn incense upon thee, and men's bones shall be burnt upon thee.' "

I Kings 13:3 "And he gave a sign the same day, saying, "This is the sign which the Lord hath spoken; Behold, the altar shall be rent, and the ashes that are upon it shall be poured out."

Josiah did everything in his power and might to pollute the land and that altar so that it could never be used as a form of worship in the future.

II Kings 23:17 "Then he said, "What title is that that I see?" And the men of the city told him, "It is the sepulchre of the man of God, which came from Judah, and proclaimed these things that thou hast done against the altar of Beth-el."

As Josiah was destroying all these things, they came on a grave site, and there was writing on the grave. When Josiah was told that a true man of God, a prophet was buried there that proclaimed the very acts that Josiah was doing.

II Kings 23:18 "And he said, "Let him alone; let no man move his bones." So they let his bones alone, with the bones of the prophet that came out of Samaria."

Then we read in the thirty first verse of I Kings that after the prophet of God was killed, the other priest wanted wanted his bones to be buried with the prophet's bones. This is why there were two men's bones buried in the same grave. So Josiah told the people to leave these two men's bones and grave site alone.

II Kings 23:19 "And all the houses also of the high places that were in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made to provoke the Lord to anger, Josiah took away, and did to them according to all the acts that he had done in Beth-el."

As Josiah was doing all these things in Samaria, there were some remnant of the ten tribes that were still left in Samaria. So Josiah is trying to take all these people, the remnant that was still in the land, and bring these people back into the house of Judah.

II Kings 23:20 "And he slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars, and burned men's bones upon them, and returned to Jerusalem."

It would be those priests that refuse to stop the heathen practice, and turn to God that Josiah would have killed and their bones scattered. These were not Levitical priests, but Baal and grove and Molech priests of the Kenites of Zidon, that the kings of the tribes had appointed to lead them in their idolatry.

II Kings 23:21 "And the king commanded all the people, saying, "Keep the passover unto the Lord your God, as it is written in the book of this covenant."

That Book of the Covenant had brought Josiah many blessings, and he was high on keeping those commandments. Josiah had listened when the priest taught him the Word of God, and he demanded that the Passover be kept in the manner that God said it should be kept.

II Kings 23:22 "Surely there was not holden such a Passover from the days of the judges that judged Israel, nor in all the days of the kings of Israel, nor of the kings of Judah;"

It had been some five hundred years since the Passover had last been observed, and Josiah brought it back into existence. There wasn't one time during all the kings of Israel, that the Passover was observed, not even under David.

Remember that Jesus Christ is our Passover sacrifice today, for when He went to the cross, His blood become our sacrifice for one and all times.

I Corinthians 5:7 "Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened, For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us:"

I Corinthians 5:8 "Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity of truth."

II Kings 23:23 "But in the eighteenth year of king Josiah, wherein this Passover was holden to the Lord in Jerusalem."

So the Passover was held in Jerusalem for the first time in the eighteenth year of King Josiah's reign.

The prophet Jeremiah was born during the reign of Josiah, and thus he would be a child at the age of five years old when this Passover and the purging took place, cleaning out the false idols, heathen altars, and false religious practices. He grew up the son of the high priest of God, Hilkiah. Jeremiah's father was the high priest that first found and gave the Bible to Josiah that started the cleanup of all Judah.

Jeremiah 1:1 "The words of Jeremiah the son of Helkiah, of the priests that were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin."

Remember that Jerusalem was in the land given by Joshua to the tribe of Benjamin in the inheritance as recorded in Joshua 20-28. This is recorded in verse 28; "And Zelah, Eleph, and Jebusi, which is Jerusalem, Gibeath, and Kirjath: fourteen cites with their villages. This is the inheritance of the children of Benjamin according to their families." This is why God gave to Rehoboam both the tribe of Judah and Benjamin to make up the house of Judah, for Benjamin's inheritance was the city of the Jebusites that became Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 1:2 "To whom the word of the Lord came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign."

Jeremiah 1:3 "It came also in the days of Jehoikim the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah the son of Josiah king of Judah, unto the carrying away of Jerusalem captive in the fifth month."

Jeremiah witnessed the cleansing of Jerusalem in his youth, and he was there to prophecy when Jehoikim, and Zedekiah allowed the kingdom to slip back deep into sin and idolatry. Jeremiah was the prophet of God that spoke out after Josiah's death to remind the kings and the people of the destruction that was coming upon them.

II Kings 23:24 "Moreover the workers with familiar spirits, and the wizards, and the images, and the idols, and all the abominations that were spied in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, did Josiah put away, that he might perform the words of the law which were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the Lord."

The workers with familiar spirits, were those little readers that would try to tell you that you lived hundreds of years before, and try to make you think that you were in that place. They are in contact with these lying spirits that lived them would try to make you think that you were in a place a long time ago. Those spirits possessed another soul back then, and they try to make you think that you are that soul. This is very common today, for it is called "reincarnation" which is a lie, and that is what familiar spirits are all about. Those that practice with familiar spirits and wizards are demon possessed.

It was about time that someone made a move to clean up the filth that was in the land. and Josiah cleaned it all up. Yes, he killed those that would not.

II Kings 23:25 "And like unto him was there no king before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him."

Josiah read and studied the book of Moses, and he sought to follow it to the letter of the law. He held the Word high, and forced the people to follow it also.

II Kings 23:26 "Notwithstanding the Lord turned not from the fierceness of His great wrath, wherewith His anger was kindled against Judah, because of all the provocations that Manasseh did provoked Him withal."

The Lord made statements during the reign of Manasseh about the house of Judah and that He was going to eliminate them. Only Josiah did much to please the Lord and turn His rath from them.

II Kings 23:27 "And the Lord said, "I will remove Judah also out of My sight, as I have removed Israel, and will cast off this city Jerusalem which I have chosen, and the house of which I said, `My Name shall be there.' "

Even though the Lord will remove Judah out of Jerusalem, and take them into captivity for those seventy years, God will still have his name attached to Judah.

II Kings 23:28 "Now the rest of the acts of Josiah, and all that he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?"

Yes they are, in second Chronicles 35:1-19.

II Kings 23:29 "In his days Pharaoh-nechoh king of Egypt went up against the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates: and king Josiah went against him; and he slew him at Megiddo, when he had seen him."

There was a war taking place here, and the war was by Egypt coming against Assyria, not Judah. This war will take place on the northern border of the old house of Israel. Remember that Judah was under a treaty with Assyria, so Josiah was forced to side with the Assyrians against Egypt. When the Pharaoh saw Josiah coming in his chariots, the Egyptians went out and killed Josiah.

II Kings 23:30 "And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own sepulchre. And the People of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's stead."

Stop and think for a moment, God promised Josiah that he would live in peace and go to join your fathers, yet Josiah went to war and died in battle. So what was going on here? We have read all the wonderful things that Josiah had done to please God, however remember when he went to that woman prophet Huldah and ask her? should I attack Pharaoh? She told him not to go, yet he went anyway. His death on the battle field was by his own choice.

God's promises have conditions, and for them to apply to you, those conditions have to be met. Let's go to II Chronicles 35:20-25. So lets read verses 21 and 22.

II Chronicles 35:21 "But he sent ambassadors to him, saying, "What have I to do with thee, thou king of Judah: I come not against thee this day, but against the house wherewith I have war: for God commanded me to make haste: forbear thee from meddling with God, Who is with me, that He destroy thee not." "

II Chronicles 35:22 "Nevertheless Josiah would not turn his face from him, but disguised himself, that he might fight with him, and hearkened not unto the words of Necho from the mouth of God, and came to fight in the valley of Megiddo."

II Chronicles 35:23 "And the archers shot at king Josiah; and the king said to his servants, "Have me away; for I am sore wounded."

Josiah wanted to get into the action, when God through the Pharaoh told him to stay away. Josiah brought brought his violent death on himself. King Josiah in trying to follow God, got to busy in trying to bring attention to himself. His attention turned to himself, and he forgot about God. He got so busy doing God's work that he forgot about trying to please God. He started to focus on his own empire, and he overlooked what God wanted, and those others that God was using. God kept His word to the point that the Pharaoh of Egypt told Josiah in advance what he was going to do, so that Josiah and the people of Judah would not be harmed when the war took place. When Josiah disguised himself, and chased into battle, God allowed him to take an arrow, and die in war, and not in peace.

The lesson for us is that we don't take our spiritual eyes off God, and allow ourselves to wander into battle fields that we have no business being in. As God for our direction and then pay attention to the leading that we have for our lives. Then if you have asked the Father for directions and you head off in the wrong way, God will gently steer you to the right direction. Go to the Father before you step out in any direction, and ask for help and direction in what ever efforts you enter into.

II Kings 23:31 "Jehoahaz was twenty and three years old when he began to reign; and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Hamutal, and daughter of Jeremiah of Lebnah."

Jehoahaz was the king of Judah, for Israel has long been scattered by the Assyrians. Hamutal was not the daughter of Jeremiah the prophet.

II Kings 23:32 "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his fathers had done."

Josiah had set a good example for his son Jehoahaz, for he had cleansed the Temple, and brought back the Passover and the reading of God's Word in the house of the Lord. Now here this son that follow in his footsteps went back into the wicked ways of his grandfather Amon, and Manasseh.

Who knows what caused this young man to go so wrong, for it happens in every generation when the son of a good man turns out to be rotten. For what ever the reason, Jehoahaz sought to do evil in all that he did.

II Kings 23:33 "And Pharaoh-nechoh put him in bands at Riblah in the land of Hamath, that he might not reign in Jerusalem; and he put the land to a tribute of an hundred talents of silver, and a talent of gold."

"Nechoh" in the Hebrew tongue means "lame". Was this Pharaoh lame? It doesn't say in the Word. After Josiah defied Pharaoh and died, Pharaoh was not to pleased with Judah for not paying attention and staying out of Egypt's way. Pharaoh took this new king, young Jehoahaz and brought him from the battle front in Riblah, bound and took him off to Egypt. So the kingdom of Judah will not be a servant to Assyria any more, but to Egypt.

II Kings 23:34 "And Pharaoh-nechoh made Eliakim the son of Josiah king in the room of Josiah his father, and turned his name to Jehoiakim, and took Jehoahaz away: and he came to Egypt, and died there."

"Eliakim" in the Hebrew tongue means "raised up by God". Though the oldest son of Josiah Jehoahaz and Eliakim were brothers with the same father, they had two different mothers. The Pharaoh changed the name of Eliakim to Jehoiakim, which means "Who God sets up."

II Kings 23:35 "And Jehoiakim gave the silver and the gold to Pharaoh; but he taxed the land to give the money according to the commandment of Pharaoh: he exacted the silver and the gold of the People of the land, of every one according to his taxation, to give it unto Pharaoh-nechoh."

This would be the very last time that the children of the house of Judah would have a time of blessing from our Father. However shortly they would go into captivity, and God would punish them for their wickedness. We have seen over the past ten chapters that the house of Judah had come to a point of sinning far more than the house of Israel had, and God had punished their brethren Israel and sent them into captivity and scattered them over the face of the earth.

II Kings 23:36 "Jehoiakim was twenty and five years old when he began to reign; and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Zebudah, the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah."

So Jehoiakim ruled over Israel for the next eleven years.

II Kings 23:37 "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his father had done."

Jehoiakim reigned for eleven years before his son Jehoiacin reigns a short time before they are taken into Babylon. When Zedekiah, the cousin to Jehoiacin began his reign over Judah, as appointed by king Nebuchaddnezzar, he will be the last reigning king over Judah before the nation of the house of Judah is destroyed and the people hauled into captivity.

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