Jeremiah is exasperated that the people will not listen to his warnings. “Hear this now, O foolish people.” “To whom shall I speak and give warning, that they may hear?” The people are in total rebellion against the Lord and disaster is upon them but their leaders are saying “Peace, peace! When there is no peace.”
The Lord tells the people to walk in the ways of the Lord “Then you will find rest for your souls. But they say, ’We will not walk in it.’” Jeremiah then tells the people that a brutal nation is coming from the north against them. Therefore the people should put on sackcloth and roll in ashes “For the plunderer will suddenly come upon us.”
King Josiah is now in his 18th year as king. He sends Hilkiah, the high priest, to the temple to count the money to be distributed to the overseers of the temple for repairs to the house of the Lord. And guess what Hilkiah finds?!?! The Book of the Law. 🤔 Hmm…this could be the problem. I’m not sure what the priests were doing all this time but they definitely weren’t reading and sharing God’s Word.
Well, Shaphan, the scribe, takes the Book of the Law to Josiah and reads it to him. When Josiah hears the Words of God he tears his clothes and tells Hilkiah, Shaphan, and others to go and inquire of the Lord for him “For great is the wrath of the Lord that is aroused against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.”
There are slim pickings of godly folks at this time but the men go and find a woman named Huldah, the prophetess. Yep, a woman! And she gives the leaders a word from the Lord. She explains that the Lord will bring calamity on Judah bc of their great rebellion. But as for King Josiah “Because your heart was tender, and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I spoke against this place…you shall be gathered to your grave in peace; and your eyes shall not see all the calamity which I will bring on this place.”
Tomorrow Josiah continues the religious reform in Judah. Keep reading.
(Jeremiah 5:20-6:30, 2 Kings 22:3-20, 2 Chronicles 34:8-28)