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The Word Made Visible
By Danny Saavedra
“Josiah was eight years old when he became king . . . He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and followed completely the ways of his father David . . .” – 2 Kings 22:1–2 (NIV)
Do you remember what you were doing at eight years old? Learning to multiply and divide? Playing video games? Managing a lemonade stand? Whatever you were doing, Josiah probably has you beat! He became king over God’s people at the ripe old age of eight! But get this: he was actually one of the few people who had a heart after the Lord.
His reign came after several years of neglect of God. A lot of rebuilding had to be done, starting with the temple. It was in shambles, so Josiah decided to restore it to its former glory.
This young man was one of the most important kings to have ruled over God’s people. A revival took place under his leadership, turning the people’s hearts back to the Lord. By all accounts, Josiah’s reign was a success. But as we’ll see, his character defined his political career.
As the workmen began to clear away the debris from the temple, they came across something that had been discarded and forgotten: a copy of the Scriptures. They dusted it off and started to read it to King Josiah. As God’s Word was being shared, Josiah became aware of how far he and his people had strayed from the Lord (2 Kings 22).
The king was so convicted by God’s Word that he did what so many kings before him failed to do; He made the Word of God visible again. Then he did a thorough “house cleaning” by sweeping through the kingdom and ending the practices that were contrary to God’s ways. This young king pulled out all the stops to make sure that the people of God were properly honoring God as He deserves to be honored.
Everything in the kingdom changed dramatically and it all went back to the discovery of God’s Word. The Scriptures had a radical effect on Josiah and once they were taken into his heart and mind, he was never the same.
In John 1, we read that when the fullness of time had come, “the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14 NASB). God made His Word visible for the entire world to see in the person of Jesus Christ!
The Christmas season is a time to rejoice and celebrate because it is the moment in time where God sent the light of the world, the Word in the flesh, Jesus, to restore us to a right relationship with Him. And just like it did for young King Josiah, God’s Word should so impact our hearts that it moves us to action!
It should be that source of life change that convicts us to the core and causes us to take sin so seriously that we “clean our house.” It should also be that dynamic that inspires us to pull out all the stops as we remember and celebrate who God is and all that He’s done for us. And it should bring us to the place where we are moved to see it take hold in the lives of the people around us; our families, loved ones, neighbors, classmates, coworkers, and anyone else we come into contact with.
This Christmas do like Josiah: make the Word of God visible for the people in your life to see. Allow the light of the world to shine brightly through you, letting it guide people to Jesus!