Not long ago, we discussed what made King Hezekiah good when his father was the most wicked king in Judah’s history. Now, let’s take a look at an opposite effect. Why were King Josiah’s sons wicked when they had such a Godly example to follow?
What King Josiah and some of Judah’s other kings did to turn the nation back to God was to legislate morality. This has been said time and again in our day: you cannot legislate morality. It must be taught and accepted in a person’s heart. Thus, here is a lesson learned for our generation in trying to ‘follow the Law.’
What we can learn from this is that although a nation’s leader might be Godly, it is more important for us to be Godly and lead our children in the ways of the Lord through proper teaching and example (Prov. 22:6). It is said that this is why David’s children, save Solomon (who was not without his own turning away at one point), had been so ungodly—that David was so caught up in affairs of the State, and so it might have also been with Josiah. But couldn’t Josiah’s sons have been positively influenced by their mothers like King Hezekiah was? It could be that in spite of Josiah’s Godly kingship, his sons, who would have been much more influenced by their mothers, had ungodly mothers. It was not uncommon for the Israel-Judah kings to have married pagan women.
Just as Josiah and David had a heart for God, our efforts in leading our children and fellow man to the Lord must be done intentionally–out of a heart for God, not out of a ‘legalistic’ approach. We must make a concerted effort to spend time with our children, and give them a Godly training through our example.
Generation X is the first American generation to not raise (the majority of) their children in church. Many children growing up now do not even know what a church is for or who Jesus is. God help us and our children to learn from our mistakes and bring revival to America once again. Let the fathers bring their sons to church, and live a Godly lifestyle at home.