FEMALE PROMISE KEEPERS SERIES
Huldah lived in Jerusalem during the reign of King Josiah. She was the wife of Shallum son of Tokhath, the son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe; (2nd Chron. 34:22). She was a woman of social standards; and a royal official’s daughter in law.
The Narrative begins with 8 year old Josiah reigning as King of Judah. He came into power after his father was assassinated. Josiah was a God-fearing King who sought the Lord. The Bible confirms that “King Josiah did right in the sight of the Lord”; (2nd Chron. 34:1). He removed idol worship from Judah and Jerusalem.
During a routine bookkeeping task, the high priest, Hilkiah, found a lost copy of the Book of the Law that had been given through Moses; (2nd Chron. 34:14). The book had been lost for generations. The temple secretary Shaphan took the book to King Josiah and read it. After King Josiah heard the words of the Law, he tore his robe; (v. 18-19). The tearing or ripping of a robe in ancient times was done as an act of pain, sorrow, grief, mourning, or loss.
The King sent messengers to the Prophetess Huldah for confirmation of the authenticity of the Book of the Law; (v. 21). The young King knew that the previous generation had fallen deeply into apostasy due to the neglect of the Law; therefore, he sought the Lord for answers.
Huldah sent an answer to the King, “Tell the man (King Josiah) thus said the Lord, “Behold, I will bring evil upon this place and upon its inhabitants, even all the curses that are written in the book which they have read before the King of Judah. Because they have forsaken me and have burned incense to other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands. Therefore my wrath shall be poured out upon this place and shall not be quenched.”
Say to King Josiah of Judah, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning the words which you have heard: Because your heart was tender and penitent and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and it inhabitants, and humbled yourself before me and rent your clothes and wept before me I have heard you, says the Lord.” (v.v. 23-27).
This lesson provides us with a sense of appreciation for the Word of the Lord and the promises of God. It also serves as a warning to us to stay connected with God and serve only Him. We must always communicate with future generations of the importance of knowing the Bible, why it was written, and the importance of keeping the commandments as Jesus taught us in the New Testament. To serve other gods is a sin against God and there are consequences for sin.
SCRIPTURES TO LIVE BY
The word of God tells us to:
- But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you; (Matt. 6:33).
- Love the Lord your God with all of your heart, soul, and strength; (Deut. 6:5).
- The Book of the Law shall not depart from you; (Josh. 1:8).
- Serve God and keep His commandments; (Eccl. 12:13).
- Keep yourself free from idols; (1st John 5:21).
- It takes the heart of a King to turn a nation back to God. Josiah loved God, and he cared about his country and his people.
- The Prophetess spoke the Word of God as a light; she was called to bring the truth to His people.
- The prophecy was death for sin committed against God. Disobedience is a sin, and the wages of sin is death.
- Every King needs a high priest and a prophet. Jesus fulfills each of these roles; King of kings, High Priest after the order of Melchizedek, and Prophet. King Josiah, Hilkiah the High Priest, and Prophetess Huldah were in the Old Testament; Jesus fulfills each role in the New Testament.
The Remedy: A revival!
After hearing the word of the Lord spoken through the Prophetess Huldah, King Josiah gather all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem, they went up to the house of the Lord, along with every able body in Judah and Jerusalem, and he read the words of the book of the covenant that was found in the Lord’s house. The King made a covenant before the Lord to walk after His ways and to keep His commandments, testimonies, and standards. He removed all the idolatrous abominations from all the territory and continued with the Lord’s Annual Passover Feast.
*Background Scriptures: 2nd Chron. 34; 2nd Chron. 35:1
*Picture Credits: Noire 3000 Bible, by James C. Lewis