People of Faith (Naaman & Josiah)

In the Bible we have all kinds of people that show certain characteristics that should be examples to us. We have been going through a series of looking at these people and learning from them. We first learned from Reuben’s experience. Now we will learn from two other men, Naaman and Josiah. 

In 2 Kings 5, there is a man named Naaman. He was a commander under the king of Aram and had apparently won many victories. But he had a problem, and his problem was an incurable disease, leprosy. Namaan’s servant girl had told him about Elisha, a prophet in Israel, who could heal him. So Naaman went to Israel and met Elisha. But when he came to Elisha’s house, it was only his servant who came to the door and told him to go dip himself in the river seven times. But Namaan became angry at this instruction but his advisors were there and told him to do it. Then 2 Kings 5:14 says, “So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child, and he was healed!” 

This is what happens when we obey the word of God. Even when God’s instructions or ways seem odd to us and make no sense we should still trust. Elisha’s instructions didn’t make sense to him and he became angry because he expected something greater. Sometimes the greatest blessings are the simple ones we underestimate. Romans 8:28, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” If we love God, we know that he works all things out for our good. This is a promise we have and it’s the same promise granted to Naaman. 

Later in 2 Kings, we come to a man named Josiah. Josiah was king of Judah and he was only 8 years old when he came to the throne. Later on in his reign, the book of the law or the Torah, had been found in the temple. It had long been ignored but it was read to Josiah. When Josiah heard it read to him, he was distressed and he proclaimed, “Great is the Lord’s anger that burns against us because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book,” (2 Kings 22:13). Josiah realizes they have not been doing what was right and change needed to happen. 

So what he does is call all of the people together. He reads to them all of the words so that they all know what it said. Then in 2 Kings 23:3 it says he, “renewed the covenant in the presence of the Lord-to follow the Lord and keep his commands, regulations, and decrees with all his heart and all his soul,”. The people also said they were to follow this covenant as well. 

Using his position of leadership, King Josiah brings everyone together under the Lord. He reads to them God’s words and proclaims his message. He decided to follow God with all his heart and soul, riffing off of the Shema. This was a renewal for him, the people, and the entire kingdom of Judah. They were rededicated to the Lord because of Josiah’s heart to follow his commands and receive God’s blessings.  

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