Then the king summoned all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. And the king went up to the Temple of the Lord with all the people of Judah and Jerusalem, along with the priests and the prophets—all the people from the least to the greatest. There the king read to them the entire Book of the Covenant that had been found in the Lord’s Temple. The king took his place of authority beside the pillar and renewed the covenant in the Lord’s presence. He pledged to obey the Lord by keeping all his commands, laws, and decrees with all his heart and soul. In this way, he confirmed all the terms of the covenant that were written in the scroll, and all the people pledged themselves to the covenant. 2 Kings 23:1-3
After God gave Moses the Ten Commandments, God told him what He longed for; “Oh, that they would always have hearts like this, that they might fear me and obey all my commands!” (Deuteronomy 5:29). From the text, King Josiah renewed his commitment to the covenant and called on the people to do the same. It was during this time that the Temple was destroyed and plan to rebuild was in the process. Yet, they realized that even if they have their place of worship, when people’s hearts are not in tune with God, worship is empty. The King was hoping that the Israelites will return to God. As soon as the Word of God was read the people realized how they have been living in disobedience. The call to repentance was echoed among them. They made a commitment to obey God’s commands with all their hearts and with all their souls. Every aspect of their innermost being was to be drawn on God. This is how we demonstrate that God is the Lord of our lives. When we say we love Him, we have to walk in His ways. King Josiah was grateful for God’s mercy and he realized that the logical response was to serve God. Listening to God speaks prompts us to respond and He wants us to choose obeying and serving Him. We are privileged to be in a relationship with God because we have received His mercy and forgiveness. But inherent in this relationship with God is the commitment to keep His commands and to follow His ways. The primary way that we show to God our love is to put Him in His place of prominence in our lives. “Love the Lord your God, walk in all his ways, obey his commands, hold firmly to him, and serve him with all your heart and all your soul” (Joshua 22:5). “Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them” (John 14:21).
Noel De Guzman