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Why Do You Believe?

Posted on January 14, 2024

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Why Do You Believe?

2 Kings 22

Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18

2 Kings 23:1-30

I know I have asked this question before in previous sermons but I believe it still and good question to visit at times. The question is, why do you believe in Jesus Christ, why do you believe in God? I think there are many answers and each person may have their own unique reason and answer for why they believe what they believe. There are some who have their own answer for why they do not believe as well. It is because of the answers for why some do not believe that us believers must also answer the question for why they do believe. For some they may have experience something miraculous. Maybe it was a healing, maybe they should have died but instead they miraculously survived. For some maybe it is the only rational explanation for how and why the world is the way that it is and how it came into existence. For others maybe they were just raised in the church and it is all that they know to believe. These are all reasonable explanations for why someone may believe. However, what if nothing miraculous happened? What if God never spoke to them. What if they were never raised in the church. What if there was no real reason for them to believe and yet they decide to do so anyway? What if all you had was law of God before you? Would this be enough for you to believe? Our scripture passages for this morning tell us the story of someone who had no reason to believe in the God of the universe and yet they chose to believe and they chose to obey.

Our story in 2 Kings 22-23 begins with a new king in Jerusalem. This king was one of the last good kings of Judah as there were many who led Israel astray. This king’s name is Josiah. Josiah took the throne at the age of 8. By all rights there was no reason for him to be a good king or to follow the Lord. After all he was just a child when he became king. Not old enough to really know all of the difference between right and wrong. His father and his grandfather were both terrible kings. His grandfather being one of the worst kings in Judah by bringing in pagan worship which included child sacrifice and sexual immorality. I guess the fortunate thing was that he was too young to understand the evil things his father and grandfather did. Yet his grandfather was 12 when he became king and still did evil things even though his father was a good king. Therefore, by all rights Josiah should have followed his family history and have been an evil king. Maybe it was because his father was assassinated for his evil deeds that he thought and acted differently.

We are told that he did what was right and stayed on a straight and narrow path not straying from the right or the left. When he was 26 years old, he sent his secretary to the temple to retrieve the tithes and offerings that were left at the temple to be used for the temple maintenance and repairs. The high priest reported that he had found the book of law in the temple. The priest gave it to Shaphan, the secretary, and he reported this back to the king. He read the law to the king and the king had the most amazing response. He tore his clothing because he realized that everyone had broken the law of God and the Lord must be very angry for his law to be broken in such a way. He says that those before him had broken the law. This means that he knows the history of his father and grandfather and yet he chose a different path. He sent for an inquiry of the Lord as to what should be done. The Lord’s answer is that he will bring disaster upon the kingdom and his temple because of all of the evil that was done and his anger would not be quenched. Yet Josiah will die in peace and not witness these disasters because of how he humbled himself and tore his clothes before the Lord.

The Lord is promising that disaster will come and Josiah could have just left it at that and carried on as he had been. However, this is not what Josiah did. He began to clean house. He destroys all that has been evil in the eyes of the Lord. He burns all of the pagan idols and turns them into ash. He puts an end to the child sacrificing to Molech. He leads the people to do what is right even though they will still experience disaster. You see Josiah is not doing what is right because he thinks he will gain something by doing so. He is doing what is right because he knows that it is right. He does good for the sake of good. Very different from his predecessors. What would our world look like today if people would just do good because it is good. What would the world be like if people would prefer righteousness over evil. Josiah’s heart was like that of David in that when he was convicted by the truth and convicted by the word of God, he chose to seek the Lord rather than his own desires.  

Notice that there was no miracle that took place for Josiah to believe. The Lord did not come to him in a dream. No prophet came before him to warn him of Judah’s doom. No voice in a burning bush. No parting waters. No people rising from the dead. Josiah merely believes because of the written Word of God. You see this is a reason for us to believe. It is because of the Bible and what is written there that we may believe. For some there may be no other reason to believe other than the truth that is written here. The Bible is sufficient enough for us to believe. When you read this book and if you understand the truths that are in there even before they were understood to be truths in our world today this is all the more reason to believe. The Bible tells us that the wind blows in cyclones. The Bible tells us that the earth is round and it is suspended on nothing. The Bible tells us that everything in existence is held together by an invisible force and invisible particles. The Bible tells us the Pleiades star system is bound and does not move. These are all things that we now know from observation but we did not know at the time the Bible was written. The Bible is the living and breathing Word of God.

As I said at the beginning of this message, each of us may have a different reason for believing. Each of us has a different and unique experience and relationship with the Lord. However, it is my hope that after today you will all realize that the Bible itself is enough reason for you to believe in God. Everything that it contains is truth and this truth is powerful. May the Word of God breed righteousness in your life for the sake of righteousness. May you obey His word for the simple reason that it is what he desires of you. May you know why you believe and may the Bible be one of those reasons just as we have learned from King Josiah’s example.