2 Kings 22:8-13; 23:1-3
With Israel captured by the Assyrians, the focus shifts to the two tribes in the south – the kingdom of Judah. Josiah takes charge of Judah at the age of eight and will go on to rule Judah for the next thirty-one years. During his reign, the Book of the Law is found! The Word of God! As they rejoice at the finding of the Book of the Law, disaster is pronounced on Judah through the Book. It too shall face the same fate as Israel. And so what does Josiah do? He gathers his people and makes a covenant with the Lord. What will follow is reformation under Josiah and the celebration of the Passover. What an amazing story of faithful leadership!
It all begins with the person of Josiah – right from the word ‘go’! "He did what was right in the sight of the Lord, and walked in all the way of his father David; he did not turn aside to the right or to the left." (2 Kings 22:2) Although Judah will eventually face the wrath of God for their disobedience and unfaithfulness to Him, God will be faithful to Josiah until the end of his life.
Jesus does not mince words when he speaks about false prophets. We are all ‘prophets’ in ways we bring Christ to people through our words and actions. However, our thoughts and actions can easily be influenced and colored by what is happening around us. There will be discouragements and disappointments. In the midst of all these, we are called to be prophetic witnesses to our world. The challenge is to remain steadfast, faithful and bear good fruit!
Fr. Bruno D’Souza, CP, is on the staff at Mater Dolorosa Passionist Retreat Center, Sierra Madre, California.