2 Chronicles 34:27-28—Because thine heart was tender, and thou didst humble thyself before God, when thou heardest his words against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, and humbledst thyself before me, and didst rend thy clothes, and weep before me; I have even heard thee also, saith the LORD. Behold, I will gather thee to thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered to thy grave in peace, neither shall thine eyes see all the evil that I will bring upon this place, and upon the inhabitants of the same. So they brought the king word again.
The son of Manasseh was evil and soon assassinated. His son, Josiah, was put on the throne at the young age of 8. By the time he turned sixteen he began to seek the LORD. He purged the nation of idols and ordered the repair of the temple. In the process, the Book of the Law was found. Apparently, things had been so bad for so long that the priests did not even know where a copy of the Law could be found. When the Book of the Law was read to Josiah, he tore his robes and grieved over the sins of his fathers and the judgment promised in the book. Because the Spirit had not yet been poured out on all, he sent his staff to ask a prophetess living in Jerusalem if this justice was impending. She told them that God was going to keep his word and send the nation into captivity, but because Josiah humbled himself, tore his robes and wept before God, the judgment would not come in his lifetime. His eyes would not see the destruction of Jerusalem. God is just and keeps His word, but He is also patient and generous. One man’s heart that was tender toward His word postponed the judgment. O that all God’s children would have such a tender heart toward the word of God. When you read Scripture, do you allow it to speak to you personally and take it to heart as Josiah did? He did not think it was for other people or just the words because he was not involved. He saw the application was for him and his nation personally and humbled himself. If there is one attribute we need more than any other as we read the Word, it is humility.