October 15, 2022, God does not have Grandchildren
Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem for thirty-one years. He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and followed the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left. 2..Chronicle 34, 1+2
Charles Philip Arthur George was 73 years old when he became king on September 8, 2022. Since then, he has ruled the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland and the Commonwealth of Nations as Charles III. And he is also secular head of the Anglican state church.
Josiah was just eight years old when he succeeded his father Amon. That was in 641 or 640 B.C. He came from the dynasty of David. His biological father Amon left him a heavy inheritance: idolatry. God was angry with Amon.
Some children sometimes are faced with a heavy legacy, which they inherit. Most parents expect their children to follow in their footsteps. That the children continue to live in their tradition. That they adopt the values which are important to their father. That the child carries on the family values on what is considered to be important to the family. That can often be a heavy burden for the child. About Charles III I heard again and again comments that the footsteps of his late mother Elizabeth II could turn out to be very big. Some think: too large. But the future will tell.
What was expected of little Josiah, we do not know. But it is certain that he followed a different way than his father Amon. As a sixteen-year-old youth, Josiah asks about the God of his ancestors. He is interested in the God of Israel and thus opposes his father Amon. Amon had despised God, served idols and piled up guilt like a “mountain of garbage”.
At age twenty, Josiah starts to reform religious life in the land and takes radical action against idolatry in the country. Unlike his father, he sanctifies the God of Israel again
The title of my sermon today reads: God has no Grandchildren. By this I mean that each generation must decide for itself whether to reject God or to take God and His commandments seriously. Josiah took God seriously and became a man of God.
I know women and men who were brought up without the Christian faith and at some point, found faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. They became children of God. They live as children of the Father in heaven. I remember a young girl who grew up in an atheist family. Then she came to know Jesus Christ in a Christian youth group, was baptized, and went her way of life with Jesus Christ. I had a blind grandmother who prayed for me. She did not live to see Jesus Christ become my Savior and Redeemer. But I am grateful to her until today!
But I also know reverse developments. Children who grew up in a Christian home or family and then as teenagers or adults turned against God. This then becomes a rather sad development! Perhaps there were people who prayed for little Josiah. Who were an example of faith for Josiah. Quite like Timothy, Paul's co-worker. Paul writes about him in the 2.Timotheus letter, chap. 1, 5: “I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.” A praying mother, a praying grandmother – a valid reason to praise the Lord for that!
I encourage you to be an example of faith to children. Please do not stop praying for your children or Grandchildren. Or, if you are childless, pray for children in your family, in your neighborhood, in your community. Be an example in faith like Eunice and Lois were to Timothy.
And it is certainly important to pray for Charles III and his family as well. James, the brother of Jesus, encourages trusting prayer (Jas.5:16b): “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” Let us trust in this promise!
May our God bless you. I pray that He will guide you to become an example of faith. May he strengthen your faith and make you a courageous praying woman, a courageous praying man.