walk in the word
“Go, inquire of the Lord for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found. For great is the wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.” (2 Kings 22:13, esv)
Whenever you see a crash or collapse, whether in another person’s life or even in your own, you don’t need to be a genius to conclude that somewhere behind it is compromise—a pattern of slipping, softening, weakening, lowering the standard. “Slipping is Crash’s law,” as poet Emily Dickinson brilliantly said. It’s essential to stop the compromise that happens so gradually, but ends so badly—and the time God has given us to handle it is now.
As per usual, a biblical example will serve us well.“What’s the importance of God’s Word in your life? You’re never too old to start a new discipline of reading and studying the Bible, and never too old to return to it.” Click To Tweet
Josiah was a young king in Judah when he detected the ruins of compromise in his country, going back a couple of generations in his royal line. His grandfather Manasseh had “rebuilt the high places that Hezekiah his father had destroyed” (2 Kings 21:3), the altars to pagan gods that God had told them to knock down. His father Amon was no better. “He walked in all the way in which his father walked and served the idols that his father served and worshiped them” (2 Kings 21:21). Josiah, however, was determined to change the culture of compromise. Here’s how he did it. And here’s how we can do it too.
1) He rebuilt God’s place. He allocated money to be used for “buying timber and quarried stone to repair the house” (2 Kings 22:6), the house of the Lord. When you’re wanting to reverse the negative trends of compromise, one of the first questions to ask is, “What’s the importance of the Lord’s house in my life?” First things belong to God—the first portion of your income, the first moments of your day, and the first day of every week. Put your church conviction back where it belongs: the Lord’s people, in the Lord’s house, on the Lord’s day.
2) He reprioritized God’s Word. During the cleaning up of the temple, workmen found something that should never go missing in a church—the Bible! “Shaphan the secretary told the king, ‘Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.’ And Shaphan read it before the king” (2 Kings 22:10). Then, watch what happened next: “When the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he tore his clothes” (verse 11), because its truth affected him so deeply. Same question: What’s the importance of God’s Word in your life? You’re never too old to start a new discipline of reading and studying the Bible, and never too old to return to it.
3) He repented over compromise. At Josiah’s command, the leadership went to a prophetess to inquire more deeply into what the Word of God was saying. And while she declared the Lord would punish the nation for its disregard of Him and His laws, she had a different word for Josiah: “Because your heart was penitent, and you humbled yourself before the Lord . . . your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring on this place” (2 Kings 22:19, 20). God withheld His judgment for a whole generation—because of one repentant man.
That’s how you stop what compromise has started.
Father, thank You for providing a stop for the waves of compromise I’ve stirred up in my life. I’m weary of these joyless feelings, of the costs to my family and those I care about. Help me experience what Your Word calls “the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Romans 8:21, nkjv), delighting again in pure things, in simple things, in consistent priorities that honor You. Thank You for desiring my good, and for making it result in Your praise, in Jesus’ name, amen.
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