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The Story of Josiah

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What is like to be eight years old in Britain nowadays?

If you're eight, you're almost certainly at school. You're probably looked after by by your parents or grandparents. You might spend a large amount of your time playing or watching television. You probably don't have a job.

But, what if you're eight and one day you are crowned king. How might you feel about that?

The Bible tells the story of a boy called Josiah who became king when he was only eight. Josiah lived in a palace in Jerusalem and was king of Judah.

Josiah's palace wasn't the most important building in Jerusalem. That was the Temple, where the people of Judah worshipped God. But when Josiah became king, the Temple was in a terrible state. Its walls were crumbling and its roof leaked. Josiah loved God. So, he ordered that the Temple be repaired.

When all the money to repair the Temple was gathered in, carpenters and builders began the work. They hadn't been working for very long when they found something amazing. It was a book of God's rules, which had been lost for years and years.

The Book was taken to Josiah. When God's rules were read out to him, Josiah became very upset and tore his clothes. He was upset because he now knew that he and everyone else in Judah had been doing things which were against God's rules. Josiah called a meeting of all the people of Judah. They met at the Temple, where Josiah read out to them all of God's rules. Before the people, Josiah made a promise to follow God and to keep His rules. Josiah made the people do the same.

Then Josiah made some changes. Across the whole of Judah, he ordered that any statues and altars of other gods be smashed and beaten into dust. Everyone was to follow the one, true God.

To celebrate these changes, Josiah invited everyone to a massive festival in Jerusalem, where they ate lots of food and sang hymns to God. The celebrations lasted seven days. It was the biggest and best festival that anyone could ever remember.


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A Primary Vision resource provided by Stockport Christians in Schools Trust