Read 2 Kings 21
Focus on verse 24
The power and authority that rests upon kings and governors seems to have a way of going to their heads. There is much truth to the saying, “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” History is full of examples of kings and emperors who assumed the place of God but were ultimately humbled. In situations such as this there always seems to be some remnant of people who understand and cling to righteousness. In this case we are not told who these people are, we are just told “the people of the land struck down all those who had conspired against King Amon, and the people of the land made Josiah his son king in his place. In other words they set things right.
What it was that caused the people of the land to do this is not explained. Ultimately it would seem that the Lord was instrumental in this as Josiah, whom they place on the throne becomes the last king to reign righteously in the sight of the Lord over the nation of Judah.
Historically this rise and fall of Israel seems to follow a similar pattern. The Lord blesses a nation because they follow after Him with their whole heart. As they become prosperous, they forget their reliance on the Lord and begin to follow after other gods. For a while the Lord graciously attempts to call them back to Him, but when they do not listen He does whatever it takes to get a remnant to return to reliance on Him alone. Typically in O.T. history this involved the invasion of some foreign power that carried the Israelites off into captivity for a time.
At this point in the history of Israel we are nearing the end of the Davidic Empire. There have been a few sporadic revivals under kings like Hezekiah, and there will be one more under Josiah, but from there on it will decline, despite the power that the people hold to bring their nation back into line with God’s principles.
It would seem the American empire is marching ever closer to that point of no return as well, becoming ever more secular, ever more ungodly in the direction the government is taking it. Perhaps the people of the land, Lord willing, may set up one more leader to lead one more generation back to the Lord? I pray that this might be so for the sake of my children and grandchildren.