"Psalm 23," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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2 Kings 22:1-10, [14-20]; 23:1-3 Commentary
by Mark Throntveit
The expression, “Like father, like son” certainly doesn’t apply to the string of Judean kings Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, and Josiah.
Whereas Hezekiah and Josiah are among Judah’s very best kings, Manasseh is clearly the worst, since his sin was responsible for God’s punishment of Judah, at least in the eyes of the Deuteronomistic editors (2 Kings 21:9, 17; 24:3). True, Amon, was like his evil father, Manasseh, but he only ruled for two years, before he was assassinated leaving the throne to his godly son Josiah.
There are many unanswered questions in the story of Josiah’s reform as well as the reign of Manasseh. For example, how is it possible, in the Deuteronomistic telling of the tale with their insistence upon blessing for the pious and curse for the impious, that a very bad king, like Manasseh, should have the longest reign of any Davidic monarch, some fifty-five years? Or that a very good king like Josiah, should be cut down in the prime of life, especially if one fails to see that Huldah’s prophecy should be interpreted in terms of when he would die rather than how (2 Kings 22:20)? Or why ...
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Summer 2020 Readings
2020-21 Readings (Year 3)
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL Podcast 382: Josiah's Reform
November 24, 2019
Podcast on the Narrative Lectionary readings for Nov. 24, 2019, (Josiah's Reform) featuring Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Kathryn Schifferdecker. Recorded at Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minn., for Working Preacher.