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Remission

Date: Sep. 6, 2015

Author: Michael Mark

2 Kings 22:1-23:30

Key Verse: 2 Kings 22:19

“Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I have spoken against this place and its people – that they would become a curse and be laid waste – and because you tore your robes and wept in my presence, I also have heard you, declares the Lord.”

One of the first times I heard the word remission was when it was used to refer to a moment of temporary healing from cancer. When a doctor says “The cancer is in remission,” it means that the sick person is well, though it is also understood that this is only temporary. In some cases, people who are terminally ill may experience a temporary remission before they die. I heard a story the other day where someone who had a stroke lost their ability to speak. Suddenly, one day they were able to speak a little, and things seemed hopeful. But not long after, that person died. The nation of Judah seemed to be going through something similar. We are coming to the end of 2 Kings, and we already know what will happen. Judgment is inevitable, and they will be exiled by the Babylonians. But before the terrible end there seems to be a time of healing and hope during the reign of Josiah.

Josiah was the sixteenth king of Judah. He was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem 31 years. I can’t imagine an 8 year old being king – is anyone in here 8 years old? Verse 2 says “He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and followed completely the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left.” Here again was a great compliment to a king of Judah. Only one other king received this level of praise. Do you remember who it was? The only other king to be compared to King David was Hezekiah. Josiah was the great-grandson of King Hezekiah, and he is among the best of the kings of Judah.

Last week we learned about Manasseh, who was one of the worst kings who ruled in Judah. When he reigned he created hell on earth. His son Amon was no better. How was it that Josiah turned out to be a good king? In 2 Chronicles 33 it says that the king of Assyria took Manasseh prisoner, put a hook in his nose, bound him with bronze shackles and took him to Babylon. In his distress he cried out to God, and humbled himself greatly. God was moved by his cry and brought him back, and from that point he began to remove the idols he had put in the temple, and restored the altar of the Lord. The people, however, still continued to sacrifice at the high places, but only to God. When Amon became king, he restored all of the idolatrous worship, but after only two years his own officials conspired and killed him. Then the people of the land killed those who killed Amon, and set up his son Josiah as king. This was the environment Josiah grew up in. He may have been young enough to avoid following in the wicked ways of his fathers, but also, he may have been surrounded by good people – people who could not stand the unjust killing of a king, even a wicked one, and people who were faithful to the will of God to maintain a king in the line of David as ruler over Judah.

Since he was still a young child, the people surrounding him may have helped him rule until he was old enough to begin doing things on his own. 2 Chronicles 34 tells us that in the 8th year of his reign, while he was still young, he began to seek the God of his father David. That means he was 16 years old. Perhaps now he would begin to lead the nation independently. In the 12th year of his reign, at 20 years old, he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, Asherah poles and idols. This was in 2 Chronicles. Our passage today in 2 Kings begins in the 18th year of his reign, when he was 26 years old. 6 years had now passed when he began house cleaning in the nation of Judah, and now he will commence the work on repairing the temple in Jerusalem.

God’s temple had been left in a state of disrepair for over 200 years. The last effort to work on the temple was instituted by King Joash. Since that time the temple treasures were emptied three times, things were removed and shifted around to support foreign kings or idol worship, gold was stripped from the doors, and Manasseh and Amon had desecrated it with foreign altars and Asherah poles for 57 years. You can see Josiah’s heart for the glory of God in his desire to restore and repair the temple. It was no small effort – supervisors, carpenters, builders and masons were all involved in the work, and it was funded by the people, who gave money through offerings given at the temple. Josiah may have called for an offering before this 18th year of his reign, and in that amount of time enough money was raised to begin the work.

While the work was going on, something unexpected happened: the Book of the Law was found. Verse 8 says, “Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the secretary, ‘I have found the Book of the Law in the temple of the Lord.’” Does it seem odd to you that the Book of the Law was just found, like right now, in the temple, during restoration? Isn’t the Book of the Law the central book of the temple? It’s like saying, “Well look here, we found a Bible in the church!” But remember now, King Manasseh did not follow the Book of the Law, and he ruled for 55 years. Things might have gotten lost by then. Either it was lost, because it was neglected, like how some people, nobody in here though, would just go home and throw their Bible in the corner somewhere and forget about it. Or, it was hidden away, maybe by some discerning priests, to protect it from wicked kings – only to be discovered later by dedicated temple servants.

The importance of the Book of the Law cannot be overstated. It is as important as, say, the Constitution of the United States is to America. I’d say it’s even more important than that. Why was it so important? Because the Book of the Law defines clearly who God is, what He has done, what He has promised, and what He requires from his people. The Book of the Law is the Book of God’s Law, which God had given to Moses to give to the Israelite people. The Book of the Law most likely contained some if not all of the 5 books written by Moses. The Book of the Law included Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. Our Bibles today have all 5 of these books, and much much more, but in those times the complete Book of the Law consisted of only the first 5 books of the Bible.

Why else was it so important? Because the law is important. Our entire universe is governed by laws. There are laws of physics, laws of thermodynamics. There are laws of gravity. Nature is governed by laws, and so are people. There are federal laws, state laws, municipal (city) laws. Imagine a universe without law. Imagine a nation without law. Everything would be chaos. Like we heard from Dan last week, it would be like hell on earth. Everyone would just do what they want, with no standard of right or wrong. People would steal, kill and destroy, and without law, there is no punishment, no justice, no righteousness. If laws of a nation are important for the well-being, security, peace for people, how much more important are God’s laws for the well-being, security and peace of our souls. If the consequences of breaking state laws are bad, how much worse are the consequences of breaking God’s law?

The law convicts us of sin. After the Book of the Law was found in the temple, it was read to King Josiah. When the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he tore his robes. Why? He was distressed because he realized that he and his nation had broken God’s law. He said, “Great is the Lord’s anger that burns against us [notice he says “us”, he includes himself in the guilt of the nation]...Great is the Lord’s anger that burns against us because those who have gone before us have not obeyed the words of this book; they have not acted in accordance with all that is written there concerning us.” I don’t think all 5 books were read to the king at one time, it would take about 10 hours to read it all, but he may have heard enough to know he was guilty. Most likely he might have heard parts from Deut 28:15, which says, “However, if you do not obey the Lord your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come on you and overtake you…” And in the next 50 verses the Lord describes all of the curses that will happen to the Israelites. Have you ever received a traffic ticket in the mail? From the red light cameras? They have photographic evidence of you breaking the law, and they will charge you $100. Sometimes, it may make you want to tear your clothes too.

Josiah’s anguish was very great. He had in him a healthy fear of God. He had a great honor, reverence and respect for God, so when he learned that he had wronged the Lord, he became very distressed and had a strong desire to make things right. He sent Hilkiah, Ahikam, Akbor and Shaphan to inquire of the Lord for him and for the people through a prophet. The 4 men met a woman named Huldah, who was a prophetess. Though not very common, there were some women who are identified as prophetesses in the Bible. Miriam, the sister of Moses, was called a prophetess (Ex 15:20). Deborah in the book of judges was a prophetess as well (Judg 4:4). Jeremiah was a prophet who served during Josiah’s reign, but they did not go to him. The Bible does not say why, but one reason might be that he could be 3 miles away in his home city of Anathoth, while Huldah lived right there in Jerusalem, and may have had a reputation of being a true prophetess.

She said to the men that disaster will come to Jerusalem, just as it was written in the Book of the Law, and she gives the reason: it was because the people have forsaken God and worshipped idols. They have rejected God, and abandoned him. He gave them and only them the laws of God through the book. They were his special nation, chosen out of all the nations of the world. He rescued them from Egypt, provided for them through the desert, and gave them a land that was not their own. He sent them prophets to warn them and performed miracles to turn their hearts back to him. Still they would not turn to God. Time and time again he called them to repent and turn to him, but one day time will be up. Judgment will come, because evil cannot go on forever. Huldah the prophetess said God has determined to bring disaster to Jerusalem because they had forsaken him.

She then gave another prophecy, specifically for the king. She said to him, can we read v.19 together (Ch. 22), “Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I have spoken against this place and its people – that they would become a curse and be laid waste – and because you tore your robes and wept in my presence, I have also heard you, declares the Lord.” The Lord lives, and he is the God of the living. He hears. What a privilege to be heard by the Lord. The God of the universe, Creator of heaven and earth, sovereign and greater than the most powerful people on earth, wiser than most wisest man to ever live, and more famous than the most famous person hears. He listens. And who does he listen to? Those, who like Josiah, have a tender and humble heart. Josiah’s heart was broken, it was contrite. He tore his robes, he wept in the presence of God over sin. Psalm 51:17 says, “My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.” Isaiah 66:1-2 says, “This is what the Lord says, ‘Heaven is my throne and earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?’ declares the Lord. ‘These are the ones I look on with favor: those who are humble and contrite in spirit, and who tremble at my word.’” God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6). The acknowledgment of our sins is a good first step in humility. God is gracious, and he listens to the humble.

The prophetess continues in verse 20, “Therefore I will gather you to your ancestors, and you will be buried in peace. Your eyes will not see all the disaster I am going to bring on this place.” God will have mercy on Josiah. Judgment is still coming, God did not say he will no longer bring disaster. But Josiah will be spared from judgment. He will be able to escape the terrible times that are coming to Jerusalem.

How did the king respond? He immediately went back to work on making reforms in Judah and in Israel. Even though God had pronounced and confirmed judgment, he did not stop in calling the nation to repent and turn to God. His response was different from Hezekiah’s. Hezekiah, when told about how the temple would be ransacked and his children taken away to Babylon, said, “The word of the Lord you have spoken is good.” For he thought, “Will there not be peace and security in my lifetime?” Granted, Hezekiah was also one of the best kings, and he did very much for the peace and security of Israel, removing idolatry, fortifying the city and preparing it for siege. It’s just that his response to God’s judgment sounded selfish, where Josiah may have thought, “Perhaps God may relent his judgment if the people have just one more chance to repent.” God is sovereign, and he will do what he decides to do, but we can still give glory to God by telling people about him, calling people to repent and turn back to God, and showing the way to salvation even to the very end.

The king called together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem, and brought people in from all over the nation, from the least to the greatest, to the temple for a public renewal of the covenant of God. He himself read to the people all the words of the Book of the Covenant. Notice in verse 2 it says, “Book of the Covenant.” This is not a different book. The Book of the Covenant is another name for the Book of the Law. The Book of the Law is also the Book of the Covenant. You can think of a covenant as promises that are bound by law. Covenants are like promises that are guaranteed, and they are guaranteed by law. An example of a covenant is a business contract. One party will provide the goods, and the other party will pay the money for those goods. They are bound by law to keep their promises, so if one party takes the money without giving the goods, or the other party takes the goods but does not pay, the law is broken and the violator of the covenant will be punished. But if they both obey the law, everything is awesome. To summarize, the Book of the Covenant says, if the Israelites obey God’s commands, they will be blessed and live in the land God gave them forever. If they disobey God’s commands, disaster will come and they will be driven away. It was God’s intention to bless them and to give them the promised land, so it was really God’s grace to make it known publicly once again how they can receive the promises. To hear and to receive God’s word is a gracious gift from God. It’s kind of like receiving a treasure map. After hearing the word being read, and seeing the king renew the covenant, all the people pledged themselves to the covenant.

After this, great reforms were made in Jerusalem, Judah and Samaria. The first place of reform was in the temple. The king ordered Hilkiah the high priest and all of the other priests and servants of the temple to remove all of the articles made for Baal and Asherah and all the starry hosts. Baal was associated with sun worship, Asherah with moon worship, and there were many gods associated with the stars. These were taken outside Jerusalem and burned in the Kidron Valley. Then the ashes were taken to Bethel. Bethel was about 10 miles north of Jerusalem. The ashes of the idol worship materials were not even worthy to stay in the vicinity of Jerusalem, so Josiah sent them up to Bethel. He didn’t even want to touch the ashes with a 10 mile pole. Get it outta there! He also did away with the idolatrous priests in the temple.

He took the Asherah pole that was in the temple out the the Kidron Valley, burned it and ground it into powder. How’s that for total destruction? Ground into powder, and then scattered over common people’s graves. Graves were considered unclean sites, so unclean ashes were dumped over there. Verse 7 says he also tore down the quarters of the male shrine prostitutes that were in the temple of the Lord, the quarters where women did weaving for Asherah. This shows how low and how far Jerusalem had fallen. The Lord’s temple, the place where he chose to dwell, was inhabited by male prostitutes who served the idols. Some of their rituals included cutting themselves, in addition to the detestable prostitution they were doing.

Verse 8 says Josiah brought all the priests from the towns of Judah and desecrated the high places, from Geba to Beersheba, where the priests had burned incense. He brought reform to all of Judah: Geba was the northern limit of Judah, and Beersheba was the southern limit. He brought all the priests from the various towns into Jerusalem. Why? Because the temple was the only sanctioned place to worship God. He was taking the priests away from the cities outside of Jerusalem because that was the improper way to worship. Verse 9 tells us that these priests did not end up serving in the temple, but they ate unleavened bread with their fellow priests. Josiah showed some grace. He unemployed the priests of the high places – they could not serve in the temple because they were ceremonially unclean, but they were still allowed to partake and eat of the portion of food set aside for the priests of the Lord.

He also desecrated Topheth, so that no one could use it to sacrifice their son or daughter in the fire to Molech. This is another low point in Judah’s idolatry, that they were continuing in the practice of killing their children to the foreign gods. Josiah desecrated this worship site. This is how thorough Josiah was purging idolatry. It was one thing to take down, break or overthrow the high places, but he desecrated, defiled and burned them. He made sure they could never be used again. Hezekiah was the first king to remove the high places, and the Bible says he smashed the stones and cut the Asherah poles. But when he was gone, these high places were put back into commission. Josiah did more than just smash or break, he defiled them to make sure that they could never be used again. In one episode of Simpsons, for some reason, actually for no reason, Homer trampled on Ned Flander’s flowers. But when Flanders went to look at his flowers, he said to Homer, “Did you have to salt the earth too to make sure nothing would grow?” Homer just chuckled and said, “Yes…” Josiah smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles and covered the sites with human bones. We are naturally repulsed by dead human beings, death is nothing pretty to look at, and by covering the sites with human bones he made the locations for idol worship, even for idol worship, unfit for service.

In this whirlwind of destroying idolatry, Josiah was fulfilling the will of God. He was fulfilling words spoken by God over 300 years before he was born. Our country is not even 300 years old. Josiah had made his way to Bethel, to the very first and original altar that had caused the kingdom of Israel to fall into sin and never come back. It was the altar made by the first king of Israel, Jeroboam son of Nebat. This altar too, Josiah demolished. He burned the high place the altar was in, and ground it into powder. Then he was looking around, thinking, “I wonder how I can defile this altar…” and he saw tombs that were on the hillside. Guess what he did. He removed the bones from the tomb and burned them on the altar to defile it. Then he saw a conspicuous tomb, with a tombstone unlike any other. The king said, “What is that I see?” The people of the city said, “It marks the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and pronounced against the altar of Bethel the very things you have done to it.” If you go back to 1 Kings 13:2, we studied this last November, you’ll go back in time about 300 years, when Jeroboam was making an offering on this altar. A man of God cried out against the altar and said, “Altar, altar! This is what the Lord says: ‘A son named Josiah will be born to the house of David. On you he will sacrifice the priests of the high places who make offering here, and human bones will be burned on you.’” Isn’t that spooky, or awesome? 300 years before Josiah was born, God knew him by name, and knew exactly what he would do. God knows you too. Probably even before you were born. And he knows your name. Psalm 147:4 says, “He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.” There are 100 billion stars in the Milky Way alone. An estimate says there are 100 octillion stars in the universe (1 with 29 0s after it). How many people on earth? 7 billion? That’s like nothing to God. He could probably name everyone on earth in alphabetical order, backwards. Back to the passage … when Josiah learned the tomb belonged to the man of God who prophesied about him, he spared his bones out of respect and did not dig them up.

Josiah’s purge extended beyond Judah and into Samaria. He defiled their altars, he slaughtered all the idolatrous priests, and burned them on the altars. This was quite bold, considering that territory belonged to Assyria, but Assyria was starting to have troubles of their own. This shows that during Josiah’s time, there was relative peace from the neighboring nations, and he was able to exert some authority and influence over Israel, now called Samaria. The remnants in Samaria, perhaps humbled by the exile, may have also been interested in reuniting with Judah under a king born to David. After Josiah had destroyed idolatry in Samaria, he returned to Jerusalem.

His reforms weren’t only about removing places to worship, but also giving back true and lawful worship. He gave this order to all the people in v.21-22, “’Celebrate the Passover to the Lord your God, as it is written in this Book of the Covenant.’ Neither in the days of the judges who led Israel nor in the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah had any such Passover been observed.” This doesn’t mean there were not great Passover celebrations in the past, but one like this, with a very strict adherence to the law, was not celebrated since the time of Samuel, the last judge. Hezekiah also had a great Passover celebration, but he did not adhere to all of the rules of the law. It was celebrated a month late, and many people were not purified for the Passover. It was a great celebration though, and the Lord was gracious. Josiah celebrated the Passover at the appointed time, and instructed people to divide into families to prepare themselves for the Passover. Josiah even provided all of the sacrifices for the lay people. From out of his own pocket, Josiah gave 30,000 lambs and goats to the people.

Verse 25 says, “Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did – with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with the Law of Moses.” It was said about Hezekiah that he trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among the kings of Judah, either before him or after him. Both Hezekiah and Josiah were great kings, and right up there with King David. Hezekiah was known for his faith, and of all the kings of Judah, excluding David, he was the greatest. Josiah was known for his adherence to the law, and perhaps of all the kings, including David, he was the greatest, and maybe in part because King David had sinned by committing adultery and murder. Josiah reigned for 31 years, and during that time there was not a threat from Assyria or Babylon. Egypt, however, passed through the land, to help the king of Assyria. Josiah engaged him in battle, for reasons unknown. He may have wanted to try to preserve the independence he had, or to stop Egypt from marching through his territory, so he engaged in Battle with Pharoah Neco of Egypt. He was shot with an arrow and died in battle. Although it seems a violent death, Josiah was spared from seeing Jerusalem seiged, he was spared from seeing the temple destroyed and his people being sent into exile. He was buried in peace, as God had promised, and though it seemed like a violent death, he died at peace with God. By his faith and repentance, he escaped the judgment which was to come.

Josiah had purged Judah and Israel of idolatry, and renewed the covenant. We even read that all the people pledged themselves to the covenant. But in v.26 it says “Nevertheless, the Lord did not turn away from the heat of his fierce anger, which burned against Judah because of all that Manasseh had done to arouse his anger.” Why did the Lord not turn away? Because their repentance was not sincere, they did not return to the Lord with a broken and contrite heart, nor acknowledge their sins. Jeremiah 3:10 says, during the reign of king Josiah, “In spite of all this, [Israel’s] unfaithful sister Judah did not return to me with all her heart, but only in pretense,” declares the Lord. The Lord knows and sees the heart. Judah did not return with all her heart, just superficially. When the Book of the Law was read, there was no weeping over what was heard. In Nehemiah 8, this would be several hundred years later, when the people returned from exile and came together to hear the word of the Law, they listened attentively, and Neh 8:9 says that all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law. But here, the people had been hardened by sin. Asked to repent and turn again and again, they refused. Their desire for idolatry becomes evident when after Josiah dies, they go straight back into sin. Now only judgment was left. The Lord wasn’t punishing them only because of Manasseh’s sin, they had been on a downward decline, and Manasseh brought them to their lowest point where it was hard if not impossible to sincerely repent. That is the consequence of denying God over and over again. That’s the consequence of continuing to deny your conscience and sinning over and over again. Josiah was a bright light of hope in the midst of darkness, like a remission in Judah’s sin, but after he died, Judah would relapse back into sin.

We can learn two things here. One: salvation and righteousness cannot come by the law, and Two: salvation and righteousness cannot come by any human king. First, salvation and righteousness cannot come by the law. The law was not meant to save us, but to show us our sin. I heard a good and interesting question the other night. It went something like this, “Since Josiah got rid of idolatry and burned all the idols, what do you think about throwing out your rock and roll CDs?” I would first say, throwing out your rock and roll CDs will not make you righteous. None of our works, even our best works, can make us righteous. The law was not a how to guide for us to be righteous, but was given to reveal our deep and utter sinfulness. Here’s a law: do not murder. Simple enough? But Jesus said, even if you are angry with your brother or sister, you will be subject to judgment. Here’s another law: Do not commit adultery. Of course, adultery is wrong, absolutely! But Jesus said, anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has committed adultery with her in his heart. And now the greatest law of all: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. I see guilty faces already, including myself. Now, we do not break the law intentionally. Just because we cannot fulfill it doesn’t mean we break any of the laws intentionally. But how should we respond to the laws of God? We should turn to God with humility and repentance, with a broken and contrite heart.

Second: Salvation and righteousness cannot come by a human king. Josiah, as great as he was, could not save the nation. But that doesn’t mean his efforts were wasted. On the contrary, Josiah showed us by his example an even greater king. Josiah was the king who obeyed God’s law. There was no other king in the world or in history like him. Josiah gave to them the words of God. Josiah was the king who called for his people to repent, and destroyed their enemies, the idols. Josiah re-established the covenant. And Josiah provided for them lambs for the Passover. Who do we see in Josiah? We see the Christ, the king of kings himself, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Jesus is the king who perfectly obeyed God’s law. Jesus is the word of God. Jesus is the king who called for his people to repent, and destroyed their enemies, sin and death. Jesus established the new covenant by his blood. And Jesus himself is the Passover Lamb. He gave himself up for us, so that our sins may be forgiven. Salvation does not come by a human king, but a divine king. It is only in Jesus Christ that we may be saved and made righteous. It is only in Jesus Christ that we have the forgiveness of sins. And that brings me to another definition of remission. We first saw remission as the temporary recovery over a terminal condition. Another definition of remission is the forgiveness of sins. In the King James version, in Matt 26:27-28 where the disciples are having their last supper with Jesus, “And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” In the NIV, the verse is, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”

So how can we be saved? Like Josiah, how can we be saved from the coming wrath and judgment of God over the sins of the world? By repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. He obeyed the entire law of God, and he exchanged his life for ours by dying on the cross. He died our death so that we might receive his life. By faith in Christ, not works, God will credit you with the righteousness of Christ, because he credited Jesus with our sin. Put on Christ, your righteousness, and you will be saved from the coming judgment. And then, in light of God’s mercy, you can do good your works, just as Josiah had done. I’m sure he was thankful for the mercy of God, and he was compelled in love and thanksgiving to serve the Lord with all his heart, soul and strength. In Christ our conscience will be influenced by the Holy Spirit. He will even help us to do our good works. Christ lives in us who believe, so we can live daily by faith in him. So if you have the desire to throw out those rock and roll CDs, do it willingly and gladly for the Lord. If you have doubt then wait on it, and seek the Lord. Some things I have no doubt you have to throw out though, like pornography, illegal drugs (you should throw these out even if you’re not a believer), but rock and roll, maybe not all of it. But God is faithful and he will help you. Are we perfect? Not yet, but God is with us. We will still sin because we live in a corrupted flesh, but in Christ the healing has begun, and when he comes we will be made perfect. But now, we repent humbly and ask for forgiveness every day, and he hears and will help us. Sin is like a cancerous disease. But look to Christ, put your faith in him, and he will heal you, forgive you, and grant you the remission of your sins.

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Daily Bread

Privilege and Responsibility

Amos 3:1-15

Key Verse: 3:2

  “You only have I known
    of all the families of the earth;
  therefore I will punish you
    for all your iniquities.

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