In chapter 22, we see that Hilkiah the high priest found the Book of the Law in the Temple.
Let’s look at the context of this discovery. The last righteous king before Josiah, who was the king that ordered Hilkiah to begin repairing the now dilapidated Temple, was Hezekiah. Fifty-seven years passed between the end of Hezekiah’s reign and the beginning of Josiah’s reign. It was in the eighteenth year of Josiah’s reign that he began the repairs. That means that the Temple had been neglected for seventy-five years.
It’s no wonder that the Book of the Law had been lost. It was probably even forgotten, and it is quite probable that it was the only existing written copy of God’s Law! Think of it. At this point there were hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years of Jewish history, from the time that God gave Moses the tablets after miraculously delivering them from Egypt’s Pharaoh, to King David, to Solomon’s building of the Temple, and on and on up until this King Josiah decides that the Temple must be repaired.
How gracious God is that He preserved this document! And now, realize that every copy since then came from that long lost book. The Bible that you hold in your hand is a treasure. It is life. It is the Word of the Living God. And if it had not been for Josiah’s decision to repair the Temple, who knows where we would be today. But of course, God was and is always faithful.
I am a tech guy. I love that we have access to just about every version and every translation of the Bible because of the internet. They’re available on our desktop computers, our notebook computers, our tablets and our handheld devices. I love it!
But I deeply believe that everyone who calls him/herself a believer should own at least one hard copy of the Bible. Because, what happens if we no longer have access to these electronic copies? Don’t laugh. It could happen. Internet censorship is real in some areas of the world, and it could spread. As a matter of fact, I believe that when the antichrist takes over, he will make it a worldwide thing, and Bibles will disappear from the ‘net.
Where will we be then? We will only have the printed Word.
Even if that doesn’t happen in our lifetime, we should still have at least one printed Bible. There is something special about holding the book in your hands. It is a truly awesome experience to leaf through the pages of a well-worn Bible and discover God’s truths. I have shelves full of Bibles sitting within easy reach right now. Each one is special, but I have a couple of Bibles that I dearly love. One of them belonged to my great grandmother. She wrote notes in it as she read, and she has the dates of the three times she read through from Genesis to Revelation. I’ll bet she had no idea that one day her great grandson would own her Bible. Will your descendants have a treasure like that? Not if your only Bible is an app on your phone.
Have a printed Bible. Write in it. Make notes. Keep a sort of spiritual diary in it. Talk to generations yet unborn.