2 Chronicles 35:24
So his servants took him out of his chariot, put him in his second chariot, and brought him to Jerusalem, where he died. And Josiah was buried in the tomb of his fathers, and all Judah and Jerusalem mourned for him.
The Death of JosiahT. Whitelaw 2 Chronicles 35:20-27
A Nation's TearsHomilist2 Chronicles 35:24-25
An Early SunsetW. Clarkson 2 Chronicles 35:24, 25
The Death and Burial of JosiahJ. S. Wilkins, B.A.2 Chronicles 35:24-25
The Death of JosiahBishop W. Lloyd.2 Chronicles 35:24-25
The Lamentation for JosiahFlavel, John2 Chronicles 35:24-25

That very good men may make very great mistakes we hardly need to be told; unfortunately, we have all too many illustrations of that fact. The text provides us with a very melancholy instance. What had Josiah to do with this contest between the kings of Egypt and Assyria? Was his heart, too, "lifted up," that he thought himself and his people more than a match for the disciplined hosts of Egypt? Had he been attacked, and had he cast himself on God as Hezekiah did when Sennacherib appeared against him, then he might have hoped confidently for victory. But to contest with a great world-power on worldly principles was a supreme and a fatal error. He paid the penalty of his folly with his life. "His sun went down while it was yet day." So passed, needlessly and unfortunately, one of the best and boldest spirits that occupied the throne of Judah. Regarding his death as that of one early removed from the scenes of earthly activity, we are naturally affected by -

I. ITS EXTREME SADNESS. We are not surprised to read of so demonstrative and so fervent-natured a people as the Jews were, that "all Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah;" nor that Jeremiah uttered his prophet's plaint concerning him. It was a time for profound sorrow; and even passionate grief might, under such circumstances, be excused. For the nation had not merely lost its chief; it had lost an invaluable leader, a king who was leading in the paths of righteousness and therefore of prosperity. There must come occasions to the country, to the Church, to the city, to the family, when one man's death will be felt to be a calamity. Very wise is that community, sacred or secular, national or domestic, that recognizes this fact and provides against it; that secures such resources, material or spiritual, that when such a blow comes everything will not be lost; that when its best is taken it has still much in reserve; that it is not dependent for the maintenance of its liberty, or its security, or its vigorous existence on anything so precarious as one human being's life.

II. ITS RIGHTEOUSNESS. Why did God not interpose to prevent Josiah from throwing his life away? Why did he let darkness come down at noon, and put an end to this bright and useful day? Why does he not now intervene between us and the death we speak of as premature? Why does he permit the young statesmen to overtax his strength and die in his prime; the young minister to commit himself to the treacherous tide and be drowned in the very fulness of his powers and the midst of his usefulness; the young missionary to expose his life to the savages who pierce him with the poisoned spear? We ask such questions, wondering, if not complaining, at the Divine inaction. But we might very justly and more properly ask ourselves another question - What right have we to expect that God will give to any man a particular term of earthly life that we may choose for him? Has he promised to confer any one length of days on his servants? Is not the gift of every added day a prolongation of his goodness and his mercy? Ought we not, rather than complain, to bless him for the number of years he does bestow - a number which is greater than our deserving? Would it be really wise or kind of our heavenly Father if he were always interposing to prevent us from suffering the natural consequences of our error or our negligence, because we were right at heart with him? Would that be the way to discipline, to purify, to perfect his children? No! when God lets death

"Descend in sudden night
On manhood's middle day," he is not unrighteous, nor is he really unwise or unkind. Get down far enough, and we stand on the rock of righteousness and wisdom and love. We may look at -

III. ALLEVIATING ASPECTS OF IT. No doubt, when Josiah found that he was "sore wounded," and that he could not recover, he would grieve more or less, as Hezekiah did. But as he confronted death he would become reconciled to the will of God, and he would, probably, have some hope concerning himself for the future, and would entrust his country to the care of God. But we have a much larger measure of alleviation than Josiah had. For there has visited us and spoken to us that Divine One who is the Resurrection and the Life indeed. And in the light of his revealing truth, and in the hope of his gracious promise, we look upon death as introducing us into another part of the kingdom of God - another and a better; a sphere from which sin is shut out; - and not only sin, but weariness and disappointment and sorrow; a sphere that will be ever brightening and broadening as added years reveal in us and to us "enlarged and liberated powers.' - C.

His servants therefore took him out of that chariot.

1. Extensively. All Judah and Jerusalem.

2. Intensively. Bitter lamentation.

3. Protensively. Of long duration, "an ordinance in Israel."

II. THE CAUSE AND GROUND OF IT. The loss of a good leader whose life had been useful.

III. DOCTRINE. That faithful, active, and public-spirited men in the Church of God should not be laid in their graves without great lamentations. In replication I will show —

1. Negatively. On what account the death of good men is not to be lamented.

2. Positively. The true grounds and causes of such lamentation.(1) Because so much of the Spirit of God as dwelt in them, when amongst us, is now recalled and gathered up from this lower world. As it is a real loss to a company when any merchant withdraws a great stock he had running in trade, out of the bank; so certainly it is a great loss to the Church of God, when the precious gifts and graces of the Spirit, dwelling in the saints, are drawn out by death.(2) Because thereby a breach is made to let in the judgments of God upon the remnant that is left.(3) The beauty and ornaments of the places they lived in are defaced and removed by their death.(4) Because the propagation of religion is obstructed in the places from whence they are removed.(5) The consideration of the time in which good men die aggravates the loss, if it falls out, —

(a)In a declining state of religion.

(b)When the numbers of the godly are thinned and lessened.

(c)When the spring and succession of good men is obstructed.(6) When we consider what influence our sins and provocations have had upon those judgments and calamities. I look upon every good man, as a good book, lent by its owners for another to read, and transcribe the excellent notions and golden passages that are in it for his own benefit, that they may return with him when the owner shall call for his book again. But in case this excellent book shall be thrown into a corner, and no use made of it, it justly provokes the owner to take it away in displeasure.Application. This reproves —

1. The worst of men, such as secretly rejoice at the removal of such men.

2. The insensibleness of good men, who are apt too slightly to pass over such tremendous strokes of. God (Isaiah 57:1).

3. The very best of men, who though they do bewail and lament the loss of such men, yet they do not lament it in the due manner.

( John Flavel..)

1. That the best of men may err in judgment and in act.

2. The danger of undertaking any work without asking counsel of the Lord.

3. How universal is the reign of death.

4. That we should be cautious how we attribute sudden and violent death to the vengeance of the Most High.

5. That it is not wrong to mourn for the dead.

(J. S. Wilkins, B.A.)


1. There was a general mourning for him.

2. The prophet Jeremiah made a particular office for it.

3. This office was used among others upon the day of lamentation.

4. This use was established by a law upon Israel, which was observed till the end of the Babylonian Captivity.


1. Because it was caused by their sins.

2. Because it was a punishment for their sins.

(Bishop W. Lloyd.)

Why does the Jewish nation now weep over Josiah? The reasons are:


1. Of a reflective nature. His mind was in the quest of the highest truth.

2. Of a tender spirit.

3. Of reformative disposition.


III. THE TERRIBLY DISTRESSING MYSTERY ASSOCIATED WITH THE DISPENSATION. Josiah was the most useful man of his age; yet he dies at thirty-nine. Mystery though it be, it teaches us —

1. That Heaven's government is no respecter of persons.

2. The irresistibility of death.

3. That there is nothing on this fleeting earth on which we should set our hearts.

4. That there must be an after life.


Aaron, Asaph, Charchemish, Conaniah, David, Hashabiah, Heman, Hilkiah, Jeduthun, Jehiel, Jeiel, Jeremiah, Josiah, Jozabad, Levites, Necho, Nethaneel, Samuel, Shemaiah, Solomon
Carchemish, Egypt, Euphrates River, Holy Place, Jerusalem, Megiddo
Body, Buried, Carriage, Carried, Cause, Chariot, Died, Dieth, Fathers, Graves, Jerusalem, Josiah, Josi'ah, Judah, Line, Mourned, Mourning, Remove, Resting-place, Ride, Sepulchers, Sepulchres, Servants, Tombs, War-carriages, Weeping
1. Josiah keeps a most solemn Passover
20. He provoking Pharaoh Neco, is slain at Megiddo
25. Lamentations for Josiah

Dictionary of Bible Themes
2 Chronicles 35:20-24

     5837   disguise

2 Chronicles 35:23-25

     5419   mourning

Cheer Up, My Comrades!
The first thing is to get every man into his proper place; the next thing is for every man to have a good spirit in his present place, so as to occupy it worthily. I will suppose, dear friends, that in the providence of God you are in your place, and that by the direction of God's Spirit you have also sought and found the precise form of usefulness in which you ought to exercise yourself. To-night it shall not be my business to arrange you; but assuming that it is well for you to keep where you are,
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 26: 1880

The New Temple and Its Worship
'And the elders of the Jews builded, and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo: and they builded, and finished it, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and according to the commandment of Cyrus, and Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia. 15. And this house was finished on the third day of the month Adar, which was in the sixth year of the reign of Darius the king. 16. And the children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Importance in Luke's History of the Story of the Birth of Christ
IT needs no proof that Luke attached the highest importance to this part of his narrative. That Jesus was indicated from the beginning as the Messiah -- though not a necessary part of his life and work, and wholly omitted by Mark and only briefly indicated in mystical language by John -- was a highly interesting and important fact in itself, and could not fail to impress the historian. The elaboration and detail of the first two chapters of the Gospel form a sufficient proof that Luke recognized
Sir William Mitchell Ramsay—Was Christ Born in Bethlehem?

Josiah, a Pattern for the Ignorant.
"Because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the Lord, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before Me; I also have heard thee, saith the Lord. Behold therefore, I will gather thee unto thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered into thy grave in peace; and thine eyes shall not see all the evil which I will bring upon this place."--2 Kings
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VIII

The comparative indifference with which Chronicles is regarded in modern times by all but professional scholars seems to have been shared by the ancient Jewish church. Though written by the same hand as wrote Ezra-Nehemiah, and forming, together with these books, a continuous history of Judah, it is placed after them in the Hebrew Bible, of which it forms the concluding book; and this no doubt points to the fact that it attained canonical distinction later than they. Nor is this unnatural. The book
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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