Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Kings 22:2

He did right in the sight of the Lord and walked in all the way of his father David, nor did he turn aside to the right or to the left.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Decision;   Obedience;   Scribe (S);   Secretary (Recordist);   Thompson Chain Reference - Children;   Home;   Seven;   Stability;   Steadfastness;   Steadfastness-Instability;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Kings;   Obedience to God;   Steadfastness;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Josiah;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - King, Kingship;   Upright, Uprightness;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Hezekiah;   Holman Bible Dictionary - David;   Jeremiah;   Kings, 1 and 2;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Adaiah;   Canon of the Old Testament;   Deuteronomy;   Gedaliah;   Hexateuch;   Idolatry;   Israel;   Jeremiah;   Jerusalem;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Josiah ;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Josiah;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Moses, the Man of God;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for February 22;  

The Biblical Illustrator

2 Kings 22:2

And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord.

Josiah an example for young men

Of the young king, whose piety is thus described, it is also said in another place (2 Kings 23:25), “And like unto him was there no king before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might” according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him.

I. The piety of Josiah as illustrative of the power of a good example. “He walked in all the ways of David his father.” Few influences are more powerful than that of example. The child imitates his parent; the schoolboy his classmate; the youth his playfellows; and so on through every stage of life. Note in what recorded actions of Josiah there were marks of an imitation of David’s example.

1. The first of these in order of time was his attachment to God’s house, and his devotion to God’s service.

2. His love to the. Word of God. Turn to the narrative in 2 Chronicles 34:14-21. David said of the man who is blessed, that “his delight is in the law of the Lord.” There is no book more valuable to the young,

3. His reverence for godly men (2 Kings 23:15-18). We know enough of David’s life to recognise in this respect for a man of God an imitation of his example. The servants are to be revered; to be “esteemed very highly for their works’ sake.” Goodness is always worthy of regard; and he who does not respect it tells us that he has no goodness in himself to be respected.

II. The piety of Josiah as illustrative of the strict integrity of godliness. “He turned not aside to the right hand, nor to the left. The man of the world may turn his creed and shape his course according to the fashion of the varying hour”; but not the Christian. He must bear in mind the words of wisdom: “Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.”

1. Josiah was not influenced by the force of ancient custom, when that custom ran counter to the course pointed out by conscience.

2. He was not influenced by any feeling of false shame. When the book of the law was found and read before him, he rent his clothes, feeling that he was a sinner.

III. The piety of Josiah illustrates the course of life that ensures Divine approval. “He did that which was right in the sight of the Lord.” It is comparatively easy to pursue a course that seems right to ourselves, or that may secure the applause of the world. It is a widely different matter so to live as to ensure the approval and commendation of God.

1. By far the greater part of men seem to live for self. They have no care or consideration for others. Selfishness is the vilest principle that ever spread in this world.

2. Others care most about the approval of the world. These are selfish coo. It is because that applause is gratifying to their selfish vanity. The man who would lick the dust to secure the favour of a fellow-mortal would sacrifice his dearest friend to gain.

3. They only are godlike who do and love that which is holy and true; who live not for themselves, but for others and for God. Application--Have an object in life! Live! Do not be content with mere existence. Remember, there is but one unfailing condition of true greatness and that is goodness. (Frederic Walstaff.)

Example for Royalty

There is at the top of the Queen’s staircase in Windsor Castle a statue from the studio of Baron Triqueti, of Edward VI. marking with his sceptre a passage in the Bible, which he holds in his left hand, and upon which he earnestly looks. The passage is that concerning Josiah: “Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty and one years in Jerusalem. And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.” The statue was erected by the will of the late prince, who intended it to convey to his son the Divine principles by which the future governor of England should mould his life and reign on the throne of Great Britain. (T. Hughes.)

Traits of youthful religion

1. Josiah began to reign when he was eight years old, and he reigned thirty and one years in Jerusalem. He ascended the throne when vice had taken deep root in the people, and national faults had become stereotyped in the Jewish character. His character and his conduct are exactly those which, judging from reason or historical experience, we should expect from the freshness and energy of a religious boy. That character is thus briefly summed, up by Huldah the prophetess: His heart was tender, his humility was great, he had given a quick and childlike credit to God’s threats against the sins of the people, and had yielded a ready sympathy with penitential acts for sins in which he had taken no part, for under God’s threats he had shed tears, and rent his garments and done his utmost to avert Divine anger. The acts which illustrate this character are seven in number, and inasmuch as they have a natural coherence and agreement with each other, I will sum them up. His first work was to repair the temple, his second to read attentively the newly discovered Scriptures, till alarmed at the threats against sin, he, thirdly, abased himself openly. He then commanded the destruction of the idols and priests of Baal, and the professed profligates of the land. He, fifthly, ordered the public reading of the Scriptures, he brought out to public notice the remains of God’s saints, and lastly, proclaimed a public celebration of the Passover. Now these are just the acts of a fresh and rumple mind, and while many of them are the features of the early days of religion, which we would fain frequently copy, they are at the same time marks of the earlier stages of religion, and cannot be expected to exist in its later day. But while this is the case with regard to the individual character, these will be signs of the early days of a great religious revival, and will speak as much of the zeal of the social body as they do of the individual.

2. To reduce these reflections to some practical bearing, the following character is not uncommon amongst us. A child, a boy, a youth at home, at school, or the university is under the influence of religious principles; he studies attentively the Scriptures of God as they are presented to him through the received translations and interpretations of his day; he follows with earnestness and alacrity a pathway which he strikes out himself in which he has received his impetus from the wonderful coincidences of prophecy or the theological questions raised on the subject of faith and works; he is startled by the mention of the Judgment, and is so keenly sensitive to the subject, that the sublime awfulness of a thunderstorm, or the congregational singing of a hymn about the “day of wonders” will awaken the most sensible alarm in his mind, doter him from a fault, or drive him to an act of devotion and holiness; he will be so anxious lest he should be guilty of mixing too indiscriminately with the wicked and those that know not God that he will be inclined to draw far too rigidly the limits between good and evil, and will be inclined to decide on certain shibboleths of the world and the worldly minded, which will neither stand the tests of reason, scripture, or experience. Certain modes of amusement will be rapidly denounced as sinful which are merely made so by the unguarded or ungracious mind of him who uses them; and certain places and people are placed under bar and ban, which have in them no essential evil whatever. In proportion as the mind of such a youth is fresh in his religious career, he will be painfully conscious of the weight of a committed sin, and will find the flow of penitential tears spontaneous and natural Such will be the features of youthful religion, and such wore the features of the religion of Josiah. There are points in the earlier religion of the child which are ever to be kept in view through after life; lovely echoes of the sweet voice associated with the first can of God still sounding round us; as fresh water drops sprinkled with the kindly hand over the dim and dusty picture of the past; dreams of fresh and happy childhood rousing us to renewed vigour when we wake to the daily strife of life.

Early piety

King Josiah, it is said, at eight years feared the Lord. Polycarp, martyred at the age of ninety-five, declared that he had served God eighty-six years, showing that he was converted at nine years. It is commonly held that Jeremiah and John the Baptist, who are spoken of in Scripture as sanctified from their birth, were early children of grace. Coming down to more modern times it is easy to name many eminent servants of God who began to serve him in childhood, as Baxter, for instance, who said he did not remember the time when he did not love God and all that was good. Matthew Henry was converted before eleven. Mrs. Isabel Graham at ten. President Edwards probably at seven. Dr. Watts at nine. Bishop Hall and Robert Hall at eleven or twelve. (H. C. Fish)

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "2 Kings 22:2". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/2-kings-22.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord,.... In the affair of religious worship especially, as well as in other things:

and walked in all the ways of David his father; in his religious ways, in which he never departed from his God:

and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left; but kept an even, constant, path of worship and duty, according to the law of God.

Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-kings-22.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And he did [that which was] right in the sight of the LORD, and a walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.

(a) His zeal was prophesied of, and his name mentioned by Iddo the prophet, more than 300 years before, (1 Kings 13:2) and being but eight years old, he sought the God of his father David, (2 Chronicles 34:3).
Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/2-kings-22.html. 1599-1645.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Kings 22:2 And he did [that which was] right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.

Ver. 2. And he did that which was right.] Helped on, no doubt, by the holy prophets of his time, Zephaniah, Jeremiah, Huldah, &c.; as was our English Josiah, Edward VI, by Cranmer, Ridley, Latimer, Sir John Cheek, his tutor, and Dr Cox, his almoner. (a)

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-kings-22.html. 1865-1868.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

the LORD. Hebrew. Jehovah. App-4.

turned not aside. Josiah is the only king of whom this is said.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-kings-22.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.

No JFB commentary on this verse.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-kings-22.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(2) And walked . . .—See Note on 2 Chronicles 34:2.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-kings-22.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in all the way of David his father, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left.
right
16:2; 18:3; 2 Chronicles 17:3; 29:2; Proverbs 20:11
walked
1 Kings 3:6; 11:38; 15:5
turned
Deuteronomy 5:32; Joshua 1:7; Proverbs 4:27; Ezekiel 18:14-17
Reciprocal: Exodus 15:26 - and wilt;  Deuteronomy 28:14 - thou shalt;  2 Samuel 2:19 - turned;  1 Kings 13:2 - Josiah by name;  1 Chronicles 28:9 - serve him;  2 Chronicles 31:20 - wrought;  2 Chronicles 34:2 - right in the sight;  Isaiah 30:21 - when ye turn to the right;  Jeremiah 22:15 - and do

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Kings 22:2". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-kings-22.html.