THE YOUNG JOSIAH AND THE BOOK OF THE LAW 149
not say, 'I am only a youth,' for you shall go to all to whom I send you, and you shall speak whatever I command you. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to protect you."
Then Jehovah stretched out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me: "See. I have put my words in your mouth, and I have appointed you this day over the nations and kingdoms, to tear up and break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant."
Again this message came from Jehovah, "What do you see?" I answered, "A great kettle brewing hot, and it faces from the north." Then Jehovah said to me: "From the north trouble is brewing for all the people of the land. For I am about to call all the kingdoms of the north, and they shall come and each set up his throne at the entrance to the gates of Jerusalem and around its walls and against all the cities of Judah. And I will pass judgment upon Jerusalem and these cities for all their wickedness, for they have been disloyal to me and offered sacrifices to other gods and have worshipped that which their own hands have made.
"Therefore make ready, rise, speak to them all that I command you. Do not be afraid of them, for see, I myself will make you this day like a fortified city, and like a bronze wall against the rulers of Judah, its leaders, its priests, and the common people. Though they fight against you, they will not overcome you, for I am with you to protect you."
THE YOUNG JOSIAH AND THE BOOK OF THE LAW
Josiah was eight years old when he began to rule, and he ruled thirty-one years in Jerusalem. In the eighteenth year of his rule he sent Shaphan, the scribe, to the temple of Jehovah with the command, "Go up to Hilkiah, the chief priest, and see that, when he has taken the money that is brought into the temple of Jehovah and that which the doorkeepers have gathered from the people, they give it to the workmen who have charge of the temple of Jehovah. Then let them give it to the carpenters, the builders, and the masons who are in the temple of Jehovah, to repair the breaks in it and to buy timber and cut stone to restore it." But no account was asked of them for the money that was given to them, for they dealt honestly.