"And Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the secretary, 'I have found the book of the law in the house of the Lord.' And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it. And Shaphan the secretary came to the king, and reported to the king, 'Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of the workmen who have the oversight of the house of the Lord.' Then Shaphan the secretary told the king, 'Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.' And Shaphan read it before the king. And when the king heard the words of the book of the law, he rent his clothes. And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Achbor the son of Micaiah, and Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah the king's servant, saying, 'Go, inquire of the Lord for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.'" 2 Kings 22: 8-13
Josiah, the King of Judah, was the last hope for the kingdom of Judah. The Northern Kingdom of Israel had abandoned the worship of the One, True God in favor of two idols of gold, the golden calves in Dan and at Bethel. That Kingdom, because of its evil, had been swallowed by the Assyrians and disappeared from the face of the earth. Judah had also fallen into idol worship and despicable evil, but King Josiah, following the discovery of the book of the Law of Moses in the Temple, recognized the sin into which his people had descended. His repentance and efforts to reform the kingdom were sincere; but his death brought them to a premature end.