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Hidden Gems

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Hidden Gems

In this Adventures in Odyssey drama, Whit teaches Olivia why it's important to read the Bible every day, and how this simple act goes a long way to encourage and direct us, and help us know God better.
Original Air Date: November 21, 2017

Today's Guests

Episode Summary

In this Adventures in Odyssey drama, Whit teaches Olivia why it's important to read the Bible every day, and how this simple act goes a long way to encourage and direct us, and help us know God better.
Original Air Date: November 21, 2017

Episode Transcript

John Fuller: On today’s special edition of Focus on the Family, you’re going to hear an engaging presentation from our Adventures in Odyssey team.

Excerpt:

Olivia: Aren’t you kind of… young to be a King?

Young Josiah: Yes. I’m only 8.

Marcus: Simon can do amazing things. Some have even seen him fly!

Balaam (fearful): It is the angel of the Lord!

Olivia: Okay!

End of Excerpt

John: You’re going to have a fun journey with us. Your host is Focus president and author, Jim Daly and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: John, one of my favorite things we’ve been able to do during the pandemic is offer a free trial of our Adventures in Odyssey Club. Not only are these dramas one of the best things we do here at Focus to communicate the gospel message, they’re also a lot of fun! And we’re hearing from many of you that Odyssey has been a great source of comfort and stress relief during this time.

John: And I think, Jim, if I recall correctly, the number is almost 100,000 families have signed up for that free trial. That’s an indicator of the need that we’re meeting a need right now.

Jim: Yes! And, uh, today we wanted to share an episode on our Daily Broadcast. It takes us into some of the lesser known stories of the Bible. You’ll meet a sorcerer, a young king, even a talking donkey. (Laughter). It’s a great reminder of how important it is to read God’s Word, to re-read His Word, and to stay in it as much as possible. The lessons we learn go right to the heart on this life. And we wanted to share an exciting Adventures in Odyssey with you.

John: And you can find out more about the free trial for the Adventures in Odyssey Club which continues all through the month of June at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. Let’s go ahead and hear this special presentation. It’s called Hidden Gems, and it’s today’s special edition of Focus on the Family.

SCENE 1: INT. WHIT’S END – DAY

(OLIVIA, WHIT)

Olivia walks into the shop. Whit is behind the counter reading his Bible.

OLIVIA

Hi, Mr. Whittaker.

(beat)

Uh…Mr. Whittaker?

WHIT

Oh. Hi, Olivia. I’m sorry. I was just caught up in a good story.

OLIVIA

Oh, what are you reading?

WHIT

The story of Abraham.

OLIVIA

The President?

WHIT

(chuckles)

The one in the Bible. Can I get you anything?

OLIVIA

Oh, no, thanks. Don’t you already know the story of Abraham?

WHIT

Of course, but I never get tired of reading it. It’s a powerful story, don’t you think?

OLIVIA

Well, yeah, but I’m not big on reading the same thing over and over. You’ve read the whole Bible, right?

WHIT

Yes.

OLIVIA

How many times?

WHIT

Well, I don’t know. I started reading it when I was younger than you.

OLIVIA

Whoa…So… if you read it once every two years, for, like… 100 years-

WHIT

100 years! How old do you think I am?

OLIVIA

I’m rounding up. It just seems like you’d know pretty much everything in the Bible by now.

WHIT

Actually, I seem to learn something new no matter how many times I’ve read a particular passage.

OLIVIA

It’s just too bad that there aren’t any new stories in the Bible. You know, something that could surprise me like a good book can.

WHIT

Oh, I’m pretty sure there are a lot of Bible stories that you don’t know.

OLIVIA

Nope. Nope. I’ve been reading the Bible for a long time, too. I know every story in there.

WHIT

Ah. Well, what if I could come up with a story you’ve never heard of?

OLIVIA

No way.

WHIT

I accept your challenge.

OLIVIA

My challenge?

WHIT

Follow me! To the Bible Room!

SCENE 2: INT. BIBLE ROOM – DAY

(WHIT, OLIVIA)

Whit and Olivia are at the door to the Imagination Station. Whit pushes a few buttons.

WHIT

All right. Just a few last adjustments… and there.

OLIVIA

If I already know the story, do I get a prize? You said this was a challenge, right?

WHIT

Well, I’m sure I can find a way to reward you.

OLIVIA

Will it involve ice cream?

WHIT

What else?

OLIVIA

Bring it on! Okay. What do I do?

WHIT

Step through this door.

OLIVIA

Okay. See –

She steps through the door and… 

SCENE 3: EXT. MARKETPLACE – DAY

(OLIVIA, MARCUS)

She’s immediately in a crowded marketplace.

OLIVIA

(startled)

Haha!

(observing)

Okay. Okay. I can figure this out. Hot fudge is riding on it.

A crowd of people is running, excitedly.

OLIVIA (CONT’D)

(thinking)

Hmm. People running. I hope this isn’t Noah and the flood.

MARCUS

(Off)

He’s outside the temple! Hurry!

OLIVIA

(to herself)

The temple. Could be Old or New Testament.

(to Bystander)

Excuse me?

MARCUS

Yes?

OLIVIA

Hi, uh, what’s going on at the temple?

MARCUS

A man who has the power of God is there! I’m going to meet him.

OLIVIA

(to herself)

Easy peasy, Mr. Whittaker. I know every Jesus story there is.

(to Bystander)

Can I go with you to the temple?

MARCUS

Of course.

They start walking quickly.

OLIVIA

So, have you met Jesus before?

MARCUS

Who?

OLIVIA

The man we’re going to see.

MARCUS

We’re not going to see any Jesus. We’re going to see Simon. “The Great Power”.

OLIVIA

Simon? Oh, you mean Simon Peter, one of Jesus’s disciples. Mm hmm. Very tricky, Mr. Whittaker.

MARCUS

My name is Marcus.

OLIVIA

Right. So, uh – so what’s Simon doing at the temple? Preaching?

MARCUS

No. He’s a magician.

OLIVIA

He’s pulling a rabbit out of a hat?

MARCUS

Don’t be foolish. Simon is can do amazing things. Some have even seen him fly!

OLIVIA

What? I don’t think anyone in the Bible could fly – unless it was in a fiery chariot.

MARCUS

You don’t believe me?

OLIVIA

I’m afraid not.

MARCUS

Soon you will. Come along.

SCENE 4: EXT. OUTSIDE THE TEMPLE – DAY

(SIMON, OLIVIA, MARCUS, JOHANNA)

A crowd is gathered around Simon the Sorcerer.

SIMON

(a bit off)

Welcome, one and all.

OLIVIA

That’s Simon?

MARCUS

Yes.

OLIVIA

He doesn’t look that great to me.

MARCUS

You’ll see.

(calling)

Simon, oh great one?

SIMON

What is it?

MARCUS

My wife is very sick.

SIMON

And you wish for me to heal her.

MARCUS

I do.

SIMON

What will you give to show her value to you?

MARCUS

I have three months wages here. Take it.

SIMON

Put it in that pot.

Marcus puts coins in a pot. It bubbles and smokes. The crowd oohs and ahhs.

SIMON (CONT’D)

Fear not! The smoke is my power at work.

OLIVIA

That’s it? That looks like something I did in chemistry class.

SIMON

Bring more money tomorrow. Then your wife will be healed.

MARCUS

But that was all I had!

SIMON

Such a small amount is not enough. If you want much, you must give much.

MARCUS

I will try to scrape up more. I will.

SIMON

Bring it tomorrow. Then you will witness amazing wonders.

MARCUS

Thank you, great Simon.

Marcus goes.

OLIVIA

You’re not Simon Peter, are you?

SIMON

What did you say, Child?

OLIVIA

Does your magic come from Jesus?

SIMON

Jesus? Hardly. “I” am the great–

A woman, JOHANNA, approaches.

JOHANNA

(interrupting)

Simon!

SIMON

Ah, Johanna. You brought the money?

JOHANNA

(hesitant)

No, I didn’t.

SIMON

Then why have you come? You know I require money beforehand.

JOHANNA

I’ve had a change of heart. I don’t want to go through with it.

SIMON

You’ve reconciled with Dinah?

JOHANNA

No.

SIMON

Oh, so she’s still your enemy.

JOHANNA

Yes, but…

SIMON

Don’t you want relief from her, Johanna? Don’t you want her to know that you are in control? You must punish her.

OLIVIA

Punish her?

SIMON

(ignoring Olivia)

The curse isn’t permanent. She will experience pain for a few days, then it will pass.

JOHANNA

That’s why I came – to make sure you didn’t curse her. I’ve found another way.

SIMON

And what is that?

JOHANNA

After I met with you, I heard a man named Philip. He’s preaching and baptizing by the river and he told me about Jesus. Philip says Jesus came to save us from our sin. He spoke of forgiveness.

SIMON

I’ve heard of Jesus’s words. And that’s all they are – words. He’s long dead and can’t help you. Only I can. And, since you’re obviously troubled, I can arrange the curse for, um, half the amount we discussed.

JOHANNA

I don’t want to curse Dinah. I’m going to tell her I forgive her. You should hear Philip’s message, Simon! Goodbye.

She leaves.

SIMON

(as she goes)

Come back when you see how far forgiveness gets you with a woman like Dinah!

(beat, to self)

I should give her a rash.

OLIVIA

Were you going to put some kind of spell on Dinah?

SIMON

Yes.

OLIVIA

How could you do that?

SIMON

I’m a magician. I can do many amazing things.

OLIVIA

More like horrible things! You know, you should listen to that lady. Go see Philip and hear about forgiveness and peace.

SIMON

(deviously)

Perhaps I will. If people are listening to him, I need to learn his secrets.

OLIVIA

He doesn’t have secrets. He has the message of Jesus.

SIMON

Enough. Away with you! Ha!

He throws a pinch of powder on the ground and it poofs.

SCENE 5: EXT. BY THE RIVER – DAY

(PHILIP, OLIVIA, SIMON, PETER)

…Olivia bursts out of the water, in the arms of Philip.

PHILIP

Rise to new life in Jesus Christ!

OLIVIA

(gasping)

Uh… thank you. Who are you?

PHILIP

(chuckles)

I understand that baptism can be disorienting, child. I am Philip, remember?

OLIVIA

Oh. Yes. Right. Sorry. Thank you.

PHILIP

And who is next? Ah, Martha…

Philip fades away as Olivia exits the water. Simon is there.

OLIVIA

(to herself)

Wow. I was just baptized by an apostle!

SIMON

(calling out)

Where is Peter? I must see him!

OLIVIA

Simon! What are you doing here?

SIMON

Oh, it’s you again. You did say I should meet Philip and I must say you were right. He performs astounding miracles. It’s very impressive.

OLIVIA

You’re all wet. Did you get baptized, too?

SIMON

Yes, of course. Don’t ask silly questions, you obnoxious child. Now, where is this… Peter?

OLIVIA

(suspicious)

Why do you want him?

SIMON

Why? People are being healed – demons cast out. It’s amazing!

OLIVIA

Yes, it is.

SIMON

If I could do the same, crowds would flock to me — and pay the steepest prices.

PETER

(off)

Brother Elias, you have repented and been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

SIMON

That must be him. The man placing his hands on new believers. At last I have my chance.

(calling out)

Excuse me! Peter?

Simon and Olivia approach Peter.

PETER

Yes?

SIMON

Greetings. I am Simon. I’ve been following Philip for several days. I made him an offer, but he wouldn’t take it. I thought that you might be more reasonable. Here.

He hands him a bag of money.

PETER

What is it?

SIMON

Silver. More than you have ever seen, I’m sure! Take it! All I ask is that, in return you share your power with me. Then when I touch people, they too will receive this Holy Spirit.

Peter throws the bag on the ground.

PETER

Be gone from me, servant of iniquity!

SIMON

What? Wait–

PETER

May your silver perish with you! You cannot buy the gift of God with money! You blaspheme against the Most High God and He Himself will deal with you.

SIMON

What? No! Pray to the Lord for me, Peter! That your God does not strike me down!

PETER

Repent of your wickedness, turn away from evil-doing and seek God for forgiveness! Now go! And take your money with you.

Simon picks up his money and leaves.

SIMON

(leaving)

Yes. Yes, thank you. Goodbye.

PETER

Are you with that man?

OLIVIA

Who me? No, no, no, no ,no! I was just baptized by Philip.

PETER

Do you come for prayer then?

OLIVIA

You mean…you mean… you would…pray for me?

PETER

(warmly)

Of course, Child. Gladly. Come forward.

OLIVIA

Yes, sir.

(beat)

Wow.

SCENE 6:INT. BIBLE ROOM – DAY

(WHIT, OLIVIA)

Olivia is in a hallway of doors. Whit talks over the intercom.

WHIT

So, Olivia, did you recognize the story?

OLIVIA

Are you sure Simon was mentioned in the Bible?

WHIT

He certainly was. Acts chapter 8.

OLIVIA

I must have missed that one.

(beat)

Can I have another chance at that sundae? I missed one story, but there’s no way that there are two Bible stories that I haven’t already read.

WHIT

I’m game. Go through the door to your right.

OLIVIA

Okay…

She opens the door and goes through.

SCENE 7: EXT. DESERT – DAY

(BALAAM, OLIVIA)

Olivia is in a sweltering desert. Balaam and his donkey are surprisingly close.

BALAAM

(upset)

Move, Girl!

OLIVIA

Huh? Ahhh!

Olivia jumps out of the way. The donkey stops.

BALAAM

Foolish child! You’ve made my donkey stop again!

OLIVIA

Oh, sorry.

The donkey brays.

BALAAM

(off)

Move, you miserable beast! Move or feel my staff!

(Beat)

Walk! Forward!

(Beat)

Move I say!

He beats the donkey with his staff. The donkey brays.

OLIVIA

Hey! Stop that! Stop hurting that poor mule!

BALAAM

It’s a donkey. And I most certainly can. He deserves it. He’s being obnoxiously stubborn.

OLIVIA

Aren’t donkeys always stubborn? You don’t beat a pig because its dirty.

BALAAM

Insolent child! Guard your tongue or I’ll use this stick on you!

OLIVIA

(taken back)

Well! Why are you in such a hurry, anyway?

BALAAM

Not that it’s any of your business, but I’ve been summoned by the King of Moab.

OLIVIA

I guess that’s important.

BALAAM

Yes, it is. But I’ll never get there if this stubborn animal refuses to move!

He beats the donkey hard on “move.” It brays.

OLIVIA

(to self)

So much for no animals being harmed in the making of this adventure.

The donkey brays and starts moving.

BALAAM

At last!

(to Olivia)

You’d better come along with me.

OLIVIA

Really?

BALAAM

You can’t be out in the desert all alone. It’s not safe.

OLIVIA

Won’t both of us riding him be too heavy?

BALAAM

He’s carried heavier.

OLIVIA

I’m not sure if that’s an insult, but okay.

She gets on.

OLIVIA (CONT’D)

I’m Olivia, by the way.

BALAAM

And I am Balaam.

SCENE 8: EXT. VINEYARD – DAY

(OLIVIA, BALAAM, DONKEY, ANGEL)

Balaam and Olivia continue on the donkey.

OLIVIA

So why are you going to see the King?

BALAAM

He wants my help with a battle he’s planning.

OLIVIA

Who are they fighting?

BALAAM

The Israelites.

OLIVIA

The King wants to fight against them? Do you really think you should help him?

BALAAM

God himself has given me permission to go.

OLIVIA

Really?

BALAAM

Of course. Would you like a grape?

OLIVIA

Are you supposed to grab things off someone else’s property like that?

BALAAM

I know the owners of the vineyards on both sides of us. This one belongs to – ahh!

The donkey brays and stops abruptly. Balaam and Olivia react.

BALAAM (CONT’D)

Not again. Get along!

OLIVIA

Oh, you’re not gonna hit it are you–

BALAAM

Move, you fowl beast! Go!

He hits the donkey again.

OLIVIA

You don’t have to get violent! I’ll get down and pull him from the front.

BALAAM

(sighs)

Very well.

Olivia gets down.

OLIVIA

(pulling)

All right. Come on, old boy. You can do it.

BALAAM

(chiding)

That’s working so well.

OLIVIA

(soothing)

Come on, come on. before the bad man hits you again.

BALAAM

He doesn’t respond to coddling. Move aside!

OLIVIA

Wait!

BALAAM

Move on!

He beats it again. The donkey brays and scampers a bit.

BALAAM (CONT’D)

Finally — Ahhhh!

OLIVIA

What happened?

BALAAM

(in pain)

He trapped my foot against the wall! You horrible — whoa!

He beats it again. The donkey brays, moves a bit, then lays down in the road.

BALAAM (CONT’D)

(beat)

What? Get back up — now!

(beat)

What’s wrong with this animal?!

OLIVIA

Maybe he’s tired.

BALAAM

He’s defiant. Make a fool of me, will you! Get up you unruly —

He hits the donkey on each word.

OLIVIA

Stop, please!

DONKEY

(brays loudly, then its bray transforms into a voice)

What have I done to make you beat me!?

OLIVIA

Did your donkey just talk?

BALAAM

(astonished/taken back)

You… you have made a fool of me! If only I had a sword in my hand, I would kill you right now!

DONKEY

Aren’t I your donkey? Haven’t you ridden me all your life? Have I ever acted like this before?

BALAAM

(unsure)

No.

OLIVIA

This is in the Bible?

DONKEY

Look and see what is waiting for you in the road.

BALAAM

I see nothing…

An angel draws a large sword.

OLIVIA

(gasp)

Who is that?

BALAAM

(fearful)

It is the angel of the Lord! Bow low with your face to the ground!

OLIVIA

Okay.

They both bow.

ANGEL

Balaam. Why have you beaten your donkey?

BALAAM

(fearful)

He refused to obey me.

ANGEL

I was standing in the donkey’s way.

BALAAM

But… why?

ANGEL

Because your path is a reckless one! If your donkey had not stopped, I would have killed you.

BALAAM

But the Lord gave me permission to go.

ANGEL

To rise and go, yes, only to do what the Lord tells you. But God sees that your heart is persuaded by the money the King offers you.

BALAAM

(emotional)

I’ve sinned. I will return home.

ANGEL

No. Go to the King. But you are not to call down a curse down upon Israel.

BALAAM

What shall I say?

ANGEL

You are to say, “How can I curse those whom God has not cursed or denounce whom the Lord has not denounced?”

BALAAM

I am to bless them?

ANGEL

They are the Lord’s own people.

BALAAM

I will obey the Lord. I will speak only the message that He puts in my mouth.

OLIVIA

(hushed)

Finally, Balaam! You’re starting to make sense.

SCENE 9: INT. BIBLE ROOM – DAY

(WHIT, OLIVIA)

Whit and Olivia are in the Bible Room together.

WHIT

Well, Olivia, did you know that one?

OLIVIA

Nope. I had no idea that the Bible had a story about a talking donkey.

WHIT

It’s from the book of Numbers. It shows what great lengths God will go to in order to get His point across.

OLIVIA

Kind of like you with these Imagination Station adventures.

WHIT

(chuckles)

I suppose so. So, what point do you think these two stories make?

OLIVIA

I thought the point was that there are Bible stories that I’ve never heard of.

WHIT

Well, that’s where we started, but what else? What did those two stories have in common?

OLIVIA

(after a bit of thought)

Okay, well, both Simon and Balaam were greedy. They both worked against God’s people.

WHIT

Uh huh. Anything else?

OLIVIA

Both of them had a chance to change. Peter told Simon to repent. And the angel told Balaam what he should do.

WHIT

Very good! All of us have the choice to obey God. Some choose poorly, but God’s Word always contains the power to change men’s hearts.

OLIVIA

Even with the lesser-known stories.

WHIT

That’s right. That’s why it’s so important to read God’s Word every day. That simple act invites God to disciple us, encourage us, discipline us, and direct us. And reading about God’s actions in history helps me get to know Him better, too.

OLIVIA

I didn’t think of it that way. It’s like God talking to us.

WHIT

That’s right.

(beat)

So, would you like to try out one more story?

OLIVIA

You bet!

WHIT

Then take this.

He hands her a glass of water.

OLIVIA

A glass of water?

WHIT

Uh huh. You’ll be giving it to the King of Israel. Go through that door.

OLIVIA

The Bible is so cool.

Olivia goes through the door.

SCENE 10: INT. PALACE HALLWAY – DAY

(ADVISOR 2, ADVISOR 1, OLIVIA, YOUNG JOSIAH)

Olivia is in a long hallway. Two advisors are talking.

ADVISOR 2

(off, whispering)

We need to take the decision out of his hands.

ADVISOR 1

(off, whispering)

We can’t do that. He is the king.

ADVISOR 2

(getting closer, whispering)

He is eight years old and a fatherless boy. How can we expect him to make wise decisions?

OLIVIA

Wow. This place is huge. I don’t see the king.

(calling)

Uh… Excuse me? Which way to the king? I brought him some water.

ADVISOR 1

King Josiah is in the royal bedroom. Through that door. Be quick.

OLIVIA

Oh. Yes, sir.

Olivia goes as they begin to whisper again.

OLIVIA (CONT’D)

Josiah. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of that king.

ADVISOR 1

(whispers, going off)

I’ll assemble a team of advisors. But ultimate power must remain with Josiah.

ADVISOR 2

(whispers, off)

Of course. I know.

Olivia walks through the door.

OLIVIA

Hello? King Josiah? I brought you some water.

YOUNG JOSIAH

Yes, thank you.

(he takes a drink of it)

Why are you looking at me like that?

OLIVIA

Aren’t you kind of… young to be a King?

YOUNG JOSIAH

Yes. I’m only 8. I never thought my father would die.

OLIVIA

When did it happen?

YOUNG JOSIAH

A few days ago. He was killed right here in the palace.

OLIVIA

Oh. I’m sorry.

Just then, the door opens, and an advisor comes in.

ADVISOR 1

King Josiah?

YOUNG JOSIAH

Come in.

ADVISOR 1

The priests of Baal have arrived.

YOUNG JOSIAH

What do they want?

ADVISOR 1

They’re hoping to enlarge their temple.

YOUNG JOSIAH

What should I tell them?

ADVISOR 1

Many of your people worship Baal. It would be… unwise to upset anyone at the beginning of your reign, my King.

YOUNG JOSIAH

What would my father do?

ADVISOR 1

Your father worshipped Baal, just as his father before him. He allowed the priests to do as they pleased.

YOUNG JOSIAH

(sigh)

Show the priests in. I’ll come in a moment.

ADVISOR 1

Very good. Thank you, King.

He leaves.

OLIVIA

Baal? Isn’t that a false god?

YOUNG JOSIAH

You aren’t a worshipper of Baal?

OLIVIA

No. I worship God. The true God.

YOUNG JOSIAH

So, do I.

OLIVIA

Then why would you meet with the priests of Baal?

YOUNG JOSIAH

I’m just a child ruling over the whole nation of Judah. I don’t know what I’m doing. This morning, there were other prophets here, asking to build Asherah poles.

OLIVIA

What did you say?

YOUNG JOSIAH

I told them to do what they think is best. They’re adults. They know more than I do.

OLIVIA

But you do know something they don’t.

YOUNG JOSIAH

What?

OLIVIA

Who the true God is. Shouldn’t you do what pleases Him instead of what might please some of the people?

ADVISOR 1

(entering)

The priests are waiting, my lord. You, girl, bring the King and his guests refreshments.

OLIVIA

Yes, sir.

ADVISOR 1

That door is for the servants.

OLIVIA

Right.

She opens it and the Station blasts her forward.

SCENE 11: INT. PALACE COURT – DAY

(ADULT JOSIAH, OLIVIA, ADVISOR 1, SHAPHAN)

A big, echoing room. Josiah, now 26, sits in his throne. Josiah looks at a scroll. The same advisor attends to him.

ADULT JOSIAH

No, this is just like the tax that was proposed last week. It’s unlawful.

OLIVIA

(sotto voce)

Whoa. This must be the throne room.

ADVISOR 1

But, your majesty, your father approved many similar taxes.

ADULT JOSIAH

I am not my father or my grandfather. The tax will not be levied. That will be the end of it.

ADVISOR 1

Very well, King Josiah.

The advisor leaves.

OLIVIA

(surprised)

Josiah?

ADULT JOSIAH

Yes?

OLIVIA

You’re all grown up!

ADULT JOSIAH

Why are you here? Are you a servant? You – you seem familiar.

OLIVIA

Yes. I am. Uh, do you need a glass of water?

Shaphan comes in quickly.

SHAPHAN

Your majesty.

ADULT JOSIAH

Come forward, Shaphan.

SHAPHAN

We have turned over the money collected at the Temple of the Lord to the workers who are cleaning it, just as you ordered.

ADULT JOSIAH

Very good.

SHAPHAN

During the restoration, Hilkiah the high priest found this scroll.

ADULT JOSIAH

What is it?

SHAPHAN

The book of the Law.

ADULT JOSIAH

I’ve never heard of this book.

SHAPHAN

It has been lost for generations.

ADULT JOSIAH

Have you read it?

SHAPHAN

I have, Sire, and I believe you’ll want to hear its words. I have selected a few sections.

ADULT JOSIAH

Then read them to me.

SHAPHAN

(clears throat)

You are to be my holy people, who belong to the Lord your God… Be careful to do everything I have said to you. Do not invoke the names of other gods; do not let them be heard on your lips…

ADULT JOSIAH

(worried sigh)

SHAPHAN

Sire?

ADULT JOSIAH

Continue.

SHAPHAN

(turning to another place)

Do not put your trust in idols or make metal images of gods for yourselves. I am the LORD your God.

(pauses)

ADULT JOSIAH

Go on.

SHAPHAN

(turning to another place)

This is from much later.

(reads)

Israel abandoned the God who made them. They stirred up his jealousy by worshipping foreign gods. The Lord saw them and drew back. He said, “I will abandon them. For they are a twisted generation, children without no faith. They have —

ADULT JOSIAH

Stop!

SHAPHAN

Your Majesty?

ADULT JOSIAH

God’s anger against our nation must be very great. We haven’t obeyed His commands or observed His laws for many generations. Call for Hilkiah. Command him to pray to the Lord for us.

SHAPHAN

Yes, Sire.

He goes.

ADULT JOSIAH

(to himself)

We’ve made offerings to other gods. There’s no end of our sins against Him.

OLIVIA

You’ve become a wise king, Josiah.

ADULT JOSIAH

I hope it’s not too late.

SCENE 12: INT. PALACE COURT – DAY

(ADULT JOSIAH, SHAPHAN, OLIVIA)

A few days later. Shaphan approaches Josiah.

ADULT JOSIAH

What’s happening, Shaphan? Has the priest carried out my orders?

SHAPHAN

Yes, sire. He’s removed everything from the temple that was used to worship other gods.

ADULT JOSIAH

Good. There is so much more to do. Tomorrow we will gather all the people of the land. And I shall read the entire book of the law that was found in the temple. We will obey the Lord.

SHAPHAN

I also have a message from the prophetess Huldah, Sire.

ADULT JOSIAH

What is it?

SHAPHAN

She said that because you humbled yourself before the Lord and were repentant before Him, your reign will see peace and be blessed.

ADULT JOSIAH

God is very gracious. I make this covenant – to walk after the Lord and to keep His commandments and statutes with all my heart and soul, to know and follow His Word all the days of my life. And to lead this nation to do the same.

SHAPHAN

Very good, My King.

Shaphan goes.

OLIVIA

You’re a wise ruler, Josiah.

ADULT JOSIAH

It would be foolish to ignore the God’s words and his instructions for us. We must read that book over and over.

OLIVIA

(thoughtful)

Yes. Every part of it.

THE END

John: Well, what a delightful and really meaningful presentation we’ve had today on Focus on the Family. That’s from our Adventures in Odyssey team. It’s called Hidden Gems. And Jim, what a positive message in that drama!

Jim: Well, it is. As I said at the beginning, we’ve been able to offer a free trial of Adventures in Odyssey Club during this pandemic time, and we’ve really been amazed by the response.

John: Well, we have and we’re hearing not only kids, but from parents and grandparents, even people in prison. One comment came from a 22-year-old college student. It was really powerful. And we have a clip to share of her talking about her experience.

Rory: When I was growing up, I was living in a pretty unstable and unpredictable environment. And during that time, Adventures in Odyssey was always a comfort for me. So, during the middle of this pandemic, I felt really lonely and alone. My mom has early onset Alzheimer’s, and my foster mom just passed away last year. So, I was crying on my couch at 3 in the morning, and I just felt this peace wash over me, and I remembered Adventures in Odyssey. And at 3 in the morning, I googled Adventures in Odyssey, and saw that Focus was offering a 28 day trial, with all the episodes for free, in the middle of the pandemic. And so, I started listening to all my favorite episodes, starting at 3 in the morning, and I just felt that comfort and that peace wash over me again, and I felt like I was going home to Odyssey.

Jim: John, that college student, Rory, I called her because her story is so close to my own struggles that she had as a young girl in dysfunctional family. And, uh, my heart goes out to her because I can feel that pain and that loneliness. I know exactly what she’s talking about. But what a great thing that Adventures in Odyssey is able to reach out to someone like Rory and literally millions of others. And to bring comfort and to bring a Biblical – entertaining – Biblical expression into their lives and this, again, happens from ages 5-years-old all the way to, you now, 85-years-old.

John: Mm hmm.

Jim: So, Odyssey does a great job in that way.

John: It does and, uh, that’s one reason we’re extending the free trial for Adventures in Odyssey Club which makes all 800+ episodes available on demand, any time, day or night. We want to bring this Biblically based source of comfort and entertainment to you and your family. Sign up today for the free trial and see all the extra activities that accompany each episode. Just stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: John, I really want to say thank you to all of the financial supporters who make this kind of free trial available for someone like Rory and, again, kids of all ages who need some help. Hey, let me turn to you as well. I know many people are hurting right now. I know 40 million people or so are out of work. We get that. You know, every day we reach a couple of million people through the radio, the podcast, et cetera. And every year about 200,000 households support Focus out of that, you know, 7 million listenership on a weekly level.

John: Mm. It’s a pretty small number.

Jim: It’s a pretty small number. And I just need to make that appeal to you that if you can, if you haven’t supported Focus or it’s been a long time, can we hear from  you right now? I mean, we need to continue to help people, to reach out for people. Not only with entertainment – Biblical entertainment – but also to counsel marriages that a breaking up. To help scholarship them into our Hope Restored program. To save a baby’s life. There is so many good things happening here. So, if you can, can you make a gift today? And it doesn’t have to be a lot. $25 would be a great way to start your support here at Focus on the Family.

John: Yeah. That one-time gift or a monthly pledge makes all the difference for us. And right now, we have a matching gift opportunity, so every donation made right now is doubled and goes twice as far. You can join our support team or rejoin the team by calling 800-A-FAMILY. Or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family. I’m John Fuller inviting you back as we once again help you and your family thrive in Christ.

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