I have only now started Day1 of the Pure Praise study that is happening over at The Worship Community. Everyone is on Day 5 already! The scripture I read was 2 Chronicles 20 and it spoke to me in many ways.
Then some came and reported to Jehoshaphat, saying, “A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, out of Aram and behold, they are in Hazazon-tamar (that is Engedi).” Jehoshaphat was afraid and turned his attention to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. (2 Chronicles 20:2-3)
The passage starts off by telling us that a number of guys had teamed together to form a massive army to make war with Jehoshaphat. Someone happens to report this to Jehoshaphat and the first thing he feels is fear. However, without delay he turns to God – in fact he proclaims a fast and instructs the whole of Judah to seek God.
I’ve been thinking more about fasting recently. I have never fasted before and I think it’s time I did. If you have any fasting experiences, I’d love to hear them. Did you feel closer to God during this time?
O our God, will You not judge them? For we are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are on You. (2 Chronicles 20:12)
Jehoshaphat cries out to God. He admits that they cannot defeat this army by their own strength. He even admits they have no clue what to do. Despite their perceived hopelessness, they continue to trust in God. At the moment, I have no clue what to do or what’s next for me, but all I need to do is keep focused on God.
and he said, “Listen, all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat: thus says the LORD to you, ‘Do not fear or be dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s. (2 Chronicles 20:15)
God speaks through the prophet Jahaziel. He lets them know He is in control. In fact they don’t even have to fight as the battle belongs to the LORD.
Listen to me, O Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, put your trust in the LORD your God and you will be established. Put your trust in His prophets and succeed. (2 Chronicles 20:20)
Jehoshaphat reminds the troops to put their trust in God and to accept the word that Jahaziel had brought to them. God was going to deliver them just like He said he would. They only needed to follow His direction.
When they began singing and praising, the LORD set ambushes against the sons of Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; so they were routed. (2 Chronicles 20:30)
God started to do His stuff when the people began to praise!