The Battle is The Lord’s
God’s promise of victory encourages Christians through life’s challenges.
This lesson, about trusting God for victory in the face of difficulties, is based on an event in the life of Jehoshaphat, one of the best Kings of Judah. When Judah was threatened by enemies with an overwhelming Army, Jehoshaphat believed in the power of prayer. He led the nation of Judah in fasting and prayer, seeking God’s help, and God intervened on Judah’s behalf in a miraculous way, giving to Judah the victory. Afterwards, there was great rejoicing in Judah, the king and the people giving thanks and praise to God for the victory. Jehoshaphat’s example encourages us to pray and trust God for victory, whatever may be the challenges we face.
GOLDEN TEXT: 2 Chronicles 20:15 Thus saith the LORD unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s.
I. LOOK TO GOD WHEN IN DISTRESS
A. Face Fear With Faith
2 Chronicles 20
1 It came to pass after this also, that the children of Moab, and the children of Ammon (decendants of Lot), and with them other beside the Ammonites, came against Jehoshaphat to battle.
2 Then there came some that told Jehoshaphat, saying, There cometh a great multitude against thee from beyond the sea on this side Syria; and, behold, they be in Hazazontamar, which is Engedi.
3 And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.
…….It is natural to fear when we come to the knowledge of a future attack.
…….The army that attacked Judah was comprised of 3 different areas, an army big enough to crush Judah! The word explains that, after the war was over, Judah spent 3 days gathering the spoils of war. Jehoshaphat knew his nation was in serious trouble but this next scripture is the key to victory!
4 And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the LORD: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the LORD.
…….It is the actions we take from this point on that determine the outcome of the fight.
…….Jehoshaphat faced his fear with faith in God and devoted himself to private prayer. Having received Divine guidance by means of his private prayer, he called the whole nation of Judah to fast and pray. This is the first biblical recording that a king lead an entire nation to prayer and fasting, and people from all cities of Judah responded.
B. Appeal to God for Help
5 And Jehoshaphat stood in the congregation of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD, before the new court,
6 And said, O LORD God of our fathers, art not thou God in heaven? and rulest not thou over all the kingdoms of the heathen? and in thine hand is there not power and might, so that none is able to withstand thee?
7 Art not thou our God, who didst drive out the inhabitants of this land before thy people Israel, and gavest it to the seed of Abraham thy friend for ever?
8 And they dwelt therein, and have built thee a sanctuary therein for thy name, saying,
9 If, when evil cometh upon us, as the sword, judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we stand before this house, and in thy presence, (for thy name is in this house,) and cry unto thee in our affliction, then thou wilt hear and help.
…….God doesn’t need to be reminded of how much power and might he possesses.
When we worship and proclaim his strength, we are reminding and encouraging ourselves of how victorious he has always been, and in this moment we build up faith to continue the fight.
Not only do we remind ourselves but we let the devil know that even during his hardest attack, we refuse to be distracted.
C. Expect God to Help
10 And now, behold, the children of Ammon and Moab and mount Seir, whom thou wouldest not let Israel invade, when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned from them, and destroyed them not;
11 Behold, I say, how they reward us, to come to cast us out of thy possession, which thou hast given us to inherit.
12 O our God, wilt thou not judge them? for we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee.
……Where is your focus?!
Do we rely on our own strength when the enemy attacks?
Jehoshaphat displayed complete humility in admitting that there was nothing Judah could do to defend themselves.
…….This is the exact place that God desires us to be, broken and completely dependent on him!
The fight isn’t ours to begin with!
2 Corinthians 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: …….Our fight is always deeper than what can be seen. When when the opposing tools are flesh, it’s not the flesh your fighting, it’s the force that drives the flesh. You can never fight a man to defeat his spirit. “Example”
4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
…….The only choice we have us to give ever battle to God.
II. TRUST GOD FOR HIS HELP
A. Wait for God’s Answer
13 And all Judah “stood” before the LORD, with their little ones, their wives, and their children.
…….Notice what the word says their reaction was. They didn’t pace back and forth impatiently wondering who, what, how or when. They STOOD STILL! Not only them but their wives and children.
What a testimony to be known by our closest loved ones as a people who fully trust in God!
14 Then upon Jahaziel, came the Spirit of the LORD in the midst of the congregation;
…….God showed himself by and pouring out his Spirit on a man that prophesied victory!
When he speaks through man, it cannot be denied!
15 And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the LORD unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s.
…….There is no greater comfort than to know that God is in control.
B. Accept God’s Plan
(The Spirit still speaking)
16 To morrow go ye down against them: behold, they come up by the cliff of Ziz; and ye shall find them at the end of the brook, before the wilderness of Jeruel.
17 Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you.
……. Standing still in worship will cause you to stand still in the battle!
C. Acknowlege and Honor God
18 And Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground: and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell before the LORD, worshipping the LORD.
19 And the Levites, of the children of the Kohathites, and of the children of the Korhites, stood up to praise the LORD God of Israel with a loud voice on high.
……Here are the children of Israel, the day before battle, worshipping God and completely confident that victory is on the horizon!
20 And they rose early in the morning, and went forth into the wilderness of Tekoa: and as they went forth, Jehoshaphat stood and said, Hear me, O Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem; Believe in the LORD your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper.
21 And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the LORD, and that should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the LORD; for his mercy endureth for ever.
…….How many of us live with this same faith, knowing that God has already won the battle on our behalf?
The only way to stay victorious is to cling to the weapon, the weapon is worship!!!
III. PRAISE GOD FOR THE VICTORY
A. Receive God Given Victory
22 And when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten.
23 For the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of mount Seir, utterly to slay and destroy them: and when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, every one helped to destroy another.
24 And when Judah came toward the watch tower in the wilderness, they looked unto the multitude, and, behold, they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none escaped.
…….God will cause the enemies confusion to be their own destruction!
We’ve seen it many times, when their is a multitude against God’s children, they eventually turn on themselves.
25 And when Jehoshaphat and his people came to take away the spoil of them, they found among them in abundance both riches with the dead bodies, and precious jewels, which they stripped off for themselves, more than they could carry away: and they were three days in gathering of the spoil, it was so much.
……. For Judah, their battle became a spiritual warfare, and they employed weapons of spiritual warfare: prayer, trust in God, obedience, and worship. We too must employ the weapons of spiritual warfare to be victorious in Christian Living. As we do this, God will fight for us.
B. Praise God for Victory
26 And on the fourth day they assembled themselves in the valley of Berachah; for there they blessed the LORD: therefore the name of the same place was called, The valley of Berachah, unto this day.
27 Then they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, and Jehoshaphat in the forefront of them, to go again to Jerusalem with joy; for the LORD had made them to rejoice over their enemies.
28 And they came to Jerusalem with psalteries and harps and trumpets unto the house of the LORD.
…….After the people of Judah spent 3 days gathering the spoils if war, they gathered in the valley of Berachah now known as the “Valley of Blessing, or Valley of Praise.”
…….The most important step we can take after the battle has been won is to continue to give God the glory!
How many of your battlefield’s have become you fields or praise?!!!
C. The Happy Conclusion
…….The reward of the Righteous
29 And the fear of God was on all the kingdoms of those countries, when they had heard that the LORD fought against the enemies of Israel.
30 So the realm of Jehoshaphat was quiet: for his God gave him rest round about.