Well Lets Sing
There you are! It is a nice day! The Lord has been good to Jehoshaphat. It is said that Jehoshaphat “walked in the way of Asa his father, and departed not from it, doing that which was right in the sight of the Lord” (2 Chron. 20:32). Although Jehoshaphat made some bad decisions, he was a good king.
In the third year of his reign Jehoshaphats turned his attention to the education of the people of Judah and “he sent his princes…and with them the Levites…And they taught in Judah, having the book of the law of Jehovah with them; and they went about throughout all the cities of Judah, and taught among the people.” As a result of these righteous acts “the fear of Jehovah fell upon all the kingdoms of the lands that were round about Judah, so that they made no war against Jehoshaphat” (2 Chron. 17:7-10).
Jehoshaphat had attempted to make some sort of peace with Ahab, king of Israel: big mistake (2 Chron. 18:28-34). After being rebuked for his participation in helping Ahab, Jehoshaphat returned to Jerusalem and properly established righteous judicial order among the people (2 Chron. 19:4-11). Life is good! And then… (2 Chron. 20).
Three nations came up against Jehoshaphat: Moab, Ammon and mount Seir (Edom). So, on this fine day, “Then there came some that told Jehoshaphat, saying, There cometh a great multitude against thee from beyond the sea from Syria; and, behold, they are in Hazazon-tamar (the same is En-gedi)” (2 Chron. 20:2): talk about a ruin to a good day!
As the events unfold “Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek unto Jehovah; and he proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. And Judah gathered themselves together, to seek help of Jehovah: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek Jehovah. And Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of Jehovah, before the new court; and he said, O Jehovah, the God of our fathers, art not thou God in heaven? and art not thou ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? and in thy hand is power and might, so that none is able to withstand thee” (2 Chron. 20:3-6). Jehoshaphat proceeds to appeal to Jehovah based upon the promises of protection that were afforded Israel during the reign of Solomon. You are encouraged to read, in its entirety the appeal and trust Jehoshaphat placed in the Lord.
What we want to reflect upon is Jehoshaphat’s plan of battle. Going forth to meet such a formidable foe: what is a king to do? Present your mightiest men of valor in the forefront and forge ahead with swords, staffs, and lances flaying! I suppose a king could do that. Not Jehoshaphat!
“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 Jehovah your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper. And when he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed them that should sing unto Jehovah, and give praise in holy array, as they went out before the army, and say, Give thanks unto Jehovah; for his lovingkindness endureth forever. And when they began to sing and to praise, Jehovah set liers-in-wait against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, that were come against Judah; and they were smitten. 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, everyone helped to destroy another” (2 Chron. 20:20-23).
Today, the battle isn’t yours nor mine, the battle belongs to the Lord: “Thus saith Jehovah unto you, Fear not ye, neither be dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God's” (2 Chron. 20:15). Our responsibility? “Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil…take up the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; withal taking up the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: with all prayer and supplication praying at all seasons in the Spirit, and watching thereunto in all perseverance and supplication for all the saints” (Eph. 6:10-11, 13-18). Ross Triplett, Sr.