It seems to be the case lately that God is taking me on a journey of discovery in His word. Several times in recent memory I have been reading a Sunday School lesson or studying for a blog post when a verse or group of verses will seem to leap right off of the page and into my heart and mind, grabbing my attention and imprinting a vital truth in the process.
This seems to happen in spurts and although I don’t know exactly why it works that way, I just do my best to listen and to learn. These teachable moments sponsored by the Holy Spirit are precious to me and I hope that they continue throughout this lifetime and in to the next one.
That being said, I believe that God works and reveals Himself to us in unique and individual ways just as we are all unique and individual. Such “inspirational” moments may not happen to you in the same way but I do believe that, based on the promises in the Bible, reading, studying and meditating on the good book will cause us to change for the better. We truly have all of the resources we need in God’s word provided to us by the Holy Spirit and that includes help in all of life’s battles.
In 2 Chronicles chapter 20 we see a glimpse into the life of King Jehoshaphat as the Ammonites, Moabites and inhabitants of Mount Seir arrayed themselves against God’s people. To really get the full picture of what is transpiring here you should read all of 2 Chronicles 20 but focusing in on the following verses we see something really amazing happen.
18Jehoshaphat bowed down with his face to the ground, and all the people of Judah and Jerusalem fell down in worship before the Lord.19 Then some Levites from the Kohathites and Korahites stood up and praised the Lord, the God of Israel, with a very loud voice.
20 Early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa. As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful.” 21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying:
“Give thanks to the Lord,
for his love endures forever.”
22 As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated. 23 The Ammonites and Moabites rose up against the men from Mount Seir to destroy and annihilate them. After they finished slaughtering the men from Seir, they helped to destroy one another.
Jehoshaphat knew that a battle was coming. He knew the enemy was coming against him and he didn’t run from it or try to hide from it. He faced it in the best way possible.
Notice in verse 18 of chapter 20 that the first thing he did was fall on his face before God. He called all of the people together and as one body they fell on their faces and worshiped the Lord. After praying and worshiping he encouraged his people to have faith in God (verse 20) and then he did a very curious thing (verse 21). He put the choir out in front of the army! And of course you can read the result of this unorthodox battle strategy: the enemy turned on each other and was utterly routed in defeat.
Jehoshaphat and the people of Israel were victorious because they let God fight and win the battle for them. They were careful to call on His name in faith and then they trusted God to see them through. They began with prayer and worship and then praised God to begin the battle. And on hearing the praise of the true and living God the enemy was defeated.
For me, this was a powerful and meaningful lesson from the Lord on how to fight and win the battles that I face in life. That doesn’t mean that I will always understand every outcome or that things will always go my way but that as long as I am trusting the Lord and fighting with worship and praise then the result of the battle will surely belong to the Lord.
Fighting our battles with prayer, worship and praise as a three pronged strategy is a tried and tested method straight from God’s word to us. It is a strategy that I have implemented lately to wonderful results and I would encourage you to do the same.