When Jehoshaphat was king over Judah, a huge army – combined forces from several nations – came to drive the Israelites out of their country. The people of Judah gathered at the temple of the Lord and King Jehoshaphat cried out to God. “For we have no power,” he said, “to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on You.”
And this is how the Lord answered – “Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.”
So they went out to the battleground the next day led by men raising their voices in worship, singing and praising the Lord.
As the people of God began to worship, that vast army began to destroy themselves. They turned on each other.
Judah’s army did not find a war to wage, but a victory already won.
Maybe you’ve been there…maybe you are there now, standing in the middle of trouble in your life, looking around and thinking – this is too much. This enemy is too strong. These problems are too big for me.
This is the time to say, like King Jehoshaphat – I don’t know what to do, but my eyes are on You, God.
This is the time to remember His words to us – “Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)
This is the time to remember that we are NOT facing the enemy in our own strength. “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
This is the time to remember that we do not live in fear because of what His power has accomplished! “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world!” (John 16:33)
Just like the army of Judah, we can lift our voices in praise to God even if we can’t quite yet see the outcome of the battle…and we, too, will find a defeated enemy. The same God who went before His people on that long-ago day is the same God who goes before us now. Through His death and resurrection, Jesus destroyed the work of our enemy! “Thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!” (1 Cor. 15:57)
We heard this phrase earlier this summer and it has stuck in our heads – “We do not fight FOR victory but FROM victory!” One way to fight from victory is following the lead of Jehoshaphat and moving forward in praise.
When we declare God’s truth and our trust in His promises through worship, we are resisting (withstanding the power or the effect of!) the devil — and when we humble ourselves before God and resist our enemy, he WILL flee. (James 4:7)
So if you feel overwhelmed today…like there is a vast army heading your way…look to Him and give Him praise. His Word was true then and it is true now — “Do not be afraid or discouraged…For the battle is not yours, but God’s.” (2 Chron. 20:15)
“It was not by their sword that they won the land, nor did their arm bring them victory; it was Your right hand, Your arm, and the light of Your face, for You loved them….Through You we push back our enemies; through Your name we trample our foes. I put no trust in my bow, my sword does not bring me victory; but YOU give us victory over our enemies, you put our adversaries to shame. In God we make our boast all day long, and we will praise Your name forever!” –Psalm 44:3-8