“Then some came and told Jehoshaphat, saying, “A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, from Syria; and they are in Hazazon Tamar” (which is En Gedi). And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.”
II Chronicles 20:2-3 NKJV
“Now all Judah, with their little ones, their wives, and their children, stood before the LORD. Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph, in the midst of the assembly. And he said, “Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the LORD to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.”
II Chronicles 20:13-15 NKJV
The Old Testament is the foundation for the new. One cannot simply dispense with it and only have sustenance in the new. Today I was reminded of something it is so easy to forget: the battle belongs to the Lord. I have, like so many others, found myself trying to deal with problems on my own. In my reading in encountered the story of Jehoshaphat as he was alerted of an impending attack. He like anyone feared. He was a benevolent leader who cared for his people. At one point he goes to God and takes his entreaty to Him, reminding God of His past faithfulness.
I have found in my own crises, try and remember what the Lord has done for me, how He has delivered me. As I seek to remind God, who needs no reminding, I am actually reminding myself. I know that He is faithful here and now and on into eternity.
I can imagine Jehoshaphat, looking around at his people, at the old people and the children, the women and the men. People who would suffer in the attack. All seemed lost as the inevitable doubt must have entered his mind.
I love that moment when I am finally reminded that my God is in the middle of my situation. Jahaziel spoke up, and reminded everyone, small and great that God is in control and they needn’t fear. Back in my cancer battle, the Lord used Joshua 1:9 to regularly admonish me when I started down the negative path.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.””
Joshua 1:9 NKJV
That reminder sustained me through months of chemotherapy, and the inevitable side effects, and it sustains me today.
It is a message that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord should take to heart in these trying times. Do not be afraid. That is the great advantage that we have in Christ. We have God going before us. He is there. He is Jehovah Nissi, God our banner. We can have confidence in Him.
Each day, we believers are going out to war, the body. It is a war not against the body, yet, but against the mind. We have an enemy. There are days when I seems as though we are surrounded, but we mustn’t be afraid.
We must see only the cross.
I love how the crisis ends…
“And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who should sing to the LORD, and who should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army and were saying: “Praise the LORD, For His mercy endures forever.” Now when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushes against the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were defeated.”
II Chronicles 20:21-22 NKJV
In your fear, sing praises to the Lord! His mercy endures forever! He is glorious, He is faithful! He is worthy!
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