From humbly seeking God first, to praying a God-centered prayer, followed by praying Scripture and surrender, the prayer of Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles 20 has practical lessons for us in our own prayer life and relationship with God. This is the final part of this prayer series found in this chapter by this great leader of Judah, King Jehoshaphat.
Principle Number Five – Do Not Succumb To Fear Because This Is The LORD’s Battle – vs 15
While it’s not a direct part of the king’s prayer, it most definitely is a result of it, the final principles is not to fear. Why are we not to fear? Because the battle is the LORD’s, not ours!
In verse 14 a man named Jahaziel has the Spirit of the LORD come upon him. Then in verse 15 he stands up and declares, “Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s.”
The battle we are facing is not our own. Yet too often we fail to understand our situation in this way and think we must face our enemy alone. But we don’t have to go it alone. If we understand the previous principle of surrender, we can take the next step and remain confident. What is that step? It’s praise.
Notice how after a night of sleep, the king makes this pronouncement in verse 20. “Hear me O Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the LORD your God and you will be established; believe His prophets and you shall prosper.” Then is verse 21, the king does something totally unheard of in battle. He puts the singers out front. They are in the front line of battle.
Those in the front are the first ones the enemies arrows hit! But Jehoshaphat knew he was not to be afraid and he needed to praise the LORD in this battle – because the fight is really the LORD’s.
We don’t think of praise as being a battlefield tactic but the king, upon being encouraged by Jahaziel’s pronouncement, knew he had to put his confidence in God’s administration of the battle the nation was facing.
When facing a battle or dealing with adversity, is praise part of your battle strategy?
Notice how the most feared and respected warrior on ancient Israel was also the author of most of the Book of Psalms! King David the warrior, was also, King David the great praiser!
Praise helps reorient our thinking. Praise puts our minds into proper alignment. Praise allows us to step aside and see God fight the battle for us. Praise takes my eyes off myself and my struggle and focuses my attention on Him. Praise keeps my mind thinking as God would have me think.
In Philippians 4, Paul tells us to concentrate on what is true, noble, pure, lovely, good report, virtuous and “praiseworthy.” This is how we are supposed to think or as he states, meditate upon. Praise allows me to step away from fear and puts God at the forefront of the battle.
When facing adversity, these lessons or principles of prayer from King Jehoshaphat as found in 2 Chronicles 20 are a pattern for us to follow for victory.
- Humbly seek God first – verse 3
- Pray a God-centered prayer and not a problem-centered one – verses 6-12
- Pray Scripture, reminding yourself of God’s promises – verses 6-12
- Surrender and throw yourself on His mercy – verse 12
- Do not be afraid. Praise Him! – verses 14-15, 20-21
God always has a better plan than we can imagine. It is His battle, not ours and He has ways of resolving our conflict we could never imagine.
Blessings My Friend!