Read the story of King Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles, chapters 17 – 20 to follow along.
This is part three of our discussion on “what to do, when you don’t know what to do”. Click here for part one.
As King Jehoshaphat heard the news of an enormous battle that was coming his way, one that he could have never prepared for, he sought the face of God. We pick up in chapter 20, verse 3, where we see the king and all of his people standing before the Lord together.
It is important to note that the King was very prepared. In part two we discovered that he had over a million men of valor in his army and that he had fortified cities. However, there are some battles in life that we can not prepare for and I believe this is the situation that we find our king and his people in.
God answered the people as they sought His divine direction.
“…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. Tomorrow go down against them. They will surely come up by Ascent of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the brook before the Wilderness of Jeruel. You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!” 2 Chronicles 20:15-17
This Battle is not yours:
When we entered into this covenant relationship with Jesus Christ we entered into a war (a Spiritual War). In any war there are battles and it’s important to remember that not every battle will have the same strategy. It is only in the presence of the God that we can find the strategy for each battle. Keep in mind that the war is already won! Jesus Christ sealed the victory when He rose from the grave. Therefore, we approach each battle with the hope of victory that we have in our King of Kings.
- A. Go in and fight! I do believe there are times when God says “Go Fight”! Pick up your spiritual sword and engage in the battle. There was one particular battle in my life where God led me to this scripture “but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.” (Jude 20:23) I knew that He was saying fight this battle with everything you have, with urgency…and I did…and there was great victory!
- B. Stand still and surrender! There are also times when God asks us to stand still. If we are not careful we will approach each battle with the same strategy and expect the same outcome. I wonder what the outcome would have been for King Jehoshaphat if his men would have stormed into battle with their swords swinging? This time God said, “I will fight for you, you don’t need to fight.”
Here is the deal, surrendering can feel a lot more terrifying than fighting. Why? I believe it is because we are 100% out of control and are asked to 100% trust God. Could this be why God told the people twice “do not fear”? I am currently in a battle that is bigger than any of my resources or “know how” and God has asked me to surrender. However, what does that look like?
Hands off and Hands up!
To truly surrender to God does not mean to sit back and watch Netflix while pretending that everything will just magically go away (though I assure you I have been tempted to go there:). On the contrary, Jehoshaphat gave his people specific direction. Here was the direction and response to God’s strategy:
Praise and Worship
Yes, that was it! Some bowed down in the presence of God while others lifted their voices with praise. On the day of the battle the King appointed people to sing and praise God saying, “Praise the LORD, for His mercy endures forever.” That day they would watch the Lord win this battle and all they did was praise Him.
Sometimes the first thing we do, when we are overwhelmed, is pull away from God. The enemy would love to take our praise from us because He knows how powerful a surrendered life is. I want to challenge you today to draw close to God in the midst of your battles! If He is asking you to surrender then it is time to take your hands off of the situation and put them in the air with praise to the King who goes before you and fights your battles.