The Desperate Plea of Jehoshaphat

O our God, will you not execute judgment on them?  For we are powerless against this great horde that is coming against us.  We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you (2 Chronicles 20:12 EV).

Chi-Rho Bann Cross
This Chi-Rho cross in Bann, Germany, reminds us that the battle is not ours but God’s.

In the year 853 B.C., a “great horde” (ESV) – a “huge army” (NET) – prepared to attack Israel.  King Jehoshaphat was told of the impending invasion of armies from Moab and Syria.  The 20th chapter of 2 Chronicles records how the king and the people prayed in desperation and fasted before the Lord.  “Then Jehoshaphat was afraid and set his face to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.  And Judah assembled to seek help from the Lord; from all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord” (2 Chronicles 20:3-4 ESV).  There was a genuine sense of alarm and a complete dependence on God for deliverance.  They felt that if God did not deliver them, they would be defeated.  “We do know what to do,” was the desperate plea of Jehoshaphat.  He needed God’s help.  A Levite in the assembly told everyone, “Do not be afraid … the battle is not yours but God’s” (2 Chronicles 20:15 ESV).

And God delivered the nation of Israel with a miracle.  Not a single Israelite soldier struck a blow.  Instead the army of Israel showed up for battle and saw a battlefield full of dead bodies.  God caused the enemy armies to defeat themselves!  God fights his own battles.  The people began to collect the spoils (weapons, shoes, gold, etc.) from the slain soldiers, and it took three days to go through the battlefield to collect the spoils of war (2 Chronicles 20:24-30).  God showed up and “the fear of God came on all the kingdoms of the countries when they heard that the Lord fought against the enemies of Israel” (20:29 ESV).

Today, remember that God fights his own battles.  When you reach the point of desperation, remember the desperate plea of Jehoshaphat and the victory God gave Israel.  No matter how great the army against you, God is greater still.  Make your plea to the God of Jehoshaphat, who plays no favorites.  Trust in the Lord and sing with the psalmist, “My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:2 ESV).

For more help in your battles, visit the Daily Bible Verse page.