Battleplan: Worship

Now it happened after this that the Moabites and the Ammonites, together with some of the Meunites, came to make war against Jehoshaphat. Then it was reported to Jehoshaphat, “A great multitude has come against you from beyond the [Dead] Sea, out of Aram (Syria); and behold, they are in Hazazon-tamar (that is, Engedi).” Then Jehoshaphat was afraid and set himself [determinedly, as his vital need] to seek the Lord; and he proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. So [the people of] Judah gathered together to seek help from the Lord; indeed they came from all the cities of Judah to seek the Lord [longing for Him with all their heart].   2 Chronicles 20: 1 – 4 AMP

As someone who lives in a country that has never experienced war on it’s shores, I can imagine the terrors of war, but I cannot really identify with the depths of Jehoshaphat’s fear.  I do, however, identify with the fear that comes from receiving a bad report…who doesn’t?

Often times, these bad reports, whether from a doctor, or from an employer, or from a loved one, will send shockwaves through our hearts, minds and bodies.  How often have I prayed like Jehoshaphat?  

 O our God, will You not judge them? For we are powerless against this great multitude which is coming against us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on You.” (V12)  

What a wonderful comfort…when you can be intimate with the father and confess not only your powerlessness and fear, but also your faith in Him.

The Lord shows Himself faithful and answers by way of Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph.  He said, “Listen carefully, all [you people of] Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and King Jehoshaphat. The Lord says this to you: ‘Be not afraid or dismayed at this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. (V15)

I  love this verse and I quote it to myself often.  The battle we face indeed belongs to the Lord and He has the perfect solution and strategy for every crises.  Reading further, we see the battle plan of the Lord…

You need not fight in this battle; take your positions, stand and witness the salvation of the Lord who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.’”

18 Jehoshaphat bowed with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell down before the Lord, worshiping Him. 19 The Levites, from the sons of the Kohathites and the sons of the Korahites, stood up to praise the Lord God of Israel, with a very loud voice.

So they got up early in the morning and went out into the Wilderness of Tekoa; and as they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, O Judah, and you inhabitants of Jerusalem! Believe and trust in the Lord your God and you will be established (secure). Believe and trust in His prophets and succeed.”  When he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who sang to the Lord and those who praised Him in their holy (priestly) attire, as they went out before the army and said, “Praise and give thanks to the Lord, for His mercy and lovingkindness endure forever.”  When they began singing and praising, the Lord set ambushes against the sons of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; so they were struck down [in defeat]. For the sons of Ammon and Moab [suspecting betrayal] rose up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir, completely destroying them; and when they had finished with the inhabitants of Seir, they helped to destroy one another. (V17 – 23)

What a plan!  Trust in the Lord…check.  Sing and praise the Lord…check.  Deliverance…guaranteed.  Spiritual warfare has taken on a new meaning, hasn’t it.  Through our worship, singing His praises, shouting, clapping, sounding instruments – however you do it – the hand of God moves and sets the enemy’s camp in disarray.  The enemy actually attacks itself, fights amongst themselves and the people of God walks away with the spoils.

When Jehoshaphat and his people came to take their spoil, they found much among them, including equipment, garments, and valuable things which they took for themselves, more than they could carry away; so much that they spent three days gathering the spoil. (V25)

What would it look like if a company of worshippers, with a rock solid faith in the goodness and righteousness of the Father marched into battle, singing, dancing and rejoicing…praising the One who is so worthy of receiving praise?  What would it look like if demons started to turn on each other and captives gets set free because a company of people sang over them?  Danced with them until the shackles broke?  I can see the spoils of this war, our portion.  I see drug addict and dealer equally free, abused and abuser both touched by the hand of God, doctors and patients alike singing God’s praises as miracles break out!  

They came to Jerusalem with harps, lyres, and trumpets to the house (temple) of the Lord And the fear of God came on all the kingdoms of those countries when they heard that the Lord had fought against the enemies of Israel. (V28, 29)

I hear them!  I see them!  Let’s sing until the fear of the Lord comes on every nation, until the fire of God spreads out of control and the whole world learns to sing too.

The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”        Zeph. 3:17 NIV