Faced with His nation’s certain demise, King Jehoshaphat responded with worship. Read his prayer in today’s passage, and you may find it difficult to separate the petition from the praise. Going deeper than familiar expressions like “hallelujah” and “praise the Lord,” he celebrates God’s personhood and extols His virtues.
Furthermore, the king led the people in glorifying God for their past redemption. As they focused on the Lord (instead of the incoming armies), the Israelites recalled anew how their heavenly Father had intervened, sometimes dramatically. This was exactly what God had told them to do—to instruct their children about His ways so they could daily honor Him. (See Deut. 6:7.) Doing so builds courage and strengthens faith.
The people’s praise paved the way for their complete and total dependence upon the Lord. The odds of the small Israelite army beating the united force of three enemies were slim. However, in their worshipful state of mind, the people could admit their weakness and await divine intervention. God gave them an outrageous solution to the problem: to do nothing. Even so, Israel was spiritually prepared to go against human reason and obey His commands. God loves it when we throw ourselves upon His mercy, because then His power can be released in its fullness.
God is also willing to lead you to victory in troubled times. The Israelites’ story is recorded in His Word so that all believers may apply its principles to their life. Bend your heart and mind toward the Lord, and He will enlarge your vision of who He is and what He can do on your behalf.
Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 4-6