The following post, titled 'Sing Louder', is based on our True Worship Series across C3 Sydney's 11 locations.
After this, the Moabites and Ammonites with some of the Meunites came to wage war against Jehoshaphat. Some people came and told Jehoshaphat, “A vast army is coming against you from Edom, from the other side of the Dead Sea. It is already in Hazezon Tamar” (that is, En Gedi). Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. The people of Judah came together to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him. Then Jehoshaphat stood up in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem at the temple of the Lord in the front of the new courtyard and said:
“Lord, the God of our ancestors, are you not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you. Our God, did you not drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham your friend? They have lived in it and have built in it a sanctuary for your Name, saying, ‘If calamity comes upon us, whether the sword of judgment, or plague or famine, we will stand in your presence before this temple that bears your Name and will cry out to you in our distress, and you will hear us and save us.’
(2 Chronicles 20:1-9 NIV)
There is a popular Christian song with the chorus “This is how I fight my battles [singing]; it may look like I’m surrounded but I’m surrounded by You.” This is a great confession of how we as Christians need to sing God’s truth louder than any circumstances we may be facing.
In 2 Chronicles 20:1-23 we read the story of a physical battle King Jehosaphat faced. Jehosaphat was a good king, but the wealth and success Judah was experiencing under his reign suddenly changed when a vast army came against them. These were three nations who worshiped demonic powers, coming together against God’s people. We don’t usually face approaching armies but we do get bad news whether it be financial, emotional, relational, health or family. We can look to Jehosaphat’s strategy as an example to use in our lives.
Keep Our Eyes on God
The people were understandably distressed and alarmed by the bad news. In the midst of their emotional response however, they resolved to seek God. Jehosaphat had seen his father, Asa face many challenges and when Asa sought God, things went well and when Asa faced the problem alone, it did not go well. They decided not to face the challenge alone but to go with God (vs.9).
Enquire of God
Jehosaphat gathered all his people to seek answers from the Lord (vs.12). Seek information from God through questions like “What do I do?” and “What season am I in right now?”. Lift up your eyes from the problem and look to God (Psalm 121:1-2). God is our help and when we turn to Him, His eyes turn to us. He gives us strength, joy, wisdom and strategy in the midst of the battle.
God Will Fight for Us
When they turned their eyes to God, He spoke and gave them a promise and a plan of victory. The word of God came to Jahaziel who prophesied “Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed at this great horde, for the battle is not yours but God’s.”(vs. 15). We must remember the supernatural fight that is behind the physical pressures we face. This battle is not ours to fight but the Lord’s. He goes on to declare that they not need fight, but to stand fast and trust God to come through (vs. 17). Our lives must be rich in the Word of God. When He gives you a promise, write it down and speak it out regularly -remind yourself of His promises until you see it fulfilled.
Victory is Found in Praise
The people responded to God’s promise with worship (vs.18-19). First they bowed down in thankful awe of how God planned to rescue them. Then they stood up and sang in a loud voice. This wasn’t about volume but their confident hope; God’s promise shifted fear in the people to faith. They headed out to battle with the worshipers at the front, declaring “Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever “ (vs.21). God went before them and defeated their enemies (vs.22).We praise God because he is victorious. Worship is about glorifying the risen Lord and he is risen, because he has overcome. An attitude of worship keeps us aligned to the truth of that victory. Within his victory lies our breakthrough. His steadfast love endures regardless of our situation. He is worthy of praise and in praising him we can gain victory (spiritually, and emotionally if not always physically) over our circumstances.
Something to talk about:
1. Do you have a place where you go to lift up your eyes/change your perspective on your problems?
2. What bad news are you facing that you can enquire of God? Like Jehosaphat gather your people (Connect group) to seek God’s wisdom.
3. What are some of the ways you can document the promises and answers you receive from God, to remind yourself of them daily?
Click here to watch the online service on the message 'Sing Louder'.