Solving Problems Through Prayer

( [email protected] ) Nov 12, 2007 04:43 AM EST

1 Chronicles 20

1Now it came about after this that the sons of Moab and the sons of Ammon, together with some of the (A)Meunites, came to make war against Jehoshaphat.

2Then some came and reported to Jehoshaphat, saying, "A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, out of Aram and behold, they are in (B)Hazazon-tamar (that is Engedi)."

3Jehoshaphat was afraid and (C)turned his attention to seek the LORD, and (D)proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.

4So Judah gathered together to (E)seek help from the LORD; they even came from all the cities of Judah to seek the LORD.

Jehoshaphat's Prayer

5Then Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD before the new court,

6and he said, "O LORD, the God of our fathers, (F)are You not God in the heavens? And (G)are You not ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You.

7"Did You not, O our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and (H)give it to the descendants of (I)Abraham Your friend forever?

8"They have lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary there for Your name, saying,

9'(J)Should evil come upon us, the sword, or judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before You (for (K)Your name is in this house) and cry to You in our distress, and You will hear and deliver us.'

10"Now behold, (L)the sons of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir, (M)whom You did not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt (they turned aside from them and did not destroy them),

11see how they are rewarding us by (N)coming to drive us out from Your possession which You have given us as an inheritance.

12"O our God, (O)will You not judge them? For we are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but (P)our eyes are on You."

13All Judah was standing before the LORD, with their infants, their wives and their children.

Jahaziel Answers the Prayer

14Then in the midst of the assembly (Q)the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, the Levite of the sons of Asaph;

15and he said, "Listen, all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat: thus says the LORD to you, '(R)Do not fear or be dismayed because of this great multitude, for (S)the battle is not yours but God's.

16'Tomorrow go down against them. Behold, they will come up by the ascent of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the valley in front of the wilderness of Jeruel.

17'You need not fight in this battle; station yourselves, (T)stand and see the salvation of the LORD on your behalf, O Judah and Jerusalem ' Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out to face them, (U)for the LORD is with you."

18Jehoshaphat (V)bowed his head with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell down before the LORD, worshiping the LORD.

19The Levites, from the sons of the Kohathites and of the sons of the Korahites, stood up to praise the LORD God of Israel, with a very loud voice.

Enemies Destroy Themselves

20They rose early in the morning and went out to the wilderness of Tekoa; and when they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, "Listen to me, O Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, (W)put your trust in the LORD your God and you will be established. Put your trust in His prophets and succeed."

21When he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who sang to the LORD and those who (X)praised Him in holy attire, as they went out before the army and said, "(Y)Give thanks to the LORD, for His lovingkindness is everlasting."

22When they began singing and praising, the LORD (Z)set ambushes against the sons of (AA)Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; so they were routed.

23For the sons of Ammon and Moab rose up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir destroying them completely; and when they had finished with the inhabitants of Seir, (AB)they helped to destroy one another.

24When Judah came to the lookout of the wilderness, they looked toward the multitude, and behold, they were corpses lying on the ground, and no one had escaped.

25When Jehoshaphat and his people came to take their spoil, they found much among them, including goods, garments and valuable things which they took for themselves, more than they could carry. And they were three days taking the spoil because there was so much.

Triumphant Return to Jerusalem

26Then on the fourth day they assembled in the valley of Beracah, for there they blessed the LORD. Therefore they have named that place "The Valley of [a]Beracah" until today.

27Every man of Judah and Jerusalem returned with Jehoshaphat at their head, returning to Jerusalem with joy, (AC)for the LORD had made them to rejoice over their enemies.

28They came to Jerusalem with harps, lyres and trumpets to the house of the LORD.

29And (AD)the dread of God was on all the kingdoms of the lands when they heard that the LORD had fought against the enemies of Israel.

30So the kingdom of Jehoshaphat was at peace, (AE)for his God gave him rest on all sides.

31(AF)Now Jehoshaphat reigned over Judah. He was thirty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem twenty-five years. And his mother's name was Azubah the daughter of Shilhi.

32He walked in the way of his father Asa and did not depart from it, doing right in the sight of the LORD.

33(AG)The high places, however, were not removed; (AH)the people had not yet directed their hearts to the God of their fathers.

34Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, first to last, behold, they are written in the annals of (AI)Jehu the son of Hanani, which is recorded in the Book of the Kings of Israel.

Alliance Displeases God

35(AJ)After this Jehoshaphat king of Judah allied himself with Ahaziah king of Israel. He acted wickedly in so doing.

36So he allied himself with him to make ships to go (AK)to Tarshish, and they made the ships in Ezion-geber.

37Then Eliezer the son of Dodavahu of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat saying, "Because you have allied yourself with Ahaziah, the LORD has destroyed your works." So the ships were broken and could not go to Tarshish.

Problems are an inevitable part of life whether or not a person is saved. The difference is that once a man or woman becomes a believer, the Father strengthens His child to face every difficulty.

Our omniscient and all-powerful God is greater than any problem. He knows our future circumstances and prepares our hearts and minds to withstand coming trials. The moment we encounter a problem, we can tap into His omnipotence. He promised to meet believers’ needs; therefore, He is under His own divine obligation to give guidance and direction. Our first response should always be to call out, “Father!” Instantly, two things take place: the problem’s growth is stunted, and God’s child is reminded of the unique position given those who trust in the sovereign Lord.

God always provides a solution to the problem. However, we don’t simply sit back and wait for Him to work out the details. The Lord usually requires an act of faith from His children to jump-start the process. Experience and trust should tell us that His solutions are always best, but human strength may falter when we hear what He asks of us. Thankfully, the One who gives us endurance also offers courage to act at the right moment.

Long before a crisis arises or any solution is needed, the wise believer will be consistently seeking God. In trouble-free times, we can build a foundation of trust and communion with Him that can withstand any hardship. Problems are unavoidable, but the Father is faithful to solve our difficulties through prayer.

Used with permission.