Today’s Jonah lesson was called “Set Up to Win”. It goes through various stories in the Bible in which God saved the day because people themselves couldn’t. I had never read the story of King Jehoshaphat before. At least not that I can remember (though I have said “jumpin’ Jehoshaphat” many times.) In 2 Chronicles 20:6-24, several of Israel’s enemies are coming together to attack Israel. The king was afraid and asked God for help. God gave him specific instructions on what to do, and those instructions really didn’t make a whole lot of sense. Kind of like marching around a city and blowing trumpets to tear down walls or fighting an army of enemies with only 300 men.
In verses 15 – 17, God told him:
Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast multitude, (L) for the battle is not yours, but God’s. (M) 16 Tomorrow, go down against them. You will see them coming up the ascent of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the valley facing the Wilderness of Jeruel. 17 You do not have to fight this [battle]. Position yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD.
“You do not have to fight this battle. Position yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD.”
Not “try to fix everything.”
Not “cram everything you can in.”
Not “fight for your beliefs, no matter who gets hurt in the process.”
Position yourselves, STAND STILL, and SEE the salvation of the LORD.
I don’t often take the time to stand still and see what He has done.
The story ends with Jehoshaphat and the Israelites marching out and singing praises to God. They are SINGING, of all things, as they march toward the place where their enemies are gathering against them. Verse 22 says:
The moment they began [their] shouts and praises, the LORD set an ambush (V) against the Ammonites, Moabites, and [the inhabitants of] Mount Seir who came [to fight] against Judah, and they were defeated.
It makes me wonder what I have missed by trying to make things happen instead of just letting God handle it.