“O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You" (2 Chronicles 20:12).
The above words were spoken by King Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, as he faced the armies of countries who had allied themselves against him (2 Chronicles 20:1-2). Jehoshaphat had been a righteous king who had sought God, walked in His commandments, and took delight in the ways of the Lord (2 Chronicles 17:3-6). Earlier he had been rebuked for associating himself with Ahab the king of Israel (2 Chronicles 18:1-3; 19:1-2). Following his being rebuked, Jehoshaphat responds with true repentance by continuing to promote righteous reforms in Judah such as setting godly judges and priests over the land to execute the Lord’s judgments (2 Chronicles 19:5-11).
Note what Jehoshaphat did when he first hears of this threat which came upon him from these nations allying themselves against him: “And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah” (2 Chronicles 20:3). He responds in faith by fearing God and setting himself to seek the Lord. He also rallied the nation of Judah to do the same.
As he gathers the nation together in Jerusalem, he acknowledges God’s power by saying, “O Lord God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven, and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations, and in Your hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand You?” (2 Chronicles 20:6). Although he himself was the king over the great nation of Judah, Jehoshaphat felt utterly powerless to remedy the present situation in which he found himself. He cries out to God: “O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You." (2 Chronicles 20:12).
God answers Jehoshaphat’s plea for help as the Spirit of the Lord comes upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah who says, “Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the Lord to you: 'Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God's’” (2 Chronicles 20:15). Furthermore, God adds, “You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see 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" (2 Chronicles 20:17). The people of Judah did not have to fight this battle. All they needed to do was take their seats and watch as God defeated their enemies by having their enemies turn on each other (2 Chronicles 20:22-24).
As I consider these events in the life of King Jehoshaphat, often I find myself in situations in which I am powerless. Sometimes this is because the obstacle I am facing is too overwhelming for me to handle. At other times, the situation I face involves another person who heart and mind I am powerless to change. During such times, I find encouragement from the example of Jehoshaphat. Like him I need to set myself to “seek the Lord”, acknowledge to Him my powerlessness, and tell Him my “eyes are upon You”. I then need to simply wait and see His answer as He says to me, “Do not be afraid nor dismayed because… the battle is not yours, but God’s”! (2 Chronicles 20:3,12,15). Today, I rejoice that God doesn’t expect me to fight every battle which comes my way, but at times, I simply need to “position myself”, “still and see the salvation of the Lord” (2 Chronicles 20:17)!
“Truly my soul silently waits for God; from Him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved” (Psalm 62:1-2).