Sermons

Summary: Does devotion to God free us from the responsibility to think deeply? How far ahead should we think?

1. Many of you wear glasses; if you need longer arms to read, that

usually means you are "far sighted..."; to drive, near-sighted; both.

Porcupine backed into cactus...."Pardon me, honey!"

2. Others wear contacts for the same reason--I could never stomach fishing around in my eye....

3. In life/history, we use the terms differently....far sighted sees the

distant future...near-sighted, the immediate...

4. E.g., our US Constitution...oldest in use...still works...far sighted...

5. Today we are going to look at a King who was very godly, but not far sighted...a king who was godly but not wise in the long term...

6. E.g. Solomon....wise, compromised godliness

Hezekiah, godly, but foolish to show the King of Babylon Judah’s

treasures...

7. Today, we are going to look at King Jehoshaphat...(introduced in 2 Chron. 17:1-6--READ)

Questions: Does devotion to God free us from the responsibility to think deeply? How far ahead should we think?

I hope to answer these two related questions by leading us to examine the life of Jehoshaphat....

I. His Wisdom and Righteousness

1. He organized teachers to train the people in the way of God (17:7-9) READ

2. He organized all the men in Judah into military units (1.6 million)...

3. Other nations feared, respected, and submitted to Judah....

4. He set up a system of judges and chose men who were honest and capable....

5. He had ships built for trade...

6. He trusted God, and God delivered him from the enemy by confusing them and causing them to kill one another....

7. Judah had one of its longest periods of peace and prosperity...

8. Since the Kingdom divided after Solomon’s death, it had never been as strong as it became under Jehoshaphat...

---spiritually, militarily, financially; smooth, fair government/ clockwork

II. His Short-sighted Compromises

1. The Principle of 2 Cor. 6:14 is key...turn there....

----common sense---well, not so common...

2. Jehoshaphat foolishly allied himself with King Ahab/Queen Jezebel...

----Ahab, King of Israel (north) was wicked/Baal worshipper...

3. Jehoshaphat arranged for his son, Jehoram, to marry Ahab’s

daughter, Athatliah

----remember the sermon in which I lost you all, "I"m My Own Grampa?"

===Athaliah went on to murder her own grandchildren to maintain the throne....

4. Jehoshaphat went to battle, even though warned by the prophet

Micaiah that it was not God’s will....Ahab killed....

----Jehoshaphat delivered by God....2 Chron. 18:31-32 READ

Questions: Does devotion to God free us from the responsibility to think deeply? How far ahead should we think?

III. Devout Believers Are Not Exempt from the Responsibility to Think Deeply, and We Must Think As Far Ahead As Possible

1. Because Jehoshaphat did not think deeply (he was concerned about his times--not future generations), Judah suffered immensely....

2. His dad, Asa, was godly and passed the legacy down to

Jehoshaphat...but Jehoshaphat did not make it easy for his son to be godly....

---I am going to coin a phrase: The Jehoshaphat syndrome---

refers to believers who live well, but set up others for defeat because they do not think of future consequences and implications of their compromises. They think "everything will work itself out."

3. Many Christian dads are fairly godly--but the don’t bring their sons along...moms don’t bring their daughters...

----why? Sometimes it is short-sightedness--thinking of today, not long term...

---dad never teaches son; he’ll get it at church; no discussions, not

answers to the "why" questions....

Eli....Samuel...and lots of people I know....kids not in church...

believers who live well, but set up others for defeat because they do not think of future consequences and implications of their

compromises. They think "everything will work itself out."

4. 2 Tim. 2:2---train to train...not train to learn/serve...

5. Rotten attitude: "I raised my kids"---better attitude, Psalms 71:18

Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come.

6. Another rotten attitude: What matters is the heart, not the mind!

Feelings/emotions called "my spirit" matter more than truth in my head.

7. All these attitudes reflect self-centeredness (who cares what happens when I die?) and pragmatism (if it helps me cope with life, who cares if it’s true--as long as it works)...

8. How contrary this is to a proper view of the "Kingdom of God" which has no end....WE ARE PART OF A CONTINUITY.... OUR CAUSE IS GREATER THAN OUR LIFE...OUR CONCERN BEYOND THIS DECADE AND INTO THE NEXT CENTURY...

9. We must think of how today’s "quick fixes" might affect tomorrows Christians....

(1) Parents & youth groups

(2) Being too busy....relaxed time together/margin....

(3) Divorce hurts kids for a lifetime (not resilient)

(4) Constant moves (esp. when kids are teens)

(5) Not giving kids definite, well-thought out guidelines but just

going along with what most do....

(6) Uninvolved parents

10. The Evangelical Church is being very Jehoshaphat like...

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