Summary: How the prayer of Jehoshaphat and the unity of the people of Judah defeated the enemy and never lifted a hand.
JEHOSHAPHAT (HE WHO PLEADS)
Intro: In the reading of the text you find that some of the people of Judah have come to Jehoshaphat and told him the Moabites and the Ammonites and others are planning to attack him. This scares Jehoshaphat. Remember at this time the kingdom is divided into the Northern Kingdom (Israel) and the Southern Kingdom (Judah) and there was no unity. Immediately in verse 3 the Scripture declares that. “Jehoshaphat feared and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.” Thus became the meaning of his name. I want to preach this day on the meaning of Jehoshaphat and how we need to apply that meaning to all of us, JEHOSHAPHAT (HE WHO PLEADS).
I. THERE WAS A STRONG ENEMY
A. He was facing the Moabites and the Ammonites and others
B. Moab and Ammon and small countries east of Judah.
C. Both the Moabites and Ammonites were descendants of Lot and bore a curse because of the sins of Lot’s daughters
D. Moab was Ammon’s uncle. Ammon’s father Benammi was Moab’s brother
E. The sin God held to their charge can be found in Deuteronomy 23:4 “Because they met you not with bread and with water in the way, when ye came out of Egypt, and because they hired against thee Balaam the son of Beor of Pethor of Mesopotamia to curse thee”
F. The reason they were strong is the were coming in a pack and they had nothing to lose
G. Not only was it the Moabites and the Ammonites but the children of Mount Seir.
H. When the devil comes at you often times he is bringing all he has got
II. THERE WAS SERIOUS PRAYER BEING MADE
A. Jehoshaphat wasted no time getting down to business with God
B. Verses 3-12 is nothing but prayer
C. Notice in verse 4 how the congregation gathered themselves to pray. Jehoshaphat did not have to round them up. They knew something was wrong when he called the fast.
D. Jehoshaphat was having a hard time dealing with this in verse 10-11
E. In verse 10 he says we couldn’t invade them when we came out of Egypt. We could have destroyed them then and they know it. In verse 11 he says and this is how they are going to show their gratitude.
F. In verse 12 he begs God to judge them. He realizes that Judah is not able to defend herself the divided state it is in.
G. There comes a time when people are going to have to depend on God and him alone. In this church world we are living in you can count the real churches you can depend on on one hand and have fingers left over.
III. THERE WAS A LOT AT STAKE
A. In verse 13 we find out how much was a stake and how much was riding on Jehoshaphat’s prayer
B. (vs. 13) And all Judah stood before the Lord, with their little ones, their wives, and their children
C. Have you ever thought about how much is riding on your prayers
IV. THERE WAS INSTRUCTIONS FROM THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD
A. Because of obedience and prayer and unity the Spirit of the Lord came with instructions
B. Here is the key, many time the Spirit comes with instructions and they are not followed or they are just tossed to the side
C. Here they were followed by a young man named Jahaziel
D. He gives all of Judah instructions from the Lord
E. If the Lord sends us instructions He means for us to follow them.
F. The people of Judah did not kill the first person. They all turned and killed themselves
G. Evil against evil will eventually manifest itself
V. THERE WAS A SUPERABUNDANCE OF SPOIL
A. (v. 27) There was more spoil than they could carry away
B. If we can get to where we could plead with God and keep His instructions until the battle is over the spoil will be more than we could ask for
VI. THERE WAS SPIRITUAL JOY AMONGST THOSE WHO FOLLWED THE SPIRIT
A. (v.27) When they returned to Jerusalem with Jehoshaphat leading the way they returned with joy for the Lord had made them to rejoice over their enemies
Close: Often times we fail to seek God in times of trouble of even at all. In this situation had Jehoshaphat not plead with God many families may have been destroyed because of his idleness. Let’s take time to plead with God for things and needs in our life and in our local church.