Summary: Asa turned to God in His time of trouble, but who do we turn to? God sends the trouble sometimes so that we will turn to Him!
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Pastor James May
WHO DO YOU TURN TO?
2 Chronicles 15:1-7, "And the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded: And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin; The LORD is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you. Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law. But when they in their trouble did turn unto the LORD God of Israel, and sought him, he was found of them. And in those times there was no peace to him that went out, nor to him that came in, but great vexations were upon all the inhabitants of the countries. And nation was destroyed of nation, and city of city: for God did vex them with all adversity. Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be rewarded."
This story actually begins with King Jeroboam. Jeroboam had rebelled against God and through his power as King of Israel he had brought Israel down into idolatry and created gods made with gold. Jeroboam’s rebellion knew no bounds and now he was determined to make the Southern Kingdom of Judah a part of his idolatrous kingdom. He raised an army of 800,000 and met the army of Judah on the battlefield. Judah was outnumbered 2 to 1 but God would not allow Judah to be defeated because of the faith and trust that the King of Judah, Abijah, had for God. Judah defeated Jeroboam that day and 500,000 Israelis were killed for their rebellion against God by the army of Judah.
The Bible says that Abijah waxed mighty and eventually married 14 wives while he fathered 22 sons and sixteen daughters. (How would you like to support that family?) One of those sons named Asa was destined to become the next King of Israel.
Asa had become King of Israel and was now facing to face a great battle against the Ethiopian army that was determined to conquer the land of Israel. Asa’s army had 300,000 spearmen with large shields and 280,000 archers. The Ethiopians numbered 1,000,000 plus 300 chariots. Besides being outnumbered 2 to 1, Asa had no heavy weaponry and was facing 300 chariots, which were the tanks of ancient armies. The prospects of victory in the eyes of flesh are not very good but Asa remembered the great victories of God in the past and he placed his faith in God for this victory also. God never fails and Israel won the day without a fight.
Have you ever tried to whip the devil on your own terms? It is an impossible task. The powers of darkness are far greater than your ability to overcome them. God says that we must place our trust in His ability to deliver us; then will we see the victory.
Asa had begun to make great strides in bringing Israel back to the True God. He had already destroyed many of the idolatrous temples and restored real worship in Israel but that didn’t mean that he wasn’t going to fight some strong battles.
Too many times we, as Christians, think that if we do everything right and we are living a holy sanctified life that we will be immune from bad things coming our way. Friend, if you try to live for the Lord you can be assured that Satan will not let you have an easy time doing so.
God allows those battles to come against you to test your faith but more so to let His power and glory be demonstrated in the deliverance that will come because of your faithfulness to Him and His faithfulness to you.
As Asa is returning from the victory over the Ethiopians, Azariah who was a prophet of God meets him. Azariah’s words were an encouragement to Asa to continue on his journey with the Lord and to remain faithful to the ways of the One True God.