How many of us can say truthfully that it is difficult to praise God during times of adversity? We all know, it is easier to praise God when “life is good.” We have no problem telling everyone life is good! We have no trouble evangelizing. But can we still witness to others in time of suffering? Can we do this when we are in that place of disappointment, humiliation, sickness or disease or even fear? Whatever the circumstance, we must know if God allowed it to happen, there is a divine purpose for the child of God. Each of us must believe that all things will work together for the good of those who love him.
“Breaking the enemy stronghold through Praising God” is the truth I would like to speak about on my blog today. What would you say if I told you that praise plays a very important part in defeating your enemy. Did you also know that God inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3)? God will dwell where praise is celebrated.
When you see someone going through a difficult time, pray for them and ask God what you can do as a witness to aid them. But I challenge you, keep your eyes on them and stand back and see the salvation of GOD Almighty. There is a purpose behind all we go through. Have you ever witness someone going through some hard times and they are still thanking and praising God but nothing has changed in their circumstance. There circumstance did not stop their praise. They are still thankful and joyful, but you are perplexed and puzzled about their calm behavior. God is allowing them to demonstrate their faith in God right before your eyes. Just maybe there is something God want you to know about Him! In time, God will reveal himself not just to the person going through but the people watching them go through.
You might be asking, what does praise have to do with your victory? How can we break the enemies stronghold? I would like to bring in my friend Jehoshaphat. He understood the importance of praise in the life of a believer. Jehoshaphat was the King of Judah. The Lord Almighty was with Jehoshaphat because he followed the example of his father (ancestry) David. He refused to follow Baal (false god) but sought the God of his father and walked in (obeyed) His commandments. Because of his obedience, the Lord established the kingdom in his hand and all of Judah brought tribute to Jehoshaphat, and he had great wealth and honor. Jehoshaphat was known also for removing pagan worship from Judah.
Even though Jehoshaphat was blessed with great wealth and honor it did not mean he was free of adversity and challenges as the king of Judah. Because we are children of God it doesn’t mean that we will be free from adversity. One thing we do know, whatever the battle, it belongs to God and He alone will see us through. Jehoshaphat found out the key to his victory.
One of the greatest challenges Jehoshaphat had to face would be found in 2 Chronicles, Chapter 20, Jehoshaphat faces war. The Moabites, Ammonites and some Meunites came to start a war with Jehosphaphat. Messengers told him that a large army is coming against you from Edom. Jehosphaphat feared and set himself to seek the Lord and proclaimed a fast throughout all of Judah. Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the Lord. Jehoshaphat stood in the congregation of Judah and Jerusalem in the house of the Lord, and this is Jehoshaphat’s prayer to the Almighty God.
Lord God of our ancestors, you are the God in heaven. You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. You have power and strength, so no one can stand against you. Our God, you forced out the people who lived in this land as your people Israel moved in. You gave this land forever to the descendants of your friend Abraham. they lived in this land and built a Temple for you. They said, if trouble comes upon us, or war, punishment, sickness or hunger, we will stand before you and before this Temple where you have chosen to be worshiped. We will cry out to you when we are in trouble, then you will hear and save us. But now here are men from Ammon, Moab and Edom who would not let the Israelites enter their lands when the Israelites came from Egypt. So the Israelites turned away and did not destroy them. they have come to force us out of your land which you gave us as our own. Our God, punish those people. We have no power against this large army that is attacking us. We don’t know what to do, so we look to you for help.
Everyone was on one accord. Then the spirit of the Lord entered Jahaziel (Zechariah’s son.) Jahaziel, a Levite stood up in the meeting and said, “Listen to me, King Jehoshaphat and all the people living in Judah and Jerusalem”. The Lord God Almighty says to you: ‘Don’t be afraid or discouraged because of this large army. the battle is not your battle, it is God’s. Tomorrow go down there and fight those people. Not only did God tell them not to be afraid, but God tells them the enemy’s plan. God said they will come up through the cliff of Ziz. You will find them at the end of the ravine that leads to the Desert of Jeruel. God promised them that they will not need to fight in this battle. Just stand strong in your places and you will see the Lord save you. The spirit of the Lord concludes by telling Judah and Jerusalem don’t be afraid or discouraged because the Lord is with you. The God speaking to Jehoshaphat is the same God that is speaking to you right in the midst of your circumstance.
Here comes the main point of my blog. Jehoshaphat bowed facedown on the ground. All the people of Judah and Jerusalem bowed down before the Lord and worshiped Him. The Levites from Kohathite and Korahite people stood up and praised the Lord, the God of Israel, with very loud voices.
So Jehoshaphat and his army was obedient to the voice of the Lord and they rose early in the morning and went forth into the wilderness of Teko. He tells the people of God to “Believe in the Lord your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall you prosper. Then Jehoshaphat appointed singers unto the Lord to praise the beauty of His holiness. How will singers help them to defeat the enemy? Where praises go up, blessings come down. They went out before the army and to say PRAISE the LORD; for his mercy endure for ever.
GOD CREATED US TO PRAISE HIM.
Here comes the climax (2 Chronicles 20:22). And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambush against the children of Ammon, Moab, and Edon who came up against Judah and they were defeated. The Ammonites and Moabites attacked the Edomites, destroying them completely. After they killed the Edomites, they killed each other. The enemies of Jehoshaphat turned againist each other. When the men from Judah came to a place where they could see the desert, the looked and all they could see was the dead bodies lying on the ground. No one escaped. Jehoshaphat and his army took their valuables. they found many supplies, much clothing and many valuable things. There was so much for them to carry away that it took them three days to gather it all. On the fourth day Jehoshaphat and his army met at the Valley of Beracah. There they blessed God. The name “BERACAH” comes from the verb “BARAK,” MEANING EITHER TO KNEEL OR TO BLESS.
Then Jehoshaphat led his army back to Jerusalem. The Lord had kept His promise and they were happy because their enemies were defeated. They entered Jerusalem with harps, lyres, and trumpets and went to the Temple of the Lord. They went to church to offer praise and thanksgiving to our Faithful God. They lifted their hearts in praise.
Jehoshaphat’s victory over his enemies began with a prayer meeting. Prayer and fasting was the weapon they used to assist them in defeating their enemy. Yes again, they were on one accord. He would seek the face of God in regard to their circumstance. God guided Jehoshaphat through his obedience and trust in Him. God had promised, you will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart (Jeremiah 29:13). Open your heart to God. Let God show you the plan He has to defeat your enemies. Praise God in the midst of your trouble. Thank Him for what he alone will do to deliver you. I challenge you again to lift up your hands to the Lord in the midst of your circumstance and stand back and see the salvation of the Lord right before your eyes.
In conclusion, 2 Chronicles 20: 27 – 30:
Then they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, and Jehoshaphat in the forefront of them, to go again to Jerusalem with joy; for the Lord had made them to rejoice over their enemies. And they came to Jerusalem with stringed instruments and harps and trumpets unto the house of the Lord. And the fear of God was on all the kingdoms of those countries, when they had heard that the Lord fought against the enemies of Israel. So the realm of Jehoshaphat was quiet; for his God gave him rest round about.
Our God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34), what he did for Jehoshaphat and the children of Israel, he will do for you. He alone will give you REST!
The key to your VICTORY: PRAYER + FASTING+ PRAISE and WORSHIP = VICTORY
All of you who fear God, come and listen, and I will tell you what he has done for me. I cried out to Him with my mouth and praised him with my tongue. If I had known of any sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened to me. But GOD has listened; he has heard my prayer. Praise God, who did not ignore my prayer or hold back his love from me.
Your Faith Isn’t Complete Without Praise!
Don’t wait on God to bless You! Bless Him first with your Praise and then watch God Bless You!
To all Truth Seekers, God Bless You!