Wednesday, April 13, 2016

2 Chronicles 20: 15, 17, 21-22

Recently, my heart has been troubled and my spirit disturbed by all the bad things happening in the world: multitudes being sucked in and deceived by the feel-good teaching in the seeker-sensitive, culturally-relevant Church; wars and rumors of wars, nations pitted against nation as proud leaders jockey for more power; horrifying famines and deadly diseases afflicting millions of innocent people; shocking earthquakes and devastating storms; unemployment and financial disaster wrecking lives and livelihoods; increased immorality, violence, and hatred. You don't have to look far to be appalled by the headline news. 
In my despair, I poured out my soul like the Psalmist. "Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me?" (Psalm 42:5) I then opened my Bible to 2 Chronicles 20 and God gave me these words:  
2 Chronicles 20: 15, 17, 21-22
This is what the LORD says to you: 
"Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God's."
"You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the LORD will be with you." 
Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the LORD and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: 
       "Give thanks to the LORD, 
       for his love endures forever." 
As they began to sing and praise, the LORD set ambushes against the enemy.
This prompted me to take up my position, stand firm and wait for the deliverance of the Lord. Immediately, I began to sing and praise the Lord like the Israelites. As I did the Lord, indeed, set the ambush against the enemy. The power of praise set my heart, mind and soul free, and armed me with strength.  

I will praise You, Lord, with all my heart;
      I will tell of all the marvelous things You have done.
I will be filled with joy because of You.
      I will sing praises to Your name, O Most High.
You are a shelter for the oppressed,
      a refuge in times of trouble.
Those who know Your name trust in You,
      for You, O Lord, do not abandon those who search for You.
Lord, have mercy on me.
      See how my enemies torment me.
      Snatch me back from the jaws of death.
 Save me so I can praise You publicly,
      so I can rejoice that You have rescued me. 
(Psalm 9)
 I love You, Lord;
      You are my strength.
You are my rock, my fortress, and my savior;
      In You I find protection.
   You are my shield, the power that saves me,
      and my place of safety.
 I called on You, Lord, who is worthy of praise,
      and You saved me from my enemies.
 You reached down from heaven and rescued me,
      from those who hated me and were too strong for me.
 They attacked me at a moment when I was in distress,
      but You supported me.

 You led me to a place of safety;
      You rescued me because You delight in me.
 You, Lord, rewarded me for doing right;
      and restored me because of my innocence.

 You light a lamp for me.
      You, my God, light up my darkness.
In Your strength I can crush an army;
      with my God I can scale any wall. 
 Your ways are perfect.
      Everything You promise proves true.
      You are a shield for all who look to You for protection.

You arm me with strength,
      and make my way perfect.
 You make me as surefooted as a deer,
      enabling me to stand on mountain heights.
 You train my hands for battle;
      and strengthen my arm to draw a bronze bow.
 You have given me Your shield of victory.
      Your right hand supports me;
      Your help has made me great.
You gave me victory over my accusers.
The Lord lives! Praise to my Rock!
      May the God of my salvation be exalted!
(Psalm 18)

Scour the Psalms and write down all the ways God is strong, mighty, and powerful. If you dwell in the shelter of the Most High, then His strength, might and power are in you. Rest on His promises. This battle is His, not yours. 
Whatever is troubling your spirit today, remember what the Lord says to you in His Word. Take up your position, stand firm, do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out and face tomorrow, the Lord will be with you. His Word says so. Do you believe Him? 
Open your mouth and begin to loudly sing and praise Him. The enemy that's attacking your heart, mind, soul, and strength will be destroyed by the dynamite of praise! 

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