Sermon Titled “Look To God” (Psalm 20:7) – Sunday 25th January, 2015
Week Two – Experiencing God Series
- Psalm 20:7 “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.”
In the Old Testament, the 18th chapter of 1 Chronicles gives an account of King David’s war victories, which are notoriously significant since many of the armies he fought were substantially larger than his. When David wrote the verse above, his reference to other men trusting in chariots and horses was quite literal; he knew that his enemies found their strength and confidence in the vast number of horses and chariots they owned. But as for David and his men, they were not intimidated; they trusted in God, and God delivered them.
Another great story in the Old Testament can be found in 2 Chronicles 20. Jehoshaphat, the fourth king of Judah, learned of a pending invasion from enemies who had formed against him. Men from the territories of Ammon, Moab, and Mt. Seir, had united as one enormous army, with just one mission – to completely destroy the Israelites and take from them the land that God had given them.
Jehoshophat was by no means naive; he was fully aware that he and his people were outnumbered and militarily less equipped. But his hope did not waiver; he had faith. He stood before God, and he prayed:
- 5 Then Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the Lord before the new court, 6 and he said, “O Lord, the God of our fathers, are You not God in the heavens? And are You not ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You. 7 Did You not, O our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and give it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever? 8 They have lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary there for Your name, saying, 9 ‘Should evil come upon us, the sword, or judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before You (for Your name is in this house) and cry to You in our distress, and You will hear and deliver us.’ …………For we are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are on You.”
By the hand of God, ambushes were set up against the men of Ammon, Moab, and Mt. Seir, and in a surge of panic, those who survived the ambush turned on one another, eventually wiping themselves out. When Jehoshophat, and the men of Judah and Jerusalem, arrived on the scene and saw only dead bodies, they rejoiced and praised God. And they remembered the words of Jahaziel, who had previously declared the following prophecy:
- ‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. 16 Tomorrow march down against them. They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the gorge in the Desert of Jeruel. 17 You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’”
The thing I love about Jehoshophat’s story, is that he understood the gravity of his circumstances yet refused to believe that God could not deliver him from what would ordinarily be an impossible situation. We can draw hope from these passages of scripture, because the same God who rescued Jehoshophat all those years ago is the same God we have today. We may not always see a way out of our troubles, but God does. We just need to be willing to get down on our knees like Jehoshophat did, and pray these words:
- “God, I don’t know what to do, but You do. I cannot fight this battle alone, but I believe You are with me, and that You will help me. My eyes are on you, God.”