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Jehoshaphat

Jehoshaphat

II Chronicles 17:3 – 20:25

2 Ch 17:3 The LORD was with Jehoshaphat because he followed the example of his father David’s earlier days and did not seek the Baals,

2 Ch 17:4 but sought the God of his father, followed His commandments, (4) and did not act as Israel did.

2 Ch 17:5 So the LORD established the kingdom in his control, and all Judah brought tribute to Jehoshaphat, and (5) he had great riches and honor.

2 Ch 17:6 He took great pride in the ways of the LORD and again (6) removed the high places and the Asherim from Judah.

Why did God establish Jehoshaphat’s kingdom with great riches, and honor?

What did Jehoshaphat take great pride in?

What would this type of leadership look like in today’s world?

2 Ch 17:7  In the third year of his reign he sent out the following officials to teach in the cities of Judah: Benhail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Micaiah.

2 Ch 17:8  They were accompanied by nine Levites and two priests.

2 Ch 17:9 They taught in Judah, having (9) the book of the law of the LORD with them; and they went throughout all the cities of Judah and taught among the people…

What was the King hoping to accomplish by sending out officials to all the cities in his kingdom?

2 Ch 17:10 Now (10) the dread of the LORD was on all the kingdoms of the lands which were around Judah, so that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat.

2 Ch 18:1  When King Jehoshaphat of Judah became rich and famous, he arranged a marriage between a member of his family and the family of King Ahab of Israel.

 2 Ch 18:2  A number of years later Jehoshaphat went to the city of Samaria to visit Ahab. To honor Jehoshaphat and those with him, Ahab had a large number of sheep and cattle slaughtered for a feast. He tried to persuade Jehoshaphat to join him in attacking the city of Ramoth in Gilead.

King Jehoshaphat erred by allying himself with King Ahab, an evil king from the Northern Kingdom (The 10 northern tribes of Israel).   Later, Jehoshaphat  escapes an ambush, thanks to The Lord’s divine protection, and learns a valuable lesson.

2 Ch 19:1 Then Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned in safety to his house in Jerusalem.

2 Ch 19:2 (1) Jehu the son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him and said to King Jehoshaphat, “(2) Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the LORD and (3) so bring wrath on yourself from the LORD?

2 Ch 19:3 “But (4) there is some good in you, for (5) you have removed the Asheroth from the land and you (6) have set your heart to seek God.”

What is the lesson that Jehoshaphat learned after his association with King Ahab?

What might we unwittingly bring upon ourselves by helping wicked people or by joining with people who hate the Lord?

2 Ch 19:4 So Jehoshaphat lived in Jerusalem and went out again among the people from Beersheba to the hill country of Ephraim and (7) brought them back to the LORD, the God of their fathers.

2 Ch 19:5 He appointed (8) judges in the land in all the fortified cities of Judah, city by city.

2 Ch 19:6 He said to the judges, “Consider what you are doing, for (9) you do not judge for man but for the LORD who is with you when you render judgment.

2 Ch 19:7 “Now then let the fear of the LORD be upon you; be very careful what you do, for the LORD our God will (10) have no part in unrighteousness (11) or partiality or the taking of a bribe.”

2 Ch 19:8 In Jerusalem also Jehoshaphat appointed some (12) of the Levites and priests, and some of the heads of the fathers’ households of Israel, for the judgment of the LORD and to judge disputes among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

2 Ch 19:9 Then he charged them saying, “Thus you shall do in the fear of the LORD, faithfully and wholeheartedly.

2 Ch 19:10 “(13) Whenever any dispute comes to you from your brethren who live in their cities, between blood and blood, between law and commandment, statutes and ordinances, you shall warn them so that they may not be guilty before the LORD, and (14) wrath may not come on you and your brethren. Thus you shall do and you will not be guilty.

2 Ch 19:11 “Behold, Amariah the chief priest will be over you in (15) all that pertains to the LORD, and Zebadiah the son of Ishmael, the ruler of the house of Judah, in all that pertains to the king. Also the Levites shall be officers before you. (16) Act resolutely, and the LORD be with the upright.”

How did King Jehoshaphat propose to bring the people back to the Lord throughout all the land of Judah?

2 Ch 20:1 Now it came about after this that the sons of Moab and the sons of Ammon, together with some of the (1) Meunites, came to make war against Jehoshaphat.

2 Ch 20:2 Then some came and reported to Jehoshaphat, saying, “A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, out of Aram and behold, they are in (2) Hazazon-tamar (that is Engedi).”

2 Ch 20:3 Jehoshaphat was afraid and (3) turned his attention to seek the LORD, and (4) proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.

2 Ch 20:4 So Judah gathered together to (5) seek help from the LORD; they even came from all the cities of Judah to seek the LORD.

2 Ch 20:5 Then Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD before the new court,

 2Ch 20:6 and he said, “O LORD, the God of our fathers, (6) are You not God in the heavens? And (7) 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.

2 Ch 20:7 “Did You not, O our God, drive out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel and (8) give it to the descendants of (9) Abraham Your friend forever?

2 Ch 20:8 “They have lived in it, and have built You a sanctuary there for Your name, saying,

2 Ch 20:9 ‘(10) Should evil come upon us, the sword, or judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we will stand before this house and before You (for (11) Your name is in this house) and cry to You in our distress, and You will hear and deliver us.’

What should a country’s leader do when faced with a national threat?  Should he ally himself with other leaders that oppose the God of the Bible, or don’t fear the Lord?

2 Ch 20:12 “O our God, (15) will You not judge them? For we are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but (16) our eyes are on You.”

2 Ch 20:13 All Judah was standing before the LORD, with their infants, their wives and their children.

Who represents a nation?  Whose prayers are heard by the Lord?  Just the chosen leaders?  Just the men?  Just those who are adults? 

Can God intervene against weapons, and against vast numbers of opponents, despite physical limitations?  Read how Jehoshaphat responded to this national threat, and how the people obeyed God in 2Chronicles 20:18-25.  Are there lessons here for us today?  How should we in our country handle the teachings of the Bible?  God’s instructions?  Jesus’ commands?

Did the King of Judah and all the Judeans obey God’s instructions when the Ammonites, the Moabites, and the Meunites made war with Judah?  What were God’s instructions?

What was the result when the people obeyed God’s instructions?

Good leaders learn from their mistakes and submit to God’s authority.  People that repent and turn to God for help find blessings.  God is our sure help to win the battle against the influence of evil in our society.

Pastor Gene

 

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